Camera Lens UV Filters

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Do you need to buy a UV filter for your lens? You may already know about Circlur polarize filters and neutral density filters.

Hello, my name is Jill from Shutter Couple Photography. I am a landscape, travel, and boutique portrait photographer. I work with my husband, and together we created Shutter Couple Photography. We love to travel and take photos of pretty much everything and anything.

UV Lens Filters:

As I look across the internet I see all sorts of images demonstrating the different types of lens filters out there. You see images of a beach clear on onside hazy on the other side. If you have bought any Hoya lens filters, they typically come with a guidebook that shows you the different filters they produce. You have a filter that will help you make the sky bluer and clear up the haze. Filters that make you waterfall stream with beauty.  I want to take a look at the UV filter. What it does or doesn’t do. Does it help with image quality or is it’s just for the protection of my lens. I plan on doing several articles on the different filters and seeing they make a difference or not.

History of the UV lens filter:

Originally ultraviolet lens filters or UV lens filters were seen as a necessity for film photography and cinematography.  The older photographic film was sensitive to UV light, so these filters would filterer out the ultraviolet wavelengths and protect the film. The UV light could fog your film and ruin your image.   Over the years the photographic film has improved and camera sensors have improved too.  So, camera sensors and photographic film are not as sensitive to UV light.

Do you need a UV lens filter for protecting your lens?

Today UV filters are not seen as being a necessity for lenses. Most people will buy a UV filter to protect the lens itself.  So, how does a UV filter help protect your lens? Since the UV filter is clear, most of the time it will not affect your image. You can use it to protect the lens from scratches and dust.  If you are going to be traveling a lot with that lens, this might be a good investment for you. Especially, if you going to be taking a lot of images outside. I have a UV filter on several of my lenses and the sun or even light can cause a reflection. Yes, that reflection will end up in your images. I was shooting some pictures in front of the Christmas tree and had the very same thing happen to me. I have read that filter can save your lens from some drops. So, the thoughts on this are if you drop your lens on a hard floor or concrete. Well, I can almost assure you that lens is busted. I have always interrupted that the UV filter provides more reinforcement for the lens. So, for example, say am walking around with my camera. I have my camera on my side. I pass through a doorway and bump the edge of my lens real hard.  So, just maybe the filter gets a good ding or it breaks but not my lens. So, my lens is saved. To me it’s worth it, getting the filter and knowing it provides me some protection.

Does a UV filter affect my images?

UV filter can provide some protection to your lens. But you might still have the question, Will this filter improve your image or degrade your image in any way? UV filters will filter out ultraviolet light. Why filter itself is clear, the filter can sometimes cause a glare even a reflection to happen on the lens. This reflection will show up on our images. A UV filter can help with clarity sometimes, make clouds more pronounced, or even take some of the haze out of the sky.  For me personally, sometimes I feel that my images are slightly clearer than normal but I really don’t notice a  big difference.



My Opinion

I believe the UV filter can be beneficial in helping protect a lens from dust and dirt. Also, in minor drops or bumps. Even in the right circumstance slight improvement in your image. For me, it is worth the investment and gives me some peace of mind about protecting my lens.

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