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06-27-2012, 07:34 PM   #16
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I'm more relaxed about using hoods than most other posters in this thread.

Yes, hoods can be very useful, but you typically realise when that is the case. In many cases, a hood will make a minute difference, if any at all.

Most modern lenses feature coatings and inner barrel designs that make them much less prone to flaring, losing contrast, etc., when faced with non-image forming light.

I only use hoods when I feel that they will make a difference and have seen no ill-effects caused by this strategy. Any minute gain in contrast that I may have gained in some instance, will be overshadowed by what I do in post-processing to the image.

N.B., hoods on zooms are only appropriately sized for the wide end. For the long end, they could/should be much longer. I guess that using a hood on a zoom makes some sense for settings other than the wide end as well, but one should not kid oneself into believing that one is using an appropriate hood at other settings.

Sometimes, BTW, I like the effects of non-image forming light on an image. There are legitimate reasons to not use a hood, even when its use would be warranted. Just to be clear, though, that's not the reason why I mostly use none.

QuoteOriginally posted by alamo5000 Quote
You have the straight hoods, flower hoods, and wide flaring hoods...

Which one is most desireable and for what?
A flower (petal-shaped) hood has a shape that is defined by the intersection between the cylinder implied by the (round) lens barrel and the pyramidal light volume implied by the (rectangular) sensor and the lens' AOV. All real-life petal-shaped hoods are truncated at the front end, to reduce length, however.

As such, a petal-shaped hood represents the smallest hood for a given blockage of unwanted, non-image forming light.

I understand all hood designs are a compromise between light blockage and portability. A flaring design allows you to have a longer hood, and thus obtain more blockage, but at the expense of a larger size and potentially excluding reverse mounting of the hood.


Last edited by Class A; 06-27-2012 at 07:42 PM.
06-27-2012, 09:28 PM   #17
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Surprised nobody has mentioned using a flash. A hood can cast a bad shadow, depending on the focal length (I guess field of view to be more precise) of the lens. I often forget to remove the hood, and sometimes the pesky little shadow is not so obvious when chimping on that little LCD.
06-27-2012, 11:13 PM   #18
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The hoods even offer protection when in your bag! One time I was running a rifle marksmanship range (<-- in the Army) and I had my camera gear with me to take some photos to put in my closing report. At the time, I had my Pentax K-5, DA 12-24, and the 55-300 in a small Kata W-90 waist pack (love that thing). It was the end of the day, and I placed the bag on the landing at the top of the stairs of the tower I was working out of (ranges have a central tower to observe the entire range). The landing of the stairs was roughly 20-25 feet high. I walked inside, and all of a sudden, a freak wind came through, and the next thing I here is, "Sir! Why the hell did you throw your camera bag off the stairs?"

"WHAT?!"


The entire thing rolled and fell off and impacted the ground below. The bag did most of the protecting, but the lens hood on my 55-300 was cracked at the mount, rendering it no longer functional. After thoroughly testing the lenses and the cameras, there was no damage whatsoever to any of them. Did the hood save the 55-300's life? I will never know for certain, but for a $6 replacement hood on eBay, I will never complain.

Another instance a hood protected my glass was with my new DA*60-250. I was taking pictures of a helicopter taking off (at 60mm......don't judge me lol), and the rotor wash (the effect of kicking up dirt, rocks, and debris causing by the bird's rotors) completely blanketed me. I turned in time to ensure nothing directly hit the lens through the hood, but there was a bunch of stuff that hit the side of the lens and the hood - not a scratch to the lens element.

Hoods are your friend. Regarding the 12-24 - I completely agree, that hood is MONSTROUS. Especially when you consider the amount of dead space when storing the lens since it's so damn wide.My recommendation? Sell the 12-24 and get the 8-16 from Sigma.

