How to Get Accurate Fuji Colors in Lightroom

Our readers often ask us if it is possible to get Lightroom to provide the same colors as one would see from camera-rendered JPEG files when shooting in RAW format. Many photographers often choose specific color profiles in their cameras and they get surprised when images are imported into Lightroom and all those changes are lost. You might have noticed when importing files that Lightroom changes the colors immediately after import, when the embedded JPEG files are re-rendered using Adobe’s standard color profiles and settings. As a result, images might appear dull, lack contrast and have completely different colors. I have heard plenty of complaints on this issue for a while now, so I decided to post series of articles for each major manufacturer on how to obtain more accurate colors in Lightroom that resemble the image preview seen on the camera LCD and in camera-rendered JPEG images. In this article, I will talk about getting accurate colors from Fuji mirrorless cameras in Lightroom. Please see our previous articles on getting accurate colors for Nikon, Canon and Sony cameras.

Camera JPEG vs Adobe RAW

Due to the fact that Adobe’s RAW converters are unable to read proprietary RAW header data, some settings have to be either applied manually or applied upon import. My personal preference is to apply a preset while importing images, which saves me time later. Before we get into Lightroom, let me first go over camera settings and explain a few important things.

1) RAW File Nuances and Metadata

When shooting in RAW format, most camera settings like White Balance, Sharpness, Saturation, Lens Corrections and Color Profiles do not matter. Unless you use Fuji-provided RAW File Converter that comes with Fuji-specific color profiles (based on SILKYPIX software), those custom settings are mostly discarded by third party applications, including Lightroom and Photoshop. Unfortunately, camera manufacturers rarely ever publish full specifications for their RAW files and do not work closely with third party application development companies like Adobe in order to take a full advantage of their cameras. Because of this, color profiles, along with all other camera settings are lost upon import of images. Although Adobe has been working hard on providing manufacturer and camera-specific color profiles, only the most popular cameras are typically covered. In addition, those color profiles are generated in Adobe’s own lab environment, which can result in slightly different color rendering when compared to the manufacturer’s.

Let’s go over data that is actually read by Lightroom / Photoshop Camera RAW:

  1. White Balance, as set by the camera. Instead of your chosen value such as Auto, Incandescent, Fluorescent, etc, only the actual color temperature and tint are read from the RAW file.
  2. Common image metadata such as Capture Date/Time, Exposure, Focal Length, Flash, Camera Make and Model, Lens information, etc.
  3. Copyright information such as Author’s Name, etc. (if it exists)

That’s basically it. Now here is the information that is completely discarded:

  1. Film Simulation and Filter Effects
  2. Color Space (only relevant for JPEG images and JPEG images embedded into RAW files)
  3. Dynamic Range
  4. Intelligent Face Detection
  5. Focus Area and focus point location in the frame
  6. Color, Sharpness, Highlight Tone, Shadow Tone and Noise Reduction
  7. Distortion Correction, Color Shading Correction and Peripheral Illumination Correction
  8. Lens Modulation Optimizer
  9. All other settings in the camera menus

All of the above settings do not affect RAW files in any way. Whatever you choose in your camera simply gets written as header information to Fuji’s RAF files. Please note that “Long exposure NR” (Noise Reduction) is the only setting that affects RAW files. However, Adobe will still not know if Long exposure noise reduction was turned on or off in your camera.

2) Camera Settings

Because the above settings do not affect your RAW files, they are essentially of no use, so I would recommend to keep them turned off by default. You might be wondering why JPEG images or the image on the back of the LCD change when you pick different Film Simulation or other settings while shooting in RAW. That’s because RAW files actually contain full size JPEG previews, which is what your camera shows on the back of the LCD. Hence, any change you make in your camera will simply be reflected in the embedded JPEG file only. When RAW files are imported into Lightroom / Camera RAW, the embedded JPEG file is discarded and a new one is generated, based on Adobe’s default settings, or a chosen import preset. That’s why when I talk about getting more accurate Fuji colors in Lightroom, we are simply trying to match Fuji’s default rendering of colors in JPEG images to those rendered by Lightroom or Camera RAW. Remember, a RAW file is just like unprocessed film – you can interpret and process colors any way you like.

