New to Photolab and need some advice

I’m in the process of switching over to Photolab from Capture One. There’s something in Photolab that just fundamentally looks better than C1 to me. It’s kinda intangible but definitely there. Maybe it’s the lens profiles?

I need help from the Fuji users here. In Capture One my photos import as the film simulation I shot in-camera with. If I shot Acros that’s how it shows up and conversely if I shot Velvia the same. When I import into Photolab it momentarily shows the film sim I shot with but converts quickly to a a color raw file. I can of course change the color profile and I do have FilmPack 6 but often I’ll import 50 photos in which I used many varied in-camera film sims and I wind up guessing which profile I had originally decided upon. So my question is, is there perhaps a way that Photolab can interpret what sims I originally shot with?

The momentary view is most likely the embedded JPEG being loaded before the RAW.

As a Fuji shooter myself I’d like PL to load with my chosen film sim as that’s what I’m used to with Lightroom and the point I ‘usually’ like to start from, but so far I don’t think it’s possible.
I haven’t dug around enough to say for certain but as the Fuji simulations are only in FP6 I’m thinking it’s not an option. Happy to be shown otherwise however.

Also worth noting that depending on which Fuji body you are using FP6 doesn’t have all the required simulations unlike C1 and LR.

Simple answer: Not without manual intervention on a per picture basis.

Long answer:

  • PhotoLab applies the corrections set forth in what you selected as default preset.
  • Even if you select “No Correction” as default preset, PhotoLab will do what it does.
  • Why does PhotoLab overwrite the previews? Because DxO wants to bring the best out of your Photos, which is not automatically the same for each user
  • :man_shrugging:

Yea ya know it’s not a deal breaker for me. As I mentioned the Photolab end results are almost always better than Capture One. I can’t put my finger on it and maybe it’s a placebo effect, but it’s real for me. That and in the end the FilmPack 6 has film sims that may in fact be as good as the standard Fuji film sims. I think I, like you, I’ve just grown accustom to having a “starting point” based on my decision in real time with the camera.

Thank you platypus! As I mentioned above it’s certainly not a deal breaker and other than this slight speed-bump I like editing in Photolab much better than Capture One.

I wanna follow through with this and asked a secondary question if I may :slight_smile: I’m inclined, at least with most of my photo excursions, to abandon the Fuji Film sims and rely more on the DXO PL and Film Pack 6. First of all I’m still convinced that for my style of editing Photolab just looks better than Capture One. But secondarily I’m beginning to really, really like Film Pack 6 look. It’s for me at least as good if not sometimes better than the Fuji sims and certainly Film Pack 6 has a much broader reach.

Then, that said, logistically I’d asked, does anyone have a feel as to what Fuji JPEG “in-camera only” preset is best for the broadest range of possibilities when importing later as RAF’s to edit? In other words if I see something that in my minds eye might be best as a B&W scenario do I switch to a B&W in-camera JPEG view? I mean, just to have a better idea as how B&W (in general) might look later in post? The weather here in Long Beach has been dramatically cold and blustery, which happens once every 40 years, so my inclination is to walk around in Acros-like settings just to somewhat match and capture the feel that might emerge post process. Conversely if it’s typically abundant sunshine should I monitor in something more “abundantly sunny” as a means of capturing that mood before editing in post. Is any of this mindset of an advantage?

I’m not a Fuji user.

I don’t think you would need to use any in-camera presets since FP6 can be used on both RAW and JPEG Fuji images.

21 color and 4 B&W renderings currently. Neopan Acros is supported.

I understand having the ability to preview what post processing might add. I guess for me it would depend on the day. If I set out to shoot B&W I might use a preset. Conversley, I rather remove color in post instead of trying to add it.

Hope this makes sense.

You can always use whatever in-camera setting suits your way of shooting. Just be aware that what you see on the back of the camera is only the embedded JPEG constructed by the camera from the RAW data. Thus it is of limited dynamic range, limited quality and not what you will end up editing.

I have a friend who is an expert at B&W photography, coming, as I, from a film background. She prefers to set her Nikon D850 to a B&W mode because, sometimes, it helps her to “sanity check” the tonal content and composition of an image she is going to process as B&W in PhotoLab. She uses the Ilford Delta 100 FilmPack preset and I use the Fuji Acros 100 presets as that was my absolute favourite low reciprocity film with a beautiful interpretation of colours.

The preset you use in-camera has to be up to you. What is more important is what you see with your mind’s eye as the finished result. Don’t forget, with film, you never had a preview/review on the back of the camera; it was all down to how you imagined the final image and your darkroom skills in extracting that idea of the image at the time of printing. PhotoLab is simply a digital darkroom and the RAW files are negatives, which are just as incomplete in that, just as negatives needed inverting, multiple exposures on multi-grade paper, dodging and burning, etc to make them into a perfect print, so RAW files need treatment in PhotoLab in order to bring out the best in them.

Personally, I set my camera to give the flattest, most un-enhanced JPEG preview, knowing that the finished image will always need those skills to bring out what I had envisioned in my minds eye before I pressed the shutter. Using an in-camera preset can sometimes limit the possibilities for a final image; sometimes I will envision an image in B&W, sometimes in colour but, when it came to processing it on a big screen, there was something in the larger image that made me decide the opposite of my initial impression. My advice is don’t limit yourself to what the camera “suggests”. Think as if you are using a film camera, don’t rely on the JPEG preview and know that, if you’ve correctly exposed the “negative”, PhotoLab is more than capable of helping you express your vision in so many more ways.

I agree fully with @Joanna. My wife does the photography for our studio, and we live by the mantra of “getting it right in the camera” then using post-processing to achieve her vision. We both have a strong background from the wet darkroom back in the day.

We switched to digital over 25 years ago, and she was elated at what we were able to achieve digitally. What helps us it to keep her vision front and center, using tools like PhotoLab to bring that vision to printed reality. For us, we don’t get too hung up on tools like Film Pack, but use them as wonderful preset jumping off points for the vision. Our challenge differs from most others though: I loved the darkroom and now the digital darkroom while she loves the camera. Imagine our lively conversations as she tries to convey her vision and bring it to life through my post-processing. We’re getting there… :smiling_face_with_three_hearts:

You’ll find PhotoLab to be a quality tool to achieve your vision. The joy is you cannot ‘break’ your image as you use the tools to your advantage!

Thank you all so much for the thoughtful and helpful info :slight_smile: My workflow was just thrown off a bit since I’m used to Capture One recognizing the film simulations upon import. In a sense it just reminded me what my thought process was at the time the photo was taken. There can be no doubt my memory just isn’t what is used to be so a quick reminder always helped. Like I said earlier it’s not a deal breaker and the advantages of PhotoLab, for me, out weight the new found workflow.

Thanks again all!