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07-16-2012, 04:26 AM   #16
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I think the best way to protect your investment is a no fault insurance policy (like I can drop my ring down the garbage disposal and its covered or just loose something, or drop it in the toilet) and its covered for whatever its insured for. I pay only about $20 every six moths for $4000 worth of gear.

For the record I only use hoods for my personal lens.


Last edited by Whitewind; 07-16-2012 at 04:31 AM.
07-16-2012, 05:08 AM   #17
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Insurance, like what Whitewind has is typical of what you can get as a rider on your home policy.

cost is 1-2% of insured value, largely depending on whether the valuables stay within your home or you take them outside the home.

there are good and bad things about these policies.

you need to consider that you declare the value of the gear, and therefore, lets say you have an old legacy lens that you paid $50 for and put that on the form. It is unlikely you can get another one now for that price, therefore you under sell yourself. even new gear is subject to inflation, so your values may not be 100% coverage. The real point here is you have to take responsibility for tracking the market value of the gear.

Now, on the other hand, if you consider your normal insurance, it does not cover you for damaging the gear, only loss or theft, but it is free, (remember the normal house insurance covers you for an insane contents value because it is based upon about 85% of the structure value of your home. THe good here is that it replaces what you loose with new, equivelents, therefore you get the latest and greatest, the bad news is, yoiu have a deductible.

take your pick. I elected long ago to drop the rider on my house policy, and have saved enough that it offsets at least 1 if not 2 of my DSLR bodies.

Also note, regardless of what you have for insurance, replacing your gear is harder than you think. expecially legacy glass


As for the OP's issue, i use filters in harsh environments. lets face it, the likelyhood of scratching the front element is directly proportional to the need to clean it.
07-16-2012, 05:15 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by slackercruster Quote
Depends. I got a 17 with a speck of dark dust in it. Shows up like hell in the sky of each photo. Can't say about knicks though.
Having dust, or scratch inside the lens is a wholly different thing, than a scratch on the front element. The last usually won't show in the final image. The excemption from the rule might be an extreme wide angle which you shoot stopped down, in which case a scratch might leave a visible mark on the image.

Whether dust inside is visible depends on the concrete position in the last. Usually, the nearer it is to the rear lens, the easier it is visible. big dust specks in zooms might get visible, if they are on the rear of the variator - but in fact I have never seen dust specks laving visible traces. And my 300/2.8 also has a scratch on the front element, which bears no consequence at all.

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07-16-2012, 05:18 AM   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
Insurance, like what Whitewind has is typical of what you can get as a rider on your home policy.

cost is 1-2% of insured value, largely depending on whether the valuables stay within your home or you take them outside the home.

there are good and bad things about these policies.

you need to consider that you declare the value of the gear, and therefore, lets say you have an old legacy lens that you paid $50 for and put that on the form. It is unlikely you can get another one now for that price, therefore you under sell yourself. even new gear is subject to inflation, so your values may not be 100% coverage. The real point here is you have to take responsibility for tracking the market value of the gear.

Now, on the other hand, if you consider your normal insurance, it does not cover you for damaging the gear, only loss or theft, but it is free, (remember the normal house insurance covers you for an insane contents value because it is based upon about 85% of the structure value of your home. THe good here is that it replaces what you loose with new, equivelents, therefore you get the latest and greatest, the bad news is, yoiu have a deductible.
Lucky North Americans... I had a camera insurance in the distant past and payed something like 10% of the nominal value p.a. It was a Swiss all risk insurance, but the only one available at that time.

Ben

07-16-2012, 07:15 AM   #20
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QuoteOriginally posted by séamuis Quote
so did you get this 'nick' in the front element while using the lens, or were you carelss with the lens in another manner. Your story didnt actually explain how your lens got scratched, therefore i cant see as an observer, tha the lack of a UV filter was to blame. ... The simple fact is, anything can indeed happen at anytime. Which means filter or no filter your lens can get scratched, broken, etc. Theres no way to say really that its absolutely good or bad to always have a filter. Youre taking a risk either way.
You're absolutely right. I don't remember the exact incident that caused the scratch, just that I noticed it one day only about 3 months after I bought it. Perhaps some grit got between the lens and the Lenspen or cloth that I was cleaning it with. Perhaps the ring of my CP filter bumped it while I was mounting/removing it. But if these front elements are so "tough", esp. on the DA* lenses, I'm perplexed at how this could have occurred after such minor contact when all the other lenses I've ever owned have never gotten a scratch no matter what I've put them through.

QuoteOriginally posted by Clavius Quote
Wow, it takes some serious abuse before such tough glass is scratched. Especially in such a short amount of time. Are you sure it's not dirt?
If it's dirt, then it's the most stubborn I've ever encountered! I've tried all my dirt-removal tricks and can conclude that it is most likely a scratch.
07-16-2012, 07:18 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
My primary objection to filters is that I have seen (and taken) too many images that had ghosts or artifacts from the filter in them. That is just not acceptable to me, so I do not use filters except for CPL when needed. Maybe that is cheap filters, or just shots into lights or the sun, or maybe just the lens, I don't know but it is enough to make me avoid them.
This is my experience as well. I have tried UV filters numerous times on multiple lenses, and the results are never better, and often worse. With cheap UV filters, I've seen reduction in resolution and some haziness. Even with decent filters from Hoya and B&W, I have been surprised by ghosts in innocuously lit shooting situations. If I care about image quality, especially with more expensive glass, I will not use a filter. This is unfortunate, since it's the expensive lenses I'd prefer to protect. But I'm not going to protect my lens at the cost of the photos. I don't really care if someone else has better experiences with filters than I do. They don't work for me.

