Reflx Lab 400D (Daylight) Colour Negative Film Review

Reflx Lab 400D (Daylight) Film

Analog Film Review

Reflx Lab 400D (Daylight) Colour Negative Film Review

Reflx Lab 400D packaging

C-41 process like Cinestill films

I totally forgot to place my order for CineStill 400D. But in the market there is something similar to it so I decided to try and I like the results. Reflx Lab 400D is a cinema film with emulsion from Kodak Vision 3 5207 250D. The film is modified and suitable for C-41 processing. It has an extra layer called “rem-jet” on the motion picture film and it has already removed this layer to allow you to develop it directly in the C-41 process. You can develop this film like CineStill in any lab that processes colour negative films such as Kodak Gold 200 and Kodak Portra 400, etc.

Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais
Shot @400, Voigtlander 58mm f1.4 SL II

Kodak Vision 3 250D - Its Base Emulsion

You may refer to this post if you ever wondered how this film looked before remjet was removed and developed in ECN-2 (processing method). One main difference between Kodak 250D and Reflx Lab 400D is the halo (glow) around highlights (bright areas), much higher contrast and the cooler tone resulting in 400D. This film is colour balanced for exposure suitable with daylight illumination (5500K). For other light sources, use the correction filters.

Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais

How to use a Daylight film (Warm tone)

The “D” in 400D stands for daylight film. If you use this film during daylight it will give you a neutral colour temperature because it is rated at 5500K. For example when you shoot during the day it will be slightly cold but if you use it approaching sunset it will give you more orange and warmer tint. And if you use this film at night, it will render a much warmer tone causing from the street lights.

Shot @400, Hasselblad Xpan II and 30mm f5.6 ASPH
Shot @400, Hasselblad Xpan II and 30mm f5.6 ASPH

Colour tone and signature

Reflex Lab 400D is excellent to shoot during the day, especially creating a deep blue sky. Some movies used this Kodak 250D as their main film stock such as Dunkirk directed by Christopher Nolan. Processing Reflx Lab 400D in C-41 gives you punchy contrast and great tonality from highlights to shadows. However, something worth noticing is that even during daytime at around 2-3pm, the colour temperature still gives you a cool tone rather than the warm tone I got with the original Kodak 250D. If you really want to create a more signature Kodak warm tone, I would suggest you shoot it around sunset or indoor.

Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais
Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais

Process difference between C-41 and ECN-2

Typically colour negative motion picture films are developed in a process called ECN-2 (Eastman Colour Negative 2) that includes a step to remove rem-jet on the film layer. This Reflx Lab emulsion can be cross-processed in C-41 chemistry. Most processing places do not have the service to remove the rem-jet layer, and by not doing that, it will contaminate the chemistry in the machine affecting not only your roll but any other film passing through the machine at that point. Make sure you deliberately tell your lab this is safe to develop in C-41 if they don’t know about it. Or do a quick examination of the base layer; a matte and sheen are finishing on the film base emulsion.

ECN-2 gives you a more flat tone allowing film directors to post-process the film in different tones but C-41 gives us more contrast.

Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais

Video of Reflx Lab 400D with Hasselblad Xpan II and 30mm f5.6 lens

Signature Halo and Why?

Same as CineStill, the highlights of this film also produced the halo glow. An anti-halation backing prevents the light from bouncing back from the camera pressure plate (to keep your film flat) into the emulsion. Without it will give out a glowing red around the highlight (bright) areas.

Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais
Shot @400, Nikon 28mm f2 ais


Overall, I think this is a good film with cheaper price and nice metal canisters compared with the upcoming CineStill 400D film. I am curious to see how they look side by side. Downside for this film of course is the first batch light leaks but I do find that interesting to have something out of expectations. If you are interested in trying this film, I have put a link below for you to purchase.

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