Skylight/UV Filters

Skylight/UV Filters

Postby LN Strike Eagle on Thu 11 May 2017, 6:45 am

I know this has been discussed before, and lots of people would say it's not a great idea to put anything inferior on the end of an expensive piece of glass.

Is this still true if it's a Hoya filter?
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby speedbird2639 on Thu 11 May 2017, 7:01 am

Probably the easiest way to find out would be to buy a filter (maybe off eBay etc to keep costs to minimum) and then go out and shoot a load of photos at full resolution etc in RAW both with and without the filter and then have a good look at them on the computer. If you decide it does add deterioration to the photo you'll get most of your money back from relisting the item on eBay and question will be answered once and for all. If you were kind enough to post some cropped shots on here it might be of assistance to others.

My personal opinion is that the potential protection for the lens afforded by having a clear filter on the lens outweighs any degradation of the photos but that may just be that the cheaper lenses I use are so 'soft' anyway that the UV filter doesn't make any noticeable compromise.

Some opinions

https://www.dpreview.com/articles/7333331953/should-you-use-a-uv-filter-on-your-lens

http://www.tested.com/tech/photography/2700-does-your-dslr-camera-lens-really-need-a-uv-filter/
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby DerekF on Thu 11 May 2017, 7:06 am

I've used Hoya and Nikon filters with no visible effect. I would stay away from very cheap ones though. I haven't used a filter on my Sigma 150-600mm as the 95mm size makes filters expensive. (£110 :shock: ) The lens hood is protection enough.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby LN Strike Eagle on Thu 11 May 2017, 7:10 am

Thanks for the swift replies. I do plan to test it with and without as it has a Hoya fitted already, just thought I'd seek out some opinions in the mean time.

My old lens never had a filter fitted to it, and most of the time it had no hood fitted either, and that's still like new despite several years use.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Wrexham Mackem on Thu 11 May 2017, 7:50 am

Definitely don't use Skylight - they have a colour. UV no longer needs to be filtered like it did in film days, so in the digital world clear protector filters are the way to go if you decide to use them.

I no longer do. I had Canon clear protectors on all my lenses and gradually started leaving them off, keeping them for wet or sandy conditions. Now I don't use them at all. I can't really put my finger on any hard evidence, but I have a gut feel that under certain conditions they were degrading the images a bit. Vague, I know :smile:
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Brevet Cable on Thu 11 May 2017, 8:05 am

Not needed on a digital camera, they're only useful for film.
As to whether or not you use one as 'protection' for the lens, that's another argument.....if it's to protect against knocks/short drops, I prefer a lens hood.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby AlexC on Thu 11 May 2017, 9:11 am

I don't use filters any more, mainly for the reasons already given above.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby LN Strike Eagle on Thu 11 May 2017, 10:24 am

Just for reference, the filter I got with it is a Hoya HMC UV(C).
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Brevet Cable on Thu 11 May 2017, 11:51 am

You may find this article from DPReview useful ( unless you've already read it ? ) : https://www.dpreview.com/articles/7333331953/should-you-use-a-uv-filter-on-your-lens

Used to use an old Hama UV filter, can't say I noticed any difference in image quality.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby vulcan558 on Thu 11 May 2017, 12:54 pm

UV are only really for protection if you want to think it protects, many do not think filters offer much protection though. If you drop your lens high enough to bust a filter then that force will have been enough to damage internals of the lens anyway making it useless.

Digital sensors do not suffer from UV light like old film used to.

If you use a filter do not leave it on all the time, the dirty moist air trapped inside will encourage mold and
Degrade your images, A bit like a culture dish.

Filters will flare or ghost your images.

I have lots of filters from my film days but do not use many today. Best ones to use are ND filters
Or a polariser. The Polariser being a favourite for outdoor statics.
vulcan558

Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Skyflash on Thu 11 May 2017, 2:55 pm

vulcan558 wrote:UV are only really for protection if you want to think it protects, many do not think filters offer much protection though. If you drop your lens high enough to bust a filter then that force will have been enough to damage internals of the lens anyway making it useless.

Digital sensors do not suffer from UV light like old film used to.

If you use a filter do not leave it on all the time, the dirty moist air trapped inside will encourage mold and
Degrade your images, A bit like a culture dish.

Filters will flare or ghost your images.

I have lots of filters from my film days but do not use many today. Best ones to use are ND filters
Or a polariser. The Polariser being a favourite for outdoor statics.


Not necessarily - I 'dropped' my Nikon 200-500mm recently (it actually rolled off my bed as I was busy preparing my camera case!) Landing directly onto the front element, the filter (a 95mm Marumi beast) instantly shattered into a million tiny pieces, but the lens, deo gratias, still works perfectly.

