Additional Thoughts on the Fujifilm X-T30 II (& X-T3 WW)

Fujifilm officially announced the X-T30 II today. This “new” camera is just like the “old” camera (including the X-T30 nameplate on the front… it says “X-T30” and not “X-T30 II”), except for a few key things. The rear screen is higher resolution. The camera has some additional built-in memory. It has (basically) the same firmware as the X-T4, X-S10, and X-E4. Otherwise, the two models are identical.

In my article Thoughts on the Upcoming Fujifilm X-T30 II I basically blasted Fujifilm for not offering a firmware update to the X-T30, but selling that firmware update as a “new” camera. I also stated:

It is possible that the X-T30 doesn’t have the internal memory, processing power, or heat dispersion capacity to receive this firmware update. It is possible that there is a hardware limitation that prevents it.

It seems that “internal memory” was indeed an issue, although I believe that the memory issue has more to do with the video side of things than still pictures. That’s just my opinion, not anything I have any evidence for. So the X-T30 II firmware can’t just be uploaded onto the X-T30, but a scaled down version, perhaps without the improved video features, certain could, and definitely should! It’s long, long overdue.

Fujifilm, if you happen to read this, please visit the comments section of my previous article. These are your customers, and those are their opinions.

The X-T30 II will be available on October 21, and if you have been thinking about getting an X-T30, you are better off waiting until October and buying the X-T30 II. I assume that the “original” X-T30 will be discontinued and discounted around that time, so perhaps a good deal on that model will be coming soon.

Also announced was the X-T3 WW, which is an X-T3 without a battery charger, and a $100 cheaper price-tag. The X-T3 and X-T3 WW are 100% identical. If you don’t need a battery charger, this might be a good option to save a little money.

Thoughts on the Upcoming Fujifilm X-T30 II

I told you a couple weeks ago that Fujifilm was going to release one more X-series camera before the end of the year, and I speculated what it might be. Fujirumors has let the cat out of the bag, and now we know it will be the X-T30 II, which will be an X-T30 but with “firmware on steroids.” I have a lot of thoughts (and emotions) on this, which I’ll share below.

First, I do not think this is the smartest move by Fujifilm. Last year I said, “If Fujifilm were to update the firmware on the X-T3 and X-T30 to breathe new excitement into these models, these cameras could still be sold for another two years easily.” Some people are looking for an excuse to upgrade from the X-T10 or X-T20 (and maybe a few other models), and whether the camera is the X-T30 II or an X-T30 with a major firmware update doesn’t matter to them. They’ll buy either. Those with an X-T30 aren’t likely to upgrade to the X-T30 II (I know I won’t).

All this does to X-T30 owners is make unhappy customers. I know that Fujifilm has no obligation to offer firmware updates. I was very happy with the my X-T30 when I bought it almost two-and-a-half years ago, and I’m still happy with it. But when a company does a certain practice (such as Kaizen firmware updates) for so long, it becomes expected. It’s not only expected that Fujifilm would do this, it makes sense for them to do so, as it creates happy customers, which means they’re more likely to be repeat customers and even unofficial brand ambassadors. Offering a major Kaizen firmware update to the X-T30 would thrill X-T30 owners and make them very happy customers (a.k.a. repeat customers who tell their friends how awesome Fujifilm cameras are), and it would breathe new life of excitement into the X-T30, increasing sales from those looking to upgrade from older models. It’s a win-win!

Instead, X-T30 owners will have to shell out $900 (or whatever the X-T30 II will cost) to get the firmware update that they’ve been hoping for. They won’t—I won’t, anyway. It seems like a greedy move. Fujifilm painted themselves with a seemingly negative light. They did it to themselves, I’m just pointing out the obvious that everyone sees.

That is, if indeed the X-T30 II is an X-T30 with nothing more than a firmware update. It is possible that the X-T30 doesn’t have the internal memory, processing power, or heat dispersion capacity to receive this firmware update. It is possible that there is a hardware limitation that prevents it. Maybe Fujifilm was attempting to do this firmware update when they realized they couldn’t, and thus the X-T30 II was born. I have no idea if this is the case or not. Emotionally I hope it is (because it means that Fujifilm isn’t driven by mere greed). Logically I hope it is not (because it means that a firmware update is still possible for the X-T30, although that seems unlikely at this point). Internally the X-T30 II might not be 100% identical to the X-T30—it’s impossible to know right now, but either way there’s a negative aspect to it for Fujifilm customers.

The X-T30 II is actually a much-needed camera in the Fujifilm lineup. Really, the X-T30 with a Kaizen firmware update is what was needed, but since that’s apparently not happening, X-T30 II will serve as a stop-gap between the X-T30 and future X-T40. You see, there are people who don’t want the X-S10 because of the PASM dial and non-retro design, who don’t want the X-E4 because it doesn’t have enough dials, switches and knobs, who don’t want an X-T4 because it is too big and expensive, and who don’t want the X-T30 because it doesn’t have all of the JPEG options that those newer cameras have. The X-T30 II will be the camera of choice for those people.

There’s also an implication here for the X-T3. Those who have an X-T3, like those with an X-T30, have been hoping for a Kaizen update for nearly two years. Since the X-T30 isn’t getting one, the X-T3 isn’t likely to get one, either. Want a firmware update for the X-T30? Buy an X-T30 II! Want a firmware update for the X-T3? Buy an X-T4! That’s the message, unfortunately.

The Fujifilm X-T30 II will be announced on September 2, the same day that the Fujinon 33mm f/1.4 will be announced.

I don’t think that Fujifilm regularly reads this website. I don’t think they were even aware of Fuji X Weekly until a little over a year ago. I do believe that they have mixed feelings about this blog, because I often use a competitor’s brand name (Kodak, Kodachrome, Portra, etc.), which seems silly to me as Kodak hasn’t been a major player in photography in awhile, yet I bring them a lot of new customers due to the film simulation recipes. They also don’t like articles where I mention yet-to-be-announced products (such as this one). I don’t have a voice at the company, but I wish that I did because I do believe I have a pretty good pulse of their customers—thanks to you, the greatest community in all of photography! In the off chance that Fujifilm reads this article, I would like your opinions to be included. If you’d like Fujifilm to release a firmware update for the X-T30 and X-T3, let them know by commenting. They might not ever read your thoughts and ideas, but they might, so please let them know, and maybe—just maybe—it will make a difference.