QuoteOriginally posted by slackercruster Quote
Depends. I got a 17 with a speck of dark dust in it. Shows up like hell in the sky of each photo. Can't say about knicks though.
There may be dark dust in your lens, but what shows up in the sky of your photos is probably dust on your sensor.
07-16-2012, 07:25 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Designosophy Quote
But I'm not going to protect my lens at the cost of the photos.
Yep, if you are counting on those photos for income then getting a surprise back in the studio after a shoot is not a good thing. Especially if working for a client and you can't do over.

But I doubt the OP was intending to start a new filters are good/bad thread. I feel bad about his lens, I know how I would fell if one of my expensive tools got dinged.
07-16-2012, 07:41 AM   #23
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I feel bad about your lens and I know how I would feel if it had happened to any one of mine.

The UV filter issue is always good for a long and involved thread and nothing ever seems to be resolved by the time it peters out. I am not going to add to the chorus, whether I use a UV filter or not is my decision. But I can say that I made that decision by doing some testing on my own lens, doing the type of photography I enjoy doing. And that is what each of us should do. Put it to the test. If you can see that the filter has degraded the quality of your image in a way that you are not happy with, by all means take it off. And another thing, don't expect a cheap, $20 UV filter to enhance the image quality on any lens, let alone one that cost several hundred dollars. The manufacturer put a lot of effort into building your lens so that it would work properly and then you slap a cheap, little piece of window glass on the front of it that was made by a company that won't even be around next month. If you are going to use one, use a quality filter, they are not that expensive. And for crying out loud, keep it clean! Dirty lenses and dirty filters probably cause more image degradation in a given day then any scratch or smudge.

I gotta get a life! Time to go take some pictures.

07-16-2012, 08:04 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by jatrax Quote
But I doubt the OP was intending to start a new filters are good/bad thread. I feel bad about his lens, I know how I would fell if one of my expensive tools got dinged.
I feel empathy for him as well. I guess I was responding to the original post as a cautionary tale. My most expensive lens is an 77mm FA Limited, and I wish I had a reliable protector/filter for it. I tried a couple. If I acquired a DA 50-135, I'd probably try again.
07-16-2012, 08:19 AM   #25
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I don't generally use filters, afraid that the IQ will suffer... But I'm happy that the DA* 50-135 I just got came with a Hoya HMC Pro1 on the front and I think I'll leave it there, thank you very much.

I have had one front element scratched when 2 of my Taks bumped together and a lens cap popped off. I don't want that to happen to my DA*.
07-16-2012, 09:04 AM   #26
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I stopped using UV filters last year and have felt no ill effects. Now I mostly use lens hoods, and if I'm outside, I nearly always use a decent circular polarizer (unless im shooting in low light or am using a UWA). Plus, I'm careful. Stuff happens though. I also bought a personal articles insurance policy through State Farm.
07-16-2012, 09:31 AM   #27
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I use multicoated UV filters from Hoya and Promaster. I'm happy with the quality of my photos, but I'm not absolutely extreme about the various potential negatives. I will remove the filter for a special purpose (usually to have minimal flare at night with strong lights around), but that is rare. I can usually angle my photos to minimize reflection. Ease of cleaning and protection are my main reasons to use them. I won't change which side of the fence I'm on just like everyone else here.
07-16-2012, 10:40 AM   #28
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Sorry to hear about your lens scratch. As you mentioned, you don't know how it happened but it COULD have been nicked when you put a CPL filter onto the lens. I use clear or UV filters when in a dusty or sandy environment because of the risk from those particles to the front element. Other than that, hoods all the way. As has been said, there is no filter that adds to the quality of the image's sharpness but hoods do.
07-16-2012, 11:05 AM   #29
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I stopped using UV filters in 2004, when I got my first digital SLR. I had to stop using them, or get much more expensive filters, because I was getting strong reflections off them. Took me a while to figure out the filter was causing the problem, and I had a bunch of really weird pictures due to that.

Since 2004, I've never scratched the front element of any of my lenses.
07-16-2012, 07:48 PM   #30
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I don't use one indoors but I often do outside. The sun here is just brutal and it fades things all the time. My last pair of sunglasses went from a very dark grey to a shade about 6 times lighter in six months and that was with very minimal sun exposure. I'm not outside a whole lot because I can't be actually. I'm a RH, fair, I'll burn quickly. I also have a health problem that gets worse from sun exposure and overheating. If I get too much sun I look like a leprous rabbit with pink eye and too much heat can literally make me barf.

A half hour or so in the sun and the next day I can barely see and I've got scabs popping up on my face or wherever the sun hit. I always wear very dark sunglasses and I stay in when the sun and heat are at their worst. I'm a bit vampiric actually. It's like I am allergic to the sun. I don't do outdoors much unless I absolutely have to and when I do go out I'm covered all up, wearing sunglasses, a hat etc. I don't forget the sunblock, ever, but even that doesn't help all the time. You can only filter out so much UV even with sunblock, shrug.

I never even really noticed the fading until I got new glasses and realized that the glasses I had were that much lighter even though the coating was identical, the darkest they use. I asked the tech in the eye doctor's about that he said that it happens all the time and that was why you should always use sunglasses down here, to keep all that UV exposure away from your eyes. It made sense to me. I mean people UV lenses on purpose to de-yellow them. Obviously sun exposure can bleach lenses.

Using a good, and mind you the key word is good, UV filter can probably save the MC on a lens from fading too much. I don't believe in using them every time though because conversely a good shot of UV once in a while can keep lenses from getting fungus, but if I am shooting a lot outdoors after a short while I do put a UV filter or a P Filter on if I feel I need one. I've never noticed a lot of difference, but then again I have pretty good filters. I don't know if it would affect the coating on modern lenses as much, but definitely I use one with my older ones or a lens hood, whichever.

Last edited by magkelly; 07-16-2012 at 07:55 PM.
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