Filter Sizes?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by acaldwell, Aug 16, 2007.

  1. acaldwell

    acaldwell TPF Noob!

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    Ok, I am trying to figure out this whole filter thing. I have a 50mm f/1.8 and the kit lens for xti (18-55mm), what size filter do i get and does it just screw directly to the lens or is there some sort of adapter? Help Please!
     
  2. subimatt

    subimatt TPF Noob!

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    If you look at the front of the lens, it will tell you the correct size for both caps and filters. the inside of the lens cap should tell you as well.
     
  3. Christie Photo

    Christie Photo No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    well... you can do it either way.

    Filters do screw directly onto the lens. Lenses come in differing sizes. So... you can buy a filter for each lens size, OR buy one filter to fit the largest lens you have (or plan to have) and buy step-up rings for all your other lenses.

    The filter size if often printed on the back of the lens cap, or indicated somewhere on the lens by a circle with a diagonal line crossing through it. Ø

    I hope this helps.

    Pete
     
  4. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    Look at the front of your lens, there will be a diameter indicated, or look on the inside of your lens cap.
    Off the top of my head, the 50mm F1.8 is a 52mm diameter and the 18-55 has 58mm threads.

    Just about all lenses have threads, into which you screw the filters. So it is important that you have the correct size. When you have lenses with different sized threads, you don't need to neccesarrily buy several sizes of filters. You can buy things called 'step up rings'. You would buy a filter for the largest diameter lens you have, and buy step up rings for the other lenses. In your case, you could buy a 58mm filter and a '52mm to 58mm' step up ring.
     
  5. acaldwell

    acaldwell TPF Noob!

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    haha. thanks for your polite answer. learning! :blushing:
     
  6. WDodd

    WDodd TPF Noob!

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    The 50mm f/1.8 is 52mm and the 18-55 is 58mm. It does say right on the end of the lens.

    Ah, Mike beat me to it...

    But usually most people would get a UV filter for every lens as a protective measure. For the more expensive filters (Polarizer, Neutral Density, GND, etc.) its good to get the step-up rings like mentioned.
     
  7. Jon, The Elder

    Jon, The Elder TPF Noob!

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    Might suggest that you do not use a lubricant on the threads. It can eventually gum up and make removal difficult.
    DON"T overtighten.

    To help prevent 'crossthreading', set the filter on the end of the lens, and GENTLY rotate it as if you were taking it off. You will feel or hear a slight 'click' as the filter drops into the right position for tightening. Try this on any screw- on type container for practice, til you get the feel.
    Anytime you feel resistance to your motion STOP and back off.
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    What about a dry graphite lubricant? You can just use a pencil lead to get some graphite onto the threads. There are few things less frustrating than a filter that won't come off.
     
  9. acaldwell

    acaldwell TPF Noob!

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    Cool, thanks for all the extra info.

    I guess the circular polarizer is a "must" from what I've been reading. Can you use more than one filter at a time?
     
  10. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    With digital photography, it's easier and more flexible to use software for effects, than to use filters. Except for the Polarizer, which would be hard or impossible to replicate with Photoshop. So yes, I'd recommend a circular polarizer.

    Yes, you can use more than one filter at a time. However, the more filters you have, the greater the chance of lens flare. Also, stacking filters may cause vignetting.
     
  11. Don Simon

    Don Simon TPF Noob!

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    Yes a circular polarizer if not exactly a must is certainly very useful. After a while you may also take a look at neutral density filters which are another one that really has no Photoshop substitute... but those are more something that you might get when you find a need for them rather than buy them now... anyway pretty much every other filter can be replicated in software.

    You can also get clear filters for protecting the lens, although how useful these are is a matter of opinion. Some won't leave the house without a filter on all their lenses. Personally I don't bother since I believe they are useful for protecting the front element from marks and scratches but not from major drops or knocks (after all if the filter's glass shatters then where will it go if not onto the lens?). Depends on what and where you shoot I guess.
     
  12. acaldwell

    acaldwell TPF Noob!

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    "...it's easier and more flexible to use software for effects, than to use filters."

    So, in your opinion, is the diffusion filter good or not. I am still awaiting the arrival of my photoshop and do not know if it can do those sorts of things.

    apparently i can't even figure this darn quote thing out!
     

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