See also: Additional Thoughts on the Fujifilm X-T30 II

Fujifilm X-Trans III + X-T3 & X-T30 Patron Early-Access Film Simulation Recipe: Kodacolor VR

Inside City Creek – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

This film simulation recipe was an experiment. I started out with my Fujicolor 100 Industrial recipe, but instead of using a cool White Balance with a warm White Balance Shift, I did the opposite: I used a warm White Balance with a cool shift. After many adjustments to various settings, this ended up not resembling the Fujicolor 100 Industrial recipe much at all, but it does have a great vintage print-film aesthetic that I really like.

I wasn’t sure at first which film this recipe most closely resembled (since it wasn’t intended to mimic any specific film), although it seemed to have some similarities to Kodacolor VR. I already have a Kodacolor recipe, which does a great job at mimicking Kodacolor VR; this recipe and that one look somewhat similar, but definitely different. Then I ran across some pictures that looked very similar to the ones you see in this article, and it turned out that they were shot on Kodacolor VR film that had expired. So I think this recipe, while it does resemble Kodacolor VR, as well as ColorPlus 200 (which is a direct descendant of that film), it most closely looks like Kodacolor VR that’s been stored a little past its expiration date. Of course, one film can have many different looks, depending on how it was shot, developed, scanned and/or printed, and (in this case) stored, so this recipe serves as a nice alternative to my original Kodacolor recipe.

Leaning Tower – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

The Fuji X Weekly app is free, yet becoming a Fuji X Weekly Patron unlocks the best app experience! One benefit of being a Patron is you get early access to some new film simulation recipes. These early-access recipes will eventually become available free to everyone in time, including this new one. In fact, many early-access recipes have already been publicly published on this blog and the app, so now everyone can use them. Patrons help support Fuji X Weekly and, really, without them there would be no app. So I want to give a special “thank you” to all of the Patrons!

This new Patron early-access recipe is compatible with Fujifilm X-Trans III and X-Trans IV cameras. For those with newer cameras, set Color Chrome FX Blue to Off, Clarity to 0 (or perhaps -2), and I’d suggest Grain size Large, but use Small if you prefer.

If you are a Fuji X Weekly Patron, it’s available to you right now on the app!

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this “Kodacolor VR” film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

Summer Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Corner Through Leaves – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Stones & Glass Ceiling – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Glass – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Building a Building – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Small Spaces Between – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Twilight Telephone Poles – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Stoneground – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Goes for Gold – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Night Parking – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Doki Doki – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Escalators – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Downtown Buildings – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Coming Train – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Trax – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Waiting on the Platform – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Glass & Sky – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Tall Downtown Buildings – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Find these film simulation recipes and many more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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Fujifilm X-T3 & X-T30 Film Simulation Recipe: Kodak Portra 400 v2

Walking on a Bridge – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Kodak Portra 400 v2”

This film simulation recipe is a slight variation of my Kodak Portra 400 recipe. It came about after I made a Portra 400 v2 recipe for the newer X-Trans IV cameras, which was created after studying actual examples of the film provided to me by a reader. I wanted to create a similar modification for the X-T3 and X-T30, which became this recipe. One film can have many different looks, depending on how it’s shot, developed, and scanned and/or printed, so this isn’t necessarily a “better” recipe, just a slightly different take on recreating the film’s aesthetic. I really like this one, and I think you will, too!

Portra 400, which is a color negative film, was introduced by Kodak in 1998. It was redesign in 2006 and again in 2010. As the name implies, it’s intended for portrait photography, but can be used for many other types of photography. It’s similar to Portra 160, but with more contrast, saturation and grain. Believe it or not, ISO 400 was considered “high ISO” by many photographers back in the film days, and Portra 400 was one of the absolute best “high ISO” color films ever made. Interestingly, Kodak briefly made a black-and-white version of Portra 400!

Downtownscape – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Kodak Portra 400 v2”

This isn’t exactly a brand-new recipe. It was published as a Patron early-access recipe on the Fuji X Weekly App back on December 1st, so Patrons have had access to it for quite some time. Now another early-access recipe has replaced it, so this one is available to everyone! If you are a Fuji X Weekly Patron, be sure to check out the new early-access recipe in the app.

Classic Chrome
Dynamic Range: DR-Auto
Highlight: -1
Shadow: -1
Color: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -2
Grain Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
White Balance: Daylight, +2 Red & -6 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this “Kodak Portra 400 v2” film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

Blackberry Forest Evening – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Three Backlit Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Tiny Red Berries – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Broken and Boarded – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Window to the City – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Lululemon – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Two Tall Buildings – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Hotel – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Two Cranes – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
A Downtown Cityscape – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Moffatt Ct. – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Find these film simulation recipes and many more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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7 New Fujicolor Pro 400H Film Simulation Recipes!

Pink Roses – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Fujicolor Pro 400H Box Speed”

In my last post, entitled A Different Approach, I shared Anders Lindborg‘s new take on film simulation recipes, which included seven different Fujicolor Pro 160NS recipes that he invented. This is Part 2 of that article. Below you’ll find another seven recipes, this time for Fujicolor Pro 400H! If you haven’t read the first post, you’ll want to do that now, because this will make a lot more sense if you have that prerequisite understanding.

If you don’t want to take the time to read it (or if you’ve already forgotten), here’s a quick summery. Anders’ approach is to have a good base recipe that works well in most circumstances, but also have subtle variations of that recipe, that mimic pushed and pulled film, for when the conditions require either less contrast (pulled) or more contrast (pushed). You can use all seven Custom Presets in the Q Menu to save each of these recipes if you want, or just save the base recipe (called “Box Speed”) and adjust to the various variations on-the-fly, or save the base setting and have the variations programmed into X RAW Studio. Also, by design these recipes will work with any film simulation, even though they call for PRO Neg. Hi.

Like the 160NS recipe, I’m only including the “Box Speed” version in the Fuji X Weekly app, and I encourage you to use the Notes section under the recipe to store the pushed and pulled variations. These seven Fujicolor Pro 400H recipes are compatible with the Fujifilm X-T3 and X-T30 cameras. If you have a newer X-Trans IV camera (X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10 and X-E4), Anders recommends setting Clarity to -3 and Grain to Weak & Large. If you have an X-Trans III camera, ignore Color Chrome Effect; the results will be slightly different, but it will still produce good results. For Pushed +3 and Pushed +4, feel free to try Grain Strong.

