NSFW Are filters making a comeback

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#1
I've noticed recently that there is much more discussion and promotion of filters.

Just wondering if filters are becoming more popular or is it the marketing departments of the manufacturers are working extra hard.
 
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#2
Nothing has changed as far as I know, pros and enthusiasts have them or have tried them generally.

I think when someone gets to a certain knowledge level they understand why they can be very good.
 
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#3
Snip:
I think when someone gets to a certain knowledge level they understand why they can be very good.
Oh, I couldn't agree more. :)

Rainbow
by J White, on Flickr

;) And just in case you wondered why this thread was tagged Not Suitable For Work, it's due to the fact that bursting out laughing will give away the fact you're actually reading this forum and not doing that urgent job you're pretending to work on! :giggle:
 
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#4
Actually, in all fairness, when not played for laughs it's not too unbelievable.

IMG_0003
by J White, on Flickr

However, as with any effect, some filters can be an acquired taste and very much subject-specific; for instance a shot of a classic early 80s performance car might look good with a tobacco or purple grad filter for that retro look, but I don't imaging you'd win many photo contests these days using one of those and a star filter on a 'beach with lighthouse' landscape shot. However, who knows, maybe a renaissance is due? Hmmm... now where did I put that diffractor galaxy filter?
 

Nod

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#5
In the back of a Galaxy diffractor filter drawer, far, far away...
 
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#7
Nothing has changed as far as I know, pros and enthusiasts have them or have tried them generally.

I think when someone gets to a certain knowledge level they understand why they can be very good.
Or the exact opposite, when a certain level of knowledge tells you they are almost all pointless :)

Dave
 
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#9
Like when half the scene is extremely dark and the other half extremely bright and it is highly advantageous to even them out with a filter ?
And if the horizon is anything other than perfect, blending exposures makes a better image. ;)
The only filters that can’t be replicated in software are a polariser and an ND (though some people disagree re some uses of an ND)
 

StephenM

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#10
Unless you're like me and use black and white film, in which case yellow, green, orange and red filters can't be replicated in software unless you're far better than I am at accurately masking the edges of many irregularly shaped objects. And even then, I'm not certain it can be done.
 
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#12
Like when half the scene is extremely dark and the other half extremely bright and it is highly advantageous to even them out with a filter ?
See Phil's message to save me replying other than I've yet to see a scene where a Grad will help me

And if the horizon is anything other than perfect, blending exposures makes a better image. ;)
The only filters that can’t be replicated in software are a polariser and an ND (though some people disagree re some uses of an ND)
Agree :)

Using filters is a little like the current vintage lens thread.

Some people just bash out several exposures and sit in front the PC editing and others would rather take their time, enjoy the scenery, use filters and take one image. Again, there's no right or wrong.
Only an idiot will "bash out several exposures" and hope to do something clever in PP. Most will hopefully see and plan for their PP in the taking stage, but NOT using a 'B&W' filter means we have options that using one generally removes

Being quicker means I truly enjoy the scene in front of me, without needing to worry about where the Grad line is on the horizon, or what I'll need to dodge later to hide the fact a Grad was used, or to give myself more options in PP - which is actually quicker than fking about with filters in the taking most of the time

Dave
 
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#13
I can't remember when I used anything other than an ND and I only used those when using wide apertures in good light to get the shutter speed down to 1/4000 or lower when using a camera that couldn't shoot faster. I remember the last time I took filters other than an ND out with me, it was about four years ago but I didn't use them that day.
 
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#14
The only filters that can’t be replicated in software are a polariser and an ND (though some people disagree re some uses of an ND)
In everyday photography thats not far wrong. In astrophotography & scientific photography there are many filters that are difficult or totally impossible to replicate in software. Many of these are narrow band filters.
 
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#15
See Phil's message to save me replying other than I've yet to see a scene where a Grad will help me

Only an idiot will "bash out several exposures" and hope to do something clever in PP. Most will hopefully see and plan for their PP in the taking stage, but NOT using a 'B&W' filter means we have options that using one generally removes

Being quicker means I truly enjoy the scene in front of me, without needing to worry about where the Grad line is on the horizon, or what I'll need to dodge later to hide the fact a Grad was used, or to give myself more options in PP - which is actually quicker than fking about with filters in the taking most of the time

Dave
So you've never been at the coast or out & about where the sky is brighter than the foreground? That's quite unlucky.

It's not 'quicker' either way. Use a filter & take a few minutes and capture one shot that needs little editing. Take several exposures in a shorter time & then spend a while in editing blending them together.... Whatever gives you the result you want in the way you want. As long as you are happy & enjoying yourself :)

Ohh.... and "B&W" filter??

