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Should I always use a lens hood?

Discussion in 'Lens Matters' started by Bazarchie, Sep 19, 2020.

  1. SqueamishOssifrage

    SqueamishOssifrage Well-Known Member

    The bulge of the objective is huge, and there is no filter thread. There is a 82mm filter thread on the inside of the lens cover when you remove the lens cap, but it vignettes at anything below 30mm. The picture below shows what I mean.

    Sigma 15-30mm lens.jpg

    I have to say I absolutely love this lens!
  2. Benchista

    Benchista Which Tyler

    Well slot-in filters generally are ok with lenses with bulbous fronts, but they slot in to a built-in holder at the rear of the lens. I think you mean system filters, which don't work, and the same goes for screw-in types.
  3. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    Slot in filters tend to be used with telephoto and extreme wide angle lenses but one important factor with such lenses is that the lens was computed with a filter in place. Very wide angle lenses such as the Sigma 12-24 or the Nikon 14-24 f2.8 aren't really designed to be used with filters, neither has a slot-in filter and a front mounted filter would have to be huge.

    Interestingly my Sigma 12-24 had a strange lens cap that was a slip-on type but with a conventional cap on the end, filters could be mounted on the thread in the end of the slip-on portion but vignetting was inevitable at the shorter focal lengths. Rather limiting but then some filters, polarisers particularly, do strange things with lenses wider that about 20mm (Full frame). Try it on a sunny day and see the effect on the colour of the sky*

    The important point about such wide lenses is that the lens hood is often not detachable so there is no choice but to use it.

    *Before anyone considers explaining why this happens I am well aware of what is going on but too lazy to explain it here.
  4. Chester AP

    Chester AP Well-Known Member

    AP regularly does 'buy a polarising lens' articles, and following their advice some years ago I invested a lot of money in a decent 77 mm one to use on my Sigma 10-20 lens. The problem you refer to occurs once the angle of view exceeds (I think) 90 degrees, and on my lens this appears to be at about 12-13 mm focal length which matches your 20 mm full frame figure. I sent AP an email suggesting that all articles about polarising lenses should include a warning about this problem, and an edited version was printed. Since then they appear to have been more careful about this when printing these articles. I now instead use a 77 mm ND graduated filter on the 10-20 lens that works so well it has never been taken off the lens since the first time I used it. You can get a lot of sky in the image when shooting at 10 mm. I know it doesn't give the quite same effect as a polarising filter, but it does work at any focal length.

    Unfortunately I can't use my favourite big rubber lens hood on the 10-20 at 10 mm with the filter fitted because of vignetting, and have to rely on Sigma's 'petal' hood and sometimes my hand too.
  5. ChrisNewman

    ChrisNewman Well-Known Member

    Ironically I first drafted “drop-in filters”, and then thought that might be the name for what you refer to as “slot-in filters”. So I Googled “types of photographic filter system”, which came up with Wex’s ‘Lens Filters Buying Guide’ where they use the term “slot-in” filters for the type produced by Lee, etc that you refer to as “system filters”! Can you recommend a better source of general photographic terminology for me to use in future?

  6. ChrisNewman

    ChrisNewman Well-Known Member

    The Sigma lenses described by SqueamishOssifrage and GeoffR are much the same as my Sigma 8-16mm. The slip-on ring section of the hood vignettes at shorter focal lengths, so I’ve always removed it complete with it’s conventional lens cap, and hadn’t noticed the thread inside it. Also, the front element isn’t readily visible behind the permanent petal element of its hood, so I’d forgotten that this element also extends furthest at its minimum focal length, as I described for my f/2.8 Nikkor zooms.

  7. GeoffR

    GeoffR Well-Known Member

    My Nikon 300 f4 AF uses a filter at the back of the lens that Nikon refer to as a "slip-in filter", Canon use the term "drop-in filter". On this lens the filter is 40.5mm which one would think might be cheaper than a 77mm version. The circular polariser, with holder, comes in at a mere £309!
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2020
  8. PeteRob

    PeteRob Well-Known Member

    Last year I was a bit tempted by a s/h Canon 300 F2.8 at not such a bad price (as these things go) with a drop-in polariser thrown in.
  9. pixelpuffin

    pixelpuffin Well-Known Member

    I have roughly 50 canon branded lenses, I make it a priority to get the lens hood for every lens I have. For me the hood is more important than the protective filter unless I’m intending to use it in the rain. Besides flare and protection I find the hood prevents fingers or bag straps coming into contact with the front element. If I remove the hood I ensure the lens cap is put on.
  10. pixelpuffin

    pixelpuffin Well-Known Member

    The EF 300/2.8 IS is on my radar as for my next purchase (S/H obvs)
    Hoping I’ll find one this year. Not looking forward to using it tho’ without a black lens coat fitted to avoid unwanted attention.

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