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04-21-2013, 11:43 AM   #1
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My ebay Cokin knockoff test shots

I've been seeing the threads debating which filter system is crapier, the Cokin or the Ebay $10 kit. I have a K-x and use mostly the cheaper end lenses, including the kit 18-55, a Tamron 75-300 4-5.6 and various primes from my days shooting film. Here are some unadulterated sample shots of a watercolor paint set. The first image is through my trusty Sears 50mm f1.7. The next shot is with one ND filter, the next is the next strongest ND, the last is with those two filters stacked. Comments are welcome, questions will be answered gladly, criticism taken.

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Last edited by Rafael; 04-21-2013 at 12:05 PM. Reason: sp?
04-22-2013, 11:57 PM   #2
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I believe it's outdoors where the majority of problems occur. I could be wrong. I just ordered the Hitech 0.3-0.6-0.9 soft-edge kit from 2filter.com with two holders, a single and a triple, in addition to a reverse 0.6 ND (not part of the kit). So I'm curious to see some outdoor samples if you're game.

I gotta say, about the Hitech reverse ND, it cost almost as much as the whole soft-edge kit.

Last edited by MD Optofonik; 04-23-2013 at 12:04 AM.
04-23-2013, 12:59 AM - 1 Like   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rafael Quote
threads debating which filter system is crapier
At the end of the day, it's what works for you and gives you the results that you want.
04-23-2013, 05:13 AM   #4
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It'd be easier to see any issues if the images were corrected for white-balance. There appears to be a strong tungsten cast on all images.

Numbers 3 and 4 are showing an additional colour cast, I'd say. Your neutral density filters don't appear to be neutral. When it comes to filters, I'd say that even the best lens is only as good as the first piece of glass in the optical path. I wouldn't be inclined to use a knock-off Chinese brand, but if you like 'em...

04-23-2013, 07:55 AM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by MD Optofonik Quote
I believe it's outdoors where the majority of problems occur. So I'm curious to see some outdoor samples if you're game.
.
I had planned on doing that, I'll try to put some up today.
04-23-2013, 07:57 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by top-quark Quote
It'd be easier to see any issues if the images were corrected for white-balance. There appears to be a strong tungsten cast on all images.
Yeah, I shot those under low light in my TV room with auto white balance. If I take some more shots outdoors, how do you recommend I proceed? Set WB for outdoors or something else? I don't have any experience shooting raw and correcting, but I'm willing to learn for this test. Thanks.
04-23-2013, 10:42 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Rafael Quote
Yeah, I shot those under low light in my TV room with auto white balance. If I take some more shots outdoors, how do you recommend I proceed? Set WB for outdoors or something else? I don't have any experience shooting raw and correcting, but I'm willing to learn for this test. Thanks.
For some reason, electric lights seem to defeat the best of in-camera AWB algorithms. Ease of changing white balance after the fact is just one of many reasons to shoot raw - the colours aren't baked into the image. I don't know what post-processing software you have but Lightroom can do a reasonable job with JPEGs as well. Here are images 1 and 4 above with Adobe's best guess at AWB:

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And, look! Lightroom's made your cheap ND filters neutral too.

AWB should be fine outdoors, but you have presets for "sunny" and "cloudy" and it should be obvious which to use! When shooting indoors and your images are coming out yellow, just switch from AWB to "tungsten" and it should be good. Unless you've got fluorescent lights in which case you can work out which WB preset to use.
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