This recipe wasn’t intended to mimic Fujicolor Pro 400H film, but it does resemble it fairly well. A lot of people like to overexpose real 400H film to get a pastel look; unfortunately, this recipe won’t achieve that particular aesthetic (but look here and here). Anders created this recipe by modifying his Pro 160NS settings; I made a couple of small modifications to it, but mostly these settings are created by him. Thank you, Anders, for creating these recipes and allowing me to share them!

Fujicolor Pro 400H Box Speed

Pops of Red – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: 0
Shadow: 0
Color: +1
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

Free Pie – South Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Birthday Girl Coloring – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Shelf Plant – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pulled -1

Snail – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: -1
Color: +1
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pulled -1: HL & SH -1.

Green Aspen Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Tank Cars – Uintah, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Yellow Cat – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pulled -2

Hazy Mountain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -2
Shadow: -1
Color: 0
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +1 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pulled -2: HL -2, SH -1, CLR 0.

Box Cars – Uintah, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Suburban Sunset – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Hazy Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pushed +1

Yucca Leaves – Uintah, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +1
Shadow: 0
Color: +1
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pushed +1: HL +1.

Red Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Tree & Dark Clouds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
David Baldwin – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pushed +2

Wood Stripes – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +2
Shadow: 0
Color: +2
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pushed +2: HL +2, CLR +2.

Mountain Biking – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Radar Mountain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Bloomin’ Onion – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pushed +3

Three Artificial Plants – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +2
Shadow: +1
Color: +3
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -3
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pushed +3: HL +2, SH +1, CLR +3.

Berry Bush Leaves #1 – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Berry Bush Leaves #2 – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Sky Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Fujicolor Pro 400H Pushed +4

Old Phone – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

PRO Neg. Hi
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +2
Color: +4
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Grain: Weak
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: -4
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -3 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

If you are adding this recipe to the Notes in the app, consider using this abbreviation: Pushed +4: HL +3, SH +2, CLR +4, SHARP -4.

Berry Bush Leaves #3 – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Green – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Landscape Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Below are examples of using the Fujicolor Pro 160NS Box Speed recipe using other film simulations. You can do this with all of the pull and push variants, too, although I didn’t supply any examples of those because this article is already very long.

PRO Neg. Hi “Box Speed”
Provia “Box Speed”
Velvia “Box Speed”
Astia “Box Speed”
Classic Chrome “Box Speed”
PRO Neg. Std “Box Speed”
Eterna “Box Speed”
Acros “Box Speed”
Monochrome “Box Speed”

Find this film simulation recipe on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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Fujifilm X-Trans III + X-T30 & X-T3 Film Simulation Recipe: Chrome Bypass

Don’t Walk Under Falling Bicycles – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Chrome Bypass”

There are a number of X-Trans IV film simulation recipes that I’ve had multiple requests to create versions for that are compatible with X-Trans III and X-T3 and X-T30 cameras. LomoChrome Metropolis and Bleach Bypass are two that are commonly requested. These recipes require JPEG settings that don’t exist on the “older” cameras, including the Classic Negative or Eterna Bleach Bypass film simulations. I knew it would be impossible to recreate those recipes for X-Trans III and the X-T3 and X-T30 cameras, but I wanted to get as close as I could. After much experimenting, I came up with some settings that are sometimes similar to the LomoChrome Metropolis recipe and are sometimes similar to the Bleach Bypass recipe, and sometimes not like either.

What the LomoChrome Metropolis and the Bleach Bypass recipes have in common are that they’re both high in contrast and low in color saturation. There are some other similarities between them, but there’s plenty that’s different, too. This recipe with certain subjects and in certain light situations can resemble one or the other, or neither. It’s as close as I could get. If you like the LomoChrome Metropolis and Bleach Bypass recipes, this is your best bet for X-Trans III and X-T3 and X-T30 cameras (aside from doing double-exposures). While it’s not as “perfect” as I was hoping to achieve, I think it’s a pretty good recipe for capturing dramatic pictures. It’s kind of (but not really) the low saturation version of Dramatic Classic Chrome.

1100 Stop – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Chrome Bypass”

Because these settings resemble both the LomoChrome Metropolis and the Bleach Bypass film simulation recipes, I decided to name this recipe Chrome Bypass, taking a little from each name. I don’t currently have access to an X-Trans III camera, so I don’t have any samples captured with a Fujifilm X-Trans III camera, but it should look very similar.

PRO Neg. Std
Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +4
Color: -4
Color Chrome Effect: Off or N/A
Sharpness: -1
Noise Reduction: -4
Grain Effect: Strong
White Balance: Auto, +2 Red & -5 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

Sample photographs, all camera-made JPEGs, captured with a Fujifilm X-T30 using this “Chrome Bypass” film simulation recipe:

Mountain Teasels – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Cloudy Branches – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Summer Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Country Fence & Old Tires – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Tulip Pot – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Colorful Tulips – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Handy Dandy Grill – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Little Bit of Green – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Thrown Pillow – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Instax Table – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Find this film simulation recipe on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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Fujifilm X-T30 (X-Trans IV) Film Simulation Recipe: Velvia v2

Sunset Cyclists – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Velvia v2”

I’ve been wanting to create a new Velvia recipe for awhile now. The previous version is bold, but sometimes produces too much contrast. This recipe is actually a little closer to my original Velvia recipe, but with even less contrast yet with more saturation. This Velvia v2 recipe doesn’t closely mimic any specific version of Velvia film, yet it still retains an overall Velvia-like aesthetic.

Velvia is a high-saturation, low-ISO color reversal (slide) film introduced in 1990. I’ve shot many rolls of it, mostly the original ISO 50 version, but also the “new” Velvia 50, Velvia 100F and Velvia 100 emulsions. Of those films, this recipe is probably closest to Velvia 100, but not exactly like it.

Brown Reflection – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Velvia v2”

This film simulation recipe is intended for the Fujifilm X-T30 and X-T3 cameras. If you have “newer” X-Trans IV cameras, you might consider Color Chrome Effect Blue set to Weak, Grain set to Weak and Small, and Clarity set to +2 perhaps. If you have an X-Trans III camera, which doesn’t have Color Chrome Effect, you can still use this recipe, but the results will be slightly different. Those with GFX cameras can also use this recipe, and it will look very close but not exactly the same.

