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11-28-2023, 09:58 AM   #1
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neutral density filter

Is it okay if I keep my polarizer filter on the camera when a use a neutral density filter?

11-28-2023, 10:23 AM - 2 Likes   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by rksend Quote
Is it okay if I keep my polarizer filter on the camera when a use a neutral density filter?
It's OK to do it, but unless both filters are of premium optical quality you will probably find that resolution drops in lockstep to the quality of the filters.
I use Breakthrough Photography filters which are quite pricey, but they are good enough that I can stack two with no quality loss even with a 40MP APS-C sensor and minimal loss if I stack 3 of them.

The more glass you want to put in front of a lens the better that glass needs to be.
11-28-2023, 11:13 AM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
It's OK to do it, but unless both filters are of premium optical quality you will probably find that resolution drops in lockstep to the quality of the filters.
I use Breakthrough Photography filters which are quite pricey, but they are good enough that I can stack two with no quality loss even with a 40MP APS-C sensor and minimal loss if I stack 3 of them.

The more glass you want to put in front of a lens the better that glass needs to be.
Thanks for the info.
11-28-2023, 11:32 AM - 1 Like   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by rksend Quote
Thanks for the info.
You are welcome.
Consider that filters are camera brand agnostic and should last decades, if not centuries, so it is a place where spending the coin to get a carefully curated set of excellent quality ones that you will actually use makes sense.
For myself, my ND and polarizing filter set has set me back about the same dollar amount as my DFA*85/1.4, DFA*50/1.4 and Fuji 8-16/2.8 combined.
That's a lot of money to spend on filters, but for me they are daily drivers that I can keep and use for the rest of my life no matter what camera brand I am using.
I'm also using fast lenses with ridiculously large filter sizes, so my filter set is comprised of 72, 77 and 82mm filters and there is some overlap to avoid stepping rings.

If you are less ambitious regarding lens speed, or if you are using the A series and older prime lenses that are quite petite (and are of generally excellent optical quality), you will find that good filters are sold at an easier to digest price.

It's the high end dinner plate sized filters that are eye wateringly expensive.

11-28-2023, 11:48 AM   #5
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Moved to the Trouble Shooting and Beginner Help section which is for photography and equipment related questions.

The Site Suggestion and Help section is for forum (website) related issues.
11-28-2023, 02:30 PM   #6
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Don’t forget to watch for vignetting.
11-28-2023, 05:30 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
You are welcome.
Consider that filters are camera brand agnostic and should last decades, if not centuries, so it is a place where spending the coin to get a carefully curated set of excellent quality ones that you will actually use makes sense.
For myself, my ND and polarizing filter set has set me back about the same dollar amount as my DFA*85/1.4, DFA*50/1.4 and Fuji 8-16/2.8 combined.
That's a lot of money to spend on filters, but for me they are daily drivers that I can keep and use for the rest of my life no matter what camera brand I am using.
I'm also using fast lenses with ridiculously large filter sizes, so my filter set is comprised of 72, 77 and 82mm filters and there is some overlap to avoid stepping rings.

If you are less ambitious regarding lens speed, or if you are using the A series and older prime lenses that are quite petite (and are of generally excellent optical quality), you will find that good filters are sold at an easier to digest price.

It's the high end dinner plate sized filters that are eye wateringly expensive.
My polarizing filter is xlt pro series digital cpl. My neutral density filters are neewer nd2, nd4, nd8, nd16. All are 62mm. I guess I could try taking photos with and without the polarizing to see which one is better.

---------- Post added 11-28-23 at 05:32 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by Not a Number Quote
Moved to the Trouble Shooting and Beginner Help section which is for photography and equipment related questions.

The Site Suggestion and Help section is for forum (website) related issues.
I thought I was on the correct site. PentaxForums.com → Camera Help Central → Troubleshooting and Beginner Help

How do I get to the site you mentioned?

11-28-2023, 05:46 PM   #8
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You are there, the move was seamless.
11-28-2023, 06:14 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by rksend Quote
My polarizing filter is xlt pro series digital cpl. My neutral density filters are neewer nd2, nd4, nd8, nd16. All are 62mm. I guess I could try taking photos with and without the polarizing to see which one is better.
That's the best way to do it. See how things act on your own equipment. Try without, try with and try stacking. When experimenting with stacking filters try the ND filter in both the front and back of the stack to see if one way is better than the other.
11-28-2023, 11:43 PM - 1 Like   #10
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My concerns, from experience, would be:

1) additional reflections, especially if points or sources of light are included in the scene. This happened to me in broad daylight without any light sources. Just the brilliance of a bright summer day caused reflections between a filter and the lens. It was sorta creative artsy, but not what I wanted.

2) vignetting on some lenses, especially wider ones. Two filter rims may extend out far enough into the field of view that the corners are darkened or cut off.

These days, I prefer not to use filters at all unless for special purpose like an ND or polarizer. My suggestion would be to use as few as possible at one time.
11-30-2023, 12:00 PM   #11
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Yes vignetting may be an issue. Especially with cheaper quality filters.
12-01-2023, 09:15 PM   #12
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It's a shame there's not more published tests on the web for filters. Have seen somebody use lasers and other lab equipment to take measurements, and there were obvious differences between terribly made cheap filters and decent ones. The most expensive filters weren't always the best, though the cheapest were reliably low on quality.

As a matter of course though, run as few filters as you can. Use the polariser with the ND if you want to filter the light that way and still need a longer exposure time (say for a waterfall). If you don't need both, take one off. It's a pain to be unscrewing and screwing them in all the time, and so personally I have often been guilty of shooting with a polariser on top of a UV or skylight filter (yes, I'm one of those people who likes a clear filter over the lens just for added protection - on some lenses anyway). :-D
12-02-2023, 03:12 AM   #13
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I have always used a quality UV filter (Hoya HMC) and even stack a PL filter on top sometimes. I have also tried pictures without, but even pixel peeping I have not seen any difference in picture quality. I might see more flare if I had the sun in the frame, but that's not my style.
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