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Archive 2013 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or simila...
  
 
RobDickinson
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


Some shorter canon zooms ( 17-40, 16-35, 24-105 etc) require a filter to be fully sealed.its on the canon product info pages I think.


Jan 20, 2013 at 07:18 PM
Wahoowa
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


Gochugogi wrote:
Sweet dude, come to Hawaii with your nekid tele 'n shoot big waves 'n surfers.


For some reason, the first time I read this, it went into my head like this,

"Sweet dude, come to Hawaii with your tele 'n shoot nekid ladies 'n big waves."

Hmmm...don't know why.



Jan 20, 2013 at 07:28 PM
RobDickinson
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


eskimochaos wrote:
Dont use UV filters on any lens.

Gochugogi wrote:
Sweet dude, come to Hawaii with your nekid tele 'n shoot big waves 'n surfers.


Wonder what you do with the supertele's that dont take 'protective' filters at all....



Jan 20, 2013 at 07:32 PM
Ian.Dobinson
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


RobDickinson wrote:
Wonder what you do with the supertele's that dont take 'protective' filters at all....


I was thinking much the same thing.

I will conceed that like that example there are times when a UV filter offers the best option for protection.

However what makes me cringe is this silly idea that gets put into many users that a UV filter offers protection against other things. I see it mentioned loads of times (usually after something has happened) how "my camera fell/got knocked / something hit it" and only the filter broke/got scratched. the implication is that without the magical powers of the filter on the front the front element would have been smashed to pieces or had a scratch that would wreck it. well it wouldnt. a filter is a very thin peice of glass that is way more fragile than the element behind it.

its like saying im going to drape a bunch of lightbulbs on the front of my car. that way if something hits me the bulbs will break and protect the fender behind them

And even worse a damaged filter can be what damages the front element. Ive seen a friends 24-70L that has 4 really nast pock marks in the element from a filter. and the cause of the original damage was the rubber end of a walking stick.

But it is also correct that a few lenses require a filter to complete the weather seal.
I find this quite strange on Canons part.
1: if a filter is required why dont Canon make and supply a filter ? (at least that way they can design one that does not degradethe image)
2: not supplying one is like buying a car with asunfroof and having to get someone else to supply the glass so the rain doesnt come in.



Jan 20, 2013 at 08:35 PM
RobDickinson
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


I've seen numerous threads with broken filters, some that have caused damage to the lens or stuck on.

And by some miracle the thin frail piece of filter glass has absorbed all of the impact and saved the day. still. :rolleyes:



Jan 20, 2013 at 08:45 PM
lukeb
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


kewlcanon wrote:
Don't use cheap UV filter.


+1

Been shooting since the early 60's and never had a problem with shooting with quality UV filters.

The answer to the question is: Whatever floats your boat.......



Jan 20, 2013 at 08:52 PM
diverhank
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


3iron wrote:
I really interested in what was said about the UV filter being necessary to make a lens weather proof. Never heard of that, but, that is not unusual for me.
Could you enlarge on that issue or show me where I could find what lenses need or do not need this?
Thanks much.
I wonder the same thing. I've heard repeatedly from respected people on this but I have not seen anything official from, say Canon. In the spirit of "trust but verify", I have placed an email to Canon support to ask about this. Hopefully they will either confirm or deny. I did try to search via the Canon website but couldn't find anything. It would be very interesting if this turned out to be an urban legend, wouldn't it?



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:20 PM
lukeb
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


diverhank wrote:
I wonder the same thing. I've heard repeatedly from respected people on this but I have not seen anything official from, say Canon. In the spirit of "trust but verify", I have placed an email to Canon support to ask about this. Hopefully they will either confirm or deny. I did try to search via the Canon website but couldn't find anything. It would be very interesting if this turned out to be an urban legend, wouldn't it?


I doubt you will get a definitive (cut and dry) answer from Canon - they sell filters too - and I doubt they will want to offend the other filter manufacturers.

http://shop.usa.canon.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/subCategory_10051_10051_-1_12111



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:28 PM
RobDickinson
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


From the 17-40L manual:




Jan 20, 2013 at 09:29 PM
Gochugogi
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


RobDickinson wrote:
Wonder what you do with the supertele's that dont take 'protective' filters at all....


A really deep hood helps greatly but most of those lenses actually have a plain glass filter over the front element which can be easily replaced by Canon Service after you're chipped off salt spray one too many times. I don't own any super tele but my ancient EF 300 4L USM has seen a lot of beach service without ill effects. Since Canon no longer services it I've gone through a dozen of cheap 77mm Tiffen filters on that lens these past 20 years. The hood pulls out so it's too shallow to effectively shield the lens from mist. When it gets really bad I remove the filter and rinse in a beach shower, dry and reinstall.