Velvia
Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: -1
Shadow: -1
Color: +4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: 0
Grain Effect: Weak
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
White Balance: Auto, 0 Red & 0 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs, captured using a Fujifilm X-T30 with this Velvia v2 film simulation recipe:

March Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Reeds in Evening Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Water Under The Bridge – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Muddy Water – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Ducks in the Shallow Water – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Flying Seagull – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Evening Gull – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Utah Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Evening Cloud Over The Ridge – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Grass, Pond & Mud – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Sunset Puddle – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Marsh Sunset – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

Find this recipe on the Fuji X Weekly app!

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Medium Format vs Crop Sensor: How Much Better is Fujifilm GFX than Fujifilm X?

Fujifilm North America sent me a GFX-50S medium-format camera and Fujinon 23mm lens to go with it. The camera and lens aren’t mine; I get to use them for a few weeks, then return them to Fujifilm. The camera is $5,500 (it was $6,500 when it came out four years ago), and the lens is $2,600, so just over $8,000 altogether. This is the most expensive camera and lens that I’ve ever put my hands on!

There are two questions that I want to answer: how much better is medium-format GFX over the APS-C X cameras, and which film simulation recipes, if any, are compatible with GFX. By the way, this isn’t my review of the camera. I’ll write that after I’ve had it for longer. This article is the first step towards a review. I’m simply trying to answer a couple of questions about the GFX-50S camera.

Yesterday I did a little survey on my Instagram account: can you tell the difference between pictures captured on my Fujifilm X-T30 with a Rokinon 12mm lens (a $1,200 combo) and those captured on a GFX-50S with a Fujinon 23mm lens? By far, most photographs are viewed on social media. People post their pictures on Instagram and Facebook and other platforms, and that’s how we see them. Printed photographs are far less common. That’s just the way it is. I wanted to know: on social media, is it even possible to tell the difference between pictures captured using $1,200 gear and $8,000 gear?

Before I get into the responses to that survey, I want to briefly talk about the technical stuff—the why. The reason that I chose the X-T30 is because its JPEG settings are very similar to the GFX-50S’ JPEG settings. I used the same film simulation recipes, Kodak Ultramax for color and Kodak Tri-X 400 for black-and-white, on both cameras (this also allowed me to see how similar or dissimilar recipes are rendered on these cameras). I chose the Rokinon 12mm lens because it has the same 18mm full-frame-equivalent focal length as the 23mm lens on the GFX camera. I used f/8 on the Rokinon and f/16 on the Fujinon (to better match the depth-of-field) and adjusted the shutter speed to compensate; otherwise, the settings on both cameras were identical.

Here are the pictures that I posted to Instagram, in the same order:

Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S
Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S
Fujifilm X-T30
GFX-50S
Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S

Now to that survey! The majority of the comments were something to the effect of, “I can’t tell which camera took which pictures.” There were 10 people who took a guess, and five got it right and five wrong. I was actually surprised that five people figured it out—some of you have very keen eyes! There were three sets of two pictures to allow for direct comparisons, but the final two pictures weren’t a set, and those two pictures tripped up a few people who otherwise figured out the rest. Even a couple of those who guessed correctly said that they weren’t certain on those last two. The takeaway is that, on social media, if you study the pictures carefully and can side-by-side compare, there is a barely noticeable difference between images captured on GFX cameras and those captured on X cameras, but otherwise you can’t tell.

Of course, you’re not spending $8,000 for good-looking social media pictures, but for good-looking prints. So I printed the pictures! All of the prints were 8″ x 12″, but I made some crops that would be about 16″ x 24″, 24″ x 36″, and 40″ x 60″ if the rest of the picture was there. Here are a few of those crops:

Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S
Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S
Fujifilm X-T30
Fujifilm GFX-50S
The prints!

I studied the prints, then I had my wife, Amanda, look at them. We both came to the same conclusion: printed at 8″ x 12″ it’s really difficult to tell which camera captured which picture; at 16″ x 24″ it’s a little easier to tell but still very tough; at 24″ x 36″ it’s more obvious, but the X-T30 still looks pretty good; and at 40″ x 60″ the GFX is the clear winner, but the X-T30 image isn’t awful.

The Fujifilm GFX-50S costs six times as much as the Fujifilm X-T30. Does it produce six times better image quality? No. Does it produce twice as good image quality? No. Is it a pixel-peeper’s dream? Yes! If you like to zoom into your images and admire the fine details that can only be noticed when you look closely, the GFX-50S is a great option. If you need to crop deeply and still have good-looking pictures, the GFX-50S will deliver. If you print really, really big, the GFX-50S is indeed a fine photographic tool. Outside of that, there’s not a big advantage to the medium-format camera. In fact, there might be as many disadvantages as there are advantages, but that’s a discussion for another time. Did I mention that those files look really nice when you look really close?

Forest Creek – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm GFX-50S – Classic Negative

I have seven different film simulation recipes programmed into the GFX-50S right now, and here’s my probably-too-soon opinion: X-Trans III recipes and X-Trans IV recipes that are compatible with the X-T3 and X-T30 are usable on the GFX-50S… but they don’t look exactly the same. One difference is that the JPEGs from the GFX-50S are slightly less saturated and a hair less warm; it’s very minor but noticeable when side-by-side comparing. The GFX-50S has a larger dynamic range, which not only gives you more latitude for highlight and shadow recovery, but also produces a more flat picture; that’s not necessarily bad, just different. The GFX-50S has Classic Negative—yea!—but not the other JPEG options, such as Clarity and Color Chrome FX Blue, that the newer X-Trans IV cameras have.

I look forward to shooting more with the GFX-50S, and I know it will be difficult to send back. Using it reaffirms that X series cameras are fantastic and that the gap between APS-C and medium-format isn’t as big as what one might think. There are people who would benefit from the larger sensor and higher resolution that the GFX-50S offers, and those people likely know who they are. If I could, I would definitely own this camera, but it’s not a big deal that I don’t because my other Fujifilm cameras are pretty darn good, too.

Sunset Photography w/ Fujifilm X-T30 + Fujinon 100-400mm

Oquirrh Mountain Evening – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

My most expensive lens, by far, is the Fujinon 100-400mm, which retails for $1,900. Despite the hefty price tag, I find myself not using that lens very often. Why? There are several reasons. First, the camera that I reach for the most is my Fujifilm X100V, which has a fixed lens, so I can’t use the 100-400mm with that camera. Another reason is that the focal length is very long and sometimes difficult to use; it’s not the right tool for many situations. The final reason is that it’s big and heavy, especially compared to my other lenses, and it works best when attached to a tripod, so it’s kind of a hassle to use. I paid a lot of money for this lens, so I need to use it more often.

