How good is the Eterna Profile in the Fuji XT3? I thought I'd try it out and see.
There's a profile in the Fuji XT3 that's called Eterna. It's intended for use as a "straight-out-of-camera" solution for video shooters who don't have the luxury of shooting in a flatter, Log profile and then spending time in post production to color grade the resulting files. It's a flat profile but not in an unattractive way. I decided to see if it was a useable solution for two different shooting situations I encounter; shooting high contrast interiors (usually in a commercial facility) and also making portraits on bright locations. The test shot I am looking at today is from a quick, handheld interior test.
I was in the JW Marriott Hotel on Congress Ave. with my Fuji XT3 and the XF 14mm f2.8 lens and I walked into a room that had floor to ceiling windows on one side which gave me a view of several downtown office buildings; two in full sun and one (on the right side of the frame) that was in full shade.
The interior was unlit as the room was not being used. To add to the wide dynamic range of the scene the window supports were brushed aluminum with bright highlights. I switched the camera profile to Eterna and, with the camera set on "fine, jpeg" I proceeded to do a three stop bracket. When I got back to the office I opened the file I thought had the best histogram and took a look.
My take was that this profile did a good job maintaining color saturation while giving me a more expansive range of shadow detail (see the shadows of the chair on the table in the foreground or the carpet detail in the far corner) while preserving the highlights in the uprights between the window glass. Given the correct, full daylight exposure on the building mid-frame I think this is a very good result.
I would not hesitate to use the Eterna profile in any overly contrasty situation. With a few tweaks to the midrange contrast I get images that seem well balanced and keep me from having to resort to less elegant "tricks" like in-camera HDR.
Next time around I'll show you how well it works in portrait settings.