Some general filter questions.

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by mal, Feb 6, 2005.

  1. mal

    mal TPF Noob!

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    I've recently become interested in the effects that can be acheived by using filters, but wanted to clarify a few things before I go shopping!

    I have a Fujifilm Finepix S20 Pro, and am unsure how, if at all, I can attatch filters to this camera. I know to attatch wide and telephoto lenses you need an adapter that gives a 55mm thread. With this in mind, what would I need to do/purchase before I can use filters on my camera?

    Digital Matt has kindly just given me a rundown as to how ND filters work. Im also interested in a filter that will cancel (or possibly just reduce - not sure how these work) UV light. I've been told that it's good practice to leave one of these on all the time as it protects your lens, and only comes into effect when it is needed. In addition to this, I'm curious about filters that make tungsten light look like sunlight. Does an ND filter duplicate either of these two effects? Is there anything else I should know about these, or using filters in general?

    Finally, what brands are generally seen to be reliable and decent quality?

    Phew, I think that's all. Thanks in advance. :hugs:
     
  2. Digital Matt

    Digital Matt alter ego: Analog Matt

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    I don't know very much about the S20 Pro, but I would assume that if there is an adapter with a 55mm thread, you should get it.

    UV filters are very cheap, and are a good idea for lens protection, but that's about all they do.

    Since you are shooting digital, I wouldn't bother with color correcting/balancing filters. This is what on camera white balance is for. A ND is Neutral, so it doesn't affect color balance at all, and while better filters may have coatings on them to reduce flaring and UV, they shouldn't be used to protect the lens, and will not be needed in every shooting situation.

    The one important thing to realize about using filters is that, it's another piece of glass in front of your lens, which will potentially increase flaring, and degrade image quality. One filter is not much of a problem, but when stacking filters, you increase the odds, as well as increasing your chance of vignetting. Also, some filters, such as ND or polarizers, will reduce the amount of light coming through the lens, so you have to be aware of that when you are deciding on your exposure. I don't know if your camera meters through the lens or not. If it does, you have no problem, because it will meter through the filter and take into account the effect.

    As far as brands, for a UV filter, I wouldn't spend alot. Tiffen makes decent, cheap filters, while Hoya makes a slightly better quality glass.
     
  3. Jess

    Jess TPF Noob!

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    That's was helpful to me! I also want to thank you for the ND info you gave in another thread :)
     
  4. mal

    mal TPF Noob!

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    Thanks again Matt. You answered my questions perfectly as per.
     
  5. FlashSpeedo

    FlashSpeedo TPF Noob!

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    shooting digital myself, i use Photoshop to add red (warming), sepia or other hues to my photos when needed. Filters are useful for what Photoshop can't do: things like split ND filters to fix exposure, Polarizers to keep skies blue and eliminate reflections, etc.
     
  6. Jess

    Jess TPF Noob!

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    Is a polarizer the same thing as a UV filter?
    Is there a sepia filter, I thought you had to buy a particular film for that.

    I have built in filters on one of my lenses, I'd really like to use the blue but haven't found anything that seemed like it'd look good in it. Any suggestions?
     
  7. Rob

    Rob TPF Noob!

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    A polarizer works to cut down UV, but it has a far more dramatic effect - especially a circular polariser where you align the invisible stripes at right angles to the light and it cuts down glare.

    There's a tobacco filter which is the right colour, but sepia is a type of printing for B&W.

    Remember that the colours of the filters do not necessarily tell you what they do!
     
  8. Jess

    Jess TPF Noob!

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    Hmm, I just realized I have a tiffin filter that says PL. Is this a polarizer? If not, what is it? It looks clear to me.

    BTW, I found a good use for the blue filter. Makes the sky amazing. Little or no effect through the viewfinder on other items depending on their color. I'll be able to view some film shots soon to see the actual outcome.
     

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