Acros – Again!

It seems like everyone who has been fortunate enough to be using the X-Pro2 during the last months all sing along to the same tune.

The ACROS tune!

As I wrote in my review of the X-Pro2 back in January I am also a member of the ACROS sing-a-long choir of believers. I instantly fell in love with the tonality and the flexibility of the jpegs. I couldn’t really put my finger on it, but the files just retained a warmth and substance not achievable with previous black and white simulations.

Then FUJIFILM wrote about what had gone into designing ACROS, and why it looked as it did. (see the post HERE) What really struck me was the part about grain differentiation!

Could this be the reason why it looked so full of substance? So organic?

I started studying my files more closely, and found it to be exactly the reason!

The way ACROS film simulation handles the noise in an image is genius. It only has to deal with luminance noise since it’s black and white. It uses extra noise reduction for the highlights and edges, and it leaves the grain untouched in the shadow areas.

The X-Pro2 actually seem to analyse the image for tonality and adjusts grain control accordingly!!

And it does this throughout the entire ISO range. Of course you get more grain as you up your ISO, but still it differentiates it according to tonality!

Below is an incredibly boring image of a can of sparkling water. (It was refreshing, but still quite a boring subject!) I used the X-Pro2, ACROS+Red, +1 highlight and +2 shadows for some punch. The lens used was a Leica Summilux 50mm f/1.4 non-ASPH.

This is also why the Lightroom ACROS preset does not give you the same files as using the built-in ACROS film simulation. It simply does not apply graduated noise reduction/addition. So with ACROS I actually always use the jpegs. Import them into Lightroom and apply my corrections in there. It simply looks way better than using the Lightroom preset on the RAW file!

The gentle contrast in the ACROS files also gives me great room to manoeuvre in post processing. So I get really great shadow control.

By the way check out a couple of EXCELLENT posts on ACROS if you havn’t already:

Patrick La Roques thoughts on ACROS

Damien Lovegroves thoughts on ACROS

Great ACROS images by Olaf and Kasia Sztaba

I will leave you with some random images shot using ACROS film simulation with various highlight and shadow tweaks in camera. Then jpeg loaded into Lightroom and tweaked with contrast and curves.

ACROS’ed – X-Pro2 




  1. Agree, it looks awesome. I can in some way get a rather Ok result, using sharpness etc and high ISO on my X100S/M1/T1, all perform beautifully om BW, especially with a little underexposure.
    Wish I could join in your shooting and use my gear, fx the Pancolar 50/2,0 which seems made for Fuji and BW!


      1. A bit from my Danish relaitves/ancestors ( paa Fyn og Jylland ), I’m in Vaxholm, some 30 km NV of Stockholm.

        As you have the Acros.. it would be fun if you could have the time to shoot in Acros and in 6400 / 12 800; BW R to see the difference. What I am slowly investigating is settings for H / L tone and sharpness to land in the old school B/W style.


  2. as usualy your pics are lovely, I find the bonsai and your daughter portrait with the side light particularly great !
    Keep up this beautifull work and keep up on making my eyes shine everytime I come across your blog

    C. F.

  3. I can see what you are talking about but I am not much for shooting JPEGs (even with everyone talking about how great they are). But I did an image just today that I shot earlier this morning. When I opened my noise reduction software plug-in, I noticed there was something with the noise in the shot (I was at ISO1250) that reminded me of my lovely Tri-X. Needless to say, I did not doing any noise reduction to the image. A little sharpening, cropping, and a touch of contrast to suit my tastes and I was happy. I would love to pick up the X-Pro2 but, like my Nikon D2H bodies that I shot for a decade, I cannot see the need.

    Oh, and I love the variety of images you posted!!!

  4. Jona, I always respond to your great control of the area of focus. In particular you always provide incredible sharpness of focus at the eye(s). This provides an exciting dialogue between bokeh’d areas and the sharp areas.

    How do you use the XPro1 focus aids in achieving this marvelous control? What is your process of achieving perfectly sharp eyes when the subject must often be moving?

    Thank you in advance,


  5. Really nice images, Jonas! My xpro2 should arrive next week–can’t wait. I’m a physician too (pediatric anesthesiologist) in the U.S.. What is your practice?

    1. Fuji Acros was a black and white film that Fuji produced. Unfortunately, they announced end of production not too long ago. ACROS in this article refers to the film simulation setting in some Fuji camera to emulate the look of Fuji Acros b&w film.

  6. Lovely photos (as usual) Jonas! I have a question about rights (and please excuse me if this is the wrong forum to discuss this). The privacy laws here in Denmark are similar to those in Germany. There are two laws affecting photography: one prohibits candid street portraiture (where a person is clearly identifiable) without permission; and the other prohibits the publishing of images of a person who is clearly identifiable without permission. I really love the work of Siegfried Hansen, in part because he uses these constraints as a major source of creativity. Some of these photos are of your children, so this isn’t an issue when it stays in the family. But I’m curious to know if you ask people in the city if you could take their photo (or do you know the people in your photos)? Is it something that you are conscious of at all, or do you find these laws to be simply too constraining, when a lot of street photography is all about being candid?


    1. Hi Brett. Its a pity you left Mimosa before I gave my lecture that night. It’s actually something I talk a lot about. Whenever (most of the time) I do images where its more portraiture based rather than situational I always state my intention to the subject afterwards. I have never encountered any problems in this regard. Be open and friendly and people will usually respond in the same manner. 🙂

  7. Hi Jonas! Is there a chance to get that lovely film simulation in the X-t1?
    Is fujifilm going to release an update with it?

  8. hi, can you tell me if I need to be changing NR sharpness highlights and shadows? if so what are your settings as your photos are just lovely

  9. What a stunning set of Photographs Jonas.

    I will definitely be trying Acros a bit more because of this lovely article, thank you.

  10. Hej Jonas!

    Interessant det du skriver. Har nu kørt som du har beskrevet og du har ret i de er lidt eller meget bløde. Jeg så en video med dig hvor du beskriver det med acros og du sætter kameraet der og så har du raw filer hvis du skal have lidt mere. jeg forstår det sådan at du så køre acros jpeg. og raw når du skyder. det har jeg gjort så jeg har en farve-reserve :O)

  11. Hi Jonas – so why does your Acros come out so… well… black and white ? Mine tends to have much more of a sepia tone to it. I don’t know what I am doing wrong !

  12. Drawn back to this page looking at Acros settings again ! I just can’t get my images to display the same pure black and white, mine have more of a brown tinge to them.

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