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Thread: Hood - when to use them?

  1. #1

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    Hood - when to use them?

    Hello,

    Another newbie question . My camera, Canon Sx20 came with a hood (if the name is correct). I'd like to know in which situations I should use it. I think that it would be mainly for stong outdoor lighting, but I guess that it is used in indoor as well. So, any advices are welcome.
    Thank you

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Jonathan

    The sole purpose of the lens hood that you got with the camera is to stop flare on your lens. If you are pointing your camera in direction that allows a light source to strike onto the lens, it can cause a flare which will then show up on your image. Many people fix the hood on their lens and just leave it there.

    I tend not to use hoods very much as I have square filter adaptor rings and filter holders almost permanently fitted to my lenses (to save having to put them on and off all the time). But I do carry the hoods in my bag and fix them on when I think they are needed.

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    I am at the opposite end of the spectrum from Donald. I don't use square filters and I ALWAYS have a hood on my lens whether I am shooting outdoors or indoors. IMO, the hood protects the lens from flare but, even more importantly protects it from physical damage.

    I fell to the concrete and my 70-200mm f/4L IS lens (wearing a lens hood) hit the concrete first propelled by my 220 pounds (100 Kilos) of weight. The hood was toast but, there was no damage to my lens. I credit the hood with saving the expensive lens.

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    So you see, Jonathan, that there is no 'right' or 'wrong' answer.

    Once you understand what the hood does and can do, then you have to make choices about what you want to do.

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    I use mine whenever I can, but again, sometimes they're not practical/possible. And sometimes I even put them on backwards, but for a good reason, and THIS TIME I'll bet someone can tell us why!

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    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    I use mine whenever I can, but again, sometimes they're not practical/possible. And sometimes I even put them on backwards, but for a good reason, and THIS TIME I'll bet someone can tell us why!
    Yes, but let's see if some other members can think why.

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    I use mine whenever I can, but again, sometimes they're not practical/possible. And sometimes I even put them on backwards, but for a good reason, and THIS TIME I'll bet someone can tell us why!
    Hmmm. So that you can't change focus once it is set ..... ?

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by BJ Denning View Post
    Hmmm. So that you can't change focus once it is set ..... ?
    Add "accidentally" to the end and you'll get a BINGO (important with night shots).

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    I tend to use them mainly because it stops me getting my greasy fingers on the lens and I can throw my camear around a little without worrying about the lens surface.

    But also I believe that it is supposed to help with contrast.. or is that an old wives tale?

    neil

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by tihsgod View Post
    But also I believe that it is supposed to help with contrast.. or is that an old wives tale?
    A 747 gets a call from the control tower to "turn left 45 degrees for noise abatement". The pilots came back with "but we're at 40,000 feet - how much noise can we be making at this altitude?" To which the controller calmly replied "have you ever heard the sound a 747 makes when it collides with another 747!".

    I'm sure there's a lens hood analogy in there somewhere ...

    Oh there it is. Hoods are there to eliminate flare; have you ever seen the loss of contrast you get when you've got massive lens flare?

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Very Clear. One question?
    Is it good to keep the UV Filter on all the time?
    I am mostly using 18-105 Kit lens and also a 35mmF1.8G on my Nikon D7000.
    Amolsan

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by amolsan View Post
    Very Clear. One question?
    Is it good to keep the UV Filter on all the time?
    For general shooting, yes. The one time when they can "bite you in the bum" is when shooting extreme contrast scenes like night scenes where you have building lights against a dark background; in those circumstances it can pay to temporarily remove them.

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    thx. Got it.
    amolsan

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by Colin Southern View Post
    A 747 gets a call from the control tower to "turn left 45 degrees for noise abatement". The pilots came back with "but we're at 40,000 feet - how much noise can we be making at this altitude?" To which the controller calmly replied "have you ever heard the sound a 747 makes when it collides with another 747!".

    I'm sure there's a lens hood analogy in there somewhere ...

    Oh there it is. Hoods are there to eliminate flare; have you ever seen the loss of contrast you get when you've got massive lens flare?
    Colin, yes but a mid air crash is not the same as a near miss, though both are noisy...

    If I see flare then there is reduced contrast as you say but also I can have a photo with reduced contrast but no flare?

    Flare I believe is caused by direct light falling from a strong source into the lens whereas I believe contrast can be affected by incident light...

    I can have a near miss incident with a lot of noise but I don't get the aircrash... but if there is an aircrash then there will be even more noise.. so your analogy is correct...

    So the open question (i think) is whether a hood improves contrast in some situations where flare would not be experienced.

    neil

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Sadly, Aviation & Photography just don't mix ...

    ... and I have proof!

    Hood - when to use them?

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    looks like they are discussing DoF with the photographer...

  17. #17
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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by amolsan View Post
    Very Clear. One question?
    Is it good to keep the UV Filter on all the time?
    Amolsan
    I would not keep the UV on my lens if I were using a polarizing filter. I don't like to have a pair of filters in front of my lens because the combination may impact image image quality and may just cause a bit of vignetting at the widest focl lengths.

  18. #18

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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Thx.

    One more advise i need. Different subject.

    I have just acquired a Nikon d7000 with 18-105 kit lens. i also bought a 35mmF1.8G.
    i would mostly be doing portraits. home party shots. landscapes etc as a hobby. not much of sports or wild life.
    What other lenses i should plan for?
    amolsan

  19. #19
    Moderator Donald's Avatar
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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Quote Originally Posted by amolsan View Post
    Thx.

    One more advise i need. Different subject.

    I have just acquired a Nikon d7000 with 18-105 kit lens. i also bought a 35mmF1.8G.
    i would mostly be doing portraits. home party shots. landscapes etc as a hobby. not much of sports or wild life.
    What other lenses i should plan for?
    amolsan
    I don't think you put as post into the New Member thread by way of introduction. So - Hello and Welcome.

    As you'll have seen, we tend to go with proper names on the site. You can edit your profile and put your name under 'Real name'. It will then show up beside all your posts.

    As to your question, you seem to have the focal range to cover what it is you envisage doing. I suppose one question would be - Instead of glass, what lighting options/set ups have you got, if any? Maybe if you foresee that portraiture is where you want to go, your attention needs to turn now to what lighting and lighting accessories you will need. And that should take care of the bank balance for quite a while!

  20. #20
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    Re: Hood - when to use them?

    Amoslan,
    Shoot a lot with what you have and develop your skills and experience and your needs will become clear. You can do a lot with what you have already so use them until you are completely familiar with them and what various focal lengths, apertures and shutter speeds achieve creatively for you. Get stuck into the tutorials and search the net in areas of your interest. After a while you will develop a bit of a style or find a voice and you will know what you need from there.
    If you are into portraits, think about a 50mm. They are a great starting length for portraits on a DX camera like the D7000. I have both the f1.8 and the 1.4D versions which are great lenses. Get the one you can afford when you think you are ready. It will be a good companion to your 35mm in your portrait kit. The 18-105 can produce nice portraits at 105mm and f5.6 too by keeping the subject relatively close to the lens. As you shoot and learn more you will know about the other options and lens choices, just take your time and don't rush into any purchase.

    Most of all have fun and be creative.

    PS: sooner or later you will get into off camera lighting, but try to master using ambient light before moving to speedlights etc to keep it simple. There is a lot you can do with a window and a reflector.

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