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01-17-2015, 09:26 AM   #1
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What is your opinion on the best type of lens hood?

Rubber, plastic, flower shape.
Please give me any experiences, opinions or real world facts, please.
Thanks.

01-17-2015, 09:43 AM   #2
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Whatever works for the lens involved?

I'd have to say the rubber ones are the handiest though, since you can roll them out of the way when not needed.
01-17-2015, 10:07 AM   #3
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Reversible if its a hard hood is essential IMHO. When a lens doesn't come with a hood I buy a collapsible rubber hood and find them the most useful.
01-17-2015, 10:08 AM   #4
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It depends:

Trying to shoot through glass cases in museums - not petal/flower shape because you get reflections from the corners (and security guards get excited when they hear plastic or metal hoods "clunk" into the glass). I prefer an oversized rubber 3-way hood on a step-up ring.

Older lens where front element turns when focusing - NOT petal/flower shape - it's just too annoying to keep adjusting the hood. I generally prefer the metal tube type because they are more compact. On short lenses, I've also experimented with using step rings as hoods, similar to the 40Ltd hood. Since older lenses tend to have less flare-resistant coatings, deeper is usually better. With a cropped sensor, you can usually get away with using a "normal" hood on a wide lens, "tele" hood on a normal lens, etc.

Getting close to flowers with bees - I've read that bees don't like the petal/flower type, because it looks like something grabbing at them. I've never been stung either way, but YBMV (your bees may vary).

Otherwise, with modern lenses, I generally use the hood designed for them, which is usually a petal/flower hood for wide angle, and a tube for tele.


Last edited by THoog; 01-17-2015 at 11:40 AM.
01-17-2015, 10:18 AM - 1 Like   #5
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I generaly use hoods instead of filters or front caps for protection so I like hard ones with nice protection.
01-17-2015, 10:21 AM   #6
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Any kind of hood that is design for the specific lens that you are using, is a good hood (since all do the same thing).
Now if we can only start teaching people to not have them installed the other way around...

Personally I prefer the metal hood ones that gets installed on the filter (and they stay there). Especially the ones for primes.

Last edited by mrNewt; 01-17-2015 at 10:35 AM.
01-17-2015, 10:26 AM   #7
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Just short enough not to cause vignetting.

01-17-2015, 10:30 AM   #8
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The problem for me with metal hoods is that they don't shatter in case of a sudden blunt force. In case of an accident I want the mechanical weak spot to be the cheapest least important piece possible, like a hood that takes most of the force but don't send it through as it shatters. Think of it as how you construct cars to be as safe as possible, something has to take the force in case of a crash so they make the car so that the front deforms to take away the force from the passengers.
01-17-2015, 10:32 AM   #9
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Some lenses come with their own dedicated hood. Use that one, or a clone/knockoff. If the lens doesn't come with a hood, buy one for a similar lens (and you can take crop sensor into account, get a tighter hood, just make sure its not so tight that it acts as an aperture).
Shape: Square hoods can be great, but you will have a hard time finding one that fits a lens, unless the native hood for that lens was already square. These cut off the most light. Petal, tulipan, flower, crown hoods (heard to many creative names for these..) are next. Circular is final, the most basic design, usually used for tele lenses, where the hood is so deep the shape doesn't matter anyway. Vented lens hoods are made for rangefinders, so they don't obstruct the view too much. The only other reason people use them is because they look fancy - a metal, vented hood reminds of early Leica lenses. But its not that useful.

Material: Plastic is good, since it is quite durable, not very reflective, and if you bump into something, it is better the hood breaks than the lens. If the hood is made of a tough metal, it will withstand the stress, and push it on the lens, which is much more expensive! Rubber hoods are also good for protection, if you will be using it in a very crowded area for example, and expect some bumps. Collapsible rubber hoods are okay as well, since you can adjust its size. But throw it away and buy a new one if the rubber starts flaking or tearing (due to sunlight exposure, environmental conditions, age)
I don't like metal hoods because they are hard, heavy, and can be reflective. And they are usually circular.

Also, there are some situations where you don't want to use a hood, for example if you are experiencing high wind (shooting out a car window, on a boat/ship, helicopter; but also sometimes in nature), as the hood can catch wind and shake the camera, blurring the image.

Using a lens hood is very important for older lenses (with older lens coatings) and for wide angle lenses (due to the inherent design and field of view).

One other thing I read about, but didn't use yet myself, is the filter bayonet. Basically its a filter that you screw onto the lens, but it has no glass. It has the bayonet so you can use a bayonet hood on the lens, which otherwise doesn't have a bayonet for filters. This can be really useful, as bayonet is a better mechanism than screw on or clip on hoods.

Last edited by Na Horuk; 01-17-2015 at 10:37 AM.
01-17-2015, 10:39 AM   #10
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Most of the metal ones are made out of aluminum. Actually pretty much as far as I can tell, the ones that I have are all aluminum.
They can easily bend if the impact is serious enough.

But then again, like I have said, this is my preference:

01-17-2015, 10:53 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Sagitta Quote
Whatever works for the lens involved?
My thoughts exactly, all my "Ladies" always wear hoods... otherwise they're naked, as they choose not to wear filters.

Last edited by Kerrowdown; 01-17-2015 at 02:58 PM.
01-17-2015, 11:26 AM   #12
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i d go for stock hood, if there isn't one include, i get a cheap rubber that can collapse.
I never had to use a metal hood, but always been afraid that it would be so solid that it could break down the lens during a shock.
01-17-2015, 01:32 PM   #13
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I prefer metal rectangular shape.
For wider angle lenses (35mm and wider) on Pentax DSLR I generally use takumar metal rectangular hoods.
-- 28mm lens hood on 24 mm Takumar (w/ a step down ring)
-- 35mm lens hood w/ step down ring on 35mm K f/2, 28mm Takumar, and 24-48mm Tamron AD2 (w/ tape to fill in opening on odd shaped front)
-- A 24 mm lens hood on Tamron AD2 17 mm lens (w/ a 62 mm to ? step ring taped or glued in the lens front)
-- Either 24mm lens hood or (prefer) Ambico shade+ hood for a Vivitar 21mm (T4) lens that flares badly

---------- Post added 01-17-15 at 02:06 PM ----------

Also for 50 mm lenses I prefer Nikon hoods that reverse, and for 50mm and longer Nikon or Pentax circular metal hoods that allow using a standard lens cap at hood front (often a 62 or 72 mm lens cap). Many of the hoods do. There is a list of Nikon hoods w/ this information (not by Nikon/I don't have handy now).
01-18-2015, 07:52 AM   #14
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I have always assumed that the tulip hoods designed for a specific lens were the best in terms of having the smallest hood that covers the largest amount of usable area within a frame. I figured that the same company that made the lens also made the hood, so they probably know much better than me what works, ya know? That said, I prefer round metal hoods due to their durability and low cost. However, I say that because many of my lenses were bought second-hand and didn't have their original hoods. Most of my subjects are static, so I work from a tripod many times. I carry a little piece of cardboard with me just so I can hand-hold it and extend my hood to block any stray light sources that may be entering my shot.
01-18-2015, 08:26 AM   #15
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Like cameras - the one you have with you. Somehow didn't have one today for one of my lenses. It was sitting on the desk at home doing me no good at all.
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