Ever since picking up the Fuji X-T1, I’ve been smitten with the Classic Chrome film emulation. Those that know what they’re talking about say that it feels and behaves much like the legendary Kodachrome film. I can’t confirm this as I’ve barely shot film and have never used a roll of Kodachrome, but I can confirm that it’s fantastic. It has a soft, subdued aura, which I expected to enjoy on a narrow category of images. I’ve been pleasantly surprised to find that I’ve enjoyed it on nearly all my images though. Even shots that I expect to be classic Velvia shots (e.g., landscapes, sunrises, etc.) have often been very pleasing when rendered with Classic Chrome.
Note that because I shoot RAW nearly all the time, I don’t get the full benefit of Fuji’s excellent film emulations. I do use the Lightroom Camera Calibration setting for the film emulations, however, which generally do an adequate job when used as a starting point.
After playing around with and loving Classic Chrome for a while, I started to get frustrated that I couldn’t get the same emulation on my Fuji X100S (it’s not available on the camera or within Lightroom), which came out prior to the release of Classic Chrome. The X100T, which is the successor to the X100S, does have Classic Chrome, but I didn’t want to upgrade to the X100T for a variety of reasons. I thought I was stuck without the option to use Classic Chrome on the X100S until I figured out the nifty and quick hack described in this post…
What You’ll Need
- A Mac (I’m sure you can do something similar on Windows, but I haven’t investigated it)
- Lightroom (I’m not sure how other RAW editors like ACR and Capture One handle camera profiles, but I’d guess this trick would work for these editors as well)
- Optional: A Hex editor, such as iHex
That’s it! 🙂
The Long Way…
To start, I’m going to explain the tedious and manual way to be able to apply the Classic Chrome profile to your Fuji X100S shots within Lightroom because I think it’s helpful to illustrate what’s going on behind the scenes. Later, I’ll show you a way to “batch” this process and make it super efficient.
I just got back from a trip to Joshua Tree, and I’ll use my X100S shots from this trip as an example. After importing these shots into Lightroom, I have the following options for the Profile within the Camera Calibration section of the Develop pane:
As expected, there’s no option for Classic Chrome. To fix this for this individual file, let’s start by opening the .RAF RAW file in iHex or an equivalent Hex editor (note that if you don’t want to download/use a Hex editor, feel free to just read along…we’ll use an approach that doesn’t require a Hex editor later). Right click on the image and select
Show in Finder:
This will open a Finder window that you can use to ensure that you’re opening/editing the right file within iHex. Next, open iHex and hit
Command + O to bring up the file chooser. Navigate to the path/file in the Finder window that you just opened. After opening the file, you’ll see something like this:
Yikes! That’s a lot of scary text. Don’t worry, though, our edits will be quick and we’ll be back to pretty pictures very soon. In addition to the hex codes on the left pane, there’s some metadata in the right pane. You’ll notice that there are three locations that say “X100S”, and this is the key to fixing all of our troubles… Because the X100S has the same sensor as the X100T (and the XT-1, for that matter), Lightroom can theoretically apply the X100T’s Classic Chrome profile to the X100S image and get the exact same result as would have been achieved had you shot the image with the X100T instead. So all we have to do is trick Lightroom into thinking that the RAW was taken with an X100T, not an X100S! We can do this by simply performing a Find/Replace that changes all instances of “X100S” to “X100T”. In iHex, hit
Command + F to bring up the Find/Replace screen. Ensure that
Text is selected (not
Hex), type “X100S” in the
Find box and “X100T” in the
Replace box, and select
Save and close the file in iHex, and then quit and reopen Lightroom. Check your Profile options, and you’ll see…
Classic Chrome!! Hooray!
The Short Way…
The process described above works great if you just have one image for which you want to make Classic Chrome available. If you’re like me and just got back from a trip where you took more than a couple pictures, the last thing you want to do is go through that process for every. single. shot.
No worries, though, because we can perform the Find/Replace operation on a group of files using a couple commands in Terminal.
First, open a Terminal window (
Command + Space > Search for “Terminal” > Hit
Enter) and change your directory to the folder that houses all your images. You can use the
cd command to change directories, and make sure to surround the file path in quotes if it contains spaces. For example, mine looks like this:
Now that we’re in the right folder, we’ll run the Find/Replace command. You’ll run the following command exactly:
perl -pi -w -e 's/X100S/X100T/g;' *.RAF. This will replace all instances of “X100S” with “X100T” within .RAF files in your current directory. Depending on the number of files in your folder and the processing power of your computer, this may take a couple seconds. Your screen should now look something like:
Now, just quit and reopen Lightroom. All your X100S images should now have Classic Chrome available!
Run into issues? Have general questions? Know an easier way? Let me know in the comments! 🙂