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Posted by bean_counter_z4 (My Page) on
Wed, Oct 17, 07 at 8:32

Can you tell me about lens filters. I just got a polarizer. I'm finding it kind of tricky to use. Now I'm wondering about gradient filters, ND6 or ND9, special effects, etc. I'd like to hear which ones you use and in what situations they work best.


Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Filters

i used to use a polarizer on my other camera, LOVED it, haven't gotten around to getting one for this one yet mainly because the one i want is so darned expensive...what are you finding tricky? have you just looked thru the viewfinder while turning the filter to see the effect? i used to photograph things on white metal, used the polarizer to eliminate unwanted reflections...also, i searched polarizers and came across this site, you might find it useful

Here is a link that might be useful: understanding polarizers

RE: Filters

Mostly using it on sky color right now. I didn't know you had to be at right angles to the sun for it to be effective. I was just reading an instruction page that told me having the sun behind me the polarizer would be totally ineffective. Learned something there. And on cloudy days it doesn't do much.

I would really like to hear what you use your polarizer for and how/when it works most effectively.

I have a spot on the river I like to photograph. Hoping to get there soon and try to work with the polarizer on reducing glare on the water.

Also just read that the linear polarizers are better and can be used with digital cameras (but not some SLR's that use mirrors). Didn't know that.

I would like to see how much improvement it would give me on a photo like below with the washed out sky and the water glare.

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

RE: Filters

Don't get linear, get circular.
I use a circular polarizer on sunny days, especially with blue skies and/or lakes.
I use a warming filter (Tiffen 812) for all my sunrise and sunset pictures.
I use a graduated ND filter sometimes if the sky is a lot brighter than the reflection in the water. (it's 1/2 clear, 1/2 gray, I put the gray part on the upper or lower half and see which way I like it best).
I use a neutral density filter (not 1/2 neutral, but all coated) if I want that silky look on waterfalls. Usually, I have to put the polarizer on, too.
I also have a blue/gold filter, I use it sometimes on sunsets or sunrises.
I use these filters quite a bit.
I also have a star filter, I use it mostly at Chrismtas, cool effects on candle flames and Christmas lights.

RE: Filters

marnie, when ya get to that river spot, look thru the viewfinder while turning the polarizer (circular not linear) and you'll soon see how it alters things...btw, i love that photo

RE: Filters

The filter you need for the picture that you show here is a graduated neutral density filter. This filter will darken the sky and give it detail and still allow light on the bottom of the picture to allow detail and colour.


RE: Filters

People spend 100s of dollars, even 1,000s on cameras and the lenses. The glass elements on these (good) lenses are calibrated buffed and, sometimes hand made per order - so why would you put a 'bargain' filter on the top of that lens. Some filters have specific purposes, but some degrade the quality of the picture.

I have filters and use them if I have to, but most of the time its just the lens and the hood.


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