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Sony Kodachrome 64 Film Simulation Recipe - The Toughest

Updated: Mar 12

The Kodachrome 64 film - one of the most interesting film stocks to me.


That's because the Kodachrome 64 was by far the most challenging custom Sony Picture Profile I have ever created.

 

This is an old version. New film simulations can be found here:

 

Kodachrome 64 film simulation

Rather than going for the Kodachrome 64 Fuji simulation, which, for me, did not seem to look like the original Kodachrome, I decided to go on a different route.

Unlike digital, film is an organic medium, so results may vary even if the image was taken in the same place with the same stock. Many other factors influence the final color rendition. (light, heat, method of handling, film processing, and storing).


When you develop your pictures in two different places, they might turn out completely different, and that's what makes film so exciting – the unexpected.


With my film simulation recipes, I am trying to bring back a bit of that unexpected and infuse the digital medium with a feeling of novelty and discovery. While these simulations are meant to rejuvenate film, they are not 100% accurate.


That being said - let me introduce you to the Kodachrome 64 film simulation!

Kodachrome 64 Film Simulation on Sony - An overview

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This film stock is just so complex and volatile, it’s really hard to find 2 pictures that look alike on the internet.


And the fact it’s not being produced anymore, it’s not making it any easier.

The creation of this picture profile alone, took me about 2 months and at one point I almost gave up because of the complexity of the project.


The funny thing is I accidentally created the Kodak Ultramax 400 in the process of creating this recipe.


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*maybe I pushed it too much towards magenta in this one- check the skies in the left corner*

So - for 2 months I kept searching and gathering sample photos of the Kodachrome 64 film, in hopes of putting them all together and finding the characteristic of the film, the so-called pattern, or what makes this film so unique.

And it was almost impossible to find the same characteristics in 2 photos, they all looked like being shot on totally different film stocks.

Asked people on forums about characteristics of the old Kodachrome 64 and everybody seems to have a different memory of how it looked in terms of contrast and color.


The only thing in common - to most, that Kodachrome was the best film ever made, and they all loved it!

And finally, after comparing hundreds of pictures, the only 2 characteristics that I could see appearing in each photo, were the blueish magenta tones and the accurate, desaturated greens, so I went for that.



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Look at that lovely skin tone falloff and almost blueish-green hues - Used a Diffusion Filter for this shot

The whole process was very frustrating, continuously going back and forth, at one point I think I had 5 or 6 different Kodachrome recipe Variations on my notepad, shooting and testing them all at the same time to see which one is the best!


It was a complete madness.

That was the point where I almost gave up, but also, that was the moment god was like ‘ i’m going to give this dude a break' , so he did.


So that evening, while I was searching for some more Kodachrome shots, I found a forum post with 2 images taken in the same place, same lighting conditions, one on Kodachrome and the other on digital.

Wow, now, not only I can finally see an accurate depiction of this Kodak film with almost the whole spectrum of colors, but I can also compare it to digital and see how the film interpreted colors, more exactly how the colors shifted.

Here is the link to the post, I am so grateful to the photographer for sharing his photos with us!

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Look at the strong magenta shifting, slight greens in the brightest parts of the clouds, and the overall the color shifting is pretty crazy


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I have brought this Film Simulation as close as I could to the original Kodachrome 64, using only the picture profiles, but I wanted to push the image further. So I created the Film Simulation Presets, to bring it closer to the Original Kodachrome 64 Film look.



By the way - I have also created a Kodachrome 64 Lightroom preset. The film preset can be used to match the look of your Sony JPEGs ( if you used the custom Sony Picture Profiles). But you can also use it with another camera - just keep in mind that the results will vary according to several factors.


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I recommend checking his post at https://www.dpreview.com/forums/thread/4213836 for better zoom-in features.


Let us know what you think of this profile, and don't forget, there is a new updated version of the Kodachrome coming up Soon.






1,679 views5 comments

5 Comments


Guest
Feb 15

I currently have a Sony camera and had Fuji's in the past. These simulations are honestly way off. The colours with the guy on the bridge look so weird. Rather edit in post to get this kinda look: https://fujixweekly.com/2022/11/28/kodachrome-64-fujifilm-x-t5-x-trans-v-film-simulation-recipe/

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Guest
May 25, 2023

In the dpreview link which frame is Kodachrome 64, on the left or the right? The original photographer does not say either.


In digital Kodachrome 64 simulation, maintaining neutral, cast-free highlights is difficult.

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Veres Deni Alex
Veres Deni Alex
Aug 14, 2023
Replying to

Sorry, I only noticed the comment right now after reviewing the article.


The one on the left which has heavy color shifting towards magenta is the kodachrome 64, the one on the right with natural & neutral colors is the Nikon.

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Great work! I will be testing this soon. Any chance of a Velvia simulation?

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Veres Deni Alex
Veres Deni Alex
May 07, 2023
Replying to

Yep, you can find it on page 4

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