Filters

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by EleanorW, Aug 15, 2009.

  1. EleanorW

    EleanorW TPF Noob!

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    Ok, next question... see? I warned everyone I have like a million questions lol.

    I've been hearing about filters. I plan on getting a polarized filter, but just yesterday I heard about UV filters... is that something else that would be a good purchase?
     
  2. Jedo_03

    Jedo_03 TPF Noob!

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    A polarisation filter is a good idea - helps to stop glare and reduce reflections. I think a circular one is a good choice...
    UV is good to reduce the "blue-ish" UV haze when photographing at higher altitudes... I hear that a UV filter reduces the light by about one stop...
    A Skylight filter is said to be good for protecting your lens from scratches...
    Some say that filters are not all that necessary with digital photography...
    HTH
    Jedo
     
  3. Gaerek

    Gaerek TPF Noob!

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    UV filters are designed to block out the haze that was created by UV light. However, film is a lot more sensitive to UV light than digital. Unless you're at high altitudes with a DSLR, there's no photographic reason to use a UV filter. Also, UV filters are clear and they will not reduce the amount of light hitting your sensor by any appreciable amount. These days, UV filters are marketed as lens protection. Something to think about, however, since you're just putting cheap glass in front of your expensive glass, is it worth the loss of image quality?
     
  4. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    Having a circular polarizing filter, and knowing how and when to use it, is an essential component of a basic photography kit.

    Graduated Neutral density filters can be very handy to stop down bright skies above your subject.

    Neutral density filters are very useful for landscape photographers.

    As noted UV filters are little needed for Digital photography.
     
  5. CSR Studio

    CSR Studio TPF Noob!

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    I agree with Gaerek, I don't want to put a cheap UV filter glass in front of my expensive glass. And if you are going to be photographing women or weddings, I would suggest some kind of diffusion filter and or a cross star (don't get more than a 4 point, anything more is too busy in my opinion), the cross star can be used instead of the diffusion for a softening effect of the skin, as well as what it is designed for, a cross star effect of candles and the like.
     
  6. Plato

    Plato TPF Noob!

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    Thanks to the wonderful world of digital photography, about the only filter that you will use on the camera is a polarizer. It MUST be a "circular" polarizer to ensure that your autofocus and autoexposure functions work properly.

    There is no need for a UV filter with digital.

    You MAY find a use for neutral density filters in the future but I wouldn't recommend that you get one now.

    Whatever filter you buy, get GOOD QUALITY. In addition to the benefit that you are expecting, all filters will degrade the image because you're adding two surfaces to the light path. The good quality filters degrade the image only slightly so that it's not even noticeable. My preference is Hoya Pro-1 but there are others.
     
  7. Lazy Photographer

    Lazy Photographer TPF Noob!

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    Great question Eleanor, I've been wondering about filters myself. And great answer too, everyone, thanks.
     
  8. EleanorW

    EleanorW TPF Noob!

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    Ok, so I won't get a UV filter - good thing since the camera bag I bought 3 months ago and swore I'd never fill up is getting full lol.

    Polarized filter - this one was recommended to me at the camera store. Hoya 55mm PRO 1 D Circular PL. My local camera store is selling it for $74.99 Canadian. Does that sound like it'll be good enough quality?
     
  9. fokker

    fokker No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Don't mean to hijack the thread but while us noobs are learning about filters - is there any reason why you couldn't or shouldn't leave a circular polarizing filter attached to your lens at all times? When at the right rotation it does nothing, correct? Or does it reduce the light coming in?
     
  10. CSR Studio

    CSR Studio TPF Noob!

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    Yes it does reduce the light, it may cost you a full stop. Also, there may be times that you want the reflections, examples, trees in a lake or pond, the sun on the ocean. Even at the right rotation it is going to stop some reflections. You don't want to keep a polarizer on all the time.
     
  11. Plato

    Plato TPF Noob!

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    I just came across this explanation of polarization.
     
  12. CSR Studio

    CSR Studio TPF Noob!

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