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Best size for variable ND filter?

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After watching this test about variable ND filters http://www.learningdslrvideo.com/variable-nd-filter-shootout/

I'm thinking about investing in the Tiffen. At the moment I'm shooting with the kit lens - H-H S12035 on my Panasonic GH3. But in the future I sure invest in some primes. 

 

- What would be the best filter seize to invest? And what rings?

- Can I apply a ND filter on the UV filter?

- If I take another seize filter as mentioned in the test - how do I make sure it's the same thing as mentioned in   the test? I saw this one but don't know if it's the same. The prices are not matching ;-)

 

 

Tiffen 82 mm from the test

 

Tiffen 58 mm found on the internet

 

 

Thanxs for helping!!!

 

Blanche

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EOSHD Pro Color for Sony cameras EOSHD Pro LOG for Sony CamerasEOSHD C-LOG and Film Profiles for All Canon DSLRs

There is also another one which has really good reviews: Genus Eclipse ND Fader. I believe this is their new version. I am planing to buy this one actually. But first I need to find a really good tripod.

 

I have the same question in my mind for my Kowa 8Z in terms of the best filter size.

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I dont ever use variable NDs for shooting video as they produce wierd artifacts and colors depending on the angle of the light hitting them

they dont use vari NDs to shoot Hollywood Movies for this reason , they use a Matte Box and individual ND's

 

I always use individual NDs like ND2 ND4 ND2

Cokin make the best for the money

http://www.cokin.co.uk/pages/cokinP.htm

Get a Cokin P series system then it will work on all your lenses

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I don't know why but I always assumed that Cokin NDs should be very expensive since most pros use them and I would need a matte box for them. I just look at the whole kit and even the Z-Pro series costs as much as a 72mm variable ND filter that I've planned to buy. I need to check it further. Thanks Andy.

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I've always steered clear of Cokins for video / moving camera as the filter holder is not enclosed like a matte box so light can hit the filter from all angles, including behind between lens and back of filter, used to have a nice collection of them, grads and all that, used for stills but not a moving camera.

 

Had a Lightcrafts II 62mm VariND and a set of step rings for the usual 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 58mm to 62mm. Covered the Meyer Optiks, Olympus and Pentax lenses I use.

 

But recently gone back to fixed ND's as all the lenses are declicked, chose 2 and 3 stop versions of B+W German made brass frames and hard coatings.

 

Slightly cheaper alternatives are the Hoya Digital Pro 1's but in the past I found them a bit difficult to keep clean.

 

Whatever manufacturer you look at for filters ensure you look at multicoated versions when comparing and buying.

 

No need to stack filters like UV + ND you'll risk getting light bouncing about and ghosting.

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make sure you buy genuine cokin filters if you buy them on ebay - real ones have Cokin screen printed in white on the front bottom right hand corner

this is a genuine cokin:-

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Cokin-P-Series-Neutral-Density-ND4X-P153-Grey-Filter-BRAND-NEW-/190835593990?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item2c6eb01306

 

 

but you can buy a generic holder and lens rings these work fine and are cheaper off ebay

just dont use the filters that come with it they make your image soft!!

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/9size-Metal-Adapter-Ring-6-Cokin-P-Series-Filter-Set-ND2-ND4-ND8-G-ND2-4-8-kit-/130858456705?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item1e77c59681

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/9size-Metal-Adapter-Ring-6-Cokin-P-Series-Filter-Set-ND2-ND4-ND8-G-ND2-4-8-kit-/281045004760?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item416f9671d8

 

 

I have spent alot of time testing nearly every ND filter made to find the best that work well on Pansonics and Canons

and Cokins for me work best and they are cheap - as NDs are a disposable items - they do get scratched , dropped and broken on jobs alot!!

 

These Jacobs NDs are made by Cokin and provide the same glass as the Cokin P system - BUT they are screw on normal filter

I use these alot too they are great - and cheap too - I cannot stress how good these are

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Jacobs-ND4-Super-slim-Neutral-Density-filter-77mm-for-nikon-canon-sony-NEW-PRO-/110954849600?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item19d56ca540

 

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Jacobs-ND4-Super-slim-Neutral-Density-filter-72mm-for-nikon-canon-sony-NEW-PRO-/110954838820?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item19d56c7b24

 

http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Jacobs-ND4-Super-Slim-Neutral-Density-Filter-55mm-for-Nikon-Canon-Sony-Panasonic-/110959490683?pt=UK_CamerasPhoto_CameraAccessories_CameraLensesFilters_JN&hash=item19d5b3767b

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Poor Blanche, you guys have not answered her question at all. She's trying to find out what would be the best size "variable" ND to get for her GH3 with the view of using other lenses in the future, such as Nikons or Canons, or Samyangs or whatever... For run'n'gun docs this is a very viable solution. I'm also curious about what would be the best size to get and then use appropriate step downs. Anybody?

