Friday, June 15, 2007

Follow-up on Cheap Lens Filters

After reading some comments about those looking at alternatives to the pricey filters, such as the circular polarizing filter I had just reviewed in a video, I decided to make a follow-up post about my own feelings on using inexpensive filters. I tend to disagree with such a broad statement, that one might consider cheap filters as "acceptable." I'd rather want "desirable" results instead, when it comes to image quality. If a manufacturer has made a nice filter and yet isn't consistent with a good majority of the samples, I wouldn't touch it with a 10-foot pole. Case in point, my OEC filter I got through eBay. I had read that there were plenty of good feedbacks, so since the thing cost $40, we tried it. But if you look at the results of the video review I just posted at would you ~really~ trust putting such glass on top of a sharp lens and gamble with the possibility of distorting your image? I've heard arguments all over about cheap polarizers (other filters and lenses as well). People simply shouldn't gamble too much over what they put on a sharp lens.

The problem is that what lies on top is what will be the best you can get from an image. If the filter sucks, you could have the most quality glass on the planet, but your results will suck raw eggs. And once you shoot images using inferior equipment, you're ultimately capturing history that cannot be revisited, but for the images you've frozen in time. I was shocked to see the results that the video showed as I turned the polarizing filter. Watch how the filter I got distorts everything. We feel passionate about our images. Don't compromise too much by using bad filters on good gear.

No comments: