Four Fujifilm X-Trans IV Film Simulation Recipes: KodaNeg VC & NC

Rainfall on the Desert Mountains – Fort McDowell, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “KodaNeg NC”

I’m asked pretty regularly if I can create a Film Simulation Recipe that mimics a certain look—usually a particular film stock, but occasionally the aesthetic of a certain photographer. These recipes began as an attempt to recreate the look of a certain photographer. Unfortunately, despite much effort, I wasn’t successful. When I say “much effort” I mean that I went as far as having conversations with this photographer (which is pretty cool, because he’s well known and respected) to try and find out what he does to get his signature aesthetic. I tried some pretty unconventional tactics to get his look straight out of camera, but in the end I determined that it’s not possible with Fujifilm’s current JPEG options. Still, I really liked one of the recipes that I created while trying (and failing) to mimic the look, so I began using it.

Right around this same time someone asked if I could create a recipe that better mimics the Kodak Ektar 100 aesthetic from a particular photographer (as one film can produce many different looks depending on a host of factors). When I saw the images, my first thought is that it looked a lot like this new recipe, except with the color turned way up. So I turned Color up from -4 to +4, and the results were surprisingly similar to Ektar. An exact match? No, but definitely in the ballpark, and certainly close enough that if one is looking for an alternative Kodak Ektar 100 recipe, this is one to consider.

Red Bench – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V – “KodaNeg VC”

I stated that I did something unconventional to create this recipe: I used a 1/4 Black Pro Mist diffusion filter, and I did so because it has a slight reddish-brown color cast. Normally I prefer CineBloom filters because they don’t have a color cast, but for this recipe it was necessary. If you have a 10% CineBloom you can use that instead; however, it will be slightly less warm. If Fujifilm allowed .5 adjustments to White Balance Shift, you could move a half-point towards red and achieve basically the same thing, but they don’t. I find that +7 Red is too strong when not using a Black Pro Mist, so I would definitely stick with +6, even though it is less warm. After creating the Black Pro Mist version, I set out to make an alternate version that does not use a diffusion filter, yet produces a similar look (albeit slightly less warm due to the lack of Black Pro Mist filter). So there are four Film Simulation Recipes in total here: two low-saturation options (with a without a Black Pro Mist filter), and two high-saturation options (also with and without a Black Pro Mist filter).

When Kodak introduced Portra, it initially came in two varieties: VC (“vivid color”) and NC (“neutral color”). The VC emulsion was more optimized for landscape photography and the NC emulsion was more optimized for portrait photography. These recipes aren’t intended to mimic Kodak Portra, but I decided to barrow the VC and NC abbreviations anyway—the two VC recipes are optimized for landscapes, while the two NC recipes are optimized for portraits. You can clearly see this in the two sets of images below.

Fujifilm X-E4 — “KodaNeg VC”
Fujifilm X-E4 — “KodaNeg NC”
Fujifilm X-E4 — “KodaNeg VC”
Fujifilm X-E4 — “KodaNeg NC”

I named these recipes “KodaNeg” because they have warm Kodak-like colors… maybe like Kodak color negative film paired with an 81A or 81B warming filter—color correction filters were fairly commonly used back in the film days, and 81A was probably the most popular among landscape photographers. Which Kodak color negative film? I didn’t model these after any specific film, so they don’t closely resemble any; however, the NC recipes are slightly Portra-like, and the VC recipes are slightly Ektar-like, but are not exact match to either.

If you have a 1/4 Black Pro Mist diffusion filter, I invite you to try the two KodaNeg recipes below that are intended for use with a diffusion filter. If you don’t have a Black Pro Mist—no worries—use the two recipes that are intended to be used without a diffusion filter. Unfortunately, because these require Clarity and Color Chrome Effect, they’re not compatible with the X-T30 and X-T3. Those with X-Trans V cameras should be able to use these recipes, but I do not have any personal experience to know for certain.

