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Thread: What filters do you use?

  1. #1

    Default What filters do you use?

    Hi I am a newbie to filters.

    What type of filters to use for the following scenarios:

    1) Outdoor landscapes
    2) Macro
    3) Portraits

  2. #2
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    All depends on whether you shoot film or digital also. Certain filters like coloured filters etc will not be necessary for digital filter.

    IN general, a UV filter should be on all your lenses no matter what you shoot. It helps to protect your expensive lenses....

    For landscapes, Circular polarisor will be good to cut off glare, increase colour saturation (so you get nice blue sky and puffy sky). Grad ND filter will help to hold back say the sky (as usually brighter) so as to have a nicely exposed pic.

    Macro - Don;t really need any filter except maybe close up filter if you can't afford to buy a macro lens

    Portraits - most common filter will be the Soft focus filter but the effect differ from brand to brand and some swears by it whereas others swears against it... so you decide.

    Since we are on the issue of filter and i am lazy to start a new thread... anyone bought any of the HOYA slim type UV/polariser filter? Is it good and how much for a 77mm one? I believe they have UV, Polariser, and one with both right? Need to get one for my Tokina 12-24...

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    1) Polarizers a must most of the time
    2) Nikon 4T, 5T, 6T filters
    3) Nikon Soft-1 filters

  4. #4

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    Read this site for various type of filters
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

  5. #5
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    1) polarizers (as espn and nemesis32 pointed out). GND or ND filters are also good to have. GND - Graduated Neutral Density filters. ND - Neutral Density filters. u have to google to find out how to use them effectively cos it'll take a page to explain! colour gels/filters are also good. again, google to find out how to best use them, esp for BnW film.

    2) close-up filters, but only if u cannot afford to get an extension tube and/or macro lens.

    3) hmmm... soft-focus filters are nice to have. but, to get the best effects u need very good sun light.
    If Life worked on auto mode then manual mode for photography would have never existed. ― Deeksha Mittal

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    Depends on what I use...

    Digital SLR:
    - Just Circular Polarizers, on top of the UV filter that's screwed onto most of my lenses
    - 5T, 6T just in case

    Film SLR:
    - Daytime: 81B warming filter most of the time + Circ Pol filters. Sometimes I switch the default UV filters with 81B, since it gives quite nice effect between 10am-4pm.
    - Nighttime: Filters to counter the effects of Florescent lighting (B+W FL-D I think)
    - Once in a while I do pack in 5T an/or 6T closeup lens along, just in case

    These are the mobile pack. If I drive to a shoot-out I just pack the whole ND, Circ-Pol and whatever filters I have.
    Leicanaut & Nikonaut @ http://nangka.org/events

  7. #7

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    Hi guys i have a UV filter lens, should i get polarised filter also? Because the seller told me that i must have a UV filter lens, so i use it all the times whenever i take pictures. Do you think its better if i will replace the UV with polarised filter? Or attached both filter? Sorry newbie here, might ask some silly questions.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Belano
    Hi guys i have a UV filter lens, should i get polarised filter also? Because the seller told me that i must have a UV filter lens, so i use it all the times whenever i take pictures. Do you think its better if i will replace the UV with polarised filter? Or attached both filter? Sorry newbie here, might ask some silly questions.
    Do get a polariser for all your lenses if possible. It is useful. You shd replace UV with polariser when you using wide angle lens as the stacking of filters may cause some vignetting. When using zoom lenses like 80-200, it doesn't really matter if you stack it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Belano
    Hi guys i have a UV filter lens, should i get polarised filter also? Because the seller told me that i must have a UV filter lens, so i use it all the times whenever i take pictures. Do you think its better if i will replace the UV with polarised filter? Or attached both filter? Sorry newbie here, might ask some silly questions.
    You probably want to keep the UV filter on for protection, but if you're not that picky about your lens investment, or if you're using a low quality UV filter, its better to have it off.

    If you're thinking of putting a polarizer on fulltime, think again. Polarizers reduces the amount of light going into your lens and the effect is dramatic only at certain angles to the sun or if your main reason is to cut out reflections off... say glass window etc. Otherwise it just reduces the amount of light that gets into your lens, and you might end up with pictures that show a lot of camera shake at lower than usual shutter speeds.

    If you dont know if you require a polarizer, you probably don't need one. I suggest that you enjoy taking pictures without having one first. Learn the basics and when you think that you really need to go into polarizers then go out and get one. Read about polarizers on the internet and ask people who has experience with it to see if you need it.
    Leicanaut & Nikonaut @ http://nangka.org/events

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    Quote Originally Posted by nemesis32
    Do get a polariser for all your lenses if possible. It is useful. You shd replace UV with polariser when you using wide angle lens as the stacking of filters may cause some vignetting. When using zoom lenses like 80-200, it doesn't really matter if you stack it.
    Urm.. I'll differ a bit..

    Get a standard sized polarizer like (77mm) for your glasses, save costs, don't buy 1 for every thread size you have.

    There are slim UV filters that don't vignette even on the 12-24 (nikkor) that has a UV attached on.

    On 80-200, depending on the number of filters you stack, it can or cannot vignette.

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    The Nikon slim Cir-Pol II stacked on the Nikon L37C UV filter on a 17-35mm does not vignette too

  12. #12

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    How about using the polarising lens at night? Will it affect the picture esp when i lower the shutter speed?

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    Quote Originally Posted by Belano
    How about using the polarising lens at night? Will it affect the picture esp when i lower the shutter speed?
    ESPN... of course best if can get 1 polariser fits all lenses the best lah.... not everyone has all their lenses 77mm thread (usually pro lenses or fixed f2.8 lenses).

    As for night photography, it will just cut down amt of light and so reduce your shutter speed further...ie.. longer light trails etc

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    Not to mention it will be darker looking thru the viewfinder when using a polarizer at night.
    For night shots I normally don't put on any filters, or maybe just a UV filter to protect the lens while in the dark.
    But certain lens + UV filter combination could produce ghost images like my old Tamron 28-200mm + Hoya 72mm UV.

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    If I had to get filters, it'd be circular polarisers and ND grad, and I'd use them for landscapes and architecture shots (minimise reflections off glass).

    To me, the less often I have to use filters, the better. Get as few as you can, and only those that you'd really need. I even forgo UV/skylight filters.
    Sony Alpha system user. www.pbase.com/synapseman

  16. #16

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    What is ND grad? And what is it different from a circular polariser? Sorry for such newbie question.

  17. #17
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    ND grad stands for Neutral Density Graduated filters. Basically they are usually half in gradual shades of grey, yellow, charcoal etc and typically use to add in sunset effect or to hold back the sky/water while maintaining the correct exposure for the other part of the scene.

    Polariser can be considered as a ND filter if i am not wrong but it's fully coated so it affect the whole photo

  18. #18

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    UV filters for my lenses without deep hoods (ie, WA lenses). UV filters (even B+Ws and Nikons) introduce extra flare and hazing (even multi-coated ones) and are not recommended for lenses with more than 10 elements. Read this from some article on Luminous Landscape.

    ND filters are also very useful for doing very long exposures at night, long exposures during the day and for doing panning in daylight. You can acheive the ND grad effect by shooting with exposure bracketing (preferably on a tripod) and doing a dynamic range extension type filter in Photoshop.

    Circular polarisers are also useful, not so much for making the sky look bluer (how often do you get blue skies in SG anyway?) but for cutting out reflections and glare when shooting subjects behind glass or water.

    Just my $0.02

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