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Author Topic: UV filters (any difference?)  (Read 5419 times)

Rienzphotoz

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2013, 09:27:20 AM »
I always use filters
According to MrFotoFool, you and I (and anyone else who uses filters) are just "snapshooters" and are not "serious photographers" :D
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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #15 on: March 04, 2013, 09:27:20 AM »

Studio1930

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #16 on: March 04, 2013, 09:48:27 AM »
  Seems to me based on casual observation that snapshooters use them and serious photographers (especially pros) do not.  I suspect this is because the snapshooters are told by the salesperson at the camera shop that they have to have one.

Wow, did you really think about this before you typed it?  Rienzphotoz already responded with a perfect reply to your statements, but I just had to add to it.  Statements like yours make you sound like the inexperienced snapshooter.  Of course I have not clue as to your actual experience and quality of work, but your comments can often give the inexperienced photographers the wrong idea.  Please don't make grand assumptions based on casual observations.  ::)

My opinion based on decades of experience:

*  Cheap filter is worse than no filter
*  No filter is sometimes preferable in certain situations
*  Quality filter is often needed for protection (sand, salt or fresh water (splash or rain), ice, dirt/mud, photojournalism...)


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Dylan777

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #17 on: March 04, 2013, 10:17:11 AM »
So I bought a couple lens recently (17-40mm and 24-105) and want to get some UV filters for them.

Is there any real difference between various filters?

For instance, Hoya UV filters range from $30 to to $110.  My gut reaction is that it is mostly marketing junk and the $30 one is fine.  But would appreciate anyone with knowledge or thoughts to the contrary!  Thanks.


I like B&W Clear Filter. All my lenses are covered with: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/756818-REG/B_W_66_1066111_77mm_XS_Pro_NANO_Clear.html
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Rienzphotoz

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #18 on: March 04, 2013, 10:29:26 AM »
So I bought a couple lens recently (17-40mm and 24-105) and want to get some UV filters for them.

Is there any real difference between various filters?

For instance, Hoya UV filters range from $30 to to $110.  My gut reaction is that it is mostly marketing junk and the $30 one is fine.  But would appreciate anyone with knowledge or thoughts to the contrary!  Thanks.


I like B&W Clear Filter. All my lenses are covered with: http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/756818-REG/B_W_66_1066111_77mm_XS_Pro_NANO_Clear.html

+1 ... I recently got to know (thanks to neuroanatomist) about the B+W XS-Pro filters (I've always used the regular/thicker or the slim B+W filters) ... just last week, I've replaced all my filters with the XS-Pro version ... they are really awesome ... the best part is that they are really slim and you can still use the lens cap or add a CPL without having to take off the filter.
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b14

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #19 on: March 04, 2013, 10:44:41 AM »
If you can afford to replace your lens or are earning enough from your work to not worry, forget the filter. Also factor in the degree of malcordination that exist within you

Albi86

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #20 on: March 04, 2013, 10:48:40 AM »
There's a very nice article on Lenstip whose conclusion is that HOYA filters are the best, both overall and in terms of value for money (depends on the model you buy).

I generally use the HMC. Sometimes Amazon has the Pro1 on offer and in that case I buy those.

No problem with lens caps, but I never tried stacking them.

neuroanatomist

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2013, 10:56:48 AM »
I always use filters
According to MrFotoFool, you and I (and anyone else who uses filters) are just "snapshooters" and are not "serious photographers" :D

Or maybe we're just clumsy...

Just the other day I was out taking some snapshots with my 1D X and EF 600mm f/4L IS II and I didn't have a UV filter on the front of the lens.   :P   

In fact, here's the snapshot to prove it!
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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #21 on: March 04, 2013, 10:56:48 AM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #22 on: March 04, 2013, 11:11:18 AM »
If you can afford to replace your lens or are earning enough from your work to not worry, forget the filter. Also factor in the degree of malcordination that exist within you

Do keep in mind that one of the lenses the OP mentions is the 17-40mm f/4L, and that is a lens that requires a front filter to complete the weather/dust sealing for the lens.

There's a very nice article on Lenstip whose conclusion is that HOYA filters are the best, both overall and in terms of value for money (depends on the model you buy).

No problem with lens caps, but I never tried stacking them.

