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Old Dec 28, 2005, 4:38 AM   #1
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Happy holidays everyone !

I have read an article this morning that recommends NOT using a filter as lens protection as it's really not necessary with modern lenses.

"Otherwise, why pay for an excellent modern lens and put another sheet of glass over it? Would you be happy shooting all your pictures through a windowpane? "

The first thing I did with my new FZ30 wastack a UV filter on the front of it . I am hesitant to remove it hwoever even after reading this article.

I'm curious to hear the opinions of the forum members on this subject :?

The article can be found here: http://www.luminous-landscape.com/co...m-feb-05.shtml
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 6:11 AM   #2
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I read that article recently, and agree absolutely with the observations that M.Johnston made.
I use a Hoya UV filter both as lens protection when out-and -about, and also to cut UV rays, but it is definitely an old habit that I have from 35mm days.
Now I keep the filter on in daytime, when it may still help and affords me some lens protection, and remove it when shooting at night or in low light to reduce the chance of stray reflections.
Maybe I will get comfortable enough to remove it all the time...when the initial cost of the camera is forgotten.
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 6:55 AM   #3
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Hi Suze,

I saw that article some time ago, I agree with the article, but I use a UV precisely from B+W that one mentioned on the article with MRC coating[/u], those arefor me and many others THE best Filters available. Sometimes I use also a Linear Polarizer from them also with the same MRC (both F-Pro Line). I must say that I live near the ocean and take many photos at sea / near sea, so UV does make some use, and protect also from saltwater spray, sand blown by fast wind...etc. I do some incursions to Snow at the mountains for skiing, and UV have some advantages there also. I also recommend a Lens Hood ! (I use a rubber collapsible one from Hama)

In front of a Leica Lens I can only put the best filter, I know that many (as Lovelife) disagree withmy opinion, but I really don't like hoya blue line that many people use, that spring used to make some tension, give me some problems in the past,I only use the IR72 from them at present time...Last month I purchased a UV and a polarizer from Hoya (blue / purple line)and sold them 2 days after and purchased more B+W...when we compare both, there is no chance not to see diferences... they are not so expensive here in Europe, if we search online....

B+W UV MRC 55mm21€, Hoya 16€
B+W Pol linear MRC 55mm49€, Hoya (circular) 36€ (cannot find a linear here from hoya)

So, with this quality, and my kind of useUV is almost always on the camera
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 9:05 AM   #4
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It would have to be a pretty junky filter to be in any way equated with a pane of glass. But regardless of quality and coatings you still have two more air/glass interfaces, which slightly cuts and diffuses your light.

There are some environments and situations where lens protection might obviate a lot of lens cleaning.

There was a poster a month or so ago that got a lot of dust down into his FZ lens. Some people thought that if the person had kept the lens area clean it wouldn't have somehow migrated from crevices down into the lens. I think they missed both the cause and significance of the post. He was obviously shooting in a very dirty environment with dust blowing into his lens to accumulate gunk in the crevices, and the blowing dust worked its way into the lens. Cleaning the stuff from the crevices after the dust blew into the camera wouldn't have prevented it from migrating into the lens. The significance to me is that FZ lenses aren't sealed very well, and if you are going to shoot a harvester from downwind or photograph the Baja 500 from a following vehicle you would do well to put a good UV filter on the camera.

I've had a FZ10 since it was first released. I have had no need for lens protection and seldom have to clean dust from the lens. I don't think it is a good idea to always have a UV filter on a FZ for most people. The lens hood protects it somewhat from clumsy dings and most environments don't need it. But if you don't have a protective filter there might be times when it would be prudent to miss a shot and not remove the lens cover. I've never encountered a situation like that, but I'm more aware after seeing all the dust down in that guy's lens.

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Old Dec 28, 2005, 9:24 AM   #5
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I'm darned glad I did carry over my habit of placing a sheet of glass over my lens when I recently changed from my Pentax Spotmatic F to the FZ30, as my prime camera.