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:37 PM
 

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RobDickinson
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


eskimochaos wrote:
Dont use UV filters on any lens.

Gochugogi wrote:
Sweet dude, come to Hawaii with your nekid tele 'n shoot big waves 'n surfers.

RobDickinson wrote:
Wonder what you do with the supertele's that dont take 'protective' filters at all....

Gochugogi wrote:
A really deep hood helps greatly but most of those lenses actually have a plain glass filter over the front element which can be easily replaced by Canon Service after you're chipped off salt spray one too many times. I don't own any super tele but my ancient EF 300 4L USM has seen a lot of beach service without ill effects. Since Canon no longer services it I've gone through a dozen of cheap 77mm Tiffen filters on that lens these past 20 years. The hood pulls out so it's too shallow to effectively shield the lens from mist.
...Show more


You realise canon have dropped the plain glass filter element on the mkII's now right?



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:41 PM
diverhank
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


RobDickinson wrote:
From the 17-40L manual:

http://i27.photobucket.com/albums/c172/robdickinson/1740.jpg


Thanks very much Rob. This is the first I've seen since I don't own this one. I have re-checked the manuals for the lenses that I own, none of them has this so does this mean it only applies to a few? BTW, the 24-105, 100-400 are among the ones that the manual does not say that you need to use it for weather-proofing.



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:47 PM
RobDickinson
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


Your right the 24-105 manual doesnt say it.

The 100-400L wont as its not sealed anyhow...



Jan 20, 2013 at 09:51 PM
Photon
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


The 50/1.2 L requires a filter for weather sealing.

The MkII teles have a fluorine coating on the front element that makes them less prone to collect grease, and maybe also a little less vulnerable to salt spray. Canon doesn't make that claim about salt, it's wishful thinking on my part, but as they're easier to clean for fingerprints and such, I'm hopeful that ocean mist might also be easier to wipe off. Haven't gone rushing out to test it with my 300!

I took the filter off my 100-400 a few years ago, and it did seem to sharpen up just a bit, though I never did any controlled testing so that doesn't mean much.



Jan 20, 2013 at 10:07 PM
diverhank
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


For what it's worth, I've got an answer from Canon...quite a surprise since today is a Sunday. I had to put down a lens so I chose the 24-105mm. I'm not quite sure if the answer is limited to this lens or not... I'll leave that up to you to decide.

My question:

I own the 24-105mm lens along with several other L type lenses (24-70 f/2.8L II, 70-200mm f/4L, 100mm f/2.8L, 400mm f/5.6L, etc). There is a popular belief that Canon lenses such as this one, but not all lenses, requires a filter (such as UV)to complete its weather proofing requirement. None of the user manuals for any of my lenses mentions this. I'd like to know if there is any truth to this and if true, I'd like to have a list of lenses that would require a filter.

Thanks so much for your help. This is important for me to know because I don't like filters and would rather not install them.

Canon's Answer:
=====
Dear Hank:

Thank you for contacting Canon product support. I am glad to assist you with Canon L glass and UV filters.

I can see where something like that would make sense, as the filter is one more safeguard when it's attached to the lens. There is nothing in the specifications that require the use of an UV filter to complete weather resistance. I can safely tell you though, that using an actual UV filter on the lens is highly recommended by myself and just about everyone else who protects their investment. UV filters keep the font element of the lens from getting damaged and away from the elements. Most professional photographers I know keep one on their lenses at all times.

I hope this information is helpful to you. Please let us know if we can be of any further assistance with your EF 24-105mm f/4L IS USM lens.

Thank you for choosing Canon.

Sincerely,

Timothy
Technical Support Representative

Special Note: Certain issues are very difficult to resolve via email. If your question remains unanswered after you have received this email, you may call our special toll-free number for email customers with unresolved issues and speak to a technician by dialing 1-866-261-9362, Monday - Friday 8:00 a.m. - 12:00 midnight ET, and Saturday 10:00 a.m. - 8:00 p.m. ET (excluding holidays).

If you prefer to continue to communicate via email, reply to this message and we will respond as quickly as possible.

Email is not a secure form of communication. Please do not send us your credit card number or other personal or account information via email.
=====



Jan 20, 2013 at 11:40 PM
ZoneV
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


I saw images where a front filter damaged IQ starting ~ 200mm focal length for DSLR cameras. And I think I remember those filter where quality filters.

Problem is: Everybody talks about transmission of filter. No one in photography talks about how flat filters are - exept manufacturers. For optics filters with something like 1 wavelength of light are ok. 1/4 or even 1/10 of wavelength are good filters. Such filters with 1/10 wavelength flatness are used for amatuer astro photography.