One recent opportunity I had to use the Fujinon 100-400mm lens was photographing the sunset in Bountiful, Utah. Some distant clouds and haze created the potential for a great sunset. I set my tripod at the top of a hill that overlooked the valley below, attached the lens to the tripod, then attached my Fujifilm X-T30 to the lens. I had my Velvia film simulation recipe loaded into the camera, which is a great recipe for sunset photography because of its contrast and vibrant colors. In the film days, Velvia 50 was a top choice if you wanted stunning sunset pictures, and now with Fujifilm X cameras the Velvia film simulation is a top option.

Temple – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

The sunset didn’t disappoint. Actually, it was more vibrant and lovely than I could have hoped for! It was a great show that lasted about 10 minutes. Even though I had the lens on a tripod, I still kept the shutter speed high to prevent blur from shake because I didn’t tighten everything down so that I could swing the lens around. To get a faster shutter speed I had the ISO set higher than one might expect. I was doing manual exposure. I zoomed in and out, trying to find different compositions. These seven pictures were captured from that one spot within the 10 minutes of the sunset show. The 100-400mm lens allowed me to capture a variety of pictures without moving places.

These photographs aren’t in sequential order. The picture at the top of this article was actually the last exposure, and the picture above of the temple was second-to-last. The very first exposure is the last picture at the bottom of this post. The order of the rest are scrambled up. In some pictures, I think the saturation is a little too much, and perhaps the recipe too bold, but in some other pictures it was the right choice. The X-T30 is a good camera, and the 100-400mm a good lens, and they worked very well together to make these pictures possible. I need to use these together more often.

Lava Sky over Stansbury Mountains – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm
South End of Antelope Island – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm
Antelope & Stansbury – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm
Salt Lake & Stansbury Mountains At Sunset – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm
Stansbury Mountains – Bountiful, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

Fujifilm X-T20 (X-Trans III) + X-T30 Film Simulation Recipe: Kodak Ultramax

Street Lamp Sunset – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 – “Kodak Ultramax”

I’ve received a lot of positive feedback from my Fujifilm X100V Kodak Ultramax 400 film simulation recipe, which I published two weeks ago. I’ve had a ton of requests to make a version of this recipe that’s compatible with X-Trans III sensor cameras, plus the X-T30 and X-T3. Well, I’ve done it, and here it is!

This version of the Ultramax recipe is pretty close to the original, but not precisely the same. Because the new cameras—the X100V, X-T4 and X-Pro3—have different tools, that recipe isn’t compatible with “older” Fujifilm cameras, but I made some adjustments and changes, and created this new version, which produces similar results. It’s fully compatible with the X-Pro2, X100F, X-E3, X-T2, X-T20, X-H1, X-T3 and X-T30 cameras. While not 100% exactly the same as the original recipe, it definitely has the same overall Ultramax aesthetic.

Sunstar Through Peach Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T20 – “Kodak Ultramax”

Ultramax 400 is Kodak’s consumer grade ISO 400 color negative film. Kodak has sold Ultramax 400 under many different names, beginning in 1987 with Kodacolor VR-G 400, rebranded Gold 400 one year later, called simply GC at one point, and finally, in 1997, Kodak settled on Ultramax 400. Kodak still sells Ultramax 400, although it’s not the same film as Kodacolor VR-G 400. This film has been tweaked and updated at least nine times over the years; however, the overall aesthetic is still substantially similar between all variations.

Classic Chrome
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: +2
Shadow: +2
Color: +4
Sharpening: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Grain: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Off or N/A
White Balance: Auto, +1 Red & -6 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Kodak Ultramax film simulation recipe on a Fujifilm X-T20 and X-T30:

Creek – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T20
Shadow Catcher – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Boy by a Window – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Jonathan in Window Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Pencils on the Table – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Balcony – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T20
Panda Express – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T20
Window Flag – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
American Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Green Mountain Summer – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Summer Pear Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Greens of Summer – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30
Backyard Tree Evening – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T20
Backyard Aspen Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also:
Fujifilm X-Trans III Film Simulation Recipe Compatibility
Fujifilm X-Trans IV Film Simulation Recipe Compatibility

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There's a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

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Film Simulation Review: Changing Light, Part 1: Velvia

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Wasatch Spring – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

Over the last few days I’ve captured a number of pictures from my house of the nearby Wasatch Mountains. I’m very fortunate that I live so close to such a majestic and beautiful landscape. I can see it from my living room. I can sit on my patio and watch the light change and the seasons change on the mountains. It’s right there! I feel very lucky to witness this and be able to capture it with my camera.

It’s been between overcast and partly-cloudy lately, with conditions changing rapidly and dramatically. It’s gone from fairly uninteresting to amazing and back to mostly uninteresting in a matter of moments. This has repeated over and over. I’ve tried to keep an eye out for it, and tried to be quick enough to photograph it before it disappeared. That’s not always possible, and many times I wasn’t successful, but sometimes I was.

The film simulation recipe that I chose for these pictures is my Velvia recipe (I also used my Ilford HP5 Plus recipe, and those pictures are in Part 2). These settings are bold and vibrant, much like actual Velvia film. I really appreciate this film simulation recipe for landscape photography where I want colors to pop. The mountain is covered in the fresh green of spring, and these settings are the best for highlighting that. If I want vivid colors, my Velvia recipe is what I choose.

The gear that I used for these pictures is a Fujifilm X-T30 with a Fujinon 100-400mm lens attached to it. I like to use a tripod or monopod with the 100-400mm lens, but these pictures are all hand-held. If I had waited to attach a tripod to the lens, I would have missed many of these shots. The long telephoto lens allows me to bring the mountains up-close, like I travelled into the mountains to capture these pictures, yet I didn’t even leave home. It really is amazing that I was able to make these photographs without going anywhere.

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Clearing Clouds Above the Ridge – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Cold Spring – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Francis Peak Veiled – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Mountain Mist – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Spring Green Mountain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Mountain in May – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Mountain Radar – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Sliver of Illumination – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Spring Green Hill – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Wasatch Green – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

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Mountain Spring – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 100-400mm

Changing Light, Part 2: Ilford HP5 Plus
See also: Film Simulation Reviews

Film Simulation Review: Dreary Day with Fujicolor Superia 800

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Gone Fishin’ – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

I get asked frequently what film simulation recipes are good for which situations. It can be hard to know when to use each one. When faced with a scene, which recipe should you choose? I hope that this Film Simulation Review series helps to bring clarity to this.