However, changing camera settings can indirectly affect your RAW files. For example, if you have Dynamic Range turned on (which simply applies a tone curve to the embedded JPEG image), you might think that you have enough shadow details in your image and you might end up underexposing the image. Noise Reduction setting might make it seem like you do not have much noise in your images, so you might not notice that your ISO value is unnecessarily high. That’s why it is best to turn all custom settings off completely.

Fuji has a set of color profiles known as “Film Simulation” available in its cameras. By default, a camera profile called “PROVIA/STANDARD” gets applied to images. That’s the profile I typically use when shooting with Fuji cameras. Whichever Film Simulation you pick, I would suggest to stick to it if you want to see consistent colors in Lightroom (or it will be too much of a headache). And do not worry about modifying other color adjustments, since those might indirectly affect your RAW images as well (for example, setting high values for Highlight Tone and Shadow Tone).

3) Lightroom and Camera RAW: Camera Calibration

Since photographers want to see colors as rendered by their cameras, Adobe ended up creating different camera profiles based on the colors they saw from the rendered JPEG images. The process of creating such camera profiles is fairly complex and it involves shooting different color charts in JPEG format, then trying to match those colors while rendering RAW files. Adobe did a decent job with Fuji’s color profiles (although as demonstrated below, some colors do appear different) and re-created many of the most commonly used ones. For example, here is the full list of created profiles for the Fuji X-T1:

  1. Camera PROVIA/STANDARD
  2. Camera Velvia/VIVID
  3. Camera ASTIA/SOFT
  4. Camera Pro Neg. Hi
  5. Camera Pro Neg. Std
  6. Camera MONOCHROME
  7. Camera MONOCHROME+Ye FILTER
  8. Camera MONOCHROME+R FILTER
  9. Camera MONOCHROME+G FILTER

The only film simulation that is missing in Lightroom 5.5 is Sepia. Usually Adobe does not bother with black and white / monochrome profiles, but they specifically added four of them to Lightroom, so you can actually get some decent black and white images just by picking one of the monochrome profiles.

You can find the above-mentioned profiles under the “Camera Calibration” sub-module in Lightroom, or the “Camera Calibration” tab in Camera RAW, as seen below:

Lightroom vs Camera RAW Camera Calibration

Basically, these try match the Film Simulations in your camera one to one. If you set your camera Film Simulation to “PROVIA/STANDARD”, picking “Camera PROVIA/STANDARD” from the Camera Calibration sub-module of Lightroom / Camera RAW will imitate those colors (assuming that additional tweaking of colors and contrast was not performed in the camera).

That’s why it is a good idea to stick to one Film Simulation in your camera, because you can set that same Camera Calibration profile to all images every time you import them.

Adobe also provides the ability to tweak individual colors for hue and saturation after applying a profile, but if you choose to do that, it might deviate from Fuji’s original colors.

4) Applying a Camera Profile During Import

If you want to always have Fuji’s native colors in your images and not the default “Adobe Standard” camera profile (which is often pretty dull), you might want to set up an import preset that gets applied to your images when they are imported into Lightroom. This is a very simple and straightforward process, so let me show you the best way to do it.

  1. First, open any Fuji RAW / RAF file in Lightroom’s Develop Module.
  2. Keep White Balance under the “Basic” sub-module “As Shot”, if you want Lightroom to read what your camera set WB and Tint to.
  3. Scroll down to the Camera Calibration sub-module.
  4. Pick the same color profile as what you have set in your camera (for example, Camera PROVIA/STANDARD).
  5. On the left panel, scroll down to the “Presets” sub-module and press the “+” sign next to it, which is used for creating a new preset.
  6. A new window will pop-up. Give the preset a name, for example “Fuji Import Preset”. The default folder “User Presets” is fine, but you can create a different folder if you want to.
  7. Only select “White Balance”, “Process Version” and “Calibration”, then click “Create”, as shown below:
    Import Preset

Once you do this, a new preset will appear in the Preset menu, under the specified folder. Now all you need to do is specify this preset when importing images. Bring up the Import Window, then look at the right side of the window and expand “Apply During Import”. Click the “Develop Settings” drop-down and pick the newly created import preset, as shown below:

Lightroom Apply During Import

Once you import the photos, every one of them will be automatically changed to the previously selected camera profile, which will match whatever you picked in your camera.

