Filter Help

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Jun 13, 2009
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OK, I've read through a couple of the threads on this board discussing similar topics but I'm still totally confused as to what I should do.

I recently purchased a Nikon 17-55mm f/2.8 (77mm mount) and need to get some filters for it.

1) Should I purchase both a UV filter and a Circular Polarizing filter? I assume if I'm outside most of the time I'll have the CP on and don't need both? Can you help me understand when I'll need a UV filter (I understand the lens protection argument, but what about for UV protection)

2) Any recommendations for filter brand/models? I see slim, multi-coated, etc.. and really don't understand how it will alter my IQ. For now, my budget is probably somewhere around $100/filter.

Thanks!
 

IsamuM

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Hi Rob,

1) You don't need a UV filter for your photography. The only reason people use them is to protect the front elements of their lenses.

2) The more expensive the better. :wink: Seriously, I think you want a multicoated filter to prevent flaring. I think Kenko and Hoya (essentially the same company) hit the sweet spot when it comes to bang for the buck, but if you want to go high end, then both Nikon and B+W make some nice ones, and Singh-Ray makes the Ferrari of CPs.
 
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A UV wont do anything for a digital camera. If you want one for protection, that is up to you.

I shoot landscape and a Circular Polarizer is on my lens most of the time. I don't use multi coated and Singh-Ray makes very expensive but very good ones. I think a very good non-multi coated from B+W is around the price you mention. I currently use Singh-Ray but I have used B+W extensively and they are very good also.
 
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Agree with Isamu. Get very best your budget can handle. The best CPs have the polarizing material blended into the glass rather coated onto it. They'll last a lifetime given due care.

UV, Haze, and 'protective filters are generally not necessary as the coatings on high quality lenses are better than the filters you attach to them. A hood is just as effective as a protection mechanism. Save your money.'
 
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I should also mention in my own testing between B+W and Singh-Ray, the SR had an ever so slight advantage in sharpness as tested on my Nikkor 17-35. Color rendition was very similar.

You can read about it here
 
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Joined
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I have used Nikon, I personally don't care for them. Didn't care for the color they introduced into my shots and they seemed softer than B+W. I wouldn't spend the extra money on multi coating. If you are worried about flare, then you probably don't want to be using a filter anyway... but what do I know, I only shoot landscapes for a living. :wink:

Take a look at this, I have used these successfully for a long time before the switch to Singh-Ray.

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/9760-REG/B_W_65_062162_77mm_Circular_Polarizer_Glass.html
 
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Thanks Douglas. I appreciate your expert opinions. I'm going to buy that filter that you recommend (and a 67mm --> 77mm converter so I can use this filter on my 70-300mm VR lens instead of the cheap Tiffen CP that I previously purchased)
 
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Since this is for the 17-55, I'm not sure if you need a thin one or not. When I was using a crop camera and the 17-35, vignetting was never a problem and I didn't need a thin filter. The "normal" filter allows you to attach your Nikon lens cap, the thin version does not, you have to use the provided soft plastic cap that tends to fall off. But that is the case with my thin Singh-Ray's too.

Here is a link to the same filter, thin version

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=product&A=getSiblingItemDetail&Q=next&Csku=9760&Cis=REG
 

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