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Thread: Filters

  1. #1
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Filters

    Thought I would pose the question, new to photography, wish to shoot sunsets and moving water I don't own any filters can initially afford only one, which filter would you suggest?
    Cheers Colin

  2. #2
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    Re: Filters

    Hi Geordie,

    For moving water, if you are trying to obtain the smooth/blurred curatin of water effect, you'll need to look at a Neutral Density filter and a tripod. The ND filter decreases the amount of light hitting the sensor and thereby decreases the shutter speed. The slower shutter speed makes the flowing water appear to be more like a blanket. (Not sure if that made sense or not, perhaps someone else can post a couple of samples that illustrate the effect. Also, if you're slowing down the shutter speed to achieve this effect, you'll need a tripod to eliminate camera movement.

    Sunsets can be tricky. You have a (in comparison) a bright sky (+/- sun) in the background and a dark earth's surface in the foreground. Here a graduated ND filter will help. You align the filter so that the darker side is over the sky and the lighter portion is over the ground in the foreground. Again a tripod helps keep things aligned. The net result is that the very light sky and the darker ground are moved closer together in terms of exposure and they both end up being equally exposed without either one of them losing any detail due to over/under exposure.

    Regards

    Martin

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    Re: Filters

    Hi, Two different subjects that you wish to photograph so really requires two different filters or more (and trust me it will become more). If cost is a factor then I would suggest something along the Cokin line of filters, yes I no you need to buy the holder rather than just screw onto the lens front but once you have the holder you can try many filters in the range and can find them at a very reasonable cost on a certain auction site, new and used, but don't go for the "A" size option you again will soon want to go onto the larger size of there filters.
    This option also means you don't need to buy a circular filter for each lens you own just the correct size of ring to fit the holder onto.
    I started with Cokin myself but now moved on to Lee but for a start try Cokin and also look at there site for examples of what each filter can achieve.
    Russ

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    Re: Filters

    IM0, there are only four types of filters worth considering for digital photography...

    1. A protection filter... There is an ongoing argument on whether a protection filter is the correct way to go. However, with a lens like the 11-16mm Tokina, the lens hood is quite shallow and will not provide the protection that the longer hoods (like the OEM hood for my 70-200mm f/4L IS lens) will provide. UV filters are a common type of protection filter. The UV doesn't impact your imagery because the digital sensor is not as sensitive to ultra violet light than was film.

    2. A Circular Polarizer... The CPL is a great addition to most photography but, it will sometimes cause problems when used with UWA lenses because the angle of the sun is different from one side of the frame to another and the polarization is uneven.

    3. Neutral Density... Will cut down the exposure over the entire frame allowing you to use a slower shutter speed to allow running/faling water to blur. This is even more important with Nikon DSLR cameras than with Canon cameras because the base ISO of Nikon is 200 while the base ISO of Canon is a stop lower at ISO 100...

    4. Graduated Neutral Density... Allows you to shoot landscapes and prevents the sky from being blown out. The problem with round screw-in GND filters is that the line of demarkation is directly through the middle of the filter. Shooting a landscape with the horizon through the center of the image is boring.

    Whatever your choice in filters, I urge you to purchase the best you can afford. The quality difference between cheap and good quality filters is night and day. IMO, it is a great shame to purchase an expensive lens, capable of great imagery, and ruin those capabilities by attaching a cheap filter which will degrade the image quality. Top-line filters are expensive but, I would rather shoot without a filter than use a poor quality filter...

    I would also avoid buying "filter sets" especially from eBay. These filters are most often poor quality...

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    Re: Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by rpcrowe View Post
    the base ISO of Nikon is 200
    My Nikon D80, D5100 and D7000 all have a base ISO of 100, not 200. I don't know about other models but notice that none of my models are pro cameras. I assume their line of pro cameras would have a base ISO that is at least as low as mine.

  6. #6
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    Re: Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    My Nikon D80, D5100 and D7000 all have a base ISO of 100, not 200. I don't know about other models but notice that none of my models are pro cameras. I assume their line of pro cameras would have a base ISO that is at least as low as mine.
    The Nikon D80 has a CCD sensor, as the D200, with a base ISO of 100. With the D300 Nikon moved to a CMOS sensor with a base ISO of 200. The same sensor, or slight variations, was used for the D90, D300s, D5000. All these have a base ISO of 200, so it is for the CMOS sensor of the FX cameras D700, D3, D3s. The D3000 uses a CCD sensor with base ISO of 100, while the D3x a CMOS with base ISO 100.

    The first DX CMOS sensor with base ISO 100 was introduced by Nikon with D7000, and later with D5100 and D5200. The FX D800/D800E and D600 all have a base ISO of 100.

    A.

  7. #7
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    Re: Filters

    Thank you Martin for taking the time and for the good information.
    Colin.

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    Re: Filters

    Thank you Russell for a very helpful reply to my question. I will take your advice and go with Cokin sounds good to me.
    Cheers Colin

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    Re: Filters

    Very clear and comprehensive run down on filters.
    Appreciate your help Richard.
    Thanks Colin.

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    Re: Filters

    I would slightly disagree with the above in that assuming that you have a lenshood and a bag to keep your camera in and you can only afford to purchase one filter then I suggest it should be a strong neutral density filter to turn moving water into 'milk'.