KodaNeg VC (with Diffusion Filter)

X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, & X-T30 II

Pickup Trucks – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V – “KodaNeg VC”

Use this recipe in conjunction with a 1/4 Black Pro Mist Filter. Alternatively, you can use this with a 10% CineBloom, but the results will be slightly different.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +1
Color: +4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: 0
Clarity: +3
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: Auto, +6 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 “KodaNeg VC” recipe with my Fujifilm X100V:

Dead Tree & Four Peaks – Fort McDowell, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Red Rock – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Gowan Trail – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Bridge Trail – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Cactus Above the Trail – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Small Waterfall – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Forest Pond – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Turning Autumn – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Sunlight Sky & Golden Trees – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Barely Autumn – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Handcrafted – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Back of Sign – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
I is for Ice – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Window Wash Bucket – Payson, AZ – Fujifilm X100V

KodaNeg NC (with Diffusion Filter)

X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, & X-T30 II

Fujifilm X70 on a Bed – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V – “KodaNeg NC”

Use this recipe in conjunction with a 1/4 Black Pro Mist Filter. Alternatively, you can use this with a 10% CineBloom, but the results will be slightly different.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +1
Color: -4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: 0
Clarity: +3
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: Auto, +6 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 “KodaNeg NC” recipe with my Fujifilm X100V:

Power Pole – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Lamp Sky – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Pines & Oaks – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Water Dripping Over Cliff – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Forested Mountain – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Mountain Path – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Forest Floor – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Logs in a Shallow Pond – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Bare Tree – Tonto Natural Bridge, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Girl Sitting on a Porch – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Drops on the Eave – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Open Obscured – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Dude – Buckeye, AZ – Fujifilm X100V
Amanda – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X100V

KodaNeg VC (without filter)

X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, & X-T30 II)

Yellow Cactus – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – KodaNeg VC”

This recipe is intended to be used without a diffusion filter. Because it requires +0.5 Shadow, this recipe isn’t directly compatible with the Fujifilm X100V or X-Pro3, but if you want to use it anyway, you’ll have to decide if you prefer Shadow set to 0 or +1—the results will be slightly different, either with a little more or less contrast.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +0.5
Color: +4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: 0
Clarity: -3
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: Auto, +6 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 “KodaNeg VC” recipe with my Fujifilm X-E4:

Saguaro & Four Peaks – Fort McDowell, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Prickly Cactus – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Logs in a Pond – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Red Rock Pond – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Small Creek – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Viewpoint 3 – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Pine Creek Trail – Tonto Natural BridgeSP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Cactus Rock – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Red Hills – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Little Blooms in the Forest – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Oak Autumn – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Yellow Tree in the Forest – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Touch of Autumn – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Forestscape – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4

KodaNeg NC (without filter)

X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, & X-T30 II)

Desert Storm – Fort McDowell, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4 – “KodaNeg NC”

This recipe is intended to be used without a diffusion filter. Because it requires +0.5 Shadow, this recipe isn’t directly compatible with the Fujifilm X100V or X-Pro3, but if you want to use it anyway, you’ll have to decide if you prefer Shadow set to 0 or +1—the results will be slightly different, either with a little more or less contrast.

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -1
Shadow: +0.5
Color: -4
Noise Reduction: -4
Sharpness: 0
Clarity: -3
Grain Effect: Weak, Small
Color Chrome Effect: Strong
Color Chrome Effect Blue: Off
White Balance: Auto, +6 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 “KodaNeg NC” recipe with my Fujifilm X-E4:

Clouds Over Trees – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Rural Elk – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Hidden Elk – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Electric Forest Rain – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Eave Drops – Pine, AZ – Fujiifilm X-E4
White Cloud – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Storm Behind Trees – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Little Red Berries & Cloud – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Smoke Stack – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Mountain Trees – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Mobile Videography – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Cactus in the Forest – Pine, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Forest Cactus – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4
Cliff Cactus – Tonto Natural Bridge SP, AZ – Fujifilm X-E4

Find these Film Simulation Recipes and over 250 more on the Fuji X Weekly — Film Recipes App!

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Standard Provia vs Provia/Standard

Clearing Clouds Over Winter Ridge – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro3 – “Standard Provia”

A couple days ago I published a new Film Simulation Recipe: Standard Provia. This recipe is the first in a new series, in which I attempt to customize each film simulation to optimize the aesthetic that Fujifilm intended—in other words, make a nice-looking recipe that is similar to yet better than the stock look of a film simulation. Provia is Fujifilm’s standard film simulation (that’s why they call it “Provia/Standard” and even abbreviate it “STD”), but it’s one of my least favorite. Sometimes, because I don’t get excited over it, I force myself to use Provia, hoping that it will improve my feelings about it.

The Provia film simulation doesn’t look like Provia film. In fact, it’s probably closer to Astia film, although it’s definitely not an exact match for that, either. There’s something that is “not right” about it to me, but I think it’s just my personal tastes. There are a lot of people who love the Provia film simulation and use it all of the time.

After I published my Standard Provia Film Simulation Recipe, I received feedback from several of you that I should have included a comparison with default Provia/Standard. So here it is! The Provia/Standard images have all of the parameters set to 0 or Off except for Noise Reduction, which is -4. Dynamic Range is DR200 and White Balance is Auto 0R & 0B. It’s basically factory Provia. These were all captured on a Fujifilm X-Pro3. Let’s take a look:

Move the bar left to reveal the default Provia/Standard image, and move it right to reveal the “Standard Provia” recipe image.
Move the bar left to reveal the default Provia/Standard image, and move it right to reveal the “Standard Provia” recipe image.
Move the bar left to reveal the default Provia/Standard image, and move it right to reveal the “Standard Provia” recipe image.

The most notable difference you might notice is that my recipe has less red, with a cooler/greener color cast that is more like typical of Fujicolor film. My recipe also has more contrast and saturation, and, in my opinion, looks better, as I find the default settings to be too flat. If you are looking for a “standard” recipe that utilizes Provia, I believe that my Standard Provia recipe is a good option.

What do you think? Do you like the default Provia/Standard settings better, or do you prefer my “Standard Provia” recipe? Let me know in the comments!

Fujifilm X-Trans II Film Simulation Recipe: Kodak Platinum 200

Bicycle 88 – West Valley City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 – “Kodak Platinum 200”

Fuji X Weekly reader Corey Steib (Instagram here and here) shared with me an X-Trans II recipe that he created called Kodak Platinum 200. Corey named it this because it reminds him of vibrant Kodak film captured with a Panaflex Platinum motion picture camera, and because the best results are found at or near ISO 200. This recipe is nothing like the Eterna film simulation, but it does have a slight cinematic feel to it nonetheless thanks to the Shadow setting. It looks really nice, with vibrant colors and soft shadows, and is a great all-purpose recipe. Thank you, Corey, for creating this and allowing me to share it!

I have the ISO in my camera set to Auto, with the upper limit set to ISO 3200. I’m happy with the results from my X-T1 all the way to ISO 3200, but the intention of this recipe is to keep the ISO lower when you can. In bright light, depending on the contrast in the scene, because of the DR-Auto setting, the camera might select ISO 200 or ISO 400, and the idea is to use this recipe at those ISOs when practical. As the available light decreases, it’s perfectly fine to increase the ISO, and I feel good going as high as ISO 3200 when necessary.

Touch of Red – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1 – “Kodak Platinum 200”

This film simulation recipe is compatible with all Fujifilm X-Trans II cameras. You can use it on X-Trans I and Bayer sensor cameras, too, but the results will be a little different (feel free to try, though).

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR-Auto
Highlight: +1 (Medium-High)
Shadow: -2 (Low)
Color: +2 (High)
Sharpness: +1 (Medium-High)
Noise Reduction: -2 (Low)
White Balance: Daylight/Fine, 0 Red & 0 Blue
ISO: Auto up to ISO 3200
(but… the lower the better)
Exposure Compensation: -1/3 to +1/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured with my Fujifilm X-T1 using this “Kodak Platinum 200” film simulation recipe:

Snack – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Yellow Rope – West Valley City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Unicorn Jo – West Valley City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Curved Trunk – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Log Bridge & 3 Trees – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Bridge & Stump – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Pine Needles – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Tree Canopy – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-T1
Plastic Plants – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-T1

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

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Fujifilm X-Trans I (X-Pro1, X-E1 & X-M1) Film Simulation Recipe: Provia

Cradle Tree Branch – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1 – “Provia”

This film simulation recipe reminds me of a filter that I used frequently on a photo editing app on my old Nokia Lumia 1020 phone (sorry, I don’t remember the app name, it’s been many years). It produces a nice vintage feel, with perhaps a cross-processed aesthetic. I especially like how it renders green and blue. Because it uses the Provia film simulation, I’ve named this recipe simply “Provia” even though it doesn’t look all that much like real Provia film. Cameras that are older than the Fujifilm X-Pro3 can’t save White Balance Shifts with each Custom Preset, so it’s helpful to have recipes that use different White Balance options. That’s how this recipe began, and why it uses the Incandescent White Balance option.

This “Provia” film simulation recipe has been a Patron early-access recipe on the Fuji X Weekly app since January, but now it’s available to everyone! There’s a new Patron early-access recipe for X-Trans I cameras on the app that replaced this one. This recipe is compatible with the Fujifilm X-Pro1, X-E1 or X-M1 camera. If you have a Bayer or X-Trans II camera, this recipe will still work, although it won’t look the same; however, I invite you to try it anyway.

