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Archive 2013 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue
  
 
dbernstein
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


hi all! i've searched for a similar thread and didn't find one, but let me know if there's another post i'm missing.

i recently rented a singh-ray vari nd filter (77mm) for a trip and was looking forward to taking some long exposures of the ocean/beach. unfortunately, my computer turned itself into an expensive paper weight a day into my trip and i couldn't review my pictures. i did a little bit of chimping, but couldn't see the extent of this problem on the back of my camera. here's what i got (this isn't the best picture, just the best example of the problem):

http://www.flickr.com/photos/91379282@N02/8469676215/in/photostream

i've done a little research on the web to see what the problem might be and it sounds like the VARIABLE part of the nd filter was misaligned, but this is consistent for pretty much every picture i took with it...

has anybody else had this problem? what's the solution?

it seems like these pictures are pretty much rubbish unless there's some genius way to fix this in post?

any help/insight would be truly appreciated!!

shot details (if helpful): Nikon D600, Nikon 16-35/4.0, singh-ray vary nd filter 77mm, for the most part shooting S priority ~4sec @ ISO 100 in RAW.

Edited on Feb 13, 2013 at 08:28 PM · View previous versions



Feb 13, 2013 at 11:04 AM
Guari
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


Tried to review them on my ipad but I'm getting a broken link. I tried removing the @ but no avail. Maybe I'm missing something?

EDIT: It's working now. No idea what you can do to salvage those. I would email Singh Ray about it and see what they say.

They also have a Fbook page where you can contact them..

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Singh-Ray-Filters/133055316767784



Feb 13, 2013 at 11:43 AM
dsjtecserv
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


(The link only includes the first part of the full URL. For someone to view your picture they need to copy and paste the full URL.)

The pattern you see is characteristic of variable neutral density filters adjusted for high ND (greater than about 5 stops, in my experience). It seems to be inherent in the nature of using crossed polarizers, which all of these products use. I don't know that there is anything particularly wrong with the one you have, and I don't know if there is anything that can be done to avoid it (other than not adjusting it for very high ND). But it would be interesting to hear what Singh Ray comments and advises. I hope you'll pass on any response you get.

Dave



Feb 13, 2013 at 04:02 PM
ACNYPhoto
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


shot details (if helpful): Nikon D600, Nikon 16-35/4.0, singh-ray vary nd filter 77mm, for the most part shooting S priority ~4sec @ ISO 100 in RAW.


Variable ND filters are nothing but 2 polarizing filters. The 16-35 covers a very wide angle and you are seeing very uneven polarization.

I own a 77mm Singh Ray and have tested it on my 16-35 and anything with the sky in the picture the results are less than ideal.

The solution is to only use standard ND filters on wide angle lenses.



Feb 13, 2013 at 04:16 PM
dsjtecserv
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


ACNY, the phenomenon he is seeing is different from the familiar problem of uneven density in sky shots with a single polarizer. This pattern affects the entire field, whether the sky is involved or not, and relates to interference between the two polarization angles, and not a differential the polarization of the light itself. It relates to wide angle lenses only because the shorter focal length "sees" more of the filter, and thus more of the pattern, and the difference between lighter and darker parts is more evident; it is not caused by using a wide angle lens. It doesn't seem to be a problem with variable ND at lower densities, so the variability feature is still useful so long as you don't try to go too far. And I agree that the surest way to avoid it is to use a conventional ND, or different NDs in various combinations, to get the degree of density needed.

Dave



Feb 13, 2013 at 04:54 PM
 

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Mike K
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


I agree with the previous poster. You will see this X pattern on every variable ND out there when shooting wide angle lenses at ND greater than about 6. This is about the limit I have seen reported, lesser quality vari-NDsmay show this X pattern at lower densities or narrower angles of view. If you want ND of density greater than 5 or 6 on a wide angle lens, do NOT use a variable ND, but square ND such as the Lee Big Stopper or Hitech/Formatt pro stopper.
http://blog.robertstrachan.com/archives/1314/hitech-pro-stop-review/

The variable NDs work well at up to ND~8 for normal focal length lenses.
Mike K



Feb 14, 2013 at 06:20 PM
Paul Mo
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


If I recall, I this only affects stills - any video shot will remain X-free.


Feb 15, 2013 at 02:52 AM
dsjtecserv
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


Paul Mo wrote:
If I recall, I this only affects stills - any video shot will remain X-free.


Really? I wonder how that could be? Why would it be different for one still picture than for 30 still pictures per second? The X is in the pattern of light reaching the sensor; how could the sensor record that light differently?

Dave



Feb 15, 2013 at 12:45 PM
Tradphoto
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · singh-ray vari nd filter 77mm issue


Here is some information that I have recieved from Singh-Ray when I went through similar issues. hope this helps.

The filter is a very good filter yes expensive but has many uses which give excelent results.

I purchased the 82mm thread mount with hopes of using it for landscape photography. at the time i purchased the filter I was using my Pentax system and discovered none of these issues untill I decided to bring the filter on a trip and now that i shoot with a full frame Canon system I ran into and discovered a variety of results.

After comunicating with Singh Ray about these effects I now realize the limitations of the filter and well as my own errors.

- The filter is limited to 24-35mm focal lengths on a full frame camera (my lenses). On a cropped sensor camera I know other photographers have had great results with wider angles.

- The filter effect the original poster gave an example of is caused by using the filter at the max density with very wide angle lenses. or if you go beyond the max mark. if you use longer length lenses this effect does not rear its ugly head. I also experienced these effects for the first time which is why I contacted Singh-Ray.

Other things to note when using this filter.

- the Min Max marks are reference guides as to where the filters intended ND range is created. The effect inbetween these two marks is not a linear effect but a logarithmic one. basically the filter increases its density vapidly the closer you get to the max mark. the marks are just there to give a reference mark for repeatability of images not as incremental f-stop marks.

- As they (Singh-ray) noted there are so many camera/lens combinations out there that they cannot make a filter that will work with every combination on the market. This will be the case for every other Vari-ND filter out there as well.

As i was reminded and to my own fault it is best when using a new piece of gear (or one that has not been used in a while and to be used on different gear as in my case) To do you homework and test these items before one heads out on trips, photo assignments, etc. so that there are no unexpected surprises. In the end it is not the filter's fault that I pushed its limitations which caused me poor results but my own for just assuming it would work in all cases.

Cheers

V.





Apr 17, 2013 at 08:47 AM





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