I sold the 12-24 and once I got my 8-16, I have never looked back. The difference between 8 and 12 is GINORMOUS. Seriously. I have to be careful when framing vertically not to get my feet - it's that wide! If I still had both, I would do a size comparison for you. But the body of the 8-16 is similar to the body of the 12-24 in terms of diameter (without the large front rim), but it's a little bit longer because it has a built in hood, but not by much. Here is why I recommend the 8-16:

- Equal or better IQ (no official testing, just my observation)
- Richer colors (many criticize the 8-16 for not being able to mount filters, but the colors are SOO rich, I insist the glass has a sort of CPL built in....seriously.)
- More compact size for travel/storage
- Built in lens hood
- 8mm vs 12mm on wide end - HHUUUGGEEEE difference
- minimal distortion, despite going to 8mm, and correctable in PP
- silent HSM (Sigma's version of SDM) autofocus
- cheaper

Like I said, I sold the 12-24, replaced it with the 8-16, and have never looked back. In fact, I often wonder what the hell took me so long to make the switch. Should I have all my camera equipment stolen, I wouldn't even consider the 12-24 - it now HAS to be the 8-16 for ultra-wide angle.

Hope this helps.

-Heie
06-28-2012, 02:10 AM - 1 Like   #19
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QuoteOriginally posted by blackcloudbrew Quote
I'm sure there are a number of opinions on this but from my perspective. I use hoods all the time, they are part of the lens from my perspective. What's more of a pain is to not use them. Lens flare can happen from many angles both day and night. Just use them.
Totally agree on this - and i have one on my lenses all the time too. In fact i just ordered a new one for the DA 35mm F2.4 on ebay, as the old "flower" one did not sit straight when tightend on the lens, and the new one includes a Lens/hood cap too, that goes directly on the hood, for just a few bucks
And on top of that, as mentioned by many - they offer good protection to the front element to.

06-28-2012, 03:33 AM   #20
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It depends. With my Fa35, lens hood all the time. Protects the front element when I can't.

My F50 1.7 has a more recessed front element than the 1.4 versions of the f/Fa 50. Thus, in most conditions, the difference, if at all, is minimal. I've thus far not noted a difference. I'm looking back through some of my pics I posted early on in my blog (Christopher Street Day Parade), which was mixed between a hooded FA35 and a hoodless f50. I guess you guys will notice little difference or loss of contrast/sharpness/saturation between the two. If I remember correctly, the PP was very similar between the two lenses. It is said that the F/FA50 1.4 needs a lens hood, when compared to the 1.7. Also some competing 50mm lenses have recessed front elements like the 1.7 from pentax. Since we're on APSc, we have to compare the 31-35 to FF 50, I guess, so in that light, the FA and DA 35 benefit from hoods, no doubt.

Always with my m85 f2.

Also an oddity is how Tamron's 90 Macro and the DFA 100 Macros from Pentax have incredibly recessed front elements, but still come with very long hoods anyhow. I don't know if people notice a difference.

Similar scene, FA35 first, lens hood, f50 1.7 no hood:



The best test would have been using the same lens and taking one shot with and one without, but that's the best I can do.

Last edited by snake; 06-28-2012 at 04:04 AM.
06-28-2012, 03:56 AM   #21
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QuoteOriginally posted by aleonx3 Quote
Here is a nothing fancy example with my super-tak lens (the sun hits the neighbours window and redirect the light to my lens, first without hood, second with the hood - resized jpeg files from camera)
Thanks Aleonx3. Those pics are pretty darned convincing. Seems like I'll have to resign myself to lug around my lens hoods from now on.
06-28-2012, 04:13 AM   #22
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Gotta' Use It!

Well, my take on hoods is this; They're part of the camera system.
Light bounces everywhere. As photographers, we should know this better than anyone.
Ever walk out after a snowfall, into sunlight? Or on a beach in bright sunshine? Near water? Around reflective glass buildings? I've had shots ruined because the sunlight hit a car bumper at just the right angle. Now in that case a polarizer would have been the solution, but you get the idea.
Even at night, time exposures, very little direct light, you'll get bounced reflections from glass, cars, any semi-reflective surface. From any/all directions.
So, I grumble about the space they take up (although stacking them inside one another helps), the extra time to put them on or take' em off ((5 seconds, maybe? C'mon!) and the fact that different lenses use different size/shape hoods, the same problem exists with polarizers and I've managed to live with that minor inconvenience for years.
Use the best equipment you can afford and any/every trick/aid/accessory that will improve your ultimate result quality and protect the gear. Eyecup. Lens cleaner/blower. Polarizer. Lens hood.
Be professional, prepared and complete in your approach to photography.
Use a hood.
JMO
Ron
06-28-2012, 05:22 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by P. Soo Quote
Those pics are pretty darned convincing.
Just know that it is possible to provoke this kind of lens flare -- in particular with a lens as old as this Super Takumar which does not have the famed Pentax SMC multi-coating yet -- in certain situations rather easily.

