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Thread: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpacking

  1. #1

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    Question Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpacking

    I'm on maybe an over the top quest to save weight for a 4x5 backpacking load-out.

    I know the typical adage is buy the biggest filters for your largest size needed and use step downs but that does seem to add weight and overall fuss. Right now I'll need multiple step-ups to do that and am trying to find the best options.

    For this trip I'll be bringing just my Fujinon 150mm 5.6 which has a 52mm ring. It's annoyingly the only lens I have that uses that size (others are 49, 58, 62, 77 if memory serves, across multiple camera systems). And it looks like most wide and tele 4x5 lenses use other sizes. But it looks like filters in that size are pretty cheap, relatively speaking. A Hoya HD CP is $38 which feels worth it in knowing I then only need a single step-up ring for my Hitech filter holder and I use CPs fairly often.

    So I was thinking of buying colored resin filters since they seem to be around 15g (based on ND filters I have in the same size). Certainly lighter weight than the larger colored filters, though it looks like the Tiffen 52mm colored filters are a hard to believe 9 grams according to Amazon. I plan on taking 2, maybe 3, colored filters (YEL-8, RED-25 and maybe a YEL-15 or an Orange-21). So that shakes out to be:

    30-45g for the resin
    18-27g for Tiffen (assuming they are actually 9g each)
    52g-76g using my current larger yel-8 and red-25 filters (and buying a larger YEL-15)

    I also thought about using gel filters but have had trouble finding them, figuring out how they could be used with my Hitech 85mm filter setup, and have no idea their weight.

    So I think the best option given the above is probably the resin though curious what other folks might think?

  2. #2
    Drew Wiley
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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Resin is electrostic, easily scratched, and not coated for flare. Get coated real glass. I like Hoya multi-coated ones in the field. Gels will get trashed too. Less is more. Carry only filters and step rings you really need.

  3. #3

    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Not sure gel filters are easily available new anymore. They are fragile, do not like water, work OK and better as behind the lens filter.

    Resin is a trade-off, work ok, light weight, does scratch, often not coated and can cause unwanted reflections if considerations for this is not done, also works good behind the lens. This might be the better set of trade offs for back-packing.

    Dye in mass glass is GOOD optically , specially if the filter is multi coated. They tend to be heavy, fragile if dropped, and still subject to optical defects if abused.


    Topic was previously discussed, still Sinar made a 103mm round optical glass filter system. IMO, it is very good. The cinema folks use big square filters in a mat box. Filters are made by Tiffen, Schneider, Harrison & Harrison and others. A good working set of these filters easily run four figures of $. Alternatives is to use Kodak series# filters (made by Tiffen and others once upon a time) with adapters. The current set up is a group of TIffen series 9 with a Sinar series 9 rotating holder. If the large front element lenses are used, the Sinar 103mm glass filters are used with the same Sinar rotating holder. This set up is likely too heavy, too bulky for back packing folks.




    Bernice

  4. #4
    tgtaylor's Avatar
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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Roscoe gel Filters are sold by the sheet at retailers such as B&H and here locally at Looking Glass in Berkeley. They are also available in a pack; https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...geID/accessory but only a few of the several hundred are in the pack. To use them you would have to make a holder out of cardboard, or better, mat board, or look for a suitable gel frame on the B&H site.

    Thomas

  5. #5

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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    If you are not using grads, a round threaded filter is fine... Getting the size for the largest lens and step-up rings for the other lenses is good, as you will only carry one set...

    Also re-evaluate what filters you REALLY use out, as many filters just hide in the bottom of the bag, waiting for the day you use them (if ever)...

    I tend to use B/W filters less now than I ever did in the past, as I learned that the two-edged sword with them is for every effect they provide, you pay somewhere else... :-) (I now tend to consider atmosphere as a element in a shot, and allow it to do it's own thing...)

    Steve K

  6. #6

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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Quote Originally Posted by tgtaylor View Post
    Roscoe gel Filters are sold by the sheet at retailers such as B&H and here locally at Looking Glass in Berkeley. They are also available in a pack; https://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produ...geID/accessory but only a few of the several hundred are in the pack. To use them you would have to make a holder out of cardboard, or better, mat board, or look for a suitable gel frame on the B&H site.

