Written by Sanne

What type of lens filter do I need?

There are different types of lens filters available that help you create the desired photo effect. Below I explain the various types. Per lens filter, you'll find the most important points that help you make a choice. For example, after reading, you'll know whether you should opt for a gray filter or a polarization filter.

UV filter

Digital cameras are not sensitive to UV radiation, so you use a UV filter mainly for extra protection.

** Pros **

  • With a UV filter your lens is protected against scratches and dust.
  • If you photograph high in the mountains where the UV radiation is very strong, you can prevent a blue haze on your photo with a UV filter.
  • Most UV filters have a thin filter edge, so the edge comes not in the picture.

** Cons **

  • A poor quality UV filter has a negative impact on image quality.

Polarization filter

A polarization filter only transmits light that comes from a specific direction, so that you are less troubled by disturbing glare and reflections.

** Pros **

  • Before filtering glare and reflections from the image with a polarization filter, you get a natural color reproduction on your photo.
  • Polarization filters also help to maintain the natural light-dark contrast.
  • With a polarization filter, you have more control over the final photo result.

** Cons **

  • A polarization filter causes light loss, this increases the shutter speed.

Neutral density filter

A gray filter, also known as an ND filter, stops light so that you extend the shutter speed without the photo becoming overexposed. There are also gray gradient filters and variable gray filters available.

** Pros **

  • With a gray filter you can reduce the intensity of the light so that you are more flexible in adjusting the light settings.
  • A greyscale filter allows you to shoot with slower shutter speeds and a larger aperture.
  • Grey gradient filters provide better exposure to an image with a lot of light darkness contrast.

** Negative points **

  • With variable gray filters create black spots on the photo when the filter is completely closed.

Color filter

With a color filter certain colors are stopped so you get more control over the (color) contrasts in your image.

** Pros **

  • With a blue color filter, you create a greater light darkening contrast in a black and white photograph.
  • With underwater photography, a magenta or red filter helps to preserve the white balance.
  • If an orange color filter comes out a sunset better.

** Cons **

  • For some color filters you need an adapter ring.

Close up filter

With a close-up filter you increase your subject so that you focus on the subject.

** Pros **

  • Close up filters make your subject enlarged, reducing the focus distance.
  • With one close up filter you also make macro photos without the intervention of a macro lens.
  • The filters are available in different magnifications that can also be combined with each other.

** Cons **

  • When combining close up filters you increase the risk of vignetting.

© 1999 - 2019 - Coolblue B.V.
Customer rating: 9.3 / 10 - 34,413 reviews