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I hear people leave a UV filter on their lenses permanently for protecting the lens but some use circular polarizers. What filter do you use? Please let me know specifically which brand and what kind...B+W,Hoya...Multi coated...etc.
Normally the filter of choice is a 1A or 1B Skylight filter, or a UV (ultra violet) filter. I would never use a polarizer and leave it on the camera. I believe the brand can make a difference. Putting a $5.00 piece of glass on the front of a $500 lense just makes no sense to me. I always purchase the best I can afford and later, if the opportunity presents itself, I upgrade the quality (new or used).
The best brands are Heliopan, B+W, Hoya who have 4 categories of filters, and Nikon. All others are considered lower cost filters.
If you are looking for a reasonable recommendation I would suggest a Hoya HMC (multi-coated filter).
I agree Larry - it is a no brainer - cheap filters on top quality glass does not work in your favor in any situation! I use a CP on my 70-300mm and generally keep it on the lens as I mainly shoot outdoor landscape style images with it - I use the Hoya Multi-coated and have had very good results. Keith
A few points ..... I took off all my Skylights as I was finding they warmed up my slide film shots a little more than I would have wished, and substituted either HMC UVs or Contax UVs (I mainly shoot Contax!). If you shoot print film you may or may not find the degree of "warming" a problem. Place the UVs and Skylights on some white paper to see the difference .... some Skylights are "pinker" than others.
If you shoot night shots, or shots with highlights and very dark areas .... it might be worth having a look here ......
>[I may have missed part of the thread but why would anyone want to place >anything on the lens and leave it there? I see th use of filters as >necessary but using a UV for protection only serves to place inferior glass >in the front tohe the Nikon lens and will degrade the image. For this >reason I avoid the use of filters unless I am forced to use one out of need >to correct the color or greyscale balance. I protect my lens by using a >lens cap. Rain spots come right off and when rocks fall I stay inside.]
Actually one can follow the ex&le of pros and use a very protective device called a lens cap. Often these are supplied with lenses when purchased. If not they are available everywhere photo supplies are sold.
The method of operation is simple. When one is anticipating a photograph to be taken, the camera is removed from the working bag, and the lens cap is removed. Upon completion of the shoot, the lens cap is once again installed on the front of the lens and the camera is put back in the bag.
When multi-coated lenses were first announced a few decades back, a Nikon rep came by to demonstrate them. During the demo, he casually butted out a lit cigarette on the front element of a very fast and very expensive lens. He spit on the lens and wiped off the residue with a rag he pulled from his pocket. These surfaces are remarkably tough.
A lens is as sharp as its weakest element. Why add two glass surfaces to the optical path when you already have a lens cap? Filters are for changing the colour balance or adding effects to your picture and the trade-off is worthwhile. If I were doing industrial shots of sand-blasting or anything else involving high-velocity abrasive particles, certainly it would be worth the trade-off in that case. If you are photographing a sandstorm in the Sahara, velocities are low enough and the particles not abrasive enough to be worried.
If you are using the filter to protect against an unexpected blow you might receive to the lens when photographing, if it is powerful enough to warrant protecting the lens, the emergency technicians will be extracting camera bits from your head on the way to the emergency room or morgue. At that point, a scratch on the lens is the least of your worries.
I'll stay with a filter to protect my lenses. As an amateur adventure/nature photographer I have only had occasion to replace three scratched filters in 30 years. I found the money to replace the filters but replacing the lenses they were protecting would have been a MAJOR financial burden. I use excellent quality filters and I have never been disappointed with my photos as a result of their use.
Having now put away my SLR's in favour of Nikon's 5700/8700/8800 series of cameras, replacing a scratched lense means replacing the entire camera.
>[After 40+ years of taking pictures as a hobby and as journalist, I can >say the only damage I have done to lenes was self inflicted. Naure has >never caused a problem. I took a lens out of a old rolleiflex (Tessar) and >attempted to damage the front element and could not damage the coat eve >with akaline solutions. I could, only with great diffulcuty scratch the >lens. The lens after 1955 are very hard to damage.]