    Thomas
    Those are lighting filters, they really arenít made for lenses!

  7. #7
    Eric Woodbury
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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    I'm with Thomas on this. I buy 24" square lighting gels at Samys. Tri-colors plus yellow and orange. I have some old Calumet filter frames. They are lightweight, small. I've been using the same ones for years. I do have a holder, but usually just hold filter in front of lens or tape in on there. Material is only 0.004" thick, so no distortion, even with widest-angles. They don't seem to get scratched or damaged. Don't break or roll when you drop them. YMMV.

    Happy snapping.
    -EW

  8. #8
    tgtaylor's Avatar
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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Bob - You're right in that they are not made specifically with the camera in mind but they will work. Recently I made a 5" 3-stop (.9) ND for the Toyo Compendium hood to use with my 610mm apo-nikkor using a 3-stop Roscoe ND sheet. Here's what Roscoe says:

    Roscoe E-Colour - This is Rosco's more than comprehensive system of European color filters for film and video production. E-Colour consists of every possible color and and material for color effects, alteration, diffusion and reflection. Whether you are in film or TV - video or digital - E-Colour has something for you.

    If you can't find the ready-made gel filter you need, you can probably make one with Roscoe Gels.

    BTW, for B&W still photography Cokin Resins (yellow, green red, etc) are the best deal out there if you are using a rectangular filter system like the Cokin or Lee. For ND and polarizers I use either a HiTek resin or now a Schneider glass.

    Thomas

  9. #9

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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    Quote Originally Posted by tgtaylor View Post
    Bob - You're right in that they are not made specifically with the camera in mind but they will work. Recently I made a 5" 3-stop (.9) ND for the Toyo Compendium hood to use with my 610mm apo-nikkor using a 3-stop Roscoe ND sheet. Here's what Roscoe says:

    Roscoe E-Colour - This is Rosco's more than comprehensive system of European color filters for film and video production. E-Colour consists of every possible color and and material for color effects, alteration, diffusion and reflection. Whether you are in film or TV - video or digital - E-Colour has something for you.

    If you can't find the ready-made gel filter you need, you can probably make one with Roscoe Gels.

    BTW, for B&W still photography Cokin Resins (yellow, green red, etc) are the best deal out there if you are using a rectangular filter system like the Cokin or Lee. For ND and polarizers I use either a HiTek resin or now a Schneider glass.

    Thomas
    Some resin filters will create colors that are not found in nature. Specifically with ND filters you can get a magenta shift. This was most common with filters made in France.

  10. #10

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    Re: Deciding between Hitech resign filters or small glass colored filters for backpac

    All good thoughts, thanks everyone! Didn't think of just making a gel holder. That's kinda clever! I thought also about just holding one in front of the lens but I'd need to be real careful (thinking reflections there). I had thought about not taking my resin ND grad filters to save weight but then I know I'll run into some amazing shot where I might want to use Velvia and be stuck. Likewise I love CPs (almost to a fault, hence why I don't mind as much buying a CP for this lens specifically).

    Other than that though, I most commonly use YEL8 and occasionally RED25 - currently neither are multi-coated circular glass in various sizes (partly why the step-ups are annoying). I'm already dealing with potential reflections though it hasn't (yet) been a problem. I'd expect resin filters to be worse though (partly due to stacking if I also use an ND grad and also because they're further from the lens?)

    When I use the red right, it's pretty awesome. YEL8 has worked off and on. For BW I was thinking of bringing Delta 100 (or maybe FP4 although I recall that it doesn't work great with a red filter so I might save a filter there) and perhaps HP5. I kinda wanted to bring some ridiculously slow film like RPX 25 but will save those experiments for another time. I also thought about Fomapan 200 (Artista EDU) since it's cheap enough I can worry less though given all the gear I'm carrying, my thought was may as well get films I better know how to use.

    I'm thinking I can probably do ok with a CP where I might want to use a YEL8 if it's to help make the clouds come out. That Red, oh man, could be really nice though. So if I had to bring one...hmm not sure which one I'd bring :P

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