Classic Chrome is probably the most popular film simulation created by Fujifilm. It is the most common starting point for my film simulation recipes. It was introduced by Fujifilm beginning with the X-Trans II sensor, so those who have X-Trans I cameras or older Bayer sensor cameras don’t have it as an option. The X100, X100S, X-E1 and X-Pro1 all lack Classic Chrome.
I’ve been asked many times how to replicate Classic Chrome for cameras that don’t have it. I figured it out! And it’s not what you might expect. It’s not the advice that I have been giving out over the years, which was based on Astia. I figured that Astia with the contrast turned up and color turned down would be close, but I was wrong. It’s difficult to get the contrast correct when using Astia, and with Color set to -2 it’s still much too vibrant. Turns out PRO Neg. Std is the film simulation required to mimic Classic Chrome. Shocked? I was. It was literally the last color film simulation that I tried.
My experiments were conducted on my Fujifilm X-T1. Using Classic Chrome, I set Color, Highlight, Shadow and Sharpness at 0, Dynamic Range to DR100, Noise Reduction to -2, and White Balance to Auto with Red and Blue both set to 0. Then I tried to replicate that look using one of the other film simulations. I figured out how to get pretty darn close using the PRO Neg. Std film simulation.
There are some differences between actual Classic Chrome and these settings. This faux Classic Chrome is actually slightly more yellow. If there was a way to shift the white balance by fractions this could be made more accurate, as the actual shift should be closer to +0.3 Red and -0.6 Blue, but that’s not possible. You could set the white balance shift to 0 Red and 0 Blue if you prefer less yellow, and I think that’s a legitimate option, as I debated between that and this, but ultimately I went with the warmer white balance shift. There’s also slightly deeper shadows and more saturation with these settings than real Classic Chrome. I think +0.7 Shadow and Color would be more accurate, but +1 is as close as I could get. I found that setting Shadow and Color to 0 produced results that were further away from Classic Chrome, but that’s something you could consider. These settings are not perfect, but for those who don’t have Classic Chrome as an option, in my opinion this is as close as you’re going to get, which is actually pretty close.
PRO Neg. Std
Dynamic Range: DR200
Noise Reduction: -2
White Balance: Auto, 0 Red & -1 Blue
What about the pictures above? The top one is the faux Classic Chrome using PRO Neg. Std and the bottom one is actual Classic Chrome. Did you guess correctly?
Below are example photographs, all straight-out-of-camera JPEGs from my Fujifilm X-T1, that compare faux Classic Chrome using PRO Neg. Std with Classic Chrome.