You love you camera, and you’ve finally got your head around the basics, but now there’s all these different accessories and you don’t know your ND filters from your skylights. Worse still there seems to be a lot of confusion about what each filter is called. Just to confuse you even more.
Here is my quick guide to filters, what they do, why you'd want one and how to get one:
The main purpose of the UV filter is to protect the lens. The more tradition purpose was to protect the film from UV rays, however all lens now have a UV fixed. UV filters can be very useful as they are easier to clean and replace then the fixed UV on the end of a lens.
Polarising filters are the sunglasses for camera. It cuts through some the light, reduces glares and haze, resulting in much richer colours and prettier skies.
Neutral Density Filters
Graduated Neutral Density (GND)
Soft-Edge Graduated Neutral Density (GND)
Hard-Edge Graduated Neutral Density (GND)
ND Filters are very useful in blocking out the light. If you want to shoot at larger apertures to get the dreamy blurring background then an ND Filter helps counter the amount of light available. You can buy them at various strengths (ie 1 stop, 2 stops, 3 stops etc).
Allows you to vary the amount of light you block. This can be very useful is you’re on the move.
Special Effects Filter
Close up or diopter filter are like reading glasses. They allow you to close on things closer. Just remember that they can affect the depth of field so use a narrower aperture. Bokeh Filter are normally different shapes to create different bokeh effects.
Don’t forget to check the diameter of your lens before buying your filters!!!
Which is your favourite filter and why?