Ohh two.... There are plenty of 'idiots' about.... ;)
 
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#16
Like when half the scene is extremely dark and the other half extremely bright and it is highly advantageous to even them out with a filter ?
Only one problem. Filter is only as strong as they make it (or too strong) and certainly many if not most shots will NOT have a straight line separation between dark and bright; typically it is extremely far from that. It's a bit like riding a horse to work.
 
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#17
So you've never been at the coast or out & about where the sky is brighter than the foreground? That's quite unlucky.

It's not 'quicker' either way. Use a filter & take a few minutes and capture one shot that needs little editing. Take several exposures in a shorter time & then spend a while in editing blending them together.... Whatever gives you the result you want in the way you want. As long as you are happy & enjoying yourself :)

Ohh.... and "B&W" filter??

Ohh two.... There are plenty of 'idiots' about.... ;)
Having used the nuisance filters around Bristol for a few years I couldn't disagree more. They are never what you want to the exact half the stop and there are always features sticking out somewhere. Even more so when it comes to sunset, and even fanciest Sony doesn't quite have DR to take it all in in a single shot. So you end up bracketing or with blown bits... And how about that extra flare which only gets worse as the filter receives minute scratches, dirt marks or sea spray. What's the point paying serious money for all that pain and hassle?
 
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#18
Using filters is a little like the current vintage lens thread.

Some people just bash out several exposures and sit in front the PC editing and others would rather take their time, enjoy the scenery, use filters and take one image. Again, there's no right or wrong.
This is one of those posts that assumes that everyone is shooting 'scenery'; please remember that not all of us are anti social loners who spend our weekends trekking alone looking for the perfect landscape scene. :LOL:
 
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#19
Having used the nuisance filters around Bristol for a few years I couldn't disagree more. They are never what you want to the exact half the stop and there are always features sticking out somewhere. Even more so when it comes to sunset, and even fanciest Sony doesn't quite have DR to take it all in in a single shot. So you end up bracketing or with blown bits... And how about that extra flare which only gets worse as the filter receives minute scratches, dirt marks or sea spray. What's the point paying serious money for all that pain and hassle?
I've never used a nuisance filter so can't comment sorry.
 
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#20
This is one of those posts that assumes that everyone is shooting 'scenery'; please remember that not all of us are anti social loners who spend our weekends trekking alone looking for the perfect landscape scene. :LOL:
I don't need to remember anything. You need to learn that scenery isn't just found when alone trekking for a landscape scene. Scenes are everywhere, not just in Snowdonia.
 
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#21
I don't need to remember anything. You need to learn that scenery isn't just found when alone trekking for a landscape scene. Scenes are everywhere, not just in Snowdonia.
But when we’re shooting people spending time
Use a filter & take a few minutes and capture one shot that needs little editing.
Isn’t an option.
Moods and expressions are transient and the light on my subject is critical. Taking in the surroundings is a waste of my time.
And I don’t shoot with a view to fix it later. It’s right because I’m concentrating on my subject not taking in the scenery or arsing about with filters.
 
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#24
But when we’re shooting people spending time

Isn’t an option.
Moods and expressions are transient and the light on my subject is critical. Taking in the surroundings is a waste of my time.
And I don’t shoot with a view to fix it later. It’s right because I’m concentrating on my subject not taking in the scenery or arsing about with filters.
I can only guess you are talking portrait photography?

I didn't say you took shots with a view to fix later did I?
 
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#25
This is one of those posts that assumes that everyone is shooting 'scenery'; please remember that not all of us are anti social loners who spend our weekends trekking alone looking for the perfect landscape scene. :LOL:
I've taken people shots that wouldn't have been possible without the filter used.
sml P1150714bw2
by Mike Kanssen, on Flickr
The eyes were completely hidden without the filter :)
 
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#28
I didn't say you took shots with a view to fix later did I?
It’s not about ‘me’ or my methods, you seem to have started with a provocative statement and now you’re struggling to stick with it rather than accept that other views may also be valid.

Some people just bash out several exposures and sit in front the PC editing and others would rather take their time,
One thing that’ll raise my hackles is sweeping statements about a right way to do something. We’re all different people, we shoot different things with further different expectations.
 
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#29
It’s not about ‘me’ or my methods, you seem to have started with a provocative statement and now you’re struggling to stick with it rather than accept that other views may also be valid.

One thing that’ll raise my hackles is sweeping statements about a right way to do something. We’re all different people, we shoot different things with further different expectations.
Where exactly? I said some people take multiple images and spend time blending in post. I said some people spend more time using filters on location and don't have to spend time at the PC....

