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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 19 Apr 2012 (Thursday) 20:16
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To filter or not to filter?

 
modchild
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Apr 24, 2012 13:45 |  #31

When I was looking into starting out I read lots of items saying filters were essential so I bought a bunch and stuck them on all my lenses. When I eventually upgraded to a 7D and Canon 100-400 L the IQ was awful. Soft focus, dull and insipid photos seemed to be all I got. I took off the filter one day and tried another shoot and the difference was amazing. Bearing in mind I'd bought good quality filters and spent over £200 on 5 filters I was very disappointed. Now I only use a CPL filter occasionally and only ever use a UV filter if the weather is really adverse.


EOS 5D MkIII, EOS 70D, EOS 650D, EOS M, Canon 24-70 f2.8L MkII, Canon 70-200 f2.8L IS MkII, Canon 100 f2.8L Macro, Canon 17-40 f4L IS, Canon 24-105 f4L IS, Canon 300 f4L IS, Canon 85 f1.8, Canon 50 f1.4, Canon 40 f2.8 STM, Canon 35 f2, Sigma 150-500 OS, Tamron 18-270 PZD, Tamron 28-300 VC, 580EX II Flash, Nissin Di866 MkII Flash, Sigma EM 140 Macro Flash and other bits.

  
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Frugal
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Apr 24, 2012 17:14 as a reply to  @ modchild's post |  #32

Not another filter thread... :rolleyes:


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AmitShinde0511
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Apr 24, 2012 19:04 as a reply to  @ Frugal's post |  #33

I strongly feel filters are “good to have” than “must to have” on lenses.

I personally own 3 types of filters UV, CP and ND. Let’s skips Neutral Density filter and concentrate on other two.
I use circular polarizer in broad sunlight and uv filter during night or indoor shots all the time. I just feel safe using filter on my very very expensive lenses. If IQ degrades while using filters it can be taken care in post processing and it’s so minimal that you may not even notice.

Lens will NOT have cap all time while shooting. Shoot without cap for hours and then you will see small dust particle getting accumulate on lens. Then you have to clean lens every time this happens with micro fiber cloth. Wiping lens with cloth several times may produce some minimal scratches. Instead why not put UV filter all time when shooting and wipe filters hundreds of times if needed without affecting lens a bit. Protecting lens with filter can also add value to resale.


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Gregg.Siam
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Apr 24, 2012 19:44 as a reply to  @ AmitShinde0511's post |  #34

I was in the camp of not using a filter, especially a UV. That changed...

I few weeks ago was Songkran (water festival) here. As you know, the lens is not fully water resistant without a filter. With a bunch of water and crazy people I knew I had to use a clear protection filter when shooting for the 3 days of Songkran.

I bought a good Hoya Pro1 filter and threw it on, forgetting all about it. it's a protection filter, so it's just clear glass. I'm really careful about my gear and even cradle my camera in large groups. Somehow at the end on 3 days, I had a slight circular mar on the filter. It looked like a water spot, but I was not able to remove it. After looking closely, it appears to be a circular abrasion. Despite my best efforts, I was still not able to protect it.

tl:dr- I added a filter and it protected my lens despite my best efforts.

From the tests I have seen, a good filter might only have a slight effect when shooting into the sun and possible sun flares. correct?

I want a filter made exactly like the front element of my 24-105 so it behaves exactly how the lens would. :D


5D MKIII | 24-105mm f/4 L| 50mm f/1.8 | 600EX-RT [FONT=Tahoma][COLOR=bl​ue][FONT="]|
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oweneck
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Apr 25, 2012 01:25 |  #35

I use filters, I always have and always will, from what I am aware they make very little difference to the image quality, I would imagine it's why if you have a big scratch on the front element of your lens that you would barely see it in the pictures, similar thing.

I use them however because I hear that most lenses aren't weathersealed through the front of the lens without using a UV filter and when I'm around sand and sea water a lot this helps, not to mention I've heard a lot of people break lenses through overly cleaning the front elements of their lenses, I'm very much like this and worry that I would get cleaning fluids or dust or just make it worse into the lens if I didn't. I used to have a nifty fifty that I sold and the night before I cleaned it, I got cleaning solution in the lens from the front element, it got water droplets all inside of it and then made it fog up pretty bad, I thought I had ruined it, luckily I was able to dry it and air it out enough before I was able to sell it the next day.




  
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Expo67
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Apr 25, 2012 06:02 |  #36
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canadave wrote in post #14295789 (external link)
As someone wrote in a blog post I read somewhere, it makes no sense to pay top dollar for the finest optical quality lenses, only to turn around and put something else in front of it :)

For protection: lens hoods.

I'd be curious to see shots with an UV and the same shots without the UV filter. Then we could see if the filter does effect the quality?

Personally I doubt that you would see any difference what-so-ever. It's all upstairs in your head. If you think the filter will diminish the end result, then it will be that way. If you feel that the filter changes nothing at all, then it will be that way as well. The placebo non-effect!




