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Fuji's 4th Layer Technology


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#1 Phil Thompson

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 06:01 AM

Dear Fuji,

Thank you for your 4th layer technology its amazing.


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#2 Filip Plesha

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 07:22 AM

What a conincidence, I was just asking about 4th layer technology in another thread ("fuji films")
and wanted to ask does it have any visible benefits in color reproduction in Reala 500D

So, I guess we can continue this discissuion here.
David says that the 4th color layer is responsible for the graininess of Reala.

But what about color reproduction of green? It is supose to have drastically improved color separation of green shades.

I'm asking because, I find that in still photography it DOES work quite well, specifically in the example of Velvia 100F

I don't know about motion picture films, but it is true, at least from my experience, that a lot of negative and E6 films in still photography, specially some Kodak films, have a slight problem with green separation.
This is normally not a problem, because the greens that are outputed, are saturated and catchy enough, so if you have a little grass in your photo or a street with a bunch of trees, it's fine.

But

If you go to nature, say, a forest, gardens etc. catchy greens are no longer good enough. You have to get a thousand shades of green to distinguish between subtle changes in plant color.
Velvia 100F for example does that quite well due to its 4th color layer. Not that Velvia 50 didn't do a good job, but its greens were a bit warmer, more like olive (which is EXACTLY what 4th color layer is supose to eliminate), and 100F does have better color separation of greens.


Also, Velvia 100F features a step forward: both blue and red colors have the same kind of correction layer. So basically the film has 6 color layers.
This improves color in the entire spectrum. More natural, colors with more gradations are also the reason why 100F isn't well recieved by fans of Velvia 50, because with Velvia 50, you had colors with their own character, stronger, denser. 100F just feels weaker, though this is because it has a bit cleaner colors with more subtleties.

Even if this Reala does show some benefit, I assume the subtle differences are lost in typical 4th generation cinema prints, though if this Reala is any good with colors, it should show it in direct prints.

Edited by Filip Plesha, 15 May 2006 - 07:23 AM.

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#3 Phil Thompson

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 07:39 AM

In my humble opinion REALA D blows Vision2 stock out of the sky. Its no exaggeration when i say REALA is th emost beautiful stock ever created on Earth.
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#4 Filip Plesha

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 08:34 AM

Could you be more specific? What is so great about it?
I'd really like to learn something here, so please tell us what you specifically find so great, and where do vision2 stocks lack?
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#5 Phil Thompson

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 08:55 AM

The most amazing thing about this stock is the way it handles skin tones. As im not a tech person i cant explain to you how the emulsion is working but its just amazing. I shot a scene in a derelict building and the shadow detail was mind blowing. I've shot Vision2 and was dismayed by its soullessness. It has a great character without being a character (if you see what i mean) ...
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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 11:09 AM

Only the Fuji F-500D motion picture stock is Reala and has the 4th color layer. It is a rather soft & grainy, pastel stock and I generally avoid it because of that. Am waiting for the Eterna update on that one before I'd use it, although Fuji has't announced any plans to update it.

Fuji notes in their demo that lavender / purple is the main color that benefits from the 4th color layer. Not greens in particular. The main advantage is that by suppressing excess green from fluorescents, it handles mixed color temps better. But stocks that generally minimize the differences between color temps tend to be worse actually for chromakey work. It was slightly lower in contrast than the old F-500T stock but now about the same as the current Eterna stocks.

"Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind", some day work in "War of the Worlds" in the begining, most of "Garden State" used Fuji F-500D.

I like Fuji stocks but avoid 500D, unless I want that soft & grainy look in the future for some project, maybe for a documentary look. Kaminski usually combines it with some sort of silver retention process in the neg or printing, which makes it look gritty and dramatic, not so soft and low-con.

I don't see why its shadow detail would be better than current Fuji Eterna or Kodak Vision-2 stocks, all of which are rather wide in latitude / low in contrast. The older Vision, EXR, and Fuji Super F-series, yes.
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#7 Filip Plesha

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 01:03 PM

If this layer affects purples, then it must be something different than the layer used in still products. The layer in still products cuts down the red from green, and is used for making greens look more like the eye sees them. It is specifically noted that its benefit is better green reproduction, it is even called "green correction layer"

That must mean that the 4th color layer in Reala 500D is not the same kind of 4th layer used in
still film products. It could be a red correction layer instead, which does exactly what you describe: it makes better purples (in fact it achieves some shades of purple that couldn't be achieved with regular combination of dyes).
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#8 Dominic Case

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Posted 15 May 2006 - 06:47 PM

The REALA 500D fourth layer is exactly the same as the one that Fuji use in their 4-layer stills products.

