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stipe

Polarizer filter: Hoya HD or Pro1?

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In the digital age you can simulate any filter effect in post processing, with more control, and without the disadvantages noted above.

 

"Simulate" is not "replicate" . . . sometimes, for some of us, "good enough" isn't.

 

Bill, as the article you reference states, Polarizing filters are "one of the only lens filters which cannot be replicated using digital photo editing". The effect of a polarising filter on foliage in sunlight is beyond comparison for example, not to mention the effects on images showing water in the full glare of the sun. If you've only ever tried to "polarise" such images in LR, you're in for a treat if you can borrow a good polariser.

 

dd

Edited by dustydingo
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An interesting thread to read - like many the polariser has sat in the draw for a long time.

 

In fact rarely used in this digital age; main use as mentioned was to bring out the blue in sky against a white cloud now done in LR - the only use recently was to cut down on some refection in a car during a bright day.

 

But here is the question, do you find the banding and brown areas is worse in digital cameras with the filter, then it ever was in film days?  What does that say about the digital ability!

Edited by Matt Limb

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"as the article you reference states, Polarizing filters are "one of the only lens filters which cannot be replicated using digital photo editing"

 

That statement is half true.

 

Stefano, our OP, uses Nikons, as I used to until recently. So he may well have Nikon NX2 software on his computer, as I do. In NX2 there's a tool called Upoint that can be used to darken, lighten, or change the color of any selected part of an image. 

 

With regard to foliage reflections, Stefano is a travel shooter, and a pretty good one. He's not heavily into flowers and such. I'm not either. If I come across something growing that makes an attractive scene, I'll probably take the picture . . . but it would be because I like the lighting as it is. So no need for a polarizer there either.  

 

I have three quality polarizers and lots of other filters (mostly 52mm, the Nikon standard) in a drawer. Just so you know.

 

This is the core of my problem with using polarizing filters to darken skies: when a sky is too dark it projects a sinister subliminal message. If it's a grey-blue instead of a true-blue, it's even more sinister. Nearly all travel images are in some way promoting the destination. A medium, cheerful looking blue does that. 

 

Edo

Edited by Ed Rooney

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MDM thanks for your post because it makes the forum more useful when members have a good discussion. It also makes people like me reexamine what they are doing.

 

I have polarizers for every lens left over from film days but after carrying them around for the first year of digital shooting, without using them, decided to leave them at home.

 

Here are some examples from my archive that I think may make my point.

 

First no polarizer subject is vegetation reestablishing itself on a lava flow. The vegetation calls attention to itself because it is isolated on the lava by both position, colour, and luminance. The sky is believable and blue even though the scene is early morning hazy cross lighting. The mountain is hazy, but that is the way it should be. To clear the haze with a polarizer would make the sky unnatural, reduce the 3D effect of distant mountain, and make the detail on the mountain compete with the vegetation subject matter. The mountain is only an adjective, not a subject. The mountain is there to help establish where the lava came from, but not compete with the subject. Better to use haze to tone the mountain back. Zeiss lens

 

capparis-sandwichiana-aka-maiapilo-growi

Another no polarizer lake view taken with the sun directly overhead. Blue adjusted in software. Note that you can see the bottom of the lake without the polarizer. Zeiss lens

 

clear-day-on-lake-ontario-one-of-the-gre

 

No Polarizer mid morning view, wide angle cross lighting from the left. Believable sky. Clouds brought out by increasing saturation and lowering illumination on the blue only, in software. Zeiss lens

 

lighthouse-on-the-jetty-at-the-entrance-

 

A forest full of no polarizer lively leaf reflections. Shooting into the light, so flare problems introduced by a filter on a Canon 70-200 would render the shot very difficult, if not possible. Sky darkened in software enough to make it present, but not to compete with the leaves.

 

mixed-forest-in-spring-taken-in-the-vall

 

Here is something that I shot on film that suffers from being polarized. The trees have gone dead because the needle reflections have been removed. The sky is too dark and close to the trees in luminance. This causes the trees on the upper right to merge with the sky. The trees are not well defined. The sky would be better if it was unpolarized and similar in luminance and colour to the sky at far left just above the water. The image will not make it if the designer wants to drop type into the sky, because the sky is too dark.

 

rocky-shore-of-otter-cliffs-in-acadia-na

 

Lastly if anyone is going to carry a polarizer make sure to think about it's application every time you use it. A polarizer does does not enhance all.

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Stefano,

 

I recently bought several Hoya HD polarizers (probably discontinued) and am quite happy with the quality and performance. (HD2 is a more recent line, but costs more.) I use them on a 5D, EOS-M and even an RX100. HDs are in a thin mount, multi-coated and transmit more light than other polarizers I've used. 

 

Thanks for starting an interesting thread. 

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Stefano,

 

I recently bought several Hoya HD polarizers (probably discontinued) and am quite happy with the quality and performance. (HD2 is a more recent line, but costs more.) I use them on a 5D, EOS-M and even an RX100. HDs are in a thin mount, multi-coated and transmit more light than other polarizers I've used. 

 

Thanks for starting an interesting thread. 

 

Hi Kevin,

thanks for opinion. Do you have this one?

 

http://www.amazon.es/gp/product/B001G7PMGS/ref=ox_sc_act_title_3?ie=UTF8&psc=1&smid=A2JKORIZ96MIAW

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Yes, I have that exact one for my 300mm IS Canon lens, as well as 3 or 4 other sizes to cover other lenses. I find that I use them quite often, but will be thinking more about that after reading this thread. Doing as much as possible in-camera is important to me, though, so I don't anticipate changing my shooting style much.

Edited by KevinS

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