While some sounded the death knell of filters when digital imaging arrived,
with all the in camera and plug-in manipulations available, there were a number
of new and often high-end filters on display. Here's what's new
and improved in this frequently essential accessory:
Argraph announced a new Marumi DHG (Digital High Grade) Achromat Macro 200 (+5)
close-up lens that is said to be superior to other strong CU lenses. They also
introduced other models of the Marumi DHG filters, the first line designed specifically
for use with digital cameras and lenses. They have black edge rings for minimal
reflection and will be offered in conventional sizes ranging from 49-82mm in
UV, circular polarizer, star-cross, soft fantasy, macro +3, and light control
Direct Source Marketing announced their new Rodenstock line of new, thinner
multi-coated glass filters that are easier to clean, have a sealed edge with
a brass ring that's black for no reflections. The thinner glass makes
them excellent for use with ultra-wide angle lenses, which with thicker filters
might cause vignetting. They will be offered in UV and circular polarizer versions
initially in 49-82mm sizes.
PL1 circular polarizer
Schneider Optics now offers the new Century brand of essential glass filters
for digital video production that are derived from their more expensive line
for motion picture users. These 4x4" filters fit into standard matte box
filter holders. They consist of a linear polarizing, neutral density 0.6, neutral
density 0.6 soft edge graduated, black frost 1/2 diffusion, and skin tone-enhancing
filters. They can be purchased individually at $129 each or in a five-filter
kit in a lightweight multi-compartment pouch for $499.
THK showed new Hoya HD filters that feature hardened glass with four times
the breaking strength plus a high transparency polarizing film for 25 percent
higher light transmission. These filters with waterproof, scratch- and stain-resistant
multi-coating will be offered in UV and circular polarizer versions in sizes
Digital HT filters
Tiffen introduced a new series of Digital HT filters said to be a technical
breakthrough in multi-coated filters for photo and video applications. They
have titanium coating on optical glass, which surpasses military specifications.
A low profile ring is combined with a black lock ring on these made in the U.S.A.
filters. Many variations are available, including haze, circular polarizer,
several strengths of neutral density, soft/FX, star, and color-grad in sizes
from 52-82mm. Each filter comes with a soft storage pouch.