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Author Topic: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?  (Read 4337 times)

chilledXpress

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #15 on: October 05, 2013, 01:09:11 AM »
On a trip, I put a Canon branded UV filter I had in my bag on my 100-400 because it was drizzling.  Looking later at the photos, I was amazed at just how much the quality had degraded.  I like this lens but it is not the clearest lens out there, and the filter made it worse. 

The next day, because the weather was still bad, I took a B&W MRC off my 24-105 and put that on the long zoom to see if that would matter.  The better filter really made a remarkable difference in the IQ that I cold see.  Certainly, this was not very scientific since the lighting and conditions might have been different (although they seemed not to be)I won't get into the argument over to filter or not to filter (seems to me there have been numerous threads and discussions here on just that topic) but if you put a UV or other "protective filter" on your glass, get the best ones you can.

I've always been amazed that Canon's filter offering are pure shite... really crazy they would even sell them. Goes to prove that UV filters are not just flat pieces of glass, at least good ones.

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #15 on: October 05, 2013, 01:09:11 AM »

rahkshi007

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #16 on: October 05, 2013, 03:19:43 AM »
I have used cheap filter be4, it make your lens not sharp at all.. My best recommendation for bang of buck is Hoya HD, I do have 1 B+W Nano on my 85mm L, i see no difference in image quality in Both this filter.. Both filter has special coating which is much easier to clean compared to cheap filter.  The different is B+W nano has much thinner frame compared to Hoya HD.
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digital paradise

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #17 on: October 05, 2013, 03:21:41 PM »
Cheap filters are excellent if your goal is to degrade the IQ your lens was designed to achieve. I would not trust any cheap filter.   

Pi

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #18 on: October 05, 2013, 04:26:57 PM »
http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2011/06/good-times-with-bad-filters


I like the last one.


It is misleading. Multiple filters create a lot of flat parallel surfaces on the rays path. One filter - there I is none but you might be too close with long lenses. Also, reflections from the front of the filter do not get back to the sensor. Put two filters - they do. So one uncoated filter (that I would not use anyway) would reflect already reduced reflected rays from the front element because the latter is coated. Two uncoated filters would perform much worse than one - more than "twice" as bad.

surapon

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #19 on: October 05, 2013, 05:46:58 PM »
1) How is a $110 filter different from a $7 one? Do they differ much in quality?

2) Some are multi-coated, others are not. What does that mean?

3) Do you have any recommendations? Brands to avoid?

4) How do UV filters (cheap or not) affect image quality (sharpness, distortion, vignetting, color balance, flares, etc.)? As I understand, they are not made out of thin air, so they have to affect the light passing through them somehow.


1) The cheap one will degrade your image quality a lot. 

2) Multicoating reduces light loss due to reflection, and reduces ghosting and flare.  An uncoated filter reflects up to 10% of the incoming light, a multicoated filter less than 1%.

3) B+W MRC or better is the way to go, IMO.  The high end Hoya lines (HD) are ok, too. 

4) Cheap filters cost you sharpness, contrast, and add can add artifacts.  Good filters will not cause any IQ loss, with the occasional exception of increased flare with bright backlight.

Bottom line, if you're going to put a filter on a lens, make sure it's a good quality filter, else don't bother.


+ 100 for me too
Thanks you sir, Dear Teacher Mr.neuroanatomist = very clear explanation.
One thing that I would like to add-----I will not to buy the 5 Dollars Cheap Plastic Sunglass to cover my eyes, and can not see the details of the beautiful body of the lady on the beach, BUT, I have no choice to put the 5 Dollars sunglass to protect my eyes from the spray water or my blood,  by the jet spray at the Dental  office, when the Beautiful dentist do my teeth job.
Surapon

 Now , Please go to see the Link that Test UV Filters by the Expert. And you will learn that the super high cost filters are not have to be the best of the best.

http://www.lenstip.com/113.4-article-UV_filters_test_Description_of_the_results_and_summary.html
« Last Edit: October 05, 2013, 08:27:05 PM by surapon »

sleepnever

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #20 on: October 05, 2013, 08:03:29 PM »
Why would you put cheap crap in front of your nice glass? I use B+W filters and I've constantly been happy with them.
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dilbert

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #21 on: October 05, 2013, 08:36:13 PM »
Unless you are using film, there is no need to use UV filters if you are careful and keep the lens cap on when you're not using it.

