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Polarizing Filter Question

This is a discussion on Polarizing Filter Question within the Camera equipment & accessories forums, part of the Education & Technical category; Originally Posted by tag I am looking to replace my UV filters with (circular) polarizers, May I ask why? Nowadays ...

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by tag View Post
    I am looking to replace my UV filters with (circular) polarizers,
    May I ask why? Nowadays people use UV filters on their lenses for protection only (don't want to start the argument about the pro and cons of this). Which means the UV filters are on there all the time. If you _replace_ them with a polarizer all the time, you might run into troubles when the light is getting dim. A polarizer takes away much more light then a UV filter. IMHO it really isn't a suitable replacement for a UV filter and shouldn't be on the lens all the time. Only when needed. Cokin has a polarizer for their system and it's quite reasonable priced. You might want to look into that...
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    I don't want to start a new thread, so I'll post my questions here.

    First, is about polarizer. Is Polaroid ND fader filter (ND3 to ND400) good? On eBay is for $45.99, is in my budget, and I can't spend over $70 for a polarizer, anyway I'm trying not to spend more then $70, but... I'm not a PRO, so I'm thinking that an entry-level or a little bit better would match my level.

    Second: what ND filters would you advice me to buy? The screw-in types or the ones that needs to attach a ring in order to mount the ND filter? Now, which ones are more need it? The ones that are in grades (screw-in grades, or classic ones in grades) are ok? If I'm taking a picture with some rocks in the water and I want motion, do I need ND grade or I can use also a screw-in ND filter that is not in grade?

    On ebay I've got good prices for some Tiffen and very cheap are the CPL (are they that bad??).

    Thanks again for your time.
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    I use a Tiffen polarizer all the time and think it's fine. I can't remember how much it was, but it wasn't outrageously priced. As far as ND filters go, are you talking the graduated kind or the solid kind? if graduate, I find that Cokin delivers pretty well as long as you shoot raw because sometimes there is a slight color cast when using more than one of them in a stack. One at a time, I don't see it although others claim it's there. the advantage to the square kind is you can put the dividing line anywhere in your frame. A screw mount grad will only let you put it in the middle. If you're talking solid ND filters I'd say a screw mount is fine. I have a 4 or 5 stop from Tiffen again (I think) and it works well for what I need.
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    my 2 cents on yr question Lovin (answered in a general way for others)

    ...It depends on what u shoot most. IF you shoot mostly landscapes, i'd say invest in the cokin or lee filter system. Although it takes longer to set up per shot with graduated ND filters in particular, the images will be more spectacular once u know what u are doing and u generally take a bit more time with compositions when shooting landscapes. The filter holder can stay on your lens and you'll pop the needed filters in and out. As WD mentioned, those systems allows for the good use of the graduated ND filter which is essential. The classic example is a mountain with a blown sky. The grad ND will be greyish and fade to clear and you'll put the greyish part over the sky and be able to adjust the "line" more easily by physically dragging the thinnish filter through the filter holder to the best spot. I have a system like this and bring it with me most of the time so that it's available. That said, I don't tend to use it much because I find myself in the city most often.

    If it's water that u need the ND for, then non grad because there's no great exposure difference in a particular area of the image. Screw in will work well but as mentioned - you could also just walk around with the filter holder on your lens and you'll pop the needed filters in and out.

    In the city - I use a screw in polarizer almost all the time during the day. When the light fades, I'll remove it. When I remove that polarizer my lens is naked as I don't stack polarizers with the UV filter that I use for lens protection only. So once the polarizer is off, at that time I'll normally screw back in a UV filter or ND 0. (if I remember where i left it )
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    Now I think I have to buy screw-in solid ND, graduate ND with a filter holder system, and a circular polarizer.
    Man, I gotta find some extra jobs

    Thank you WD and Marko ! It really helped me.

    PS: Marko, I'm so behind with the podcasts, but today I'll update the playlist and listen the one about filters.
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    If I had to have one, I'd take the polarizer first. The effects can't be replicated in post-production. I use it a lot actually. It makes foliage really pop!
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    I spent the extra money on the B&W one. I got talked into the fact that it is a metal rather that plastic and probably has better glass. They say buy the best glass (lenses) you can afford and I believe that is also true for the filters. Not unhappy at all with this choice, and it fits all of my 18-55, 50 f1.4 and 55 -250 lenses so that's an advantage.
    In fact I used the polarizer on that colour picture I just posted of the polish church.

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    There's a great in-depth review of circular polarisers on Lenstip.

    I chose a Marumi DHG as a result, it came joint 4th in the results out of a field of 20+, but is one of the least expensive 'name' brand CPLs tested. Interestingly Hoya (which is Lenstip's undisputed king of UV filters) didn't do so well in the CPL tests. I got my slimline Marumi in 77mm fitting for about 60 from Hong Kong.

    Hoepefully no one splurged on the B&W EW KSM one - it got disqualified for not being a Circular PL at all, but in fact a Linear one!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Wicked Dark View Post
    If I had to have one, I'd take the polarizer first. The effects can't be replicated in post-production. I use it a lot actually. It makes foliage really pop!
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    After lots of search for a good price, on ebay, amazon, craigslist, I decided to go with a brand new HOYA Digital Filter Kit (1 multicoated UV, 1 circular polarizer and 1 NDx8 - 0.9) from a local store.
    After my trip to Point Roberts in US (just at the border) to get my tripod, where I spent 6 hours in traffic, usually 45 minutes one way, because of a truck accident right at the tunnel's entrance, I decided that is not worth it to go through same thing for a filter.
    So here I am excited to have my first CPL and ND.
    Now, I just can't wait to go out and try them.
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