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cheap camera filters

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Re: cheap camera filters

Postby pw » Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:18 pm

pvnisher wrote:Haha. Total user error. That makes me feel better. Oh wait, I mean worse!
I hadn't used it before, and had no idea it would change the settings so drastically.
I know some of the basics but am still getting used to manual mode.
Good tips!


I've gone to mostly shooting AV mode (aperture priority) and letting shutter speed take care of itself. Also use Auto WB, but do set the ISO, as I said. I also shoot raw if I think I might actually be getting a decent photo, then you can correct any errors in WB, plus you have a little more ability to correct exposure problems.

Re: cheap camera filters

Postby MonGoose » Fri Oct 12, 2012 2:52 pm

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Re: cheap camera filters

Postby Motown Mike » Sun Oct 14, 2012 4:36 pm

Just a note... Nikon, Canon, etc. spend millions of $$ on lens design and coatings.
Putting a cheap piece of glass in front of a good lens does not make much sense.

1. Filters on digital cameras being used outside (not in a studio) are mostly a waste of time. Let the lens do its work with no additional glass to screw up what the lens was designed to do. Do your adjustments in post production with Photoshop.

2. Camera salesmen try to sell you a filter because they are a big markup item... not because they are needed to protect the lens.

3. If you think you are protecting your lens with a filter... guess again... get a lens hood it will absorb shock on a drop much better than a filter. The biggest enemy of a lens is being dropped... not dust entering from the front element. A hood also offers some protection from rain and snow.... use a lens cap.

Re: cheap camera filters

Postby MonGoose » Sun Oct 14, 2012 5:08 pm

Motown Mike wrote:Just a note... Nikon, Canon, etc. spend millions of $$ on lens design and coatings.
Putting a cheap piece of glass in front of a good lens does not make much sense.

1. Filters on digital cameras being used outside (not in a studio) are mostly a waste of time. Let the lens do its work with no additional glass to screw up what the lens was designed to do. Do your adjustments in post production with Photoshop.

2. Camera salesmen try to sell you a filter because they are a big markup item... not because they are needed to protect the lens.

3. If you think you are protecting your lens with a filter... guess again... get a lens hood it will absorb shock on a drop much better than a filter. The biggest enemy of a lens is being dropped... not dust entering from the front element. A hood also offers some protection from rain and snow.... use a lens cap.


I have to disagree with you Mike. A high end circular polarizer greatly enhances photos in the same way a pair of high end sunglasses increases your view of the world. I love my polarizer (I buy the good ones) and use them every opportunity I get. Simply Google "circular polarizer" and look at the images returned. The difference is night and day. While the clear UV Ray filters do hurt your photo quality a little bit they are a good protection for the lens. I've heard countless stories of guys who have dropped $1,500 lenses only to be saved by the $6 UV filter they were using. I do agree with you that a lens hood is also good protection and that dust isn't a major issue under normal conditions.

Also of note, it is recommended to use some type of UV filter to protect your lens at high elevations.

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Re: cheap camera filters

Postby Steve Gio » Mon Oct 15, 2012 8:45 am

I also disagree with Motown Mike.

On a backpacking trip to the San Juans this past September I had my dslr and 70-300mm lens safely wrapped in my down jacket and stowed in my pack. At some point I must have banged into something since when I removed the lens from my pack I noticed 3 cracks in the UV Filter (promaster) in a leaf pattern across the whole filter. I don't know what happened but I would say this saved my lens. I also had the lens cap over the UV filter so it is puzzling.

On a side not pictures I had taken with that lens showed no cracks on the photos. Also if you are going t obuy a UF filter might as well get a good one. Should be able to look at it at various angles and see no reflection.

As for Polarizing filters and GNDs, I am at that point that I need to get better quality filters than the $20 ones I am using. I am curious what a difference they may make so time to experiment.

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