Classic Chrome – Raw vs Jpeg FujiX100T

Out of curiosity I wanted to see how the FujiX100T manipulated images between JPEG and RAW when using the new Classic Chrome color profile.

At first I would have thought that they would be almost indistinguishable or at least extremely close. After all, why would a JPEG image look any different than the RAW with Classic Chrome? The profile is built by the same company using the same curves. But the results are actually surprising.

 

Raw vs JPEG with Classic Chrome

Several of the shots turned out looking very close, but then I had a lot that turned out looking nothing like the RAW. I thought I maybe had done something wrong until I remembered the camera is doing a lot of post processing to create these JPEG images even though all the settings are set to 0. 

Highlight Tones, Shadows Tone, Sharpness, including the Dynamic Range setting all seem to effect the JPEG and do little to the RAW files. You can set the DR to 100%, 200%, 400% or auto, but can never turn it off. Which is probably why this camera defaults the ISO to 200. So you always get that latitude in your highlights.

Midway through reviewing the photos something strange happened. I started getting some photos there were wildly out of balance or the exposure was just off. Usually too bright. After tests and tests I’ve learned that it’s actually Lightroom’s RAW converter that is the problem not the Fuji color profiles.

 

Classic Chrome – Raw vs JPEG Sample Images

For this test I went out and shot some RAW+F so I would get a RAW file that I could add the Classic Chrome profile to in Lightroom, and the Jpeg files would be baked Classic Chrome in camera.

For the camera settings such as shadows, highlight, sharpness, saturation, I left everything at default.

 

Shot 1 – Gamjatang Korean Soup

In this relatively well lit area with semi even lighting. The difference between RAW and JPEG using Classic Chrome was very subtle. Almost unnoticeable. You can only really see the subtleties in the highlights and shadows. It looks like the Fuji X100T has pulled down the highlights a little bit to preserve them and has lifted the blacks just slightly. A look that I actually thinks help contribute to the film look that we’re going for by using Classic Chrome. The JPEG is actually very nice and the RAW looks correct.

Camera: Fuji X100T
Color Profile: Classic Chrome
ISO 2500, f/4.0, 1/60sec

Use the slider at the bottom left of the image to swipe between images.

RAW <—-> JPEG

 

Shot 2 – Wienerschnitzel

This photo also has the lifted black and preserved highlights. Colors in the reds also seem to shift significantly. This could have something to do with the JPEG trying to bring down that highlight detail. If you look at the W signage on the left in the RAW, you’ll see it’s a red color and in the JPEG it’s almost an orangish color. 

Camera: Fuji X100T
Color Profile: Classic Chrome
ISO 1600, f/2.8, 1/60sec

RAW <—-> JPEG

 

Shot 3 – Water Drops

This is where things got weird. And I actually have a lot of photos that turned out like this when shooting at night. The RAW converter drastically adjusts the exposure in Lightroom. My guess is it did some sort of auto exposure but I don’t really know. The photo looks fine on the back LCD panel of my camera but it’s a full stop too bright in Lightroom.

 

Camera: Fuji X100T
Color Profile: Classic Chrome
ISO 6400, f/4.0, 1/20

RAW <—-> JPEG

 

Shot 5: Sergio

Colors between the two shots here are all over the place. Feels as though there is a white balance correction in the JPEG shot that’s shifting it towards the purple pink spectrum. The RAW seems more green.

Camera: Fuji X100T
Color Profile: Classic Chrome
ISO 1250, f/4.0, 1/60

RAW <—-> JPEG

 

Does Lightroom Suck For The Fuji X100T?

By doing this test on one topic, it actually became another. I can’t accurately compare Classic Chrome JPEG to the Classic Chrome profile in Lightroom because so many of my raws seem to be a full stop too bright. Some also seem to have the white balanced shifted. So I opened up Iridient Developer to compare its RAW files to the RAW of Lightroom.

For Lightroom I’m using Adobe Standard and Iridient I’m running the default IDv300.

Iridient: IDv300 Fuji X100T Standard <—-> Lightroom: Adobe Standard

Only real difference I’m seeing is the Lightroom image is slightly brighter which is easily corrected by lowing the exposure. Colors don’t seem to be drastically different. 

 

Other Looks In Lightroom – Raw vs Jpeg

For these I shot on Aperture Priority – RAW+JPEG.

All JPEG settings, Highlight Tone, Shadow Tone, Noise Reduction, Color, Sharpness were set to 0. Long Exposure NR was also turned off.

RAW <—-> JPEG

Use slider to reveal RAW image.

ASTIA

 

VELVIA

 

PROVIA

 

PRO NEG STD

 

PRO NEG HI

 

CLASSIC CHROME

 

RAW vs JPEG With Classic Chrome Conclusions

I have to say I can’t really make up my mind on how to work with files using the Fuji X100T, RAW or Jpeg or both? I want the Fuji film looks in RAW but they just seem off in Lightroom on many shots. Classic Chrome seems to be the closest, sometimes indistinguishable. But Astia, Provia, Velvia, Pro Neg all seem to have a bigger shifts to them. I imagine the Adobe Fuji Simulators were build by Adobe and not Fuji? Can anyone shed light on how these are made?

What else is strange is some sequences turn out with bigger color and exposure shifts than others. I think it’s just that Fuji has a little army of gnomes inside the camera, developing the JPEGs to perfection. And that’s what Fuji is known for. Great JPEG imaging.

I was hoping I would just be able to shoot RAW and add the film looks later which I guess I still can do, but the JPEGs are really nice by default.

As an exclusive RAW shooter now I’m in the place where I can’t ignore the quality of the JPEG. It just looks better when using the Fuji film simulators. At the end of the day that leave me shooting RAW+F which unfortunately really slows down your SD memory card write speeds. But I guess we can use the JPEG images when we want to just pump out some quick looks for Instagram or whatever. And when we feel like playing with various looks or using Lightroom Presets, we still have the RAW files.

The other alternative which I might start doing, is to shoot all RAW all the time. Then select an image in camera and use the RAW Converter to create the JPEGs needed. You can do this by selecting the play button, finding an image you like, then pressing ‘Menu Ok’. All your settings are right there.

I’m curious to know what’s everybody else doing? Are you using mostly shoot JPEG or RAW or both? Which has been working better for you?

 

Lightroom vs Iridient Comparisons

I’ve done a few more tests with Iridient and Lightroom that have all been pretty interesting.

Iridient vs Lightroom Camera Profile Test – This is the same test seen here but compares the Lightroom profiles to those of Iridient.

Iridient vs Lightroom Detail Comparison – This test shows how much better the Iridient X-Trans Raw Converter is compared to Lightroom.

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