Tales of the X-T4: Tale 3 ETERNA Bleach Bypass

Previously Fujifilm released X-T4 tales:

Tales of the X-T4: Tale 1 – Versatile Performance
Tales of the X-T4: Tale 2 – IBIS

Now Fujifilm has released its second tale “Tales of the X-T4: Tale 3”

Fujifilm has always been a company that cared about color science whether dealing with film or digital photography. This is why in 2003 they started creating film simulations in their digital cameras with the FinePix F700, which featured “F-Simulation” that kicked off Fujifilm’s continued roll-out of digital film stock simulations.

The rolling out of film simulations haven’t been random, because starting with the X-Pro2 Fujifilm introduced “ACROS” which fit the design philosophy of the X-Pro2, which was followed by “ETERNA” in the X-H1 which was intended for video use, and later “Classic Neg.” for the X-Pro3. This has now lead to “ETERNA Bleach Bypass” in the X-T4.

“ETERNA Bleach Bypass” is the follow up to “ETERNA”, which was introduced for the X-H1 that was intended to be more videocentric. When Fujifilm compares their film simulations “PROVIA” was dead center until the introduction of “ETERNA”, which is outside the matrix of their photography centric simulations due to its low saturation and contrast, which you can learn about here.

Now “ETERNA Bleach Bypass” pushes Fujifilm simulations even further, making “ETERNA” more of a middle ground simulation. It resembles black-and-white photographs dropping saturation even more, while tightening dynamic range making it equivalent to “Classic Chrome” for photography on their matrix which you can see below.

In Japan “bleach bypass” is know as “retaining the silver” because it skips the step of removing (“bleaching”) the silver halide during development which goes back to the days of film. Fujifilm has been aware of this technique for some time and they have decided to introduce it first in its “bleach bypass” movie film simulation.

This effect is very different today, because in the past it was done for movies being projected on a screen, while digital images are often viewed on monitors, phones, TV screens, and more. This made designing “bleach bypass” an engineering challenge because it has to be designed to relay the same impression created by viewing the film in the theater on any format that it is viewed.

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