On grey-sky days there’s one film simulation recipe that I love to use: Fujicolor Superia 800. When I invented this recipe, I had no idea how good it was for dreary days. Fuji X Weekly reader Luis Costa shared his use of this recipe on a grey day, and it blew me away! Ever since, when there’s overcast sky and a little rain, for color pictures, my Fujicolor Superia 800 film simulation recipe is what I use.

This series of pictures were captured on a recent dreary day using the Superia 800 recipe. I used a Fujifilm X-T30 with a Fujinon 90mm f/2 lens attached to it. This 90mm lens can be difficult to use just because of its focal length, which is full-frame equivalent to 135mm, but it delivers excellent results. It’s super sharp and nearly flawless. It’s such a great lens!

My Superia 800 recipe is based on Fujicolor Superia X-tra 800 film. Fujifilm introduced this consumer grade high ISO color negative film in 1998 and discontinued it in 2016. It was a common film to find at the local store. It was an excellent choice for low-light situations, and it was commonly used by photojournalists. All of the pictures in this article are camera-made JPEGs using my Superia 800 film simulation recipe.

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Raining in the Alley – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Goodyear – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Drop in the Bucket – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Wet Slide – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Wish Maker – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Green – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Drop of Water on a Blackberry Leaf – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Green Tree Tops – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Trees – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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King – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Catching a Lost Float – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Geese – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

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Swimming Duck – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 90mm

My Fujifilm X-T30 Kodak Vision3 250D Film Simulation Recipe

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Ice Cream Trailer – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodak Vision3 250D”

A Fuji X Weekly reader asked me to create a film simulation recipe that mimics Kodak Vision3 250D motion picture film. Kodak introduced Vision3 250D in 2009. While it’s a color negative motion picture film, it can also be used for still photography. I’ve never used this film, but as I researched it, I came to realize that this one film can produce many different looks, depending on how it’s shot and developed. In fact, you can develop it using either the C-41 or ECN-2 process, and you can even develop it as black-and-white. You can push-process several stops. There’s a lot of latitude for over and under exposure.

As you can imagine, it would be impossible to create a film simulation recipe that mimics every possible look from this film, or even most. I focused in on one specific aesthetic, although I can’t say for sure how that aesthetic was achieved, and made a recipe that mimics it. I think I came pretty darn close. Perhaps more importantly, these settings look good. There’s a certain quality to the pictures made using this recipe that’s especially lovely. Some of you are really going to love these settings!

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Flowers on a Tree Branch – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodak Vision3 250D”

Since Kodak Vision3 250D is a motion picture film, I had fun using this film simulation recipe in the 16:9 aspect ratio from time-to-time because it is a more cinematic shape. If you used the film for still photography, most likely the frame would be a 3:2 aspect ratio, which is what I chose for most of these pictures. You can choose any aspect ratio that you’d like. If you have an X-H1, which doesn’t have Color Chrome Effect but does have Eterna, you can still use this recipe, but the results will be slightly different.

Eterna
Dynamic Range: DR100
Highlight: +3
Shadow: +4
Color: +3
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -2
Grain Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
White Balance: Fluorescent 1 (Daylight Fluorescent), -3 Red & -1 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Below are all camera-made JPEGs captured using this Kodak Vision3 250D Film Simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30 camera:

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Blue Bokeh – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Nighttime Fire Hydrant – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Yellow Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Lights Strung Across The Road – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Forever the Perfect Accessory – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Artificial Light Rays – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Reserved Parking – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Grass by a Waterfall – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Three Ducks – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Pond – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Tree & Purple Flowers – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Green Leaves & White Blooms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Webs in the Grass – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Sky Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Clouds & Roof – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Chopped Logs – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Fake Flower Decor – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Shy & Uninterested – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Sunglasses Indoors – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Boy in Evening Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Beans in the Grinder – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also: Film Simulation Recipes

Help Fuji X Weekly

Nobody pays me to write the content found on fujixweekly.com. There's a real cost to operating and maintaining this site, not to mention all the time that I pour into it. If you appreciated this article, please consider making a one-time gift contribution. Thank you!

$2.00

My Fujifilm X-T30 Kodak Portra 400 Film Simulation Recipe

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Around The Bend – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodak Portra 400”

Portra 400, which is a color negative film, was introduced by Kodak in 1998. It was redesign in 2006 and again in 2010. As the name implies, it’s intended for portrait photography, but can be used for many other types of photography. It’s similar to Portra 160, but with more contrast, saturation and grain. Believe it or not, ISO 400 was considered “high ISO” by many photographers back in the film days, and Portra 400 was one of the absolute best “high ISO” color films ever made. Like all films, results can vary greatly depending on how it’s shot, developed and printed or scanned, and even which version of the film you’re talking about. Interestingly, Kodak briefly made a black-and-white version of Portra 400!

I’ve been meaning to revisit Kodak Portra 400 for some time now. As you may know, I already have a Kodak Portra 400 recipe, which I created two years ago, but it requires a difficult-to-achieve custom white balance measurement. I was never really satisfied with that recipe, even though it can produce interesting results. I have been eager to create a new Portra 400 recipe, and, In fact, I’ve tried a couple of times, but without success.

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Blue Sky Day – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodak Portra 400”

A Fuji X Weekly reader suggested to me that if I use my Kodak Portra 160 recipe, except increase Shadow, Highlight and Color by one, that should be pretty close to Portra 400. Indeed it is! I liked what I saw, but I played around with the settings more to see if I could improve on it. Turns out not much needed to be tweaked. I liked the results better with Color Chrome Effect set to Strong, but if you have an X-Trans III camera, which doesn’t have that feature, you can still use this recipe, but it will look slightly different. The only other change that I made was I set Grain to Strong.