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #21 on: October 05, 2013, 08:36:13 PM »

dtaylor

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #22 on: October 05, 2013, 08:48:34 PM »
I'm a big fan of Hoya's S-HMC and HD filters. I've taken plenty of with/without shots, and I've never seen any IQ degradation or additional flare. This includes test shots at night with longer exposures and plenty of light sources in the frame.

I have them on every lens for protection except my EF-M 22mm. (Tiny element on a low cost lens.)
« Last Edit: October 05, 2013, 08:52:28 PM by dtaylor »

candc

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #23 on: October 07, 2013, 10:06:43 PM »
After reading this thread and the articles linked I took a good look at the filters I have been using and the promaster 77 non multi coated one that's been on my sigma 80-400 For years clearly shows reflections, I took it off and its not night and day but it does  look better without it on, better contrast in low light and seems like less aberrations. I like keeping a filter on the front of that lens because the lens cap comes of easy, even in the bag so I will get a better protective filter for it.

Botts

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #24 on: October 07, 2013, 11:23:02 PM »
Personally, the big reason I spend more money on good filters is that the higher end coatings are far, far, far easier to clean, and way better at resisting getting dirty.
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Mt Spokane Photography

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #25 on: October 07, 2013, 11:40:52 PM »
, also the kenko zeta are the exact same filter as the hoya HD so worth looking at too

You are right, some may not know that the manufacturer "THK" stands for Tokina, Hoya, Kenko.  They merely market the filters under different names in different places.

overman

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #26 on: October 08, 2013, 12:23:42 AM »
A good analogy. Filters are like condoms  ;)  There are lots of pros and cons.

surapon

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #27 on: October 08, 2013, 08:24:20 AM »
, also the kenko zeta are the exact same filter as the hoya HD so worth looking at too

You are right, some may not know that the manufacturer "THK" stands for Tokina, Hoya, Kenko.  They merely market the filters under different names in different places.

WOW---Thank you, Sir, Dear my Teacher Mr. Mt Spokane.
"  some may not know that the manufacturer "THK" stands for Tokina, Hoya, Kenko. " , Wow, Wow, Wow'
Surapon

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #27 on: October 08, 2013, 08:24:20 AM »

photonius

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #28 on: October 11, 2013, 02:16:00 PM »
, also the kenko zeta are the exact same filter as the hoya HD so worth looking at too

You are right, some may not know that the manufacturer "THK" stands for Tokina, Hoya, Kenko.  They merely market the filters under different names in different places.

WOW---Thank you, Sir, Dear my Teacher Mr. Mt Spokane.
"  some may not know that the manufacturer "THK" stands for Tokina, Hoya, Kenko. " , Wow, Wow, Wow'
Surapon

Yes, but it's not easy to figure out what is what.  When you look at the filter tests carefully at the lenstip web site, you will see that the transmission curves of similar filters (e.g. UV or CP filters for hoya, kenko) is not the same, so there is a different production.

Ewinter

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #29 on: October 11, 2013, 02:20:08 PM »
Unless you are using film, there is no need to use UV filters if you are careful and keep the lens cap on when you're not using it.
Tell that to the guy who hit my 16-35 II with his bass guitar head.
Luckily, it popped the filter, not my front element.
For what I do, there's careful, and there's getting the shot. I prefer the latter while protecting my equipment

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Re: Cheap UV filters: are they worth it?
« Reply #29 on: October 11, 2013, 02:20:08 PM »