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  #21  
Old 14-03-2012, 04:12 PM
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Octane (Humayun)
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Hi Greg,

Handholding a graduated neutral density filter in front of that particular lens will be problematic. I tend to hold the filter flush up against the lens. With the aspherical element, unless your filter is orthogonal to the lens and parallel to the image axis, you will introduce surface reflections of your surrounding environment. I feel that it would be prudent to invest in a filter holder for such a beast.

Get the Lee filters, straight off eBay. They do the whole 1-, 2-, 3-stops and beyond. The soft step filters fade gently from halfway up the filter to the top of the filter, whereas the hard step filters typically gradate from nothing to maximum in the space of 5% of the filter length; on an 6x4" filter, that equates to 7.5 mm.

The hard step filters are typically used for flat horizon/ocean shots where there is no subject or object that could be obscured, whereas soft step filters are used primarily for scenes involving subjects such as mountains, and, the like. Reverse filters reach maximum density about 2/3 to 3/4 through the filter and then soften out again. This is so that cloud features don't turn too dark at the top of your frame. I avoid this typically by gently blending in a second exposure or a pushed double-processed RAW.

You always have the ability to double stack filters, too. Typically, beyond 3-stops of neutral density, the filters shoot up in price quite dramatically, like, 50%+ hikes. So, you can get a couple of cheaper ones and stack them together to get the density required.

A recent 3-stop hard step filter in action: http://users.tpg.com.au/octane2/b.html

Hope that helped.

H
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  #22  
Old 14-03-2012, 06:17 PM
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gregbradley
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Hi Humi,

Oh my God that shot is amazing! That's exactly one type of shot I would like to take.

CSI Miami does that sometimes - they get the sky to be deep red or black. I also saw a wonderful landscape shot of the Blue Mountains with very dark blue/ almost black skies. It looked fabulous.

So you used stacked filters eh?

With the 14-24 it also has a lens hood so I could potentially put it up against the hood. I think though I am likely to shoot with the 24-70 F2.8 more often.

I also like to shoot mosaic panoramas with several rows of images. Because I shoot these in manual mode, exposure is locked and I think a filter would be good to introduce during the rows that shoot the sky.

I have seen that dark cloud effect you mentioned.

Have you ever used variable circular ND filters?

I read an article yesterday about stacking 2 polarisers. You spin them and they will black out the view at some point. Although I am not sure if it affects colour as when it blacked out it was really a deep blue. I'll have to test that as its very convenient to simply stack 2 polarisers on your lens and spin them against each other.

Do you have a website for your images?

Cheers,

Greg.

Last edited by gregbradley; 14-03-2012 at 06:31 PM.
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  #23  
Old 15-03-2012, 06:37 AM
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White Rabbit
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Hi Mike.

I have the Conkin z pro series with my 5d MKII and 24-105 , I found the vignetting to be an issue as well. If you look at the bracket that holds the filters there are two slots so you can use two filters at the same time, you can screw one of them off and they no longer obstruct the view, of course this doesn't help if you want to se two at the same time though.
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  #24  
Old 15-03-2012, 06:42 AM
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I cry every time H posts a photo. Not sure if it's from the joy, or the realisation I'll never be able to achieve it.
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  #25  
Old 15-03-2012, 08:49 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by iceman View Post
I want to use the slide in filters, rather than screw on.

Having to screw on and off filters out in the field, would be a real pain.

I've got the knock-offs already and they're the ones that worked fine on my 40D but have severe vignetting with the FF camera.
That is why I use the Matte Box, I am used to them from cine work anyway, and it is so easy to swap filters in and out, and lets you use big buggers.

Same reason I use a filter drawer on the scope.
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  #26  
Old 15-03-2012, 08:56 AM
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There is also a Lee holder
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...older_Kit.html
http://youtu.be/fMX5p9Iwx3Y

and a Hitech one:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...ide_Angle.html

or you can make your own.
http://www.flickr.com/photos/13847280@N03/2655841619/
http://www.amateurphotographer.co.uk...-lens&p=713499

Quote:
Originally Posted by gregbradley View Post
This is an interesting thread as I have the Nikon 14-24mm F2.8 ED and its a beautiful lens but it is often commented you can't use filters on it because of the large aspherical lens at front. The Lee or Cokin holder for it is a cool $700+. So do you think I could handhold a 100 x 150mm filter in front of it and light would not get in through the sides?

Greg.

Last edited by Poita; 15-03-2012 at 09:07 AM.
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  #27  
Old 15-03-2012, 10:01 AM
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Thanks for those links Peter.

I may end up getting one. Although the 14-24 is probably going to be doing night time lapse shooting on a Nikon D800. Or even my 40D. I have the Novoflex adapter and it works great to fit this lens on a Canon body.