Classic Chrome
Dynamic Range: DR-Auto
Highlight: -1
Shadow: -1
Color: +2
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -2
Grain Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
White Balance: Daylight, +4 Red & -5 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400
Exposure Compensation: +2/3 to +1 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this Kodak Portra 400 film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

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Mountain in the Evening Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Reeds To The Sky – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Jensen Pond – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Water Beyond The Trees – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Paved Trail – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Spring Green & White – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Fries in the Sky – Syracuse, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Royal Lunch – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Evening Suburban Home – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Boy in the Striped Light – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Boy Sitting – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Sunlight Through The Pink Blooms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Pink Tree Bloom – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also: Film Simulation Recipes

Help Fuji X Weekly

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Film Simulation Review: Walk in the Park, Part 2: Kodak Portra 160

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Pathway Through the Trees – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

Part 1: Kodak Ektar 100

In Part 1, I hiked a path in a local park using my Ektar recipe. Part 2, which is what you are reading now, are the pictures from my stroll back down the trail using my Kodak Portra 160 film simulation recipe. As before, the gear I used was a Fujifilm X-T30 with a Fujinon 35mm f/2 lens attached to it. The only thing that I did differently was select my Portra 160 recipe instead of Ektar. I mentioned in the previous article that my Ektar film simulation has high contrast and perhaps is not ideal because of that. Since my Portra 160 recipe has very low contrast, would it be a better option?

Actual Portra 160 is a low contrast, low saturation film intended for portrait photography. It wasn’t made for landscape photography, but sometimes a low contrast, low saturation film is what’s needed. The same is true for this film simulation recipe. It might be too dull for landscape photography, but sometimes it might fit the scene well. In this case, it balances the high contrast landscapes quite well. If what you are photographing has bright highlights and deep shadows, Portra 160 might be a good option to combat that. However, if it’s low contrast, a film simulation recipe like Ektar could be a better choice.

The day of the hike was a beautiful blue-sky spring day with lots of sunshine. There are an abundance of those type of days in Utah during this time of year. It’s perfect for a walk in the park with a camera in hand. Choosing a film simulation for such an outing can be a difficult choice because you have so many options. It’s important to judge the light and subject to determine what might serve it best. The photographs in this article are all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs using my Kodak Portra 160 film simulation recipe.

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Finally Spring – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Mountain Behind The Trees – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Sunlight Through The Branches – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Lake Peek – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Can’t See the Lake for the Trees – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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White Trees & Fingernail Moon – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Oh, Deer – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Rock & Log – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Trees & Creek – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Forest Creek – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

See also: Film Simulation Reviews

Film Simulation Review: Walk in the Park, Part 1: Kodak Ektar 100

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April Forest – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

Last week I went for a walk in a local park here in Utah. This park has trails that pass through forests. There’s a stream and a small lake. The snow-capped peaks are visible to the east. It’s a beautiful place, especially in the spring when the green is fresh and the flowers are blossomed. On this hike I brought along my Fujifilm X-T30 with a Fujinon 35mm f/2 lens attached to it, which is one of my absolute favorite lenses. It’s sharp, small, and plenty fast, plus it’s a versatile focal length. On the way up the trail I used my Kodak Ektar 100 film simulation recipe, which are the pictures that you see here in Part 1, and on the way back down I used my Portra 160 recipe, which you’ll find in Part 2.

Ektar is a color negative film made by Kodak. It’s known for vibrant colors, high contrast and fine grain. It’s the closest negative film to reversal film. In fact, when Kodak discontinued Ektachrome 100VS, they recommended Ektar 100 as the best alternative. It’s a great film for landscape photography, which is why I chose it for this walk in the park.

Ektar film, and especially this Ektar film simulation, can be difficult to use because of the contrast. With the film, there are things that can be done in development and/or printing to reduce the contrast if it’s too much. With these settings, one could use +2 Shadow instead of +3, which is what the recipe calls for, if they wanted less contrast. These pictures are straight-out-of-camera (with the exception of some minor cropping) with the  settings exactly as the recipe states.

My opinion is that my Ektar recipe is best suited for low-contrast landscapes, where a boost in contrast and vibrancy is needed. But it can do well in other situations, as well. I thought it served this photographic outing well, although it was borderline too contrasty for the scene. Ektar was a good choice for a walk in the park, but was it the best choice? How does it compare to Portra 160? We’ll take a look at that in Part 2.

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Sunlight Through The Leaves – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Old Log – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Forest Stream – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Stream & Yellow Flower – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Single Tree Blossom – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Green Tree, White Tree – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

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Blossoming Branches – Layton, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & 35mm

Walk in the Park, Part 2: Portra 160
See also: Film Simulation Reviews

Film Simulation Review: Waiting With Fujicolor 100 Industrial

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Waiting Outside – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

My Fujicolor 100 Industrial film simulation recipe is very underrated. I don’t hear many people talk about it. This recipe doesn’t get nearly as many views as some of my other ones, perhaps because the film that it mimics isn’t especially well known. Make no mistake, this recipe is one of the best! If you’ve never tried it, I invite you to do so.

This particular film simulation recipe pairs well with urban scenes. It’s good for more than just that, but a downtown environment seems to be where this recipe does its best work. These photographs aren’t urban, but my Fujicolor 100 Industrial recipe was a good choice for this series.

Anytime can be a good time for photography. Take a camera with you wherever you go, and you’ll be surprised at the photographic opportunities that present themselves. This series of pictures was captured while waiting in line to get inside of Costco, and I was able to do this because I had my Fujifilm X-T30 with me, which had a Fujinon 35mm f/2 lens attached to it. With what’s going on in the world, there’s a line to even get inside of the store to shop. I used the wait as an opportunity to create some pictures. This is no special event. The lighting wasn’t extraordinary. It was unremarkable. Despite that, there were pictures worth capturing, images worth creating, even in an ordinary moment. Use the ordinary moments in life as photographic opportunities.

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Architecture of Costco – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Green Tree & Roof – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Removing Gloves – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Pushing Baskets – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Distancing – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Guy in a Red Shirt – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Cart Man – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Red & Silver Carts – Ogden, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

See also: Film Simulation Reviews

My Fujifilm X-T30 Kodacolor II 126 Film Simulation Recipe

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Blooming Pink – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodacolor II 126”

A Fuji X Weekly reader asked me to recreate the look of some old family prints from the 1970’s that he found. After some investigating, it was determined that the pictures were captured on an Instamatic camera using 126 film (also called Kodapak). 126 film was basically 35mm film, except with a paper back and no sprockets (like 120 film), and in a cartridge that didn’t need to be rewound (similar to 110 film). It was intended for low-budget point-and-shoot cameras, and the cartridge made loading and unloading film easier. Basically, Instamatic was Kodak’s attempt to open up photography to the masses, as it required little to no skill or photographic background. It was very popular in the 1960’s and ’70’s, and became less popular in the 1980’s. A quirk of Instamatic cameras and 126 film is that it captured square pictures.

