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Neutral Density Filters

Discussion in 'Accessories' started by NickCyprus, Jan 5, 2015.

  1. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    I want to experiment with ND filters and have concluded that I'd prefer a Variable ND rather than fixed ND ones (more versatile etc). For now, I'd get a 72mm one to use with the Sony G 18-105 f/4 PZ lens (my only wide angle capable lens)

    I don't want to spend a lot of money for now. I've been looking online and prices seem to vary greatly. For example Tiffen, B+W, Hoya, Cokin, Kenko etc are too expensive for me now, Hama, Camdiox and Polaroid are of an average price while Fotga, Vivitar and GB Optics are cheap.

    Any brands to suggest or to avoid?
     
  2. shotupdave

    shotupdave TalkEmount Regular

    114
    Jul 22, 2014
    Torrance, CA
    Dave
    buy what you can afford, when you can afford a better one then buy it.
     
  3. WestOkid

    WestOkid TalkEmount All-Pro

    Jan 25, 2014
    New Jersey, USA
    Gary
    It will depend on your expectations. Cheap nd filters will affect color and more. I originally had a Polaroid variable nd. The color was inconsistent across the frame and it created an X shape on all but the lower settings. I ended up buying a $130 Tiffen. It is much better but still struggles at the highest strengths.

    If I were you, I would forgoe convenience and go with individual nd filters. There are much more quality bargains there. I recommend the ICE filters from Amazon. Get a 4 stop ND and use your aperture to control light. That gives decent flexibility.
    Good luck
     
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  4. eno789

    eno789 TalkEmount Top Veteran

    720
    Jan 1, 2012
    NoCal, USA
    Brian
    Agree with Gary about going with good fixed ND.

    Personally I like Marumi brand a lot. I also occasionally use the combination of ND + Polarizer.
     
    • Like Like x 2
  5. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Thanks for the replies and suggestions guys!

    I've looked at more professional/quality filters such as the Cokin system (Z-Pro) and while it does looks like a great system, it adds up pretty quickly, both money wise and also in bulkiness (different diameter adapter rings, filter holders and filters) - something I'm trying to avoid atm. Photography is just a hobby for me, thus I'm trying not to make it too "complicated" :)

    I've read about the known issues that variable ND filters have and I've narrowed it down that if I get one then it'll be a quality one (but not a very expensive one). I've read good reviews about the Cokin Pure Harmonie variable ND one and the price is not bad. I also like the idea behind the Fotodiox Vizelex ND Throttle, since I have many Minolta MD lenses, but not sure how it does with those known variable ND issues...

    Gary and Brian, I'll check out these two brands ;)
     
  6. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Well, today's visit in my local photography shop, got me a square filter system (adapter ring, filter holder and filters) since it was so cheap and I thought it doesn't hurt to try it. I originally went to see what they had in variable nd's but got two individual square nd filters, a 4-stop and an 8-stop.
     
  7. TareqPhoto

    TareqPhoto TalkEmount Regular

    57
    Jun 16, 2014
    Tareq
    Well, i have Fotodiox Vizelex ND Throttle but i tested only once and with a manual lens itself, so i don't know how this can help others, but sounds this adapter is not that good for some, but to me, it saved me money as i have lenses that i need so big filters due to non standard filter threads such as Samyang 14mm and Canon TS-E 17mm and also my Canon fisheye and Sigma 12-24, all i need special filter holder and all need filters from 150mm or bigger so imagine how much it costs me to have many filters at larger sizes of different stops.

    I just try to overpass the negative of this adapter so i can save money and headache and i need to test it more and i will post later on different sites if any would be interested in.
     
    • Like Like x 1
  8. NickCyprus

    NickCyprus Super Moderator

    Oct 11, 2012
    Cyprus
    Nick
    Thanks!
    I really like the idea of variable ND filters initially (and especially this one that I could use with my many Minolta MD lenses!) but after researching and reading about the many cons of vari NDs, I decided to stay with fixed density NDs :)
     
  9. TareqPhoto

    TareqPhoto TalkEmount Regular

    57
    Jun 16, 2014
    Tareq
    Well, i had only 2, i sold one, and i hold the other and will see how it will perform in the future, and i also have fixed NDs filters just in case.
     
    • Like Like x 1