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Coming from a photography background, I always got 77mm filters since they are the "standard" for "professional" lenses. Then I would just get step-up rings like a 62 to 77 for my Sigma 30mm 1.4, 52 to 77 for my Canon 50mm 1.8, etc.

 

You could stack filters but that's adding more glass in front of your lens. This increases the chance of unwanted flares, glares, etc. but also can degrade image quality. When I don't need a ND filter, I sometimes shoot with no filter at all.

 

One example was when I shot a video at night, obviously a ND filter wouldn't help. A UV filter on my Sigma 30mm 1.4 created glares that were annoying.. like they'd move when the camera moved. Don't use filters if you can, and use them if you have to.

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Poor Blanche, you guys have not answered her question at all. She's trying to find out what would be the best size "variable" ND to get for her GH3 with the view of using other lenses in the future, such as Nikons or Canons, or Samyangs or whatever... For run'n'gun docs this is a very viable solution. I'm also curious about what would be the best size to get and then use appropriate step downs. Anybody?

 

Hahaha - anyway I did buy the Tiffen for only 70 euro's. I figured let's buy the 58mm now - before they discover their mistake.  B)  All other places are way more expensive. Let's hope my camera likes it!

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I got a 72mm one... then got an 82mm front lens... So get the biggest one and step ups

 

I have a 72 or 77 (can't remeber) and don't seem to get cross artefacts.

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I had a Cokin setup, but yes the fake plastic filters are soft, so don't go that way unless you wanna buy the good glass.

 

I bought the cheap Polaroid Fader ND. It's gets cooler one way, and warmer the other. There's always colour shift but I don't find it a huge issue. 

 

It doesn't change polarisation or refelctions as far as i can see.

 

Cheap and cheerful: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Polaroid-82mm-Fader-Variable-Filter/dp/B004GZ0U9G/ref=sr_1_7?ie=UTF8&qid=1368531306&sr=8-7&keywords=polaroid+variable+nd+filter

 

I use it for video and for shooting 3200ASA black and white film in daylight.

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Poor Blanche, you guys have not answered her question at all. She's trying to find out what would be the best size "variable" ND to get for her GH3 with the view of using other lenses in the future, such as Nikons or Canons, or Samyangs or whatever...

 

The biggest you can afford, then step rings down to small lens threads to suit. :-)

 

Had a Lightcrafts II 62mm VariND and a set of step rings for the usual 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 58mm to 62mm. Covered the Meyer Optiks, Olympus and Pentax lenses I use.

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Hahaha - anyway I did buy the Tiffen for only 70 euro's. I figured let's buy the 58mm now - before they discover their mistake.  B)  All other places are way more expensive. Let's hope my camera likes it!

 

Good for you! With the cash you saved you can get a larger one too.

 

The biggest you can afford, then step rings down to small lens threads to suit. :-)

 

Thanks Yellow.

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I use 72mm B&W ND filters because that is the thread size on the end of my kowa, you can get them quite cheap in from B&H used in "like new" condition, they are slim and i've never had any trouble with artifacts. Don't go variable it will affect your IQ. 

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I use 72mm B&W ND filters because that is the thread size on the end of my kowa, you can get them quite cheap in from B&H used in "like new" condition, they are slim and i've never had any trouble with artifacts. Don't go variable it will affect your IQ. 

 

 

 

 

What's  IQ Paulio? As I'm a run and gun style videographer I need the variable ND to save me time. Got only two hands doing audio, interviews and photography  ;) 

 

 

Anyway my variable ND from Tiffen arived with sticky stains (!!!) so I send it back. But I tested it before and didn't like the colorcast it's given even though I tried to color grade it. So now I'll go for a more expensive one which Philip Bloom likes the LCW ND Digi Pro-HD. Fingers crossed that all the money is worth it. 

 

O by the way I found this test for testing color casts on ND filters.  vimeo.com/26988895 

 

 

EDIT : Wow got a really quick delivery of my LCW ND Digi Pro-HD. Tested it in the garden and on my macbook. First review - no color casts and really pleasing images. Didn't test the sharpness of the bokeh really but it looked all right to me on the first view

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