Film Emulation

Sophisticated and fast film grain synthesizer

Film emulation is used to apply and adjust film grain. These are not color adjustments intended to mimic the look of a particular film stock. Start by checking the Grain Enabled box to add grain.

Grain Amount

Grain Amount increases the amount of added grain, starting with a value of 0 for no grain.

Grain Size

Grain Size controls the size of grain elements within the image. For example, if you are emulating 35mm film grain, then this would use a small size. 8mm grain would use a larger size.

Film Response

Film Response defines whether grain is added into the shadows or into the highlights, which emulates the look of grain in scanned positive or negative film. When the Film Response slider is set fully left (-100), grain is predominately visible in the shadows. With the slider set to the right (+100), grain is in the highlights and the shadow area is clean.

Color Variation

Color Variation controls whether the emulated grain is monochrome, has chroma value, or is a mixture of both. With the slider at 0 (left), the added grain is only black-and-white. At 100 (right) the grain is made up completely of RGB pixels. Slider values in between 0 and 100 are a mix of both monochrome and RGB pixels.

The grain structure of actual film is a texture with a random pattern that changes from one frame to the next. The Grain Rate slider sets the speed at which the grain pattern is updated. When set to a value of 1 (left), the grain texture is changed with each consecutive frame. With the slider set to a maximum value of 5 (right), the texture holds for five frames before changing and then holds again for the next five frames, and so on. Holding grain frames is specifically effective on high frame rate material, e.g. 60fps content. Otherwise, human persistence of vision integrates out frequently changing grain and often completely removes the desired effect.

Grain Presets

Grain settings can be saved as Grain Presets. Before a preset has been created, the only option from the pulldown menu will be None. Once presets have been created and stored, other selections will appear. The contextual menu can be used to add, rename, and delete Grain Presets.


Last modified December 22, 2020