Right - but you have to look at the test data in the context of the utility of a UV filter on a dSLR.  The Hoya filters scored better than the B+W because they more effectively block UV light (defined as 200-390nm).  But modern dSLRs aren't sensitive to UV light, so that criterion is pretty much irrelevant in terms of current utility.  The B+W filters actually score better (slightly) than the Hoya filters in terms of visible light transmission (which LensTip defines as 390-750nm, although the standard definition is 400-700nm).  But the difference is only ~1%, which is practically irrelevant. 

So, based on the LensTip test data, for a dSLR there's no optical difference between the B+W MRC and the high end Hoya filters.  Personally, I find the MRC (and Nano) coatings very easy to clean, similar to the Hoya HD coating.  The standard Hoya coatings are reportedly harder to clean.  Also, the brass mount rings on the B+W filters are less prone to thermal expansion than the aluminum rings on most other filters, meaning it's less likely the B+W's will get stuck if stacked (but it can still happen, which is why having a set of $5 filter wrenches with you is a good idea!).
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Albi86

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #23 on: March 04, 2013, 11:24:11 AM »
If you can afford to replace your lens or are earning enough from your work to not worry, forget the filter. Also factor in the degree of malcordination that exist within you

Do keep in mind that one of the lenses the OP mentions is the 17-40mm f/4L, and that is a lens that requires a front filter to complete the weather/dust sealing for the lens.

There's a very nice article on Lenstip whose conclusion is that HOYA filters are the best, both overall and in terms of value for money (depends on the model you buy).

No problem with lens caps, but I never tried stacking them.

Right - but you have to look at the test data in the context of the utility of a UV filter on a dSLR.  The Hoya filters scored better than the B+W because they more effectively block UV light (defined as 200-390nm).  But modern dSLRs aren't sensitive to UV light, so that criterion is pretty much irrelevant in terms of current utility.  The B+W filters actually score better (slightly) than the Hoya filters in terms of visible light transmission (which LensTip defines as 390-750nm, although the standard definition is 400-700nm).  But the difference is only ~1%, which is practically irrelevant. 

So, based on the LensTip test data, for a dSLR there's no optical difference between the B+W MRC and the high end Hoya filters.  Personally, I find the MRC (and Nano) coatings very easy to clean, similar to the Hoya HD coating.  The standard Hoya coatings are reportedly harder to clean.  Also, the brass mount rings on the B+W filters are less prone to thermal expansion than the aluminum rings on most other filters, meaning it's less likely the B+W's will get stuck if stacked (but it can still happen, which is why having a set of $5 filter wrenches with you is a good idea!).

All very true, but I don't know how it is where you live, but here in EU B+W XS filters are more than twice as expensive as the already-quite-good Hoya HMC and around a +30% compared to the Hoya Pro1. IMHO they're not a convenient purchase.

For what it's worth, I never had a problem cleaning them. I actually find myself doing it very often by just breathing on them and brushing the surface delicately with my t-shirt.

Kristofgss

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #24 on: March 04, 2013, 11:31:11 AM »
I haven't seen anything which an UV filter improves optically, but I use them on all my lenses to have the weather sealing and to prevent dirt/fingers/smudges from affecting the lens itself. I like the HMC-type filters, the multi-coating does help to minimise reflections. Having said that, whenever I tried to use the 70-200 with filter in complete darkness to take pictures of anything lighted by a candle, the light of the candle would reflect from the sensor back to the front glass and create a ghost image, so when doing things in complete darkness, I now take them off first.
I do wonder about the front filters who are really cheap, are they strong? i.e. would these shatter quickly under impact and thus still damage the lens front glass?

RLPhoto

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #25 on: March 04, 2013, 11:42:56 AM »
I always use filters
According to MrFotoFool, you and I (and anyone else who uses filters) are just "snapshooters" and are not "serious photographers" :D

Or maybe we're just clumsy...

Just the other day I was out taking some snapshots with my 1D X and EF 600mm f/4L IS II and I didn't have a UV filter on the front of the lens.   :P   

In fact, here's the snapshot to prove it!

If they made them for Big Tele's, I'd probably buy one to be honest.  :-X
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RJB

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #26 on: March 04, 2013, 11:48:04 AM »
Usually half the gear I shoot with is on loan from an agency and the other half is insured. However, I always use filters.

Why?