It is a cyan-sensitive layer that mimics the negative lobe of the red curve of the CIE tristimulus charts of human eye sensitivity. However, the emulsion has several other differences in the peak sensitivities of each conventional layer and in inter-layer effects, all of which add up to greater accuracy in the yellow-green area of the spectrum AND in purples.

More specifically, there is greater overlap in the red- and green-sensitive dyes, (partly offest by the fourth layer, and interlayer effects) which is what makes the greens more accurate. Meanwhile, at the deep red end of the spectrum, the REALA cuts out a little earlier (at around 670nm, closer to the human eye). THis means that purples (which are a combination of short blue wavelengths and long red wavelengths) are reproduced more accurately, whereas conventional stocks tend to over-emphasise the red component.

The end result (particularly as a result of the overlapping red and green sensitivity) makes the stock a little more subtle (and therefore pastelly, as David points out), though more accurate.

Fuji published a paper in the SMPTE journal (April 2002) which describes esxactly how it works.
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#9 Filip Plesha

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 04:58 AM

That sounds more like the 4th layer in still emulsions, thanks Dominic
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#10 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 07:59 AM

The REALA 500D fourth layer is exactly the same as the one that Fuji use in their 4-layer stills products.

It is a cyan-sensitive layer that mimics the negative lobe of the red curve of the CIE tristimulus charts of human eye sensitivity. However, the emulsion has several other differences in the peak sensitivities of each conventional layer and in inter-layer effects, all of which add up to greater accuracy in the yellow-green area of the spectrum AND in purples.

More specifically, there is greater overlap in the red- and green-sensitive dyes, (partly offest by the fourth layer, and interlayer effects) which is what makes the greens more accurate. Meanwhile, at the deep red end of the spectrum, the REALA cuts out a little earlier (at around 670nm, closer to the human eye). THis means that purples (which are a combination of short blue wavelengths and long red wavelengths) are reproduced more accurately, whereas conventional stocks tend to over-emphasise the red component.

The end result (particularly as a result of the overlapping red and green sensitivity) makes the stock a little more subtle (and therefore pastelly, as David points out), though more accurate.

Fuji published a paper in the SMPTE journal (April 2002) which describes esxactly how it works.


Dominic's discussion of changing spectral sensitivity to make a stock less sensitive to variations in the spectral quality of the lighting reminds me of the "universal sensitization" Kodak used in the early 1970's for Super-8 EKTACHROME 160 Type G film. Although that film was less sensitive to variations in illumination, it also tended toward less saturated color reproduction ("pastelly"). It is interesting that although Fuji REALA 500D was introduced over four years ago, Fujifilm has evidently not added any additional motion-picture films using that technology, so the issues of increased granularity and different color reproduction others have discussed here may have influenced that decision.

I used quite a bit of the Kodak EKTACHROME 160 Type G film for available light home movies as my daughters were growing up, but others give it mixed reviews for color reproduction:

http://www.rivalques.../filmtypes.html

Ektachrome 160 Type G: This film is for both indoor and outdoor filming without filtration. Therefore it doesn't look good in either. Indoor scenes are orangish and outdoor scenes are blueish. Maybe a good choice if you are shooting in mixed light conditions.


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#11 Phil Thompson

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 09:25 AM

Sorry John, with all due respect Kodak just can not (at least with the vision2 series) match the
Fuji Reala D 4th layer breakthrough. I am not biased as i use some kodak stocks. Double-X (lush)
But Fuji are really ahead of the game with this stock.

4th Layer!! o i love you... The film which was shot in it recently. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a great example of the look you get. simply wonderful stock.
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#12 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:03 AM

Sorry John, with all due respect Kodak just can not (at least with the vision2 series) match the
Fuji Reala D 4th layer breakthrough. I am not biased as i use some kodak stocks. Double-X (lush)
But Fuji are really ahead of the game with this stock.

4th Layer!! o i love you... The film which was shot in it recently. Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind is a great example of the look you get. simply wonderful stock.