Those filter for us photographers are not as good.
I want to start measurments. First filter in not perfect setup seems to have ~8 wavelengths difference in flatness!
In front of long lenses such problems could get visible enlarged.

No filter manufacturer answered my question how flat their filters are.
At least Hoya seems to try to get a better quality, like some good German manufacturers. But I am not sure whether these are good enought for the 100-400.



Jan 21, 2013 at 02:38 PM
Gunzorro
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


There are a lot of opinions on protective filters.

My opinion is that there is a good chance they degrade IQ slightly. I'm willing to be cautious and refrain from using them in situations that I completely control, with no unexpected elements or motions that could inflict damage to the front element. Or using lenses I don't care much about.

Here are a few thoughts and experiences.

My first view camera (Kodak Korona) came with a lens (Kodak Anastigmat) that had a large gouge in the front element, and some less critical scratching. I was able to take pictures, but the lens was essentially worthless -- it was worth more for the shutter. No provision for a filter on this older lens, at least not a convenient size (probably like 39mm).

I bought a Nikon AIS 180/2.8 ED lens with gouged and deeply scratched front element. Someone had obviously had it in the camera bag loose with other Nikon lenses, and the lens cap came off (or was not put on). The metal "ears" for aperture control of other lenses obviously banged and scraped into that front element. Again, the lens was nearly worthless for resale, but I used a Sharpie to darken in these specific marks (the element was mostly clear and unscuffed), as the marks did cause noticeable flare if sun or bright light touched the surface. The bad news is the marks are visible to posed humans, and they leave telltale blemishes in the bokeh circles. A filter would have taken the beating, not the lens element.

I bought another used Nikon AIS lens, a 24/2, which had been obviously carried PJ-style -- in a bag without caps. The front glass was scratched and scraped all over, and the back element was essentially a special effects fog lens due to the rough-buff it had gotten all over. The mechanics were beaten to hell too. I sent to Nikon and got a rebuild and replace of the front elements section, but the rear could only be slightly polished. Cost me about $200 more for the repair, and now I have a lens that works pretty good from f/2.8 to 5.6, but looks fuzzy wide open or past 5.6. When I go to sell, it will be worth about $50, despite all the work, and would have been less if the front element was still marred. (Undamaged, the lens sells used for near $300 in excellent condition.)

I had bought a brand new Zeiss ZE 21/2.8, and when I went to sell it after about a year of ownership, I noticed a small scratch on the front element. I'd fallen under the sway of the "no filter" crowd, and apparently the metal lens hood had slipped once on mounting and scraped the surface. I could see the mark, and had to disclose it for sale, even though it didn't affect IQ in the least. That cost about $200 and make the lens much more difficult to sell -- people seem to think if you are honest, you are covering up even worse faults!

I've bought lots of used lenses that have marks on the front glass, and if they weren't disclosed in the listing, I ask for a minor refund, or return the item. I've gotten a lot of good deals myself from this "damage" and the lenses are generally fine with no affect on IQ. But it is a crap-shoot, as with the severe damage that occasionally turns up. This complexity and uncertainty turns off a lot of people to buying used lenses or gear in general -- and that contributes to the affordable prices for those wishing to chance it.

From a cosmetic standpoint, I've had the metal ring of the filter come in contact with cement structures plenty of times while out photographing building, especially when setting the camera down for a minute or two. Otherwise, marks would have been left near the lens' filter ring, making marks on the front of the lens barrel. Naturally, I try to find soft things or take along my camera bag, but that isn't always possible.

Who's ever had camera with a front heavy lens drop forward on a tripod, slamming into the leg, leaving a little impression on the filter rim? Or the actual lens, if you didn't have a filter mounted? I prefer the filter rim being a tiny bit marked up, not the lens bent.

At events, and while gyrating around in landscape, in I've had plenty of contact and light frontal impacts on the filter mounted on a lens -- pens, nails, cuff links, branches, etc -- that leave permanent marks on the filter. These would have gone on the lens and at the least lowered its value and desirability. (Then there are salt spray, coffee spray/drops, pitch, etc, that may or may not mark, but are a bitch to remove.) Granted, for catastrophic damage, like dropping the lens on cement, or being hit with a hammer, the filter could do more damage than not -- then again there are instances here where the filter protected the filter ring and front element! But for minor impacts, I think it is prudent to think the filter will take the beating instead of the front element.

In checking and cleaning UV and CPL filters, I'm amazed at how much film and dirt gets on the lens in a few weeks or months of light use outdoors in city situations -- even more in the "wild". Upon examination, I find small scratches from things rubbing on the surface in "normal" use, plus a build up over years of ultra-fine cleaning marks. If people think these marks, films, and smudges don't affect IQ, I don't know that to say to convince them!

