Filters & Tripod


TPF Noob!
Feb 20, 2009
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I can get a polarising Fokar 52mm CP filter at $35. Or a Kenka 52mm CP at $39.

Which one would you get?

Also, Slik SDV550 Tripod I can get for $26. Anything bad about these?

Edit: I meant FOTAR, not FOKAR.

Also, is it worth getting a cheap UV filter AS WELL?

I've just heard that it's good for protecting, but I don't see the point in image difference if I have a polarising filter... does a UV filter affect the image? (differently to the polarising, that is)How?
UV filters do little to your image. If you buy a cheap one it may change the IQ of your shots however.
Oks for starters lets try this.... what camera are you using. The mm's on on filters are not like the mm's on lenses. The mm's on filters are the size of lens mount they will fit on.
Ah, pardon me.

It's an EOS 450D/Rebel XSi.
18-55 & 55-250
Polarising filter... for enhancing the colours and protecting the lens.

Oh, and the tripod factor...

Slik SDV550 Tripod reduced from $50 to $30.

There's also (uncertain about this one) Inca AT330 Tripod from $30 to $25, and the Velbon CX-480 with Case from $90 to $60.

I'd like to get the Slik, but it doesn't say whether it comes with case or not. There's also a [FONT=Arial, Helvetica]Slik SDV-30 Tripod[/FONT], but it's $45 and I don't know the difference.
Kenko Circular Polariser 58mm Filter - $50

[FONT=Arial, Helvetica, sans-serif]58mm - Hoya 58mm Circular Polarising G series Filter (budget series) - $51[/FONT]

I'm doubtful about the Inca.
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I would say to definitely get the hoya filter, as for the tripod, they're not really my area of expertise but from what I see, the velbon would be a good choice because it can go higher, and also has a greater maximum load.
I have seen that Slik tripod in the store and I honestly don't think there is anything wrong with it for someone with a light camera and just starting out. Any lower end consumer tripod is going to get treated here like junk.... after all the TPF is a photographic community with certain (high end/expensive) tastes.

Above the physical attributes and specs of a tripod (tons of info in search), the tripod should reflect the value of your equipment much like insurance. The more expensive the camera/lens, the more you'll want to spend on a higher quality tripod.

With that said, I bought an old Bogen/Manfrotto 3001 tripod and 3-way head for 35 bucks at a camera swap. I wouldn't hesitate putting any of my expensive $$$$ cameras on it.... The message, consider a used, high quality tripod... there is not much to break or wear.
You'll find that you don't want a polarizing filter as a protective filter. Why? Because it cuts out 2 stops of the precious light that we all want as much of as we can get to work with. They are great for their purpose of cutting reflections and making the sky darker. But indoors or whereever it's dark, you do not want a polarizer on our lens in almost all cases.

That's what makes UV and Skylight filters best for their protective qualities. They don't do a lot to change the photos, but they do help very much if your lens gets dropped, bumped, dragged across something sharp, etc. It is way easier and cheaper to replace the filter than the lens. UV filters do cut some haze out of distant skies, and Skylight filters usually have a slight pinkish warming tone to them. Neither one cuts out enough light transmission to worry about.

Yes, this is an expensive hobby we all are working in. After you save the money to get some higher quality equipment you'll understand why it costs more. Tripods are one area that I really think that it's worth it to buy a good sturdy Manfrotto or Gitzo or the like.

I went through several Slik and bargain brand tripods before getting my first really good one. They seemed to do the job, but joints and parts wear quickly and the legs become floppy with use. If your camera and lenses are fairly heavy, there's always the danger of tipping the tripod over. Then you go back to hoping you have that protective filter on the lens!

Can you tip over my Manfrotto legs? Yes, but only if you try really hard or aren't paying attention to where you set them up. I feel very comfortable with my gear on them, and that wouldn't be the case with a Slik.

In understand the expense of things, but many times it is just plain worth it to save up your money and get the right stuff.
Go with the Velabon tripod for sure. I have one and love it. It is an older tripod that was made for a fullsize vhs tape camcorder so it is way overkill for my A100 but I wouldnt have it any other way. I bought a cheapo tripod for like $30 and was very disapointed. I only bought it for if I go hiking or something thinking that it was lighter but the weight difference didnt make up for the quality. That cheapo tripod still does get used as a light stand now though.

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