Difference between a good filter and a normal filter


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Nov 25, 2005
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#1
Hi.

Was just wondering if purchasing a branded UV filter (e.g. B+W or Hoya?) brings immense benefits as compared to a normal Tokina (or other brand) UV filter?

Will it also increase the sharpness or AF accuracy or colors? What other benefits are there?

Thanks for answering my queries as the branded filter cost up to 10x more than the normal filter and especially when I use this filter to protect the front lens element....

Cheers!
 

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Aug 8, 2008
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#3
If you tend to shoot a lot of into the sun kinda shots, the poorer quality filters tend to give you more flare. I used to use Tokina, but now I junk them and buy better quality ones that I can use for a long time. But seriously, it is very much of an individual's preference and tolerance for quality.
 

leeter

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May 1, 2004
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#4
i experienced the difference when taking night scenes.

using a normal filter, you'll get ghosting of the light sources.

but with a Multi-coated filter, this can be avoided.

currently now i use hoya HMC / nikon filters.
 

Aug 31, 2008
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#5
Bad filters creates loads of flare. Bad filters are only like a glass piece; a protective piece for your lens, in case it gets scratched etc. I once dropped a lens, from a low height of about 40cm, thankfully only the filter cracked, the lens worked perfectly fine.
 

Octarine

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Jan 3, 2008
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#6
Will it also increase the sharpness or AF accuracy or colors? What other benefits are there?
It might rather DEcrease image quality and create more trouble, e.g. ghosting and flares. UV filter are supposed to block UV light and be neutral to normal light. Most UV filters also act as haze filters to improve the colours slightly, although I haven't noticed much so far.
The protective function is highly debatable, a hood provides good protection, too. So far, cleaning the front element of my Tamron lens was always easier then cleaning a Hoya Pro filter.
Check this forum, plenty of threads discussing the same topic several times per month.
 

geraldkhoo

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Jun 15, 2007
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#7
I started out thinking... what's the difference between a good and normal filter? If it is just to protect the front element of the lens, a cheap one will do... right?

Well... I was wrong. I was shooting a night wayang scene with a Tokina 12-24 coupled with a Tokina filter... and I ended up with flares and ghosting. I have since changed to HMC filters, which do reduce these undesirables ;)
 

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Nov 25, 2005
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#8
mmm....well..so a good UV filter cuts flares and improve image quality? so, if i am going to be semi-pro, good filters are a must? :think:
 

dorts

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Mar 10, 2007
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#9
Difference?

Look through a Hoya Super-HMC and a Tokina filter. You'll see that the Hoya is almost invisible, while it's obvious that the Tokina one has a piece of glass in front. The glass really cannot be seen unless you shine light on it or look towards a light source.
 

Nov 25, 2005
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#10
Difference?

Look through a Hoya Super-HMC and a Tokina filter. You'll see that the Hoya is almost invisible, while it's obvious that the Tokina one has a piece of glass in front. The glass really cannot be seen unless you shine light on it or look towards a light source.
now....that difference is easy to imagine....
any pics of both?
 

Nov 25, 2005
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#12
:bsmilie: Pictures? Not sure if can see, but I'll post some tomorrow?
thanks bro....

considering getting good filters for my lens but not sure of the benefits...seeing the difference between a good filter and normal one on the same situation will help me decide.....especially when the price difference is so great...
 

dorts

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Mar 10, 2007
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#13
thanks bro....

considering getting good filters for my lens but not sure of the benefits...seeing the difference between a good filter and normal one on the same situation will help me decide.....especially when the price difference is so great...
Actually, it's hard to spot differences if you compare photos, unless you pixel-peep. I would suggest go with a good one. It's a one time buy anyway, unless you foresee breaking filters every few shoots. :bsmilie:
 

Blur Shadow

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Sep 17, 2005
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#14
Possibly problems of a low-quality filter include:

1. Ghosting, flare and other common problems when introducing additional optics.
2. Color Casts
3. Reduction of the total amount of light entering the lens

Perks of the high-quality filter? It tends to reduce the problems I mentioned above. Don't think using a high-quality filter will improve AF speed!
 

DeadEnd

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Nov 24, 2006
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#15
Possibly problems of a low-quality filter include:

1. Ghosting, flare and other common problems when introducing additional optics.
2. Color Casts
3. Reduction of the total amount of light entering the lens

Perks of the high-quality filter? It tends to reduce the problems I mentioned above. Don't think using a high-quality filter will improve AF speed!
I concur on the above. And a higher quality filter does not make an image sharper compare to naked lens. And also using a filter on a 50mm f1.8 where the glass reside deep in the barrel, it is more likely to cause flare then going w/o filter
 

Nov 25, 2005
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#16
Actually, it's hard to spot differences if you compare photos, unless you pixel-peep. I would suggest go with a good one. It's a one time buy anyway, unless you foresee breaking filters every few shoots. :bsmilie:
mmmmm.........if there is no difference that can be spotted, why the huge price difference? for peace of mind?:think:
 

Nov 25, 2005
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#17
I concur on the above. And a higher quality filter does not make an image sharper compare to naked lens. And also using a filter on a 50mm f1.8 where the glass reside deep in the barrel, it is more likely to cause flare then going w/o filter
ah....my comparison is with a normal filter rather than a naked lens....
 

Octarine

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Jan 3, 2008
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#19
mmmmm.........if there is no difference that can be spotted, why the huge price difference? for peace of mind?:think:
It is about the resistance against flare and ghosting due to coating. Simple coating is cheap but you'll see it immediately. More expensive coating works better but still cannot eliminate all flare effects. One side effect is that expensive coating is easier to clean.
As night86mare mentioned: best is to shoot without any filter (or only the effect filter that is really needed). The coating of front elements is very good, a filter as permanent 'lens condom' is just not necessary. If you want to spend money for peace of mind it's ok. Just keep the limitations in mind. Alternatively get a lens hood. Protective and useful without side effects.
 

Blur Shadow

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Sep 17, 2005
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#20
...Or unscrew the filter when taking that shot.
 

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