Going into inclement surroundings, I'll always consider my lenses as needing the filter to complete a safety seal, even for a non-L lens. Naturally, if I had a lens that I could confirm IQ degradation, I would leave a filter off except in the direst need.

I avoid filters as a calculated risk, when I can control the environment (about 70% of the time) -- then I think there is an advantage to IQ, at least temporarily while the lens is clean. So, I'm firmly in the middle of the discussion. I try to use a lens hood with no filter along, but it's not always practical.

Whew! Word, up!



Jan 21, 2013 at 03:55 PM
Roland W
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


There is no question that a protection filter is very useful for some situations, and I use one when needed, but only for protection from mist or salt spray or dust or blowing sand. But when I need a protection filter, I always use a top quality multi coated one, to minimize the issues it creates. And I always use a lens hood for mechanical impact protection except in a few cases where I can not.

I do not have a source for a full list of the Canon lenses that need the front protection filter to give the lens a "sealed status", but the ones that have moving front optical group that moves in and out of the lens housing when zoomed are the ones that need a filter. The small gap around the edge of the moving front group is the opeing that needs to be sealed up. Both versions of the Canon 16-35 are lenses that I know have the moving optical group. Most longer Canon telephoto zoom lenses, including the 100-400, do not need a front filter to provide sealing protection, but the 100-400 is not a sealed lens design to begin with, and has plenty of other places where contamination can enter or be "sucked" in. You can hear a 100-400 "breath" air in or out when you zoom it fast.

The flat optical surfaces of a filter act different than any of the curved surfaces that the internal lens elements have, and that is why filters are "worse" than you would think. Light can reflect off of the front of the image sensor in a digital camera, and then reflect off of the flat surface of the filter, and return back to the sensor. In scenes where there are big areas of dark, combined with bright sources of light, like a night city scene, it is very easy to see the effects of a filter as extra images of the light sources. Even a good filter will show up some effects, so those kind of scenes are especially important to remove all flat filters.

Canon super telephoto lenses of the first generation needed a protection element at the front because the main fluorite front element was too soft to stand up well to cleaning. So they added a thin glass element that is multi coated on both sides for protection. But because of the multiple image reflection issues off of the digital sensor, they went to the trouble of making the protection glass with a slight curvature, which dispersed the reflected images off of axis far enough to eliminate the problem. That is a perfect example of a solution to the problem where a “filter” was needed, but for more normal lenses, we have the choice to just leave the filter off.

Besides the specific reflection effects, you also loose contrast in an image when you add a filter, and again especially if you add a low quality filter. The loss of contrast can often appear as a "loss of sharpness", but in addition, a low quality filter can also cause a true loss of sharpness, especially in longer focal length lenses. A good and expensive filter, made with high quality color neutral multi coated surfaces, and with a high quality glass substrate that is finished very accurately, is what you want as a minimum on any lens when you truly need a filter for protection. And there is no benefit of a filter for UV protection for digital photography, because the sensor all ready has significant UV protection built in.

Note that in the film days, if you are old enough to remember that stuff, UV filters were much more useful and necessary for cutting UV to prevent a haze type of effect in sunny distant scenes or while shooting at high altitude. And also, film did not reflect light back forward in a polished surface way, so you had no problems with filters that caused imaged multiple reflections.

So the general rules from my point of view are use a top quality clear protector for contamination protection when needed, a top quality polarizer for UV haze removal or reflection control, and a top quality solid neutral density filter if you need longer exposure or less depth of field. Otherwise, enjoy that beautiful lens with nothing on the front except its hood.



Jan 21, 2013 at 07:10 PM
alexdi
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


Try your test again. Tripod, MLU, remote release, static high-detail subject, and so on. If you can seen a difference with the UV filter, the filter is garbage.

I really think we need to start treating this like audio. There's too much "well, I can see it even if you can't" malarkey. If you think you can spot a difference, let's find out with a double-blind setup.



Jan 21, 2013 at 07:21 PM
Zenon Char
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p.2 #20 · p.2 #20 · Thanks to those that commented on No Filter (UV or similar) on 100-400


They may be able to prove it on paper but I don't think the human can tell the difference if there is a high quality filter on the end. What convinced me were these shots. B+W UV filter on the lens and taken through thick dirty zoo glass. At least 3/8" thick, maybe more. There has to be some quality loss due to the zoo glass but these images are far from unacceptable. How much better could they have been? Not much I don't think.




















Jan 21, 2013 at 09:16 PM
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