If you read my first post, I also stated there is no right or wrong ;) I said that simply because I use both methods depending on the situation.

I then added....... "Whatever gives you the result you want in the way you want. As long as you are happy & enjoying yourself"

You can do what you want with those sweeping statements ;)
 
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#32
So you've never been at the coast or out & about where the sky is brighter than the foreground? That's quite unlucky.
Shooting in mountains/hillside rather than the sea - no - its rare for me; that said, the last few times I shot at a coast then no the sand wasn't black and the exposure difference wasn't so great that a grad filter would be needed

I also now tend to prefer the increased quality, ease and creativity of using the simulated long-exposure technique to actually using a 10-stopper or more

There are occasions where filters have a use, but not for me in the way, and what, I shoot and obviously teach

Dave
 
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#33
Wow ! As the OP I certainly understand the law of unintended consequences.

My post was intended to see if the marketing drive by certain manufacturers with use of social media and brand ambassadors had made filter use more popular. The answer for TP is clearly not

My own view is that I'm happy to use ND and a polariser for in camera use. Anything else I'll post process. This is based on the rare occasion Ive got something I consider half decent then I'm happy to spend a bit of time in front of a PC.

I recognise that others have a different view and it's always interesting to hear about that
 
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#34
My post was intended to see if the marketing drive by certain manufacturers with use of social media and brand ambassadors had made filter use more popular. The answer for TP is clearly not
To answer your question they would be certainly wise to do and try that or else change business profile or even go bankrupt. I don't think you will truly get the answer because the select few will be showing off and shouting very loudly about these products making it look cool and widely-adapted. When I'm out and about or posting I don't brag that I did NOT use X, Y or Z, but only CPL at most. So the non-users are effectively silent ones, and it could well prove to be the silent majority if even by complete ignorance on any image modification or post-processing.
Just like with any expensive goods with lots of shouty advertising you need to be able to decide for your own if that's a good use of your money and not try to be a trendy one on the block or the forum :)
 
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#35
If it could be done with an IR filter it can be done in software surely?
Not a chance. IR is not seen to any significant degree by the camera. You can't determine the red channel by studying the blue channel, why should IR be any different?
The data is swamped by visual data or not present at all.

There are programs that produce faux IR images, but these work by assuming green things are foliage & thus reflect lots of IR. Green painted metal is generally near black in IR. It might be possible to get results that look like IR but they won't be accurate & sometimes will be complete guesswork.

True IR images can also see through many dyes, potentially allowing censored documents to be read (biro can be seen through laser print can't)
 
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#36
Not a chance. IR is not seen to any significant degree by the camera. You can't determine the red channel by studying the blue channel, why should IR be any different?
The data is swamped by visual data or not present at all.

There are programs that produce faux IR images, but these work by assuming green things are foliage & thus reflect lots of IR. Green painted metal is generally near black in IR. It might be possible to get results that look like IR but they won't be accurate & sometimes will be complete guesswork.

True IR images can also see through many dyes, potentially allowing censored documents to be read (biro can be seen through laser print can't)
True, but here we are really talking about sensor level colour filters. The cheap screw in thing doesn't give true IR however image degradation is spectacular. Let alone our lenses are optimised for visible light and you truly need to pick one carefully for IR work if larger than 6x4" print is expected.
 
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#37
True, but here we are really talking about sensor level colour filters. The cheap screw in thing doesn't give true IR however image degradation is spectacular. Let alone our lenses are optimised for visible light and you truly need to pick one carefully for IR work if larger than 6x4" print is expected.
This was taken with a cheap screw in 720nm filter on a standard camera, using a 50mm prime:

I've used the same camera with it's kit zoom as well without issues:


These ARE true IR. They may not work well on Canon bodies (which are very insensitive to IR) but the only issue I had was slightly long exposure times, even with the ISO maxed out.
 
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#40
Extreme red or very very near IR at the best case. You are not even scratching the surface towards the middle of IR band.
The visual band is normally considered to be 400-700nm.
According to the spectrometer at work these filters do not transmit below 710nm, & have over 90% transmission throughout the range 730nm to 1100nm. The same camera can see through a 960nm filter too but at MUCH longer exposure times & with no significant change in most images.
Yes it's all near IR, silicon (used in photoreceptors & sensors) is transparent to EM radiation with wavelengths above 1150nm. So special detectors are needed for thermal imaging, but NIR is what is normally meant when discussing IR in photography, I don't know of any IR film that has significant response above 1000nm so the wavelength sensitivity of digital sensors is actually slightly more into the IR than for film based IR..
 
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