Green Tree & Blue Sky – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1 – “Provia”

Provia
Dynamic Range: DR200
Highlight: -2 (Low)
Shadow: -1 (Medium-Low)
Color: +1 (Medium-High)
Sharpness: 0 (Normal)
Noise Reduction: -2 (Low)
White Balance: Incandescent, +6 Red & -9 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 3200
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs captured using this “Provia” film simulation recipe:

Sun over Country Horses – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Target – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Bricks in the Wall – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1 – Photo by Joy Roesch
Strollin’ Jo – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Green Canopy – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1
Bunch of Little Blooms – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1
White Bloom in a Green Bush – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1
Park Path – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1
Looking up Through The Trees – Salt Lake City, UT – Fujifilm X-Pro1

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

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Fujifilm X-M1 (X-Trans I) Film Simulation Recipe: Classic Analog

Sticks & Dry Leaves – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1 – “Classic Analog”

I wanted to create a Portra recipe for X-Trans I cameras, such as the Fujifilm X-M1. All of my Portra recipes are based on the Classic Chrome film simulation, but X-Trans I cameras don’t have Classic Chrome. I did create a recipe for mimicking Kodachrome without Classic Chrome, but that’s intended for X-Trans II cameras, and, while the results are similar, it doesn’t look exactly the same on X-Trans I. This recipe was my attempt at Portra without Classic Chrome, but it’s not quite Portra enough for me to name it Portra. It’s close but no cigar, but it does look nice nonetheless, and I like how it renders pictures on my X-M1.

This was a Patron early-access recipe on the Fuji X Weekly app. Fuji X Weekly Patrons have had the opportunity to use it since December 1st, but now it’s available to everyone! There’s a new Patron early-access recipe for X-Trans I on the app in its place. If you have the app, go check it out!

E.T. – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1 – “Classic Analog”

This recipe also marks the first one that includes a photograph captured by my 11-year-old son, Jonathan. I let him use my X-M1, and I liked one of the pictures he made, which you’ll find further down this article, entitled Frozen Pond Scum. The Fujifilm X-M1 can be found for cheap, and would make a great “first real camera” for a kid. Maybe I’ll give him mine at some point in the future.

Provia/STD
Dynamic Range: DR400
Highlight: -2
Shadow: -1
Color: -2
Sharpness: 0
Noise Reduction: -2
White Balance: Daylight/Fine, +1 Red & -6 Blue
ISO: Auto, up to ISO 3200
Exposure Compensation: +1/3 to +2/3 (typically)

Example photographs, all camera-made JPEGs made using this Classic Analog film simulation recipe on a Fujifilm X-M1:

Thin Ice – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Falling Water – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Autumn Overcast – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Night at the Lake – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Frozen Drain – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Frozen Pond Scum – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1 – Photo by Jonathan Roesch
Irrigation Cover – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Quadruple U’s – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Improbable – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Evening Euonymus – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Blue Sky Reeds – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
Yellow, Lamp – Farmington, UT – Fujifilm X-M1
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Comparing Film Simulation Recipes


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I shoot JPEGs, but it’s not uncommon for me to shoot RAW+JPEG, since it gives me the opportunity to reprocess the picture in-camera, which is helpful when developing different film simulation recipes. Because of this, I was able to process a single picture I captured recently on my Fujifilm X-T30 using many of my different recipes to compare the differences. I thought that this might be helpful to some of you. Perhaps there’s one recipe that stands out to you in the pictures below that you’ve never used. Obviously different settings look better in different situations, and in this article there’s just one picture to compare, so even though you might not like how one recipe looks in this article doesn’t mean that you wouldn’t like it with different subject and in a different light. The scope of this article is quite limited, but I hope that seeing the various film simulation recipes applied to a single exposure is helpful to someone.

Not every recipe was used for this post. Some of them require a specific parameter that was not available. For example, the picture at the top was made using my HP5 Plus Push-Process recipe, which requires an ultra-high ISO, so it wasn’t possible to apply it to the exposure below. Other recipes, such as my faded color and faded monochrome, require double exposures. There are other film simulation recipes that you could try not represented below, and I invite you to investigate the different options to see if there’s one or more that work well for your photography. Let me know in the comments which film simulation recipe is your favorite and which in your opinion fits the exposure below best.

Color

B&W