5) Adobe Camera Profiles vs Fuji Film Simulations

Now let’s take a look at a photo and see how closely Adobe’s Camera Profiles match Fuji’s Film Simulations. I did a quick experiment, setting the Fuji X-T1 to “PROVIA/STANDARD” Film Simulation, then taking a picture of flowers. I set the camera’s file format to RAW + JPEG, so that I could use the JPEG file as a reference. Here is the JPEG file that the camera captured:

Fuji X-T1 JPEG PROVIA-STANDARD

And here is what the image looked like after I applied the “Camera PROVIA/STANDARD” profile in Lightroom:

Adobe Camera PROVIA-STANDARD

As you can see, unlike Sony camera profiles, the colors from Adobe profiles closely match the colors from in-camera JPEG, which is great news! Looking at the above images, I do not feel the need to change any color settings. This means that once you set the same color profile on the camera and in Adobe Lightroom/Camera RAW, the colors should match quite well.

Comments

  1. 1
    ) Sam
    July 8, 2014 at 8:19 am

    Good tip, Nasim!
    May I ask what is the font name you’re using in your blog? I love it :-)

    • 10
      ) dfbgt
      July 9, 2014 at 4:49 am

      Candara

      • 11
        ) Sam
        July 9, 2014 at 7:54 am

        Thank you!

        • July 9, 2014 at 8:42 am

          Looks like you’ve already got your answer, sorry for being a bit late!

          • 24
            ) Sam
            July 9, 2014 at 9:11 am

            Not an issue, Nasim. Thanks for your time to reply.

  2. 2
    ) Sebastiano
    July 8, 2014 at 9:30 am

    Hi Nasim, thank you for those two recent articles on how to get accurate colors using Sony and Fuji cameras and LR. Is there a similar article also for Nikon cameras?

    p.s. I have still to read carefully both :)

  3. 3
    ) Pete
    July 8, 2014 at 9:36 am

    Hi Nasim
    Do I have to reimport my library when I do this or is there another way to apply this to my already imported libraries?

    • July 9, 2014 at 8:44 am

      Pete, you can already apply these settings to your imported photos – just copy the “Calibration” part only (Develop->Copy Settings), then paste to all photos you want changed.

  4. 4
    ) John Mottershaw
    July 8, 2014 at 9:39 am

    Great article!

    Just one thing though – even as a RAW shooter with a camera like the XT-1 it is worth choosing a profile on the camera to emulate the profile in Lightroom simply because it is affects what you see on the camera’s screen.

    • July 9, 2014 at 8:52 am

      John, absolutely! I usually use the “Standard” profile in all cameras I shoot with. Some cameras are pretty dull with Standard, so in those cases I might switch to something like Vivid.

  5. 5
    ) Brian Bullock
    July 8, 2014 at 11:32 am

    Hi, Nasim.

    Are there equivalents to these presets in ACR? I don’t need any of the ‘extras’ in Lr and prefer the UI in ACR, so I have chosen to pass on Lr even though I have Adobe’s CC. Thanks for all of the valuable services you provide us with photographylife.com.

    • July 9, 2014 at 8:53 am

      Brian, yes, ACR is an exact replica of Lightroom in terms of camera profiles!

  6. 6
    ) James Stephens
    July 8, 2014 at 12:47 pm

    Hi Nasim, You may have just done it for most folks but for an old fellow like me, you lost me. If I use Nikon D4S and Nikon D800E, is there a simple procedure to do in Lightroom 5.5 to get those results? Thanks – Your site is one of the first 3 I look at twice a day.

