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12-03-2013, 08:01 PM - 1 Like   #31
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The only filters I use are protective UV and circular polarizing, the latter for scenics primarily and occasionally. I sometimes use close-up lenses, especially the Canon-Nikon achromatics but also a Pentax #1 49mm that I've had from about 1965. It works quite well on the 40 & 70mm lenses for close-ups when on tour and I want to reduce weight. I recently obtained an Olympus 49mm achromatic that I've not had opportunity to compare to the single element Pentax.

The odd color filters come mostly from the film era for use on B&W (yellow-orange-red increase contrast especially for emphasizing clouds against a dark sky) or for correcting color reversal (slide) film when used under "incorrect" lighting, for example, daylight balanced slide film used indoors under incandescent lights requires a deep blue filter.

12-03-2013, 11:48 PM - 1 Like   #32
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QuoteOriginally posted by savoche Quote
I think one reason why a lot of us like primes is that being "locked" to one focal length forces you to think, to look for ways to find a good framing and composition for the FL, rather than simply zooming to get a framing that might work. Zoom lenses tend to make me lazy, and maybe less creative.

I think
QuoteOriginally posted by dtmateojr Quote
Zoom lenses actually make me think because they are infinitely flexible. Compression control is something you can't do with prime lenses. Give me a good zoom anytime.
While zooms can be used to make you think, they tend to make people lazy.

For the OP, there are two things that need to be considered when picking focal length (ok there are a lot, but in my perspective-pun intended- only 2). Start with what you are shooting and from where. Specifically what magnification you need. This can determine focal length for single subjects, like sporting events where you focus on one player, portraits, wildlife etc. where you have an idea of subject size, and shooting distance. This is pure math. (Image size = subject size x focal length / distance). Then you need to consider what perspective you want to give the subject. This is determined by your shooting distance and can quite often conflict with your selection of focal length.
(Maybe the above should be switched in order, select perspective first then magnification but you get the point..,)

There are no rules, only guidelines developed by people in the past who we're successful applying specific ranges of focal lengths for specific jobs. The beauty of photography is that it is an age which tolerates breaking the guidelines,

The guidelines or "rules" should be used as a starting point, not the end point.

So back to the issue of zooms vs primes. The best use of a zoom, is to experiment with different focal lengths without changing position. It lets you play with "how would this look if I shot it differently, with a different focal length."

Bit have their uses providing you don't fall into the trap of being lazy with zooms or "I am shooting this style, therefore I must have this focal length".
12-04-2013, 12:16 AM - 1 Like   #33
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For primes and bodies, I have only one body (but often bring along a compact as a second camera). But for scenarios:
- a walkabout on my own, I bring the K-5 and some primes, say 15+21+35+50
- just for a stroll I might bring only the lens currently mounted, whichever that may be
- for a safari I bring the 18-135, 55-300 plus 15mm for wide landscapes and 35mm (or 50mm) for low-light
- for a city holiday 18-135 and 15 or 10-20 (and I suppose I should consider my 8mm FE now that I've got one...)

I don't really see any use for filters other than polarizers. The colored filters you can emulate just fine (and do better) in postprocessing - especially when shooting raw. The UV filters can protect the front element of the lens, but will also be an extra layer of glass for the light to pass through. I'm one of those who think hoods are better protection than filters are. And hoods increase image quality instead of decreasing it

And what Lowell said.
12-04-2013, 05:00 AM   #34
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About protective clear, UV or Skylight 1A filters. Never used one of these until about the second time I went out with the 50-500 Sigma. Walking through a woodsy area with camera/lens on a tripod heading to edge of a pond where I knew there were both waterfowl and a beaver, a branch stuck right down the lens hood and made a little scratch on the front element coating. Didn't degrade IQ, but drove me nuts. The lens was recently sent to Sigma for cleaning (oil on the inner surface of the front element) and it came back with that blemish removed. Not sure how they did it (cleaning, recoating, new front element).

If I can create a strange mental image. Way back I was advised it was easier to carry a single set of filters that fit the largest diameter lens in your set together with step rings for mounting it to all smaller diameter lenses. Consider an 86mm diameter circular polarizer for the 50-500 Sigma mounted with a step ring to the 49mm diameter 40mm f2.8, together with an 86mm thread-on lens hood. Amusing thought. DO NOT do this with your filters.

12-04-2013, 06:04 AM   #35
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QuoteOriginally posted by WPRESTO Quote
DO NOT do this with your filters.
Okay! Thanks for the insights! Really appreciate it!

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