Filters?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by MichaelMcDoanld, Nov 9, 2006.

  1. MichaelMcDoanld

    MichaelMcDoanld TPF Noob!

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    I just started photography and i was wondering what filters did. Are they just to protect your lens or do they actaully do something? I know this is a noobie questions but thats what i am.
    Cheers
    Michael
     
  2. Big Mike

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

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    A filter is anything you choose to put in front of the lens. If you wanted to smear peanut butter onto the lens...that could be a PB filter :).

    So in answer to what filters do...just about anything.

    UV filters are typically used for protection. It's much better to replace a $30 filter than it is to replace a $1500 lens.

    Polarizing filters are great to use outdoors...they do things that you can't really do with Photoshop.
     
  3. JEazy

    JEazy TPF Noob!

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    Haha I've heard of Vasoline being used, but never peanut butter! :lmao:

    But yeah, filters are generally mounted to your cameras lens and either help the photo or create a special effect.
     
  4. Groupcaptainbonzo

    Groupcaptainbonzo TPF Noob!

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    Hi Michael !
    Have a look at

    http://medfmt.8k.com/bronfilters.html

    it will give you some idea. The only problem is that it is a bit "In Depth" and may scare you. But to be honest filters are not a mine field they are a tool. you use what you choose to and disregard the rest. Over time the mud clears a little and you find yourself giving people advice on a forum....

    Thinking about it....

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Filter_(photography)

    may be better as it is more friendly (Often the last bracket will not be included when you click on it. It needs to be to get the article up. If this is the case . just go to the address bar and add the last bracket ")" to the end of the address and all should be fine).

    Most useful filters...

    I use a polariser, It hightens and intensifies colour and reduces glare,
    a warm up from time to time. When light is dull and "Cold" it just adds a warmer "Light orange" tint to the image. and that is it really. we all have our favorites . and our "Don't touch it with someone elses barge poles! " but try them out, learn what you can, and above all have fun.
    take photography like life...
    To excess but not too seriously...
     
  5. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    Unless you are clumsy type and are interested in a filter or filters for your camera. Start with a circular polarizer. Like said above it helps to improve pictures by blocking polarized light from the sun. It will help turn a dull blue sky into a nice dark blue sky. Or say your are taking a picture with glass or water in it. By turning the filter you can either allow light to reflect off the glass or go away so you can see through the glass or water. It is the most used filter I have (I have a couple sizes for different lenses). There are two types of polarizers. Circular and just plain polarizer. They do the same thing, just the circular one, the glass element can rotate without loosening the screw mount to the lens. Basically for more money its easier to use. To use a polarizer you turn it until the affect you want (goes from full effect to no effect in a 1/4 of a turn).

    Now if you are clumsy or afraid you might damage your lens. Alot of people keep a UV filter in front of their lens for protection. They don't change the scene very much and are fairly low cost. There are different qualities of filters. Cheap ones may be made so bad they affect the pictures in bad ways. So be carefull in choosing them. You don't have to get the most expensive one. But like in anything you get what you pay for. Cheap ones may be just fine if you don't do large enlargements or prints. But they may start to show bad things with large prints.

    Also stacking filters. There is no rule against stacking different filters. But normally you just use 1 or 2 at a time. The more glass layers you have in front of your lens the lower the picture quality will come out. And if conditions are right you may get stray light reflections off the additional glass and ruins the pictures (bounces around off the different glass layers).

    There also filters wher maybe only half of the filter has a shade or color. This is a special filter to help with specific scenes. Alot of colored filters are used for filtering out certain light. Like for shooting b&w lot of people use a yellow or red filter.
     
  6. MichaelMcDoanld

    MichaelMcDoanld TPF Noob!

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  7. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I have a question. I did some filter tests many years ago and discovered that linear polarizers work noticeably better than circular ones. They have more filtering affect on polarized light. I know the linear ones cause metering problems or AF problems or something in some cameras. What cameras are affected in what way by linear polarizers?
     
  8. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    I have never heard of this?? I have a linear on one of my mf lenses. Just a simple meter on that camera. So it may not show up. Seems to meter correctly with it. 3 of the 5 I have are B+W's and am satisfied that their cost is worth it. The 2 others are ones I bought in emergencies at local camera stores while on a trip. Price was moderate but quality was definately not. Can definately tell a difference between them and the B+W's.
     

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