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Thread: Which filter for Ektar?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Oct 2010

    Which filter for Ektar?

    I will be doing some portraiture with 4X5 Ektar and my Mole Richardson hot lights. I'm not sure what filter to use. I'm looking to get nice warm results.

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Buffalo, NY

    Re: Which filter for Ektar?

    Why use a filter at all? You should be able to correct the color in post processing either in the darkroom or in PS. If you wanted you could use a blue correction filter such as a B&W KB-15 which I believe is an 81A.

  3. #3
    Drew Bedo's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Houston Texas

    Re: Which filter for Ektar?

    Why not gel the lights?
    Drew Bedo

    There are only three types of mounting flanges; too big, too small and wrong thread!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Adelaide, Australia

    Re: Which filter for Ektar?

    What colour-temp are the lights? You probably want an 80A to get neutral results from 3200K hot-lights; if they're cheaper tungstens then they'll have a lower temp (warmer look). You definitely don't want an 81A; that's a warming filter for use in heavy shade!

    Main issue to watch out for is that an 80A eats about 2 stops of red light, which means that if you're shooting unfiltered in 3200K (or redder) light, your blue channel is about 2 stops under-exposed for a "correct" exposure. You risk losing all shadow detail in the blue channel, which is NOT correctable in post. You'd need to "over"-expose by about 2 stops to retain detail in the blue channel and that will push the red right up onto the higher (perhaps shouldered) parts of the film curve. You can then mostly-correct the hue in post because all channels have plenty of information, but your highlights might have less red-contrast, which might lead to slight crossover.

    I would suggest an 80A (over the lights if possible, otherwise put it on the camera and add +2 exposure), then get the warmness from your printing/scanning workflow. Using an 80A is just like doing the +2 stop thing to have detail in all channels, except the filter gets the red under control.

    It'd be a good idea to test a few filtering options using a roll of the same emulsion; totally worth it now that a whole roll of Ektar costs less than 2 sheets!

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