A lucky escape, sure, but without the filter I'd almost certainly have been looking at a hellishly expensive comprehensive repair-job to the actual lens.

I have always fitted filters (where possible) to DSLR lenses, haven't noticed any significant image degradation if at all, and I like the additional comfort which they provide for idiotic incidents like the above.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby wv383 on Thu 11 May 2017, 5:14 pm

Only a personal opinion but I wouldn't use a Skylight filter as it is slightly coloured. I tend to spend a bit more for pro-series filters (available in several makes not just Hoya) and for lens protection, if I use one at all, it will be a Protector which is totally clear. They are available in various sizes not just the one in the link below.

http://www.wexphotographic.com/hoya-67mm-pro1-digital-protector-filter-1011123/
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby vulcan558 on Thu 11 May 2017, 5:55 pm

Skyflash wrote:
vulcan558 wrote:UV are only really for protection if you want to think it protects, many do not think filters offer much protection though. If you drop your lens high enough to bust a filter then that force will have been enough to damage internals of the lens anyway making it useless.

Digital sensors do not suffer from UV light like old film used to.

If you use a filter do not leave it on all the time, the dirty moist air trapped inside will encourage mold and
Degrade your images, A bit like a culture dish.

Filters will flare or ghost your images.

I have lots of filters from my film days but do not use many today. Best ones to use are ND filters
Or a polariser. The Polariser being a favourite for outdoor statics.


Not necessarily - I 'dropped' my Nikon 200-500mm recently (it actually rolled off my bed as I was busy preparing my camera case!) Landing directly onto the front element, the filter (a 95mm Marumi beast) instantly shattered into a million tiny pieces, but the lens, deo gratias, still works perfectly.

A lucky escape, sure, but without the filter I'd almost certainly have been looking at a hellishly expensive comprehensive repair-job to the actual lens.

I have always fitted filters (where possible) to DSLR lenses, haven't noticed any significant image degradation if at all, and I like the additional comfort which they provide for idiotic incidents like the above.

I doubt the mains lens would break they are much stronger then any skinny filter, that filter ran the risk of scratching your lens with the broken glass.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby wallace on Thu 11 May 2017, 8:44 pm

UV filters was only needed in the days of film photography.

They have no place in the days of digital - there are filters on the sensor and coatings on the lens to stop UV, IR and internal reflections, so take 'em off and bin 'em.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby trebleone on Thu 11 May 2017, 11:21 pm

Something else to consider - I read somewhere several years ago that aviation fuel residue in the atmosphere at airshows can, over time, destroy the coating on a lens front element. For that reason, I always use a good quality, multi-coated, clear protection filter and I have noticed that after a couple of years of doing 4 or 5 airshows each season, the coating on the filter has taken on a patchy 'bloom'; so I replace the filter. To me, it's preferable to replace a £70 filter every 2 or 3 years than risk the loss of contrast that would result from the lens coating being eaten away.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 12 May 2017, 7:29 am

I've posted this article previously ( a couple of years ago ) which shows how little effect dirt & scratches on the front element can have : http://kurtmunger.com/dirty_lens_articleid35.html
There's also this, for an extreme example : https://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2008/10/front-element-scratches/
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby DerekF on Fri 12 May 2017, 8:13 am

Scratches may have little effect optically but they certainly have an effect financially. If you ever want to sell your kit, it's worth keeping it in as good condition as possible. If that means putting a decent quality protection filter on the front then that's what I'll do.
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Pen Pusher on Fri 12 May 2017, 4:25 pm

:whistle:

I doubt a filter on the front would have prevented this.

£12.5K worth of ouch. Not taking care when mounting large telephoto lenses can be a costly mistake.


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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby Brevet Cable on Fri 12 May 2017, 4:47 pm

I bet there was a cloud of purple smoke, a smell of sulphur and a distant cry of "Bwa,ha,ha,ha,ha!" when that happened ! :lol:
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby john001 on Fri 12 May 2017, 5:16 pm

trebleone wrote:Something else to consider - I read somewhere several years ago that aviation fuel residue in the atmosphere at airshows can, over time, destroy the coating on a lens front element. For that reason, I always use a good quality, multi-coated, clear protection filter and I have noticed that after a couple of years of doing 4 or 5 airshows each season, the coating on the filter has taken on a patchy 'bloom'; so I replace the filter. To me, it's preferable to replace a £70 filter every 2 or 3 years than risk the loss of contrast that would result from the lens coating being eaten away.


how do you clean your filter?
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Re: Skylight/UV Filters

Postby trebleone on Fri 12 May 2017, 10:56 pm

john001 wrote:
how do you clean your filter?


Soft lens brush, a 'huff' or two and a micro-fibre lens cloth.
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