Wednesday, December 29, 2010

FZ35 Necessary Accessory – The B&W UVA Filter

Some photographers feel that it’s a mistake to place a filter in front of a high quality lens, thinking that the optics of the elements in the lens might be compromised by an inferior piece of glass. But, since the lens in focusing beyond the place where the filter goes, the filter glass doesn’t really enter into the optical equation.

True, an inferior filter can, and usually does, cause other problems, like unwanted reflections, vignetting, (dark areas around the edges of the image, or tunnel-vision), and color shifting. So, the answer is to use the best quality filter, one with the same kind of multi-coating that is on your lens.

First consider what happens without an ultraviolet haze filter. Images can take on a milky, or well, hazy quality, which can soften the detail and rob you of adequate color saturation. And, without a filter, your lens is naked, susceptible to that heart stopping, smudgy, oily fingerprint. So, you’re going to buy a filter, but which one.

I bought the B&W UVA #10 46mm filter from Amazon for about $21.00. It is a beautiful piece of multi-coated optical glass in a sturdy, but thin, black brass frame. Be sure to hold onto the outer ring of the Panasonic FZ35 lens when you screw in on the threads, or the ring will just keep going around. Yes, the B&W costs more than a Tiffen or Hoya filter. But do you really want to explain how you saved a few bucks every time people ask what that shiny round spot is on your pictures? Just get the good one, the B&W, be proud of it and smile the first time you put your finger on it, being thankful that it’s not that Leica glass you’ll be wiping that smudge from.


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