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Neutral Density Filter question

Discussion in 'Creative Pursuits' started by Greyhound, Apr 28, 2012.

  1. Greyhound Trail Rat

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    I love, love, love shooting with my f1.8 35mm prime.

    What I don't love, is fighting the sunlight for that beautiful, shallow DOF the lens gives you when the shot calls for it. I'm looking at some ND filters to help that out, but not sure if -1 stop is sufficient enough, or should I go up to -3?

    Anyone have some experience they would like to share on this?
    #1 Apr 28, 2012   
  2. narlus Eastcoast Softcore Staff Member

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    if you are fighting tough sun, it's likely that 1 stop won't cut it.

    next time you are in those conditions, just take note of what aperture you have to shoot at min ISO/max shutter, and then see how many stops it's over f/1.8
    #2 Apr 28, 2012   
  3. kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    #3 Apr 28, 2012   
  4. Polandspring88 Superman

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    #4 Apr 29, 2012   
  5. stevew unique white person

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    #5 Apr 29, 2012   
  6. kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    I've only borrowed a set of grad NDs to do some sunset stuff. The kit I used seemed pretty legit but I didn't geek out on them very hard and LOOK for color shifting. It's magenta/pink that usually shows up the worst but it's not something you'll notice where I used them where the filtered part is only above the horizon in pretty sunset colors. That's all I got on those guys. They seem to be somewhat well respected in the realm of 'not schott glass' filters.

    I just mentioned the vario ND thing because it's kind of sweet having one filter to cover 6 to 8 stops of darkenationing™

    The only problem I've had with the ones I've used (including the heliopan) is that since they're essentially two polarizers, you'll get some really subtle crosshatch patterns. It's nothing you'd notice in an individual shot but when comparing wide open to full 'closed' you'll see the shading. For stills it's not big deal at all. I only noticed it because of some of the timelapse stuff I shoot where I've tried to rotate the thing across multiple frames.
    #6 Apr 29, 2012   
  7. kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    Shlt, I throw a party for myself for buying one every time I use mine.
    #7 Apr 29, 2012   
  8. Greyhound Trail Rat

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    Thank you very much for all of your responses. I figured the -1 stop on that filter would be not enough.

    But, on the other hand, if my filter costs more than my lens....I need to think more creative with my lens.

    "darkenationing™" Strong work, sir. Great word. :thumb:
    #8 Apr 30, 2012   
  9. bean New Member

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    Would setting a custom white balance with the filter in place help with the color shifts of less expensive filters?
    #9 May 2, 2012   
  10. kidwoo Celebrating No-Pants Day

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    Usually yes.


    Unfortunately one thing you can't tune out is the image softness that also comes with some of the cheaper filters. I'd suggest that whatever you buy, do some good locked down tripod shots in various light and do comparisons of what your camera looks like with/without whatever filter you get. It if looks like crap, return them immediately.
    #10 May 7, 2012   
  11. Silver find me a tampon

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    Yeah, don't shoot in the middle of the day. Spend that time riding.
    #11 May 12, 2012   

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