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View Full Version : UV Filters - Oh dear!


Aquavit
24th April 2010, 07:58 PM
As a newbie to Olympus use and DSLR's in general I think I've done a fair bit of research in to what kit I may need (or want)! On buying the camera the shop where I purchased strongly advised I buy some "lens protectors", I declined at that point on the grounds that I wasn't sure what I was buying and why, and also I was reluctant to spend any more money!

Researching on here, and other forums, quickly flagged up a lot of debate on the pro's and con's of using lens protectors. Or as I learnt, UV filters.
Deciding that perhaps I should protect my glass I bought a couple of these filters, along with a polariser, all from the Kood stable.

Today was my first opportunity to try them out. I'm currently touring Northumberland and visited Warkworth Castle where I reeled off a fair few shots around mid-afternoon. Sky was blue but a little hazy, overall conditions were good with the prospect of some decent results.

As soon as I downloaded the images I could see I had a problem, all the shots were lacking in sparkle, appearing underexposed and flat. Nothing worth saving from the whole shoot :(

I won't use them again, but why do so many people bother with them if they have such negative effects??

jamie allan
24th April 2010, 09:10 PM
It's difficult to say what the problem is without seeing the images but I must say that I've been impressed with the Kenko Circular Polarising Filter I bought a couple of months ago. I took all the advice I could about using it at 90 degrees to the sun etc and feel the blues of the sky have been really accentuated. Here's a shot I took with it - Central Scotland in February.
http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/P3203279s.jpg

theMusicMan
24th April 2010, 09:35 PM
Jamie - UV isn't the same as polariser.

However... Aquavit - I don't tend to use UV filters - why put addiitonal glass in front of expensive lenses? OK, they may serve to protect the front element, but as long as you're careful and look after your lenses, I find you don't need them.

Besides... if I wanted one to protect my 7-14mm, I couldn't even if I wanted to :)

DekHog
24th April 2010, 10:28 PM
It's easy to knock them, but perhaps you should try some with/without shots in the same locale at the same time to compare them before just assumming this is what the problem is/was - what you describe doesn't sound like the consequences of any UV filter I've ever used, especially the Kood filters of which I've had many....

Zuiko
24th April 2010, 11:31 PM
I would imagine there is some other problem which you assume is caused by the UV filter. The light and time you describe is far from ideal - in fact it's just about the worst sort of coditions you could have for landscape photography (I know, I've just had a fortnight of this rubbish weather in Ireland - great for a family holiday but the kiss of death for photography). It may just be that your images need a tweak of levels or contrast in Photoshop; why not post a few and we'll see what we can do? :)

theMusicMan
25th April 2010, 07:37 AM
(I know, I've just had a fortnight of this rubbish weather in Ireland - great for a family holiday but the kiss of death for photography). It may just be that your images need a tweak of levels or contrast in Photoshop; why not post a few and we'll see what we can do? :)

/not during the golden hours though John, surely/

jamie allan
25th April 2010, 07:52 AM
Jamie - UV isn't the same as polariser.

However... Aquavit - I don't tend to use UV filters - why put addiitonal glass in front of expensive lenses? OK, they may serve to protect the front element, but as long as you're careful and look after your lenses, I find you don't need them.

Besides... if I wanted one to protect my 7-14mm, I couldn't even if I wanted to :)

John,
I appreciate the difference between UV and a cpl but Aquavit did say in his original post he'd bought both and that his shots were taken with a blue sky. I was just trying to show what the cpl I'd bought could achieve.

theMusicMan
25th April 2010, 08:14 AM
John,
I appreciate the difference between UV and a cpl but Aquavit did say in his original post he'd bought both and that his shots were taken with a blue sky. I was just trying to show what the cpl I'd bought could achieve.
Hi Jamie - yup, my mistake, sorry.

Aquavit
25th April 2010, 08:29 AM
Thanks for your replies, I know the timing/light was not perfect (golden hour) but it's not always possible to shoot only within these constraints! Besdies I have taken similar shots in not dissimilar conditions (minus filters) and achieved much better results.

Below are a couple of pictures from yesterday demonstrating the effect, picture A is untouched, picture B I have tweaked a little (I use iphoto):

Warkworth A

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/picture.php?albumid=76&pictureid=321


Warkwoth B

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/picture.php?albumid=76&pictureid=322


And this is from a couple of weeks ago before I fitted the filters:

http://e-group.uk.net/forum/picture.php?albumid=76&pictureid=293

ndl0071
25th April 2010, 09:26 AM
Hi Aquavit

here you go, 5 seconds in photoshop, just a quick levels tweek with a little extra sharpening.

My advice would be to stick with the filters, I've always used them and never suffered any adverse reactions.

I hope these examples put your mind to rest.

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/user1367_pic322_1272183659.jpg

http://e-group.uk.net/gallery/data/500/user1367_pic321_1272183659.jpg

Radar
25th April 2010, 09:51 AM
Always fun to see places I know here :) I pass Warkworth on my way to work every day.

Zuiko
25th April 2010, 12:54 PM
/not during the golden hours though John, surely/ You are absolutely right, John, but the OP did specify his shots were taken mid afternoon - now in this sort of weather that really is a challenge!

Zuiko
25th April 2010, 01:21 PM
Thanks for posting examples, Aquavit. The main difference between the three are exposure and lighting. The first is rather under-exposed, with the histogram bunched to the left whereas the third one, which you prefer, is in theory over-exposed with the highlights curve overshooting the left edge of the histogram. Within limits exposure is a personal preference and you are obviously drawn towards lighter images. The middle one actually has a pretty good histogram and is "correctly" exposed, but I note that the light appears to be comming from the left and slightly behind the subject which will indeed make it a little darker and more contrasty than the side/front lighting of the third. The light also appears a litle softer in the third and these factors all combined can make a very big difference between images.