Anders Lindborg (Instagram) sent me a black-and-white film simulation recipe to try, which he modeled after Ilford Pan F Plus 50 film. Anders, you might recall, created the Kodak Tri-X 400 recipe, teamed with Thomas Schwab to create the Kodak T-Max 400 recipe, made seven Fujicolor Pro 160NS recipes, created seven Fujicolor Pro 400H recipes, and made an important D-Range Priority discovery. His contributions to the Fujifilm community are significant! The Kodak Tri-X 400 recipe is a favorite of mine that I use frequently, so I’m personally very grateful to Anders for his hard work on this recipe and all the others.
And hard work it was! Anders sent me a lengthy note on his process to create this recipe, and I want to share with you a short snippet just so you get an idea of the effort put into this. “I checked the spectrum sensitivity chart and looked for any significant bumps in the wavelengths,” he wrote. “For the largest bump, I checked what color it represents to try to match it as close as possible with the white balance shift. This recreated the bump in the recipe to make the simulation a bit extra sensitive to that specific color.” This was point four of seven in his process, and shows the kind of effort that can go into creating film simulation recipes.
Ilford Pan F 50 Plus is a low-ISO, contrasty, sharp, detailed, fine-grain, black-and-white negative film. It has the punchiness of a mid-ISO film, but is very clean, and can be printed large and still appear crisp and fine-detailed. Of course, how a film is exposed, developed, scanned and/or printed will affect the exact aesthetic. Ilford Pan F 50 Plus is one of the best black-and-white films you can buy today, and this recipe is a pretty darn good facsimile of it.
“This one needs some care,” Anders wrote of this recipe, “and really soft light is recommended for portraits, but the reward is wonderful! If you’re looking for drama, this is it. Great in studio where lighting can be controlled, but can sometimes also work nicely for certain kinds of street photography. High contrast with a really classic black and white look, emphasis on the black.”
I modified Anders recipe a little. His version calls for Shadows to be +2 and Clarity set to 0, but he says that +2 Shadow can sometimes be too strong, and that +1 is not always strong enough, but +1.5 (for those cameras that are capable) is probably just right. I wanted to use this recipe on my Fujifilm X100V, which isn’t capable of .5 Shadow adjustments, so I set Shadow to +1 and Clarity to +2 (to increase the contrast, similar to what +1.5 Shadow might be)… alternatively, Shadow +2 and Clarity -2 is an option, too, but I didn’t like it quite as much. Because of Clarity, I decreased Sharpening to 0 from +1 (what the original recipe calls for). Instead of -3, I set Noise Reduction to -4, which is my preference. If you want to use Anders full recipe, set Shadow to +2 (or +1.5 if your camera is capable), Clarity to 0, Sharpness to +1, and Noise Reduction to -3. Otherwise, you’ll find my slightly modified version below. This recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4 and X-T30 II cameras.
Dynamic Range: DR100
Noise Reduction: -4
Grain Effect: Weak, Large
Color Chrome Effect: Off
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: Daylight, +1 Red & -6 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 6400 (for best results, try to limit the ISO to 1600 and lower when able)
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +1/3 (typically)
Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs using this “Ilford Pan F Plus 50” film simulation recipe on my Fujifilm X100V:
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