Then why has Fuji not come out with additional motion picture negative stocks using the same technology? It's been over four years. It is a unique film, with its own "look".
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#13 Filip Plesha

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:30 AM

I still don't understand how this technology doesn't affect quality in that way in still products.
If this layer is the reason for the grain, then Velvia 100F with 3 additional layers should be REALLY grainy, but it isn't any more grainy compared to other E6 films (including Kodak films).

Obviously it is possible to construct an emulsion with 6 layers that is neither desaturated nor grainy, and yet has accurate colors.

Why Fuji doesn't make a MP film stock like that, is beyond me, but it sure isn't because of the technological disadvantages of color correction layers.

You can't really judge this technology based on ONE motion picture stock, while it is proven to work in a whole number of still films.
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#14 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:41 AM

Many modern color negative films have over a dozen separate emulsion layers! You may have a slow-mid-fast layer structure for some color records, plus interlayers and subbing and topcoat layers.

Graininess is usually a matter of what size and shape the silver halide grains are, an how the dyes are formed from the oxidized developer that surrounds each exposed grain.
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#15 Phil Thompson

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:43 AM

Then why has Fuji not come out with additional motion picture negative stocks using the same technology? It's been over four years. It is a unique film, with its own "look".


Yes it is a unique film with a beautiful look. My question to you is this. Why has Kodak not brought out a standalone product with striking look like this. I know to many its a love or hate stock, but i really admire Fuji film for having the balls to put out such a striking stock.
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#16 Filip Plesha

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:46 AM

I just remembered something...

Astia 100F uses a 4th color layer, a 5th color layer and a 6th color layer, and it is the fines grain E6 film in the world, in fact in film history.

Many modern color negative films have over a dozen separate emulsion layers! You may have a slow-mid-fast layer structure for some color records, plus interlayers and subbing and topcoat layers.

Graininess is usually a matter of what size and shape the silver halide grains are, an how the dyes are formed from the oxidized developer that surrounds each exposed grain.


then what does graininess have to do with this 4th color layer?
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#17 John Pytlak RIP

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 10:52 AM

Yes it is a unique film with a beautiful look. My question to you is this. Why has Kodak not brought out a standalone product with striking look like this. I know to many its a love or hate stock, but i really admire Fuji film for having the balls to put out such a striking stock.


As I wrote, Kodak did have a film that was specifically designed for mixed lighting over 30 years ago, with the EKTACHROME 160 Type G --- had a unique, more desaturated "look" that some did not like.

If you really like less contrast and less color saturation, consider the Kodak VISION2 Expression 500T Color Negative Film 7229. Sounds like 7277 or 7263 might also have been your "cup of tea".


then what does graininess have to do with this 4th color layer?


I never said it did.
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#18 Filip Plesha

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 11:00 AM

Well David said that, so I assumed it is the general idea
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#19 Dominic Case

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 06:07 PM

Although the fourth layer is the striking difference about REALA, I don't think it is the main reason for the colour reproduction characteristics of the stock. It seems to me from reading the technical papers about it (as written by the emulsion builders, not the marketers) - that both the subtlety and range of the greens, and the accuracy of the purples, come from the shift in sensitivity curves of the basic 3 dyes - cyan, magenta, yellow. The cyan-sensitive fourth layer mainly compensates, partly, for the loss of saturation caused by the changes to the curves.

Of course it's the whole combination of changes that give the stock its look. There must be a downside to the product, as John says, or we'd be surrounded by fourth-layer stocks. I think the truth is that there is a bigger market for the more saturated look, and maybe not enough for the desaturated look - however well it reproduces flowers and trees, Hollywood doesn't do much nature! (Perhaps that's another problem, but not on this thread!).
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#20 Ted Johanson

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Posted 16 May 2006 - 06:56 PM

Mr. Pytlak,

Has Kodak finally managed to apply their "two-electron sensitization" technology to any of their still films yet?

Over in FujiFilm world, people are enjoying improved technology in thePro160S/C stocks. FujiFilm uses the same name for their technologies regardless of whether it is applied to still picture films or not. The new Pro160S/C stocks both use "Super Nano-Structured Sigma Grain", "Super Efficient DIR Coupler", and "Super Efficient Coupler" technologies; the same three technologies which are used in the new Eterna 500 motion picture stock. Those three technologies are what place Eterna stocks on par with Vision2 stocks.

By the way, those Pro160S/C stocks also use 4th Color Layer technology.

So, did Kodak already employ "two-electron sensitization" technology in a still film but foolishly call it something else? OR...are they just a little slow in the still picture film department?


-Ted Johanson
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