Please briefly describe what filter (s) you use and why.

Please briefly describe what filter (s) you use and why.
Yes, there are still good reasons to use lens filters.
62% (187 votes)
No, I don't use any filters over my lenses.
36% (108 votes)
I am not sure what use filters are these days so haven't made up my mind.
2% (5 votes)
Total votes: 300

Robert Agli's picture

Circular Polarizer and Graduated Neutral Density filters still have a place in my camera back but I only use them for specific problems. I do not subscribe to the silly policy advocated by profiteering dealers that I should have a "protective filter" on all my lenses. Why on earth would I want to purposely cover the front of a $2K lens with a $60 filter and compromise the optics? Those users are the same people putting transparent plastic covers on their sofas.

W.  Spruance's picture

No one has devised a polarizer plug in for Photoshop or Nik that works as good as the real thing.

Joe's picture

One should always try to get the best shot in camera. ND, split ND, and polarizer filters are essential to outdoor photography.

D.  Lynn Justis's picture

I have been in the Aerial Photography business for 32 years. I hav not used a filter since digital. First, I do not fly until the light is right. And, by using RAW I have every tool needed at my finger tips to modify or enhance the image I start with. Note: I had more than 40 Nikon filters I could not give away!

Doug Wigton's picture

I believe you still need to use Polarizing filters, as you really can only partially mimic this effect in software. Particularly the reduction of reflections from water or highlights. Also, I still find that using a neutral density filter is the only way to reduce highlights enough to take long exposures. I still use a graduated neutral density filter to reduce dynamic range for landscapes, because the effective exposure is better than using a software effect to "dim" the sky, or "brighten" the foreground.

Roland Reisley's picture

A polarizer can be essential to reduce reflections, darken blue sky and cut haze. Nearly impossible with software.

Jim Hayes's picture

ND for longer exposures, graduated ND for reducing sky exposures, circular polarizer for sky and reflections.

Dennis's picture

Very definitely. There will always be a need for polarizing and graduated neutral density filters.

Bob Vannix's picture

I can do it with filters and by have a stock unfiltered original, I have more options with plug-ins

Bugsman's picture

Could not live without my graduated ND filter.

Jim Albert's picture

I use my polarizing filter on just about everything I shoot outside. Throw in graduated neutral density. Proper application can make for a better capture.

Larry Shank's picture

I still use a polorizer to darken the sky and contrast with white clouds. I also like the effects of a warming filter on a lot of scenes.

Paul Hinrichs's picture

I regularly use a circular polarizer. I also use neutral density graduated to control sky / foreground exposure. I can tweak the results digitally, but without the filters I'd have to use HDR to retain digital information.

Steven B.'s picture

At a minimum, I can't imagine life without several neutral density filters. Given a minimum ISO of 100 on most DSLRs, there is no way to use a slow shutter speed without them, especially if you want to manage depth of field. Also, of course, I need a polarizer for glare. Software cannot handle either of these issues. Both need to be addressed at the light source.

Paul Antrim 's picture

I utilize filters that produce effects unatainable with image processing (Photoshop, Nik) such as polarizers, star and other dePfraction effects.

Janet Kubas-Furnish's picture

Because if you do it right the first time you don't have to spend so much time in front of the computer adding filters, etc. If you can do it TTL and get the result you want why spend any extra time in front of the computer when you can be behind the camera taking pictures!

Ed's picture

Certainly haze, UV and polarizing filters are still very useful. Center filters are essential for compensating for super wide angle lenses. The old axiom always applies, "you can't add back in what wasn't captured to begin with."

Michael S.  Rose's picture

I regularly use UV, CP, ND filters on my lens to 1) block general glare, 2) block or reduce directional glare/reflections, and 3) to reduce DOF in bright light. None of these can/should/will be accomplished in Post Processing!

Milton McNatt's picture

I use a polarizer to make the sky darker blue, to make clouds stand out better, to reduce reflections off of foliage to make the greens look deeper, and to reduce reflections off of water to provide more detail. I use a starburst filter occasionally to create radial spears of light radiating from lights at night. The result is sometimes quite spectacular. Of course, UV filters are good lens protectors. I'd like to see a plug-in do that!

Dorsey Davis's picture

Polarizing filters reduce non-specular glare and haze in a way that no software is capable of doing. This makes for better contrast and color saturation.

Don Cordell's picture

I still use polarizing filters to control reflected light, and an occasional ND filter to force the camera shutter speed higher, since so many digital cameras have no control on shutter speed.

Peter R.'s picture

There is no e-substitute for a polarizer. Filters for black and white continue to be important - and surpass their electronic simulation. And of course, there's always the need to protect the lens using a UV or Skylight filter.

John Van Aken's picture

With so many software options available, filters for digital photography are not necessary.

Ed Le Doux's picture

I try to get the best image with effects at capture, reducing post-production time. I'll use polarizers, fog, warming, center-sharp, star and other Cokin filters.

Paul's picture

No post processing that I have seen can improve a good polarizing lens on so many shots. Also, use of ND filters to allow slower shutter speeds in daylight. Even lowest ISO on digital cameras cannot help you reduce shutter speeds enough to allow image of water movement for example.

Daniel's picture

I use a daylight or UV filter on all of my lenses; Why? Replacing a damaged or scratched filter is cheap and gives an extra layer of prtotection. If a bad damaged area is on lense coating it can mean that the lense is finished for good photo work.

David's picture

I use UV and polarizer filters on my digital camera and I still shoot black and white film so I use the above filters plus orange and red filters on my film cameras.

Bob Wall's picture

I use 2 and 3 stop graduated ND filters to handle the range of highlights and shadows.

Fred H.'s picture

Graduated ND and circular polarizers handy for DSLRs.

Gene's picture

UV for lens protection, Polarizer for deep blue skys and ND for slower shutter speeds otherwise, PS does a better job thatn the plethora of CC filters we used to draf around for film cameras.