    James

    • Profile photo of Daniel Michael
      8
      ) Daniel Michael
      July 8, 2014 at 1:26 pm

      Hi James,

      As far as I’m aware Lightroom picks the camera profile based on the camera the picture was taken with. You will only have the choice of the Nikon Jpegs in the drop down menu (vivid, portrait, landscape etc). You can’t use the Fuji presets, even if you create them as presets, for the Nikon pics ( I have tried it!). I guess it would take someone with some hacking experience maybe, but I doubt it. I hope that’s what you were asking!

      Daniel

      • July 9, 2014 at 8:55 am

        Daniel, perhaps I misunderstood the question, but I believe that James was asking if he can use the same consistent preset between two different cameras.

        But you are right – camera profiles are camera-specific. You cannot use a Fuji profile for a Nikon camera, unless you create one yourself :)

        • Profile photo of Daniel Michael
          20
          ) Daniel Michael
          July 9, 2014 at 8:59 am

          Haha! Well then I think I must have misunderstood the question also! :)

    • July 9, 2014 at 8:54 am

      James, yes, you can use the same process for both cameras in Lightroom! Just make sure to keep the same profile on both cameras (say Standard), then pick “Camera Standard” and use it as the import profile :)

  7. Profile photo of Daniel Michael
    7
    ) Daniel Michael
    July 8, 2014 at 1:20 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    Thanks for the article, it’s actually a good discussion point since this is a topic which has many people giving different opinions depending on the reviewer. One of the reasons I was drawn to Fuji cameras was the idea that I read in many reviews, that the JPEGs were so good you “didn’t have to shoot in RAW”, and noise reduction was so good “you can shoot up to ISO 3200″ , which for me was a way of cutting down on post processing. This would be my “non-serious” camera for all the fun stuff. Unfortunately, the reality was very different.

    My favourite film sims on the X-E1 were Astia and B+W(Red) and when I imported them (RAW + JPEG), the JPEGs would look too contrasty, noisy and the colours were a bit in-your-face. In the end, I’d use the RAW version and post-process it, getting much better results.

    Now whether this is because I didn’t shoot to the right enough, I’m not sure. I’ve found that processing the RAW using the Fuji presets in LR had a much better look than the ones straight from JPEG. In fact, they are vastly different. In your article, you’ve compared the Lightroom Fuji preset to the in-camera JPEG and the colours seem pretty close.

    Do you think that the Lightroom presets are based on the film simulations from the latest Fujis like the X-E2 and the X-T1? Is it possible that the film sims in these cameras have been tweaked a bit over the ones from the X-E1? Could you at some point (if it’s not too much hassle off!) compare the JPEG colours from the X-T1 to the X-E1?

    Thanks once again!

    Daniel

    • July 9, 2014 at 9:06 am

      Daniel, keep in mind that those profiles have changed in the later versions of Lightroom, so perhaps your experience was from the older presets that did not match well? I have not tried all the presets, but there is a possibility that the colors might vary. The thing with RAW files, is that you have much better control over sharpening, noise reduction, etc, compared to in-camera JPEG files. So it is expected that you should be able to get better results. Still, Fuji does an excellent job with colors and noise reduction on its JPEG files – compare the output to Nikon or Canon and you will see that Fuji JPEGs are very good!

      As for X-E1 comparisons, could you shoot a colorful scene with RAW+JPEG, then send both to me (let me know what profile the camera was set to)? I can do a quick comparison and tell you if the rendering is different in Lightroom. You can do this yourself too – set the camera to a particular profile, put the JPEG file in a folder, then set the same profile in Lightroom for the RAW file and extract it in JPEG format. Make sure that both are sRGB when you look at images, or colors might appear different if the files have different color profiles…

  8. 9
    ) Tom Piorkowski
    July 8, 2014 at 3:35 pm

    Excellent article, thank you for all the tips, I look forward to using them.