Over Christmas, with the grandkids all peering into the new monster, one large ah-tish-oooo right in front of me was enough to convince me that scraping it off the UV was a lot easier than removing it from the Leica! :-)
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 9:45 AM   #6
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Only my opinion but a Multi Coated UV filter is a good Idea to protect that valuable lens....And while it may detract from a clear lens it does keep the lens clear and free of scratches.....I will keep mine on..

And I have no delusions of it removing haze or UV light.. only for protection.
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 12:39 PM   #7
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Hi Suze

Thats a ncie and thought provoking piece on Luminous landscapes. There are some pretty vaild points that he makes but personally, I'd rather have a good quality thin filter infront of the lens just to protect it - I always have my UV filter fitted to the FZ10, theres no point putting crap infront of the lens!



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Old Dec 28, 2005, 1:08 PM   #8
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I, too, have read Mike Johnston's article (published at http://www.luminous-landscape.com/columns/sm-feb-05.shtml), but I still protect all my lenses -- both built-in and add-on converters -- with multicoated filters except when that filter would cause vignetting (as on a wide-angle lens). I've never had a problem with lens flare by doing so. I'd rather spend a few tens of dollars for a good filter as an insurance policy vs. a few hundred dollars to repair/replace that beautiful Leica lens.

This is my opinion. Others are welcome to disagree.


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Old Dec 28, 2005, 1:56 PM   #9
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yes, it does seem a shame to put additional - and some would say unecessary - glass in front of the Leica lens. but that extra bit of glass could keep the lens from irreparable harm, especially if you do a lot of outdoor shooting. if it were a relatively inexpensive, and most of all, replaceable lens, i might be less inclined to use the filter as protection, since i could get a new lenswithout replacing the camera. but since it's not a replaceable lens, and i really can't afford to buy a whole new camera just because of a moment of carelessness or an unforeseen accident, i'll leave the filter on. if something does happen,i'd much rather replace a $20 filter than have to buy a new camera!

i don't believe anyone could tell, looking at a photo, whether a protective filter was used or not (unless the filter was dirty or scratched, in which case it has served its purpose and should be replaced). there are so many other variables that can have so muchmore impact on the clarity, sharpness, color, etc., of an image, that using a filter to savethe lens is just not a big enough factor to concern myself with. as long as you keep the filter clean, the camera will not even "see" it, and it won't have any visible effect on your images. by the way,the only time i'vehad any problem withlens flare at all was when shooting directly, or very nearly so, into a bright light source, and in that situation, you'll get flare whether you have afilter on or not. on top of which, your photos will be blown because the FZ's have nowhere near the dynamic range to deal with such brightness and contrast, so it's better to avoid shots like that entirely!

as for askinghow many "scratched" lenses you see on eBay, and using that to judge the durability of modern lenses... c'mon, who's gonna even try to sell a lens with a big ol' scratch on it?? the lack of such postings is more a testament to the care photographers take with expensive equipment than to the durability of lenses. most of us, as soon as we graduated from pocket Instamatics, realized that we were investing a lot of money in cameras and gear, and by golly, it would probably behoove us to take good care of them! yes, you do have to have a relatively serious mishap to physically damage a lens, and for most of us it probably won't happen, but it can... and as i mentioned earlier, that Leica lens isnot replaceable...

call me old fashioned (frankly, i take that as a compliment!), butif cheap insurance can save your prized FZ from irreparable damage, without any noticeable degradation in your image quality, i say leave the filter on.
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Old Dec 28, 2005, 5:14 PM   #10
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This is probably some kind of psycho thing regarding protectingsomething that is soprecious that the protection of it impairs it's preciousness. I like to tramp through the woods and feel much more comfortable (as in fully clothed) with a uv filter on. The camera seems to take great photos with it or without it. I take the adapter off for flash shots at parties but I'm contantly worried about little sticky fingers reaching for the lens. Life is so complicated.:?
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