ND Filter vs. Polarizing Filter and UV Filter

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by roger.wee, May 8, 2008.

  1. roger.wee

    roger.wee TPF Noob!

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    Hi Everyone,

    I've got a question regarding what kind of filter to get for my Canon 10-22mm lense.

    I go mountain climbing a lot and am planning to go to France at the end of this year (winter), and was about to get a Polarizing filter with a UV filter but my friend just told me that i should get a graduated ND Filter...apparently works well for landscape shots...Can anyone please tell me what the better option is, and perhaps a few reasons why?

    Thanks in advance.
    Roger.
     
  2. Arch

    Arch Damn You! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Personally i would get a polarizer anyway... they are good for your general shots as your moving around.
    Nd grads are also usefull... i use them alot myself, and find you can sometimes get the best results with them, However, ND grads in mountain areas can have a drawback and that is, whilst tryiing to darken the sky for a more even exposure you can also unavoidably include then highest parts of the mountain, same goes for tall trees etc... this can be sorted in post processing and is sometimes not too bad anyway.

    So... i use both, but bearing in mind the Cokin ND grads i have are not 'top of the line' and didnt cost too much anyways... your Polarizer however will be at least £50 -£60+ british.
     
  3. saltface

    saltface TPF Noob!

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    Go for the polarizer and UV filters.
    I leave my UV filters on in case of an accident and save the more expensive glass.
    The polarizer works for more than just sky. It cuts down on reflections from any angle, be it sky, water, or glass.
     
  4. Dutchboy

    Dutchboy TPF Noob!

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    I can guarantee you you'll end up with all those filters eventually. I say buy the uv + polarizer first.
     
  5. christopher walrath

    christopher walrath No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The graduated neutral density filter would bring together the SBR by lowering the brightness of your skies and and bringing that light closer to that of your terra. A polarizer would be great if you needed to eliminate reflections and glare from non-metallic surfaces. The UV filter would help a wee little with haze around midday but is primarily useful as a glass cover for careless photographers and is generally a sell-up IMHO. I would go for the Grad ND myself. Then the polarizer.
     
  6. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Better option is to use a tripod and take bracketed exposures. Taken one normally one at +1EV one at -1EV etc as if you were doing a HDR photo. Import two of them into photoshop and layer them on top of each other. The top one add a layer mask with a gradient.

    Why is it better? It's linear, it doesn't introduce a colour cast like many filters do, and it's customizable in post processing. Also if you want a stronger effect you don't need a second filter you just need to bracket +2 EV instead of +1.

    This method only every breaks down when photographing moving subjects, but for landscapes it works very well and IMO looks better than the plasticy results HDR produce.
     
  7. andrew99

    andrew99 TPF Noob!

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  8. Arch

    Arch Damn You! Staff Member Supporting Member

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    ugh, another useless rant by ken Rockwell... as you can tell im not a fan of his...

    I'v just been out shooting all day with my 10-20mm Sigma and the 77mm Hoya Polarizer attached... i dont have one image with a dark patch across the sky. This is not to say you won't get any effects.. one or two of my images have lighter areas where i think i lesser wide angle lens would have given me a more even spread, but to say not to use them at all for ultra wide angles is wrong imo.
     
  9. andrew99

    andrew99 TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for posting that -- I've been holding off on a polarizer for my Sigma 10-20, but now I'll go ahead and pick one up. I have polarizers for all my other lenses, and I love the effect.
     
  10. Alex_B

    Alex_B No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    you can get some effect of brightness variation over a wide angle of view. but it rarely ever is as bad as demonstrated on that image.

    I even do panoramic shots, which are much wider in the angle of view than 10mm, still on some days the result looks nice.

    If in doubt I would just go for one shot with and one without.

    My advice would be to get the polariser, leave it on the camera while in the mountains, and get one or two graded NDs.

    avoid stacking filters with wide ultra angle lenses.
     
  11. King Mango

    King Mango TPF Noob!

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    I think that's the Photomatix Pro Tonemapping plugin that gets that. I agree that using that effect looks too processed and borderline gimmicky to me. A good HDR is a thing of beauty though.
     
  12. Garbz

    Garbz No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    King Mango I agree. Either make the effect so subtle that it still looks real or go way overboard and then actually spend an hour in photoshop afterwards playing with it some more to get a truly artistic effect. Some excellent examples can be seen on this forum by Woodsac. But some of the most amazing photos (HDR and standard tone mapped) I have seen are from www.suckincustoms.com
     

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