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Filters
by sue hamblin - Saturday, 25 June 2016, 5:23 PM
 

Hi David

Thinking of investing in some kind of ND and Grad ND filter system for landscape photos. I want to try and improve the lighting/exposure "in camera" in higher contrast situations and am also loving trying for soft water and streaky skies with slow shutter speeds.

I've done a bit of reading but am struggling a bit with different terminology with different brands, and also don't want to spend a fortune on the wrong or unnecessary kit!

Can you offer any advice on which brand(s) you would recommend and which filters might be good to get started with?

Loving the course, by the way - both the inspiration I get from the different projects and from seeing what other folk are doing in the forums. 

best wishes

Sue Hamblin

 
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Re: Filters
by Robin Price - Sunday, 26 June 2016, 3:54 PM
 

Hi Sue,

I'm not a tutor but have recently been through the same questions myself.

I have a Panasonic Lumix mirrorless camera and a few different lenses. I started to get a few cheap screw in filters of various types but I started to realise that on set for all my lenses was the way to go. A professional photographer friend of mine uses and swears by Lee filters so I tried them out.  They are expensive but are really first class and give consistent results. I use the Lee seven5 range because I'm using a smaller camera.

I use a circular polariser, a 10 stop big stopper and 3 grads soft & hard. I'm still getting used to using them but they do work. The big stopper really smooths things out!

There are other slide in filter systems out there but the question is how much do you want to spend and occasional use may not justify great expense. The screw ins worked but only for one lens. 

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Re: Filters
by David Eales - Monday, 27 June 2016, 8:08 AM
 

Hi Sue, well i think Robin has answered your question perfectly. He is quite correct in saying that Lee filters are one of the best alongside the Tiffin brand. Filters for landscape photography are essential to give you ultimate control and as so require careful consideration, as you are doing. If you have a range of lenses or believe you may well have in the future then a filter kit system such as Robin suggests is the best way to go. In terms of cost it's one of the accessories that is worth investing in, given it sits in front of your lens, the best quality you can afford will be a decision you will not regret.

Hope this helps, but if you want more thoughts just let me (or Robin) know and i'm sure we will be happy to help.

Regards, David.

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Re: Filters
by sue hamblin - Tuesday, 28 June 2016, 3:44 PM
 

Hi David, Robin

Thanks very much for both your advice on this one. The Lee filters did seem to be the make that kept coming up in my research so its good to know you guys are recommending them too. 

The different size systems has me a little puzzled still as to what would suit my camera. I use a Pentax K50 currently and was looking at the 100mm Lee Filter system. Is that suitable or would the Seven5 system work with my camera?

I have a circular polarizer but its a Hoya so I guess that might not be compatible?

So do you think a 10 stop big stopper and maybe a set of 3 hard grad filters would be a good first step?

Thanks again

kind regards 

Sue

Picture of David Eales
Re: Filters
by David Eales - Wednesday, 29 June 2016, 7:47 AM
 

Hi Sue, either Lee system will work with your camera, the seven5 system will be less money and the filters are 75mm X 90mm in size against the larger 100mm square filters. So you need to ensure they cover the diameter of your lenses. There is no difference in quality. Your polariser might still work it it has a thread on the filter itself which you can then screw the Lee filter holder into. Your choice of the 4 filters you mention will be an excellent start. I strongly suggest a Filter case as your investment in them can cost almost as much as the camera itself, and they are easily scratched if not in some kind of protection.

Hope that all makes sense.

David.

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Re: Filters
by Robin Price - Wednesday, 29 June 2016, 8:47 PM
 

Fully agree with David. I looked on the Lee website and they do have a selection tool that shows which system suits. The site told me that my lenses suited the seven5 system. You have to be careful about the adaptor ring sizes plus you'd need to consider your future needs. I'm committed to micro 4/3rds so seven5 is my best choice. I invested in the Lee case that just clips onto my main bag and works great. Some of my filters came with their own wallets/cloths but I found that 1 case for them all works for me.     

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Re: Filters
by sue hamblin - Sunday, 3 July 2016, 8:27 PM
 

Thanks very much, guys, for all the advice. Its all been really helpful. Will go back now and look at both the Lee systems and the website. It will likely come down to how many pennies I want to spend! And I will definitely get a case for the filters!

Thanks again.

kind regards

Sue