Film Emulator Comparison ("Star Trek" Big E)

Working on an TOS Enterprise model off and on for a year and a half now, and decided to use the current version with different film “looks” in Blender. Background uses ESO’s all-sky image, and lighting is a combination of HDRLabs’ Milky Way and a keylight sun. These are all low resolution images.

Here it is using Ektachrome 310T:

Ektachrome was used in the Apollo missions, so this was the first try. It is slightly red-sensitive as in real-life, so probably needs some color correction. A more stylish look.

Here is the image with Eastman Double-X using 12-minute sensitivity:

Nicer balanced image, but noticed that the lower numbers are more sensitive, despite what is shown on the real-life spec sheet on Eastman Double-X.

And now with Kodak KAI-1010 sensor (electronic “film”):

The KAI-1010 is the basis for the imager on Venus Express, so this emulation also has some space heritage. Slightly different brightness than the Eastman Double-X. This one is growing on me.

I can’t upload the default (with no film) due to the 3-picture limit, but safe to say there are a lot more background stars with the ship more fully lit without using film.

Thoughts? Does anyone have their own particular film emulation they like to use?


My go-to looks for previewing are Eastman Double-X for neutral colors, or Agfacolor Futura II for warm colors. I tend to use Eastman for anything involving space, since I think the way it crushes the blacks looks really nice. It’s usually too dark though, so messing with the exposure and gamma is useful. For most other purposes, I use the regular film view with no look, and do the majority of the grading in the compositor or in Photoshop.

Thanks. Something to keep in mind.

Current version:

Ended up using the Eastman Double-X 4 min with a color curve to brighten but keep the shadows dark. Modified the model a bit and made it more of a scene.

Another view of the model with improved material textures. Still using Eastman Double-X 4 min but with no color curve, going with Photoshop for contrast correction.


Used “None” film look with a color curve and exposure/gamma settings of 2.00/0.8. Also more tweeking of the material textures, notably changing the “Bussard collector” shader to be non-volumetric.