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Why The Fujifilm X Series Images Are So “Film-Like” — 10 Comments

  1. Pingback: Why The Fujifilm X Series Images Are So „Film-Like“ | Dan Bailey

  2. With Bayer pattern processing there is a process of interpolation which estimates a missing value of a blue for example by “what the neighbors are saying”. Is there a similar component in the processing of XTran sensor data. I would think it would be “hella” complex, but nothing I’ve read talks about it.

  3. Robert, I think that’s where the initial problems ensued. Those interpolation algorithms that were written for the Bayer pattern obviously didn’t work for the X-Trans sensor’s vastly different filter array. However, 5 years later, there has been a clear effort by Adobe and other software developers. I know that Fuji has worked closely with Adobe, and the result is that the latest versions of LR and PS are WAY better at deciphering the X-Trans RAW files.

  4. Pingback: Narrow-guage | northumbrian : light

  5. I have been shooting the X70 and XT-1 with an R72 filter, BWr mode, ISO6400 and getting pretty good approximations of the old Kodak BW IR images. A little tweaking of resulting images is needed but I have been producing images with same kind of grain structure. By shooting at 6400 I am also able to shoot handheld. Of course all these tweaks only apply to the JPEG image, not RAW. The RAW takes a bit more post work. 😉

  6. Pingback: The Fujifilm X-T2 is Now Shipping! | Dan Bailey's Adventure Photography Blog

  7. Too funny,

    Saw this post on Scoop.it, looked interesting to me given I just wrote a similar piece but from a COMPLETELY different POV. Yes I compared it to film but not in a bottom-up way more a top-down way. Just to see what your take was I took a look.

    Guess what… The funny part and the punchline;

    The TMZ (Tmax 3200P) image at about 40x magnification happens to be one I shot of Daughter #2 back in the 90’s when testing the then new Contax G2 and lenses vs my other go-to rangefinder 35mm system (Leica M). Small world huh??

    RWB

  8. A few nits to pick.

    1) The X-Trans layout is neither random nor irregular. Set several of the squares you showed above side-by-side, and it becomes apparent that they form a clear, regular pattern; it’s just that the pattern has a longer period than Bayer. The main difference is that the X-Trans layout makes sure every row and column have pixels that detect all three colors, whereas any one row of Bayer has pixels that capture only two colors.

    2) I’m not sure the grain-like appearance of the Fuji X-Trans images is inherent to the sensor, inasmuch as other raw processors do not seem to match it. I use RawTherapee quite a lot, for instance, which is widely considered an excellent processor for X-Trans, to the point that many consider it far better than LightRoom. Nevertheless, its noise patterns on Fuji’s X-Trans files do not resemble those on the camera, which makes me suspect the grain-like appearance is something Fuji is adding to the in-camera software processing pipeline.

  9. Hi Robert,

    Ha! Thanks for the comment. Small world indeed!! I remember chatting with you on Twitter last year. Really funny that’s your image. I’ll add your name to the image in my post.

    I just read your “Black and White Processing” post- I love your wording when you talk about “making aesthetic choices that were fixed” and incorporating “limitations and flaws” in photography, vs smooth, perfect grain-less reproductions. You totally nailed the mark there- photography is art and art is representational- flaws, grain and noise are the brushstrokes of our craft. Film wasn’t perfect and digital photography shouldn’t be either.

    Keep up the good work!
    -Dan

  10. Jack- Thanks for the comment. You’re right, the X-Trans is not totally random or irregular, just more so in “appearance” when compared to the Bayer pattern. It’s a pattern indeed, but rather than a 2×2 pattern, it’s a 6×6 pattern. When you compare it to actual film grain, as did Louis Ferreira in this post on his site Fuji Addict, you can see that the more “open” array of the green pixels more closely mimics the random arrangement of the red, green and blue grain crystals on the film.

    Regarding your second point, there would certainly be a difference in how unprocessed RAW files look vs. in-camera processed JPEGs. The RAW files would show a more accurate look of the actual “grain” that’s inherent to the X-Trans sensor, while JPEGs could include a wide variation of noise reduction, smoothing, and in some cases, increased grain. When I look at my X-T2 RAW files, they look very grain like, so even though there could be some grain-tweaking done inside the image processor, every JPEGs originates from a RAW capture. While image processing technology does play a significant part in how any image looks, regardless of the camera, it all starts with the sensor.

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