However, in most situations, you won't notice a difference between using a hood and not using a hood.

If you find yourself in a situation without hood and notice lens flare, you can typically use your left hand to shield the lens from the stray light.

I'm not arguing against hoods, but I don't see how they are so indispensable as they have been described in this thread.

06-28-2012, 07:25 AM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote
Just know that it is possible to provoke this kind of lens flare -- in particular with a lens as old as this Super Takumar which does not have the famed Pentax SMC multi-coating yet -- in certain situations rather easily.

However, in most situations, you won't notice a difference between using a hood and not using a hood.

If you find yourself in a situation without hood and notice lens flare, you can typically use your left hand to shield the lens from the stray light.

I'm not arguing against hoods, but I don't see how they are so indispensable as they have been described in this thread.
yep, if you have forgotten the hood at home your hand can be a substitute for blocking flare - Doesn't do much on the protection end though. My DA14 hood got broken (lens is fine) by some twat at a show i was shooting. need to replace it, but use my hand right now. Same thing happened to my sigma 24-70 hood (mosh pits really are not a togs best friend) Since i rarely use the sigmma now i haven't ordered a hood. the Pentax i will replace before i go to europe in the fall

I use a metal hood on most of my primes (have a couple of different length hoods)
06-28-2012, 07:34 AM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by eddie1960 Quote
yep, if you have forgotten the hood at home your hand can be a substitute for blocking flare - Doesn't do much on the protection end though. My DA14 hood got broken (lens is fine) by some twat at a show i was shooting. need to replace it, but use my hand right now. Same thing happened to my sigma 24-70 hood (mosh pits really are not a togs best friend) Since i rarely use the sigmma now i haven't ordered a hood. the Pentax i will replace before i go to europe in the fall

I use a metal hood on most of my primes (have a couple of different length hoods)
Yep, my Nokia N8 is very sensitive to flare-inducing light, but a hand just out of view changes it completely.
07-01-2012, 08:26 PM   #26
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I don't know what lenses you have, but on many, the the hood can be reversed mounted and take up very little additional room.
07-01-2012, 08:52 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I don't know what lenses you have, but on many, the the hood can be reversed mounted and take up very little additional room.
There are even these kind which more or less fit universally. I ordered a few and am interested to see how well they fit when they arrive.

MATIN Camera Lens Hood 49mm(Can be equipped backwards) | eBay
07-02-2012, 04:16 AM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote
I don't know what lenses you have, but on many, the the hood can be reversed mounted and take up very little additional room.
Hi Marc:
As I mentioned above, the lens that I have with the "huge" hood is the Pentax 12-24 mm. It's 4 inches in diameter and sticks out 2 inches. It does reverse-fit onto the lens but it becomes very bulky and won't fit into the slot that I use for the lens in my gadget bag. However, I think I'll have to find another niche to put it in, since the large consensus in this thread is that I should use it to improve image quality under some conditions, and also for physical protection. If I accidentally slip and fall forward, the lens will be saved even if my face is smashed to pieces.
07-03-2012, 11:00 AM   #29
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That's why so many of us value lenses like the DA15, which is miniscule in comparison and has a built in slide-out hood :-)
07-06-2012, 12:48 PM   #30
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Good thread because I have been recently thinking about this. I don't have any hoods for my lenses currently! :-o and was looking online to purchase some, but they all seem so expensive, plus the different variations in shapes, etc... and then wanting a hood that I can keep on the camera lens (turn it backward) for storage. My friend recently gave me a hood for my 35, but I couldn't seem to keep it on the camera AND put the lens cap on which I found annoying. Does anyone know of a good source to find those kinds of hoods that don't cost $30-$40/ pop?
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