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  1. #1
    Junior Member
    handsy's Avatar

    Lightbulb Hood or filter or both?

    Hi everyone, I'm new to the forums and new to the world of DSLR photography
    I've just bought myself a Nikon D3100 with 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR lens.
    My question is around hoods and filters. There seems to be a 50:50 split of people who say hoods are better than filters and vice versa. I guess I need to know what you guys think would be the best for me?
    I have a Nikon HB-45 hood coming, but do I need a filter as well to protect the glass?

    Also, if I do need a filter, how do I know what size to buy?

    Thanks in advance


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  2. #2
    Senior Member
    Rick M's Avatar

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    I do not use either unless I need it for a specific reason. I use filters for the effects they create, like a circular polarizer to bring out clouds or a neutral density for a waterfall. 95% of my shooting is without any hood or filter. I do not believe in putting a lesser piece of glass in front of a great lens. Opinions vary, that is mine
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    Rick

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  3. #3
    Happy to be Canadian
    Super Mod
    Marcel's Avatar

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    Welcome to the forum Handsy. To answer your question, as you already found out, it's 50:50. It all depends on where you use the camera, how you'll protect it from elements and what will you be taking pictures of. Any kind of backlit shots should benefit from a hood and filters can protect the from element from scratches and other outside dangers. Pro-filters will say it's cheaper to replace a filter than the lens in case of an accident and they're right. Those others say they don't want to diminish the quality of their picture with another piece of glass in front of their lenses are right too. There is just NO right and wrong here. To each his own.

    Now as far as what size to buy, if you just look under your lens cap, you will see the lens diameter written in mm. This is the size you need.

    Enjoy your Nikon!
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  4. #4
    Gear Head
    Moderator
    gqtuazon's Avatar

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    I have filters on every lenses that I have. Filters have been my sacrificial component instead of risking in damaging my lenses. I had two incidents were the filters cracked instead of my lens when I dropped it and one when I banged it against another object.

    Filters can be cheap and can also be expensive. Depending on how much you want to spend. A scratched front element will be difficult to sell but if the filter was scratched, then it's easy to take it off.

    Hood depends if I want to prevent the sun from entering the lens and creating a ghosting or flare effect. I don't use hood all the time since the lenses that I have are very good in preventing lens flare.

    With your particular lens, according to Nikon, it uses 52mm lens filter thread.

    AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR from Nikon

    Tiffen 52mm UV Filter 52UVP
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  5. #5
    Staff
    Moderator

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    I uses filters primarily for protection of my lens. I can see no difference with one on or one off, so I'd rather have piece of mind and put one on.
    You will get what you pay for in terms of filter... my choice of filters is usually Hoya or B&H, and I have found a UV filter doesn't affect my pics.
    Hoya have a Pro-1 Digital range made especially for DSLRs so look at those as a starting point if you want
    Sam
    Do or do not, there is no try.
    D5100
    18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR | 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR | 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
    50mm f/1.8G, 24-70
    mm f/2.8 VC (Tamron)
    SB-400 | SB-700 ​x2



  6. #6
    Senior Member

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    if the glass is near the front of the lens then I prefer a filter for as they say peace of mind, if the lens is recessed then I don't bother.

    As far as quality and effect on the picture, I have not seen a definitive controlled study that states a degrading of an image. I should so some research on that. Personally, I have not seen any reduction, but I also have had several lens saved by the filter, totally cracked filters, bent the edge of the metal, etc. But, I am out side quite a bit, hiking and such, so, a bit more rough than some.

    I hate lens hoods, and never ever use them. I did like the older metal screw on types, but the modern plastic ones are yucky in my opininon, and bulky. Personally, I like a few of my older lens that had the slide out metal hoods, those are great.

    Polarizer is a must. you can read the lens size off of the lens cap for the filter size of a lens, or the small letters. In the old days, most lens were 52 mm which made it easy, but now they are every odd ball size from 58 to 77.

  7. #7
    The Dude
    Dave_W's Avatar

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    I always use a hood. It's good practice and it only takes one perfect image marred by lens flare that you cannot remove, no matter how hard you try, to teach you to keep a hood on.

    As for filters, it's a personal choice. Some people take issue putting cheaper glass in front of very fine glass while others buy glass that's nearly as expensive as their lenses. I suppose if you're worried about a stick jabbing into your lens tube then maybe a filter would help but typically lenses are dropped and I'm still not convinced a filter will be much help in a situation like that.

    "i wanna live with a Cinnamon girl
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    with a Cinnamon girl...."

    AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED; AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G IF-ED; AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED; AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G; AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VRII; AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G; AF-S Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VRII; AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VRII;

  8. #8
    Staff
    Moderator

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    I've never experienced a dropped lens (and touch wood I don't), but I would imagine there's a whole host of factors which will determine what and how much gets damaged on your lens.
    A filter might help with everyday scratches, the occasional poke by something glass shattering etc, but imagine dropping the lens mount side first... eeeek, no hood or filter gonna help you there!!!
    Sam
    Do or do not, there is no try.
    D5100
    18-55mm f/3.5-5.6G VR | 55-200mm f/4-5.6 VR | 18-105mm f/3.5-5.6G VR
    50mm f/1.8G, 24-70
    mm f/2.8 VC (Tamron)
    SB-400 | SB-700 ​x2



  9. #9
    Banned

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    The sign of an amateur is the use of the lens cap ...first thing to leave in the box...do you want rain on your lens ..no so fit a UV filter and you can polish that if it gets dirty...hood of course

  10. #10
    The Dude
    Dave_W's Avatar

    Re: Hood or filter or both?

    Quote Originally Posted by SS381 View Post
    ... but imagine dropping the lens mount side first... eeeek, no hood or filter gonna help you there!!!
    I have to disagree with that statement. A lens hood does a wonderful job of absorbing the bulk of the impact. You would be surprised by some of the mis-treatment lenses go thru in tough situations. That's why the metal lenses are so much more expensive than the plastic lenses are, they're able to withstand conditions that would otherwise shatter a cheaper lens.

    "i wanna live with a Cinnamon girl
    i could be happy
    the rest of my life
    with a Cinnamon girl...."

    AF-S NIKKOR 14-24mm f/2.8G ED; AF-S DX NIKKOR 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5G IF-ED; AF-S NIKKOR 24-70mm f/2.8G ED; AF-S NIKKOR 28mm f/1.8G; AF-S NIKKOR 70-200mm f/2.8G ED VRII; AF-S NIKKOR 85mm f/1.8G; AF-S Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VRII; AF-S NIKKOR 300mm f/2.8G ED VRII;





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