It’s unknown what film was used on the pictures in question, but most likely it was Kodacolor II, which was by far the most popular color 126 film during the time that these pictures were captured. Kodacolor is a name that Kodak gave to a number of different color negative films going back to the 1940’s. Kodacolor II was the very first C-41 process film. It was introduced in 1972 and discontinued in 1981, replaced by Kodacolor VR, which is the film that my Kodacolor film simulation recipe resembles. The prints likely have some fading and color shifts due to age, but they appeared to be in good condition overall.

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Instamatic – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 “Kodacolor II 126”

This film simulation recipe, which I’ve called Kodacolor II 126, is a bit unusual in that it is supposed to mimic a look that came from cheap cameras. It calls for Image Quality to be set to Normal instead of Fine (I normally use Fine). The only other recipe that I’ve done this with is my Kodak Elite Chrome 200 Color Fade. I keep the ISO high on this recipe to make it look more grainy. While I’ve done that with several black-and-white recipes, this is the first time I’ve done it with color. This is also the only recipe that calls for the 1:1 aspect ratio, although feel free to use 3:2 or 16:9 if you’d like. These settings pair well with vintage lenses, and if you “miss” focus a little sometimes, well, that just makes it resemble Instamatic even more.

Classic Chrome
Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +3
Color: -4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpening: -4
Grain Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Image Quality: Normal
Aspect Ratio: 1:1
White Balance: 6300K, +6 Red & +3 Blue
ISO: 3200 – 6400
Exposure Compensation: 0 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this “Kodacolor II 126” film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X-T30:

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Polaroid Girl – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Lizard, Boy & Wall – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Boy in the Alley – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Two Cans – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Suburban House & Tree – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Suburban Trees & Distant Mountain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Tree Top & Mountain Top – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Suburban April  – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Robot in the Window – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Heart & Soul – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Wreath & Flowers – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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White Paper – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Bowl on a Trike – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Hose & Elephant – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Concrete Path – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Little Colorful Chair – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Summer Chair – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

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Day Dreaming – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30

See also: Film Simulation Recipes

Help Fuji X Weekly

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Film Simulation Review: Light & Shadow with Ilford Delta Push-Process

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Chair & Pillow – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

Photography is about light. Without light there are no photographs. Great photographs require great light. What “great light” is depends on the picture and circumstance, and what’s great for one image might not be for another. Great light can be found anytime of the day or night if one looks hard enough for it.

This series of pictures demonstrate the play of light and shadow in an image. It features instances of bright highlights and deep shadows together. It’s the contrast between illumination and the absence of it. I needed a dramatic film simulation recipe to capture these pictures. I knew that it would need to be black-and-white because these pictures aren’t about color, but light and shadow. Color would only be a distraction to the point. But which black-and-white film simulation recipe should I choose?

There are several options for dramatic black-and-white that I could have chosen, including Dramatic Monochrome, Monochrome Kodachrome, Agfa Scala, Ilford HP5 Plus, Ilford HP5 Push-Process, X100F Acros, X-T30 Acros, Acros Push-Process, and Tri-X Push-Process. Any of those recipes would have worked, but each would have produced a different result. Some have more contrast, some less. Some have a greater dynamic range and others a more narrow. Some are brighter, some darker. Some have more grain and other less. I could have picked any of them and gotten interesting results, but I went with Ilford Delta Push-Process instead, partially because I had been using it for other pictures during this time. It turns out it was a good choice, because it seems to have the right contrast, tones and grain for this series. Sometimes luck plays a role. What I know now is that the Ilford Delta Push-Process recipe is a great option for dramatic light situations like these, and I will choose it again for similar situations in the future. I captured these pictures on a Fujifilm X-T30 with a Fujinon 35mm f/2 lens attached to it.

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Suburban Shadows – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Seat Back Shadow – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Chair Details – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Girl Ghost – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Sunlight on the Kitchen Floor – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Don’t Step Into Darkness – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

See also: Film Simulation Reviews

Film Simulation Review: Planting Flowers with “Kodak Gold 200”

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White Tulip Bloom – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

Believe it or not, there are over 70 different film simulation recipes on Fuji X Weekly! That’s amazing! There are lots more than I would have guessed before I counted them. And I’m working on even more!

Something I’ve realized is that I haven’t spent all that much time on the practical use of these different recipes. You might not know which ones to choose, or when to use them, or maybe even how to use them. Perhaps you are overwhelmed by all of the options. Maybe you are not sure which ones can be used on which cameras. I haven’t done a great job with this side of it, the practical side. Moving forward I hope to make things easier for you by showing you the “what, where and why” of the different film simulation recipes.

This post is the very tiny tip of what I hope is a great big iceberg of information. I plan to publish many articles that I hope are helpful to you, that answer some of the questions you might have about these recipes. This article is a very simple one: an example of when to use my Kodak Gold 200 film simulation recipe. I get asked often, “What’s the best recipe for this situation?” Whatever that situation might be. I thought it would be helpful to showcase different recipes being used in various situations. I hope to do a whole bunch of these types of articles, and I’m calling them Film Simulation ReviewsYou’ll be able to see a certain recipes used in a certain situation, and you’ll be able to judge for yourself if you like it or not. If you appreciate how a certain recipe looks in a certain case, for example Kodak Gold 200 with flowers and shaded light, which is what you see here, then you can use it yourself when in a similar situation.

My wife, Amanda, was going to plant some flowers in a pot on our porch, and I wanted to capture it. I grabbed my Fujifilm X-T30 and attached a Fujinon 35mm f/2 lens to it. Why this combo? I like that camera and lens; I don’t have a profound answer. Initially I planned to use my Portra 160 recipe, but after judging the light, which was shady and flat, I decided to go with the Gold recipe instead because it has more contrast. I think it was a good choice for this scene. Actual Kodak Gold film was considered a good all-around choice for many situations, so it shouldn’t surprise anyone that the film simulation that mimics it is also good for many different situations.

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Pot & Soil – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Digging Dirt – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Planting Tulips – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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White Tulip Blossom – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Adding Yellow – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Adding Soil – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Potted Blooms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Just Add Water – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Wet Potted Blossoms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Wet Tulip – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Porch Blossoms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2

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Potted Blossoms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T30 & Fujinon 35mm f/2