Greg.
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  #28  
Old 15-03-2012, 05:04 PM
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iceman (Mike)
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I can't find any AU store on ebay with Lee filters.

There seems to be a few in the UK, but they only have the hard ND. I'd prefer the grad ND.

Where else can I get them from?
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  #29  
Old 16-03-2012, 04:26 AM
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Found robertwhite.co.uk and did some online shopping. Haven't bought yet as was floored by the price.

For:
- 77mm adapter ring
- Digital SLR starter kit (contains the filter holder, 0.6 hard grad, 0.6 ND)
- 0.9 hard grad
- 0.9 ND
- postage

It'll cost me around $620.

Anywhere cheaper?
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  #30  
Old 16-03-2012, 07:50 AM
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I don't know about their prices and what they stock but Mainline Photographics at Crows Nest definitely had a large stock of these square glass filters and holder.

Greg.
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  #31  
Old 16-03-2012, 07:56 AM
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Octane (Humayun)
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Hi Mike,

Yeah, unfortunately, none of this stuff is cheap.

In the meantime, you can continue to exposure blend!

Greg, I'll send you an email, re: site.

Troy, you are far too kind. As said previously, you've got the gear and the skill, you can make pretty pictures with intent, too!

H
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  #32  
Old 16-03-2012, 11:02 AM
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I got most of my Lee filters from US (Adorama) after a loooooong waiting list for them to come in stock. The one exception was the Big Stopper, which I got from Vanbar Imaging in Victoria. Bit more expensive, but at the time they were the only ones to have them in stock in the world from what I could tell. Might try them?

The prices you list don't seem unreasonable for what you're purchasing/investing.
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  #33  
Old 16-03-2012, 11:23 AM
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iceman (Mike)
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Yeh I know, it all adds up..
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  #34  
Old 16-03-2012, 11:53 AM
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Why don't you do the opposite of what I did, ie just start with one or 2 filters? ie just get the lens adapter, filter holder, a 3 stop hard and a 2 stop soft, or something like that? Or 3 stop hard and 3 stop ND?
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  #35  
Old 16-03-2012, 11:58 AM
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Yeh I might. I think I'd prefer the soft grad over the hard grad though. Why do you prefer hard?
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  #36  
Old 16-03-2012, 12:42 PM
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Just that I've only used them for landscapes with a relatively flat horizon so far. That's all. If I understand correctly, if you hand-hold a hard grad, while the shutter is open for longer exposures, you can feather (H uses the term dither above I think) the filter to soften the edge anyway.
Tried to find a youtube clip that showed the technique but can't find it at the moment.

H would be better at recommending the first one or 2 to get. The above is just based on my preferences. But if you're shooting different things, the advice would be different.
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  #37  
Old 16-03-2012, 01:41 PM
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Octane (Humayun)
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The 3-stop is the most universal (and, also toughest) to use.

I'd get a hard-step for the reason Troy mentioned above; you can always dither the filter. However, if you're set on using a holder, then, get the soft-step filter for starters.

Using filters is joy and getting it right in-camera first up makes you swell with pride.

H
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  #38  
Old 16-03-2012, 02:37 PM
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Omaroo (Chris Malikoff)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Octane View Post
Using filters is joy and getting it right in-camera first up makes you swell with pride.
I've witnessed this phenomenon first hand. It's bloody dangerous to all around. Humayun gets out his filters....run.
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  #39  
Old 16-03-2012, 02:40 PM
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Ok I thought I would add my two cents here...

Firstly my mate had diffculty finding Lee filters, he ended up going with a UK or USA company and it took like 2 months or more for them to get over there.

I saved enough money and had a look myself:

http://www.mediavision.com.au/

I think the digital starter pack (holder kit, adapter ring, Hard Grad and ND) cost me $443.85 AUD Delivered. Service was great and it took like 3 days for delivery (waited about 2 weeks for them to get stock) to Brisbane.

Ive been playing around so far with the Lee filters and they seem great so far...dont screw around with the colour etc.

One thing H... I know Ill eventually want to hand hold and dither with the Hard Grad... but how to you ensure there is no space between the front element and the filter whilst not bumping or moving the lens? Just practice holding your breath and work on the dexterity? haha

Say for example I was using my 24-70 @ 24mm as its reversed glass elements make it zoomed out @ 24 I keep doing my head in thinking I will push the lens back in thus adjusting the photo compostion? Does solving this problem just come with exp and practice because thats basically all I can conclude I just thought you might have some sneaky tips haha

Anyway hope the above link helps

Cheers
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  #40  
Old 16-03-2012, 03:13 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Omaroo View Post
I've witnessed this phenomenon first hand. It's bloody dangerous to all around. Humayun gets out his filters....run.
All this talk about hard/soft, and H swelling... I'd be running too.
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