Because if I'm out in the bush, on an embed or just somewhere generally a bit dusty/salty/sandy, a filter getting caked, scratched or cracked isn't really an issue. Getting the front end of a lens in such a state is. I'm generally out in areas where you can't just pick up a new 24-70 and travelling light(ish) means no back-up in the same focal range.

I fully agree that guys shooting studio probably won't use protective filters, but many others like the security that a filter offers. My point is that breaking down the whole filter/no filter argument into non pro/pro isn't really valid; pros have the same range of interests and areas of expertise as non-pros, and their gear tends to reflect the type of shooting they specialise in.

P.s. I'm with Neuro on the recommendation, I use the XS-PROs - they keep the vignetting down nicely, and because they're brass, even if you ding the front of the lens and bend the filter thread you can generally get them off again if you need to.

Rienzphotoz

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2013, 11:56:08 AM »
There's a very nice article on Lenstip whose conclusion is that HOYA filters are the best, both overall and in terms of value for money (depends on the model you buy).

I generally use the HMC. Sometimes Amazon has the Pro1 on offer and in that case I buy those.

No problem with lens caps, but I never tried stacking them.
I don't know which are the "best" ... but a few years ago, I did have a couple of Hoya filters on my EF 17-85 lens and the 50-500 lens) I really liked them ... I see no problem with Hoya ... its just that I personally like B+W ... maybe because I have a lot of trust and respect for made in Germany products ... or maybe, since I cannot afford the more fancier German made products like Leica, BMW etc I kinda feel happy that I can at least afford some German products  ;D  ... either way I don't care, I really like the B+W XS-Pro filters and I'm sticking with them, especially bcoz they are so slim and yet you can put a lens cap on them.
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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #27 on: March 04, 2013, 11:56:08 AM »

TrumpetPower!

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #28 on: March 04, 2013, 12:11:39 PM »
Whether you decide to use a filter or not, if protection is your goal, you'd be a fool to not use a lens hood.

A hood actually improves image quality, while even the best filters degrade image quality (though, granted, imperceptibly so with the high quality ones). Except for those few lenses where a filter is required to complete environmental sealing, a filter only protects against the types of hazards that come in situations where you yourself should be wearing eye protection -- such as gravel kicked up at a rodeo. A hood, on the other hand, protects against all the common real-world types of hazards photographers face, including impact and fingerprints. More to the point, an impact that would damage a front element will damage the filter in a way that will often transmit the damage on to the lens, such as by jamming the filter threads or scratching the front element with the broken filter. The hood will actually protect the lens against those types of damage. And quality filters generally cost about as much as repairing a lens with a damaged front element.

For most photographers in most situations, the hood provides all the protection one needs. For many (not most) photographers in many (not most) situations, a filter will degrade image quality. For only a few photographers in only a few situations will a filter provide protection not offered by a lens hood.

The key is understanding the actual type of photography you do and, from that, knowing if adding a filter to your hood (which you should always use) will offer physical protection worth the degradation of image quality. Or, if you regularly shoot in environments in which a filter is actually prudent, you should be able to recognize situations where the filter is going to significantly degrade image quality and be able to make the decision to remove the filter for that shot.

(Of course, this all applies only to clear / UV / protection filters. Polarizers, neutral density filters, and other filters for effects are irrelevant to the discussion. And, of course, there are all sorts of other odd exceptions, such as lenses like the 50 compact macro which is its own hood, the fisheye lenses and their bulbous front elements, photojournalists who should be getting combat pay, and the like.)

Cheers,

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wsheldon

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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2013, 01:51:26 PM »
Quote
The key is understanding the actual type of photography you do and, from that, knowing if adding a filter to your hood (which you should always use) will offer physical protection worth the degradation of image quality. Or, if you regularly shoot in environments in which a filter is actually prudent, you should be able to recognize situations where the filter is going to significantly degrade image quality and be able to make the decision to remove the filter for that shot.


+1

I do use UV filters when shooting around water/sand (and on my 17-40L), but always use hoods on all my lenses for the reasons TrumpetPower states.

Interesting article and discussion at LenRentals.com on this topic as well (http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2011/06/good-times-with-bad-filters). Filter quality does matter, particularly if you need to stack.
« Last Edit: March 04, 2013, 01:53:15 PM by wsheldon »
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Re: UV filters (any difference?)
« Reply #29 on: March 04, 2013, 01:51:26 PM »