  9. 15
    ) Steve
    July 9, 2014 at 8:49 am

    Thank you for your time in writing this article. I have lightroom 5.5 and an xt-1. When I go under Lens Correction in Lightroom, I see Make_Fujifilm. Model X100s. Profile: Adobe (Fujifilm X100s). I converted the raw file on import to dng and for the life of me, I can’t figure where the profiles such as Provia etc. are. If you have the time, could you point me to this. Thanks

    • July 9, 2014 at 9:07 am

      Steve, the color profiles are located on the very bottom of the Develop mode – it is called “Camera Calibration”.

  10. 25
    ) Roberto Keller-Pérez
    July 9, 2014 at 6:16 pm

    Awesome post! First time I actually understood how the camera calibration works on Lightroom.

  11. 26
    ) Ioannis Doukakis
    July 10, 2014 at 3:55 am

    I do not totally agree with this post. Yes, Lightroom and ACR have added Fuji profiles, but in general Adobe raw processing (2012 version) has some characteristics that affect RAW files and create differences with JPEG
    a) Adobe RAW processor renders shadows with more light than Fuji
    b) Adobe RAW processor tends to have a softer curve on the highlights, postponing clipping. In other words very light areas become pure white at a lower value in JPEG than in Adobe.

    Finally from my personal experience Lens correction of Adobe is stronger (and better) than the one my X100S has, so the distortion of the JPEG and RAF/Adobe is different, making pixel-peeping observations difficult.

    The addition of the film profiles was a big plus for Adobe and I was excited to use them even when ACR was in beta. I wish I could use them also for my Canon…

  12. 27
    ) jJan Demuzere
    July 10, 2014 at 4:09 am

    Hallo Nasim, very interesting post !
    What happens if you make also a conversion to the DNG format as well ?

  13. 28
    ) Lee
    July 15, 2014 at 5:48 am

    Has anyone had 100% success in recreating Velvia simulation from Fuji RAF files in LR?

  14. 29
    ) Lucy
    July 15, 2014 at 7:09 am

    Hello, sorry to bother you but I cannot seem to find how to change my camera calibration. I literally only have ‘adobe standard’ to choose from. I am using a free trail of lightroom at the minute, do you have to be a paid subscriber to get this option….it will save me so many hours processing! Also thank you for your articles, they are so informative.

  15. 30
    ) Peter
    July 16, 2014 at 3:24 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I recently got a Panasonic Lumix GX7 and I just did my first import. To my dismay I am experiencing the issues with washed out colors, as described in this and other articles. I’ve been reading up on the issue, and am happy to learn that there is a solution. However, I have no idea how to find color profiles for the GX7. Are you planning a similar article for Panasonic cameras? Do profiles for them even exist or will I have to create one myself. If so, how would one go about doing so?

  16. 31
    ) Eric
    August 2, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    Hi Nasim,

    I’m curious about any lens correction profiles for Lightroom when attached to the X-T1 when shooting RAW. Are these implemented into Lightroom 5.6?

    Thanks,

    Eric

  17. 32
    ) Malcolm Kirkaldie
    September 13, 2014 at 7:44 pm

    Thank, thank you. This has been bugging me for some time, now i can finally get LR to do what i/and fuji film want.

  18. 33
    ) Terry Andrews
    September 23, 2014 at 8:44 am

    RAF files now include the necessary data to correct for lens aberration. It seems that there is no way to turn this off in adobe cc raw converter. I have noticed that the lens corrections given to in camera jpegs is very slightly different. But I am undecided which is more accurate, ther is very little in it.

    There is no need to apply a profile to achieve this, it is entirely automatic.

    I do not have stand alone versions of lightroom or photoshop to compare, so I can not say for sure that this is true for those versions.

  19. 34
    ) Vipul Kapadia
    October 15, 2014 at 6:03 pm

    Excellent article! I have tried this on RAF files (actually DNG) and they work great! I see a huge difference with the way Adobe Standard gets applied vs. Astia, Provia and Velvia. Like Fuji colors better!

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