    As far as sunsets and sunrises there is a process where you take two or three photos with say for the first one you reduce exposure so that the bright sky is properly recorded and then a second photo where you under-expose to achieve detail the darker areas. I am fairly sure the camera will do this automatically for you if you check out bracketting in the manual. For sunsets I would choose the minus two and plus two stops. The camera will also take what it thinks is the 'correct' exposure and arrange the other two two stops above and below it. [There may be other tricks it can do that I am not aware of.]

    We now come to the editing programme and you then organise the three images registered with each other as three layers in an editing programme. You could do it manually by erasing the dark areas from the 'highlight layer' to see the darker detail in the layer below. To do this you could use the free download Paint.Net.

    Another approach is to use an HDR programme and searching Google I found straight off
    http://www.techsupportalert.com/best...e-hdr-software

    But when we come down to what is important my personal preference would be to get Corel's Paint Shop Pro X5 rather than a filter. Currently I am being bombarded with adverts offering it to me for AUS$60 or so. I have used the PSP since v.7 and am registered with Corel, so get bombarded I have PSP X4 and it has an HDR tool and I have read that X5 has improvements to it. So if you buy PSP rather than a filter you have the option of doing it either way.

    So that covers the Sunset/Sunrise query. In a quality editor such as PSP it is also possible to turn water into milk by selecting out the subject that you want sharp and blurring the rest of the picture or vice versa. This is done by duplicating the image and blurring the top version and then erasing it where you want the sharp results to be seen in the bottom layer or VV.

    With experience and time spent with a good editor you will find you can do many more things.

    Not exactly a sunrise shot by a high contrast situation pre-sunrise. Just two exposures, topleft bottom right is the exposure for dark areas and bottom lefttop right exposure for the bright areas. I also blurred the water a little way up from the bottom so in a way I combined the need for two filters with the editing programme.
    Filters
    EDIT Correction the righthand side is the dark sky with the light ground area combined.

  11. #11
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    Re: Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by Mike Buckley View Post
    My Nikon D80, D5100 and D7000 all have a base ISO of 100, not 200. I don't know about other models but notice that none of my models are pro cameras. I assume their line of pro cameras would have a base ISO that is at least as low as mine.
    Sorry Mike... I made an assumption based on some erroneous informaton... Where in the world did I get that info?

    Perhps it was from comments like this...

    http://photographylife.com/what-is-iso-in-photography

    Not having much interest in Nikon gear, I didn't read this or other articles carefully.

    I should stick to comments about Canon gear...
    Last edited by rpcrowe; 6th December 2012 at 11:42 PM.

  12. #12
    GEORDIE's Avatar
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    Re: Filters

    Thank's jcuknz for your very detailed and helpful reply. I have a Canon 1000 D a Velborn Sherpa tripod, two kit lenses 18_55mm and 75_300mm For PP I have pse7. I am just learning pse7.so that is my photography situation in a nutshell.
    Thank's again for your help.
    Colin.

  13. #13

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    Re: Filters

    Quote Originally Posted by jcuknz View Post
    I would slightly disagree with the above in that assuming that you have a lenshood and a bag to keep your camera in and you can only afford to purchase one filter then I suggest it should be a strong neutral density filter to turn moving water into 'milk'.

    As far as sunsets and sunrises there is a process where you take two or three photos with say for the first one you reduce exposure so that the bright sky is properly recorded and then a second photo where you under-expose to achieve detail the darker areas. I am fairly sure the camera will do this automatically for you if you check out bracketting in the manual. For sunsets I would choose the minus two and plus two stops. The camera will also take what it thinks is the 'correct' exposure and arrange the other two two stops above and below it. [There may be other tricks it can do that I am not aware of.]

    We now come to the editing programme and you then organise the three images registered with each other as three layers in an editing programme. You could do it manually by erasing the dark areas from the 'highlight layer' to see the darker detail in the layer below. To do this you could use the free download Paint.Net.

    Another approach is to use an HDR programme and searching Google I found straight off
    www.techsupportalert.com/best-free-high-dynamic-range-hdr-software

    But when we come down to what is important my personal preference would be to get Corel's Paint Shop Pro X5 rather than a filter. Currently I am being bombarded with adverts offering it to me for AUS$60 or so. I have used the PSP since v.7 and am registered with Corel, so get bombarded I have PSP X4 and it has an HDR tool and I have read that X5 has improvements to it. So if you buy PSP rather than a filter you have the option of doing it either way.

    So that covers the Sunset/Sunrise query. In a quality editor such as PSP it is also possible to turn water into milk by selecting out the subject that you want sharp and blurring the rest of the picture or vice versa. This is done by duplicating the image and blurring the top version and then erasing it where you want the sharp results to be seen in the bottom layer or VV.

    With experience and time spent with a good editor you will find you can do many more things.

    Not exactly a sunrise shot by a high contrast situation pre-sunrise. Just two exposures, topleft bottom right is the exposure for dark areas and bottom lefttop right exposure for the bright areas. I also blurred the water a little way up from the bottom so in a way I combined the need for two filters with the editing programme.
    Filters
    EDIT Correction the righthand side is the dark sky with the light ground area combined.
    To use a double-negative, I don't disagree with the technique described (I use it myself) but I would like to point out that if one is striving for a large and high-quality result then it's not always as easy as it sounds. Not saying that it can't be done, but often folks find that when they follow the theory the result isn't quite as they were expecting -- whereas when using a filter to essentially "get it right in camera" the hard work is essentially done for you.

    Filters

  14. #14
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    Re: Filters

    Thank you Colin for your input.
    Cheers Colin.

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