  
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JohnB57
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Apr 25, 2012 07:03 |  #37

A filter is like underwear. It's entirely optional and, depending on the situation, can either help to avoid serious damage or will help to make damage unavoidable. Many will consider you a bad person if you don't use it, but others will say you're missing out on something if you do.

Discuss.

Or, better still, don't...




  
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SkipD
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Apr 25, 2012 07:06 |  #38

Expo67 wrote in post #14325090 (external link)
I'd be curious to see shots with an UV and the same shots without the UV filter. Then we could see if the filter does effect the quality?

Personally I doubt that you would see any difference what-so-ever. It's all upstairs in your head. If you think the filter will diminish the end result, then it will be that way. If you feel that the filter changes nothing at all, then it will be that way as well. The placebo non-effect!

If you are using a high quality clear filter AND if the lighting of the scene is all from behind the photographer, you will generally not see any degradation of images because of the filter.

However... If you have strong light sources in front of the camera (back-lit scene in the day or strong lights in a night scene, for example), that's when you may see flare due to the filter. Thus, if you are going to do a test of the filter that's the sort of lighting situation you want to use for the test. The degradation to images can be very real.


Skip Douglas
A few cameras and over 50 years behind them .....
..... but still learning all the time.

  
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Expo67
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Apr 25, 2012 07:28 |  #39
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JohnB57 wrote in post #14325263 (external link)
A filter is like underwear. It's entirely optional and, depending on the situation, can either help to avoid serious damage or will help to make damage unavoidable. Many will consider you a bad person if you don't use it, but others will say you're missing out on something if you do.

Discuss.

Or, better still, don't...

I wouldn't leave the house without showering, washing my hair, brushing my teeth, clean shoes and with underwear, surrounding the boys.




  
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JohnB57
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Apr 25, 2012 07:34 |  #40

Expo67 wrote in post #14325335 (external link)
I wouldn't leave the house without showering, washing my hair, brushing my teeth, clean shoes and with underwear, surrounding the boys.

Expo67? Just proves the old saying "what's in a name?"




  
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cortlander
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Apr 25, 2012 07:34 |  #41

One more reason not to use a 'protective' filter is that sensors in digital cameras are sensitive to internal reflection from the additional glass in front of the lens.


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PandaSPUR
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Apr 26, 2012 00:01 |  #42

I remember in the past I did a comparison with my G1, with kit lens, and without filter/with cheap hoya UV/with B+W XS-Pro UV.

Saw massive difference with the cheap Hoya, but barely any difference (even when pointed directly at a bright pinpoint source of light) with the XS-Pro.

For me, I plan on getting a protection filter (Marumi one) for my Sigma 50. The front element is so massive and I've already managed to get a few tiny marks on it from cleaning (sigh... not sure how, been using blower + lens pen). I also tend to take my camera to parties (where drinks being spilled isnt uncommon) and I like to leave the lens cap off (leads to dust accumulation which just bugs me).

To be honest, it all depends on the user and situation.
For me, I'm a college student that takes my camera everywhere and I have less experienced friends that play with it as well (sometimes they cant keep their damn fingers off the lens...)
So for me, I think its a good idea. I can easily take it off if I'm taking images into the direction of the sun anyway.

EDIT:
Found my old comparison test:

800
x
1800
TOO LARGE!
EMBED PREVENTED, IMAGE TOO LARGE:
http://img.photobucket​.com …162/AznDVL/Comp​arison.jpg
Click here to see our image rules.


its a quick and by no means scientific test. But in that picture it goes in this order: Naked lens, Lens w/ cheap Hoya, Lens w/ B+W XS-Pro
Here is a comparison of just Naked vs XS-Pro:
http://img.photobucket​.com …v162/AznDVL/Nak​edvsXS.jpg (external link)

Canon 5D Classic: Sigma 50mm f/1.4, Rokinon 14mm f/2.8
Panasonic G1: Panasonic 20mm f/1.7, Panasonic 14-45mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens
Pentax K-r: Pentax DAL 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 kit lens

  
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Andriy
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Apr 26, 2012 04:18 |  #43

I am stationed in a very dusty environment. There is dust (actually, fine sand) in the air even when you don't notice it. All things considered, I prefer wiping it off the flat surface of the filter at the end of the day to blowing it off the lense's curved front element.
Every pro I've talked to says there is no such thing as a "clear" protective filter; it will always have some UV coating. However, there are good filters and not so good ones, and it all comes down to the effect they have on the lense's IQ. So I shelled out on a good UV filter by Heliopan. Call me a fool if you will.
As for polarisers, the need for them in certain situations is beyond debate.




  
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Ivann
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Apr 26, 2012 05:04 |  #44
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Two years ago I used UV filters for protection, but then I just stopped and learned to be more careful. I always have lens hood on and it offers enough protection.




  
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BeerWolf
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Apr 26, 2012 09:00 |  #45

I just bought a used lens and the UV filter on it was a mess...lots of dust and a nick. Took it off and the lens itself was pristine. So I'm really glad the previous owner used a UV filter!




  
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To filter or not to filter?
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