Using Partially Compatible Fujifilm Film Simulation Recipes on Newer Cameras
I get asked somewhat frequently, “Can I use X-Trans III recipes on my X-Trans IV camera?” I’ve published almost 250 Film Simulation Recipes on this website, and there are at least a few recipes that are compatible with whatever Fujifilm X camera you own. Sometimes, though, someone wants to use a recipe on a camera that it wasn’t intended for. Can that work? What modifications does it need? I hope to answer those questions in this article.
If you have the Fuji X Weekly App on your phone and are an app Patron, you have the ability to filter the recipes by camera model or sensor generation. If you Filter by Camera, and that camera is the Fujifilm X100V (for example), there are currently 74 Film Simulation Recipes that will appear. These are recipes that are 100% fully compatible with the X100V. If you were to Filter by Sensor, and choose X-Trans IV, there are currently 170 recipes that will appear. Why the discrepancy? Some of these recipes aren’t compatible with the X100V because it requires an option only found on the newest cameras (such as the Eterna Bleach Bypass film simulation), but most of them are nearly compatible with the X100V—only some small tweaks are needed for it to work.
What kind of small tweaks? To use X-Trans III recipes on a Fujifilm X-T3 or X-T30, simply set Color Chrome Effect to Off and you are good to go (feel free to try it Weak or even Strong if you’d like). To use an X-Trans III recipe (or a recipe intended for the X-T3 & X-T30) on an X-Pro3, X100V, X-T4, X-S10, X-E4, or X-T30 II, you’ll have to decide on Grain size (either Small or Large). For the picture at the top of this article, I chose Small for the Grain size, and the picture below I chose Large. It’s a decision that you’ll have to make for yourself—whatever you think is most appropriate for your pictures. Set Color Chrome Effect (unless it’s an X-T3 & X-T30 recipe that calls for it) and Color Chrome FX Blue to Off; however, don’t be afraid to try Weak or Strong because you might like the results. Set Clarity to 0 (or try +2 or -2 if you want). For X-T3 & X-T30 black-and-white recipes with toning, you’ll have to figure out what the equivalent tone is, because it works a little different on the newer cameras. With all of that, now the recipe will work on your newer camera. Suddenly the options for the X100V have more than doubled!
Technically there is some cross-compatibility; however, the results will be different. That’s not necessarily “bad” because you might like the results. For example, I really love using the Bayer Classic Chrome recipe on my X-T1, an X-Trans II camera. The recipe wasn’t intended for that camera, but it works really well on it. If you have an X-Trans II camera, try X-Trans I and Bayer recipes and see what happens—just know that it will render the pictures differently on your camera, which you might really like or really not like (but you won’t know until you try!). For those with Bayer cameras, try X-Trans I and X-Trans II recipes. There are a few X-Trans II and Bayer recipes that those with X-Trans I cameras can try if they’d like—just look to see if your camera has the required film simulation.
For those with X-Trans III cameras, the cross-compatibility is a little less. You can try X-Trans I, II & Bayer recipes, but it will definitely render differently. You’ll have to decide on Grain (Weak, Strong, or Off). You might find something that you really like, so don’t be afraid to see what happens. For “older” GFX, try X-Trans III and X-T3 & X-T30 recipes. For “newer” GFX, try the X-Trans IV recipes intended for the newer cameras. Also, try GFX recipes on X-Trans IV cameras.
No matter your Fujifilm X camera, there are some Film Simulation Recipes that are 100% fully compatible; however, there are a lot more that are “mostly” compatible. You might have to make some modifications, or just know that the results won’t be exactly as they’re intended—what’s most important it whether or not it works for you. My advice is to give it a try, because you might find something that you really love.