Yay or nay?

Discover what the internet is saying about Mastin Labs.

Upgraded Reviews scanned the web to find out what real users are saying about Mastin Labs.

See the highlights below and decide for yourself!

Pros and Cons

Table of contents

✅ Pros

Actual film emulation, not just an over-edited “look.”
Review Pros
The online tutorials have been incredibly helpful in getting the hang of editing with Mastin Labs.
It’s clear that Mastin Labs spent some time thinking this through.
Grain emulation is on point.
“Kits” create a zero-click workflow which is great when you are on the go.
Excellent contrast.
The marketing slogan for these presets is “Moody, not muddy” and they deliver.
You can go back and reedit and tweak your photos because filmborn creates copies and allows you to have a non-destructive edit.
If you’re not a hybrid shooter, and care less about matching the look of real film, these are still a very strong option.
Tthey’re originally designed for hybrid shooters who work with both film and digital,
Mastin Labs offer three different film emulation packs.
This preset system doesn’t have to be used to give a filmic look, you would love using it for portraits with subtle split toning.
They provide beautiful and consistent results.
There is affordability and value.
These presets emulate Portra that has been pushed incredibly well. It is stunning how accurate they are, making it obvious that many hours were spent matching film scans to digital files.
There is simplicity and ease of use.
The presets are easy to work with.
You just pick your stock of film, then you can go through a series of additional presets to refine the highlights, the shadows, and pick your grain.
They will provide you with that film look you’ve been craving.
Each Mastin pack consists of at most three emulsion emulators, and a handful of single click actions.
These are great way to get a punchy, contrast filled, dark look while still maintaining a natural skin tone.
Then there is color fidelity and skin tone control of each preset.
When properly dialed in it’s really tough to tell the difference between the digital and film images — perfect for hybrid shooting.
Mastin works gorgeously well on all lighting situations.
With Mistin,editing time has been cut down to a third.
Mastin Labs absolutely has the closest film emulation presets on the market, and contrary to what the digital era is telling us, film is not dead.
They do make for a great starting point for any photo processing.
From the subtle adjustments to contrast and saturation to the included 35mm and medium format grain tweaks, each one of these film stocks shines in digital form.
Filmborn edits actually look like the film stocks you use for client work, not just “vintage film-like” oversaturated, over-grainy, deep matted messes with heavy vignettes that scream filter.
They give you plenty of choice to suit your style.
Once you dial in the exposure, temperature, it takes very little time to mimic film — even less once you get the hang of it.
They have ability to match film stocks, for hybrid shooters.
Working with Mastin Labs will teach you even further how to get your shots correct in camera which saves you oodles of time and stress on the back end.
There are level of flexibility with adjustments to create a custom look.

❌ Cons

The packs are not cheap.
Digital sensors more often than not produce a color that feels unnatural, or electric while film keeps the varied tonality of grass or trees much more naturally.
With only Canon and Nikon options at the moment Sony, Fuji, Leica, Olympus, Pentax, etc. users will be out in the cold.
You’ll need to find the right light in the first place.
The price is high.
Using the in-camera app kills battery life.
The packs are sold separately.
RAW capability is yet not supported.
They require skill and practice to master.
The settings for 35mm and medium format were both hardly visible on ~20 megapixel files.
They don’t have the same amount of impact when you shot with an off camera flash indoors.
VSCO gives you many different film emulations in each pack, so you do have a lot more variety from the beginning.
The Mastin packs are a poor investment for any photographer, amateur, professional, and any in between.
Price seems to be pretty high.
The $99 price tag for 6 somewhat similar presets might be a bit much for some.
It requires more fine tuning when it comes to compatibility.
There is no android app.
There are less film stocks.
Useless for someone who is not technical and does not practice a lot.
At $119 per pack, Mastin only offers a slim selection of emulsion emulations.
They’re not a panacea,understanding color theory and building a repository of looks to reference will help you out immensely.
The presets only shine when you give them the whirl.

Final Say

Read the summaries of what reviewers think about Mastin Labs below.

Review Summaries
Mastin Labs hit its audience square between the eyes. For film shooters with a light and airy style, it’s easy to see how they would have a regular place in the workflow.
There is simplicity and ease of use. They provide beautiful and consistent results.There are level of flexibility with adjustments to create a custom look.They have ability to match film stocks, for hybrid shooters.
This is more than just a preset system. It’s a community, a movement of hybrid photographers, and a way to shoot on film in the 21st century, using the fantastic technological advancements we have at our disposal.
These presets are created to specifically emulate Kodak Portra film, when pushed in development, and scanned on the Fuji Frontier scanner. It allows hybrid photographers the ability to easily match their digital files to their film scans, or for digital shooters to get the film look they want.
From the subtle adjustments to contrast and saturation to the included 35mm and medium format grain tweaks, each one of these film stocks shines in digital form. Tthey’re originally designed for hybrid shooters who work with both film and digital,
Film photographers all over the world are doing a little jig now that FILMBORN has been released for iOS. The new iPhone app is unlike any other on the market and has truly revolutionized how we approach emulating film with digital photography.
When it comes to value there’s sadly that the Mastin packs are a poor investment for any photographer, amateur, professional, and any in between. At $119 per pack, Mastin only offers a slim selection of emulsion emulations. Digital sensors more often than not produce a color that feels unnatural, or electric while film keeps the varied tonality of grass or trees much more naturally.
These presets are not meant to be a one-click editing solution, in order to match the digital images to the film ones you’ll need to manually adjust exposure, temperature, and tint to taste When properly dialed in it’s really tough to tell the difference between the digital and film images — perfect for hybrid shooting.
With Mistin,editing time has been cut down to a third. Mastin works gorgeously well on all lighting situations.Working with Mastin Labs will teach you even further how to get your shots correct in camera which saves you oodles of time and stress on the back end. Mastin Labs absolutely has the closest film emulation presets on the market, and contrary to what the digital era is telling us, film is not dead.

Top Current Discount