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Yet Another Filter Thread

Discussion in 'Pro/Adv Discussion' started by DesignFlaw06, Feb 24, 2016.

  1. DesignFlaw06

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    Sorry, I tried to search for this, but there is so much conflicting information. I'm trying to sort it all out.

    I'm a hobbyist, not a pro. I want to step up my game and ND filters appear to be a necessity. OK, I get that. Let's buy some. My thinking is I'll need to get down to a ND32. We have sunny days with snow and from what I've read, a ND32 should get me where I need to be. But I want a pack so I have some options.

    The general consensus is shoot at twice the shutter speed as your framerate. Also shoot in a 2-3-2 configuration with a Log profile to give a flat footage. Ideal conditions for post-processing your video. So far, I suck at color grading but I'm guessing that has something to do with not having filters.

    Question #1
    Am I wrong about thinking I need a ND32 filter? More? Less?

    Question(s) #2
    If I'm trying to shoot flat looking video, why would I want a polarizing (ND or non-ND) filter? That would give me higher saturation correct? Do I have to compensate for that? If I'm already at -2, I thought -3 is as far as you can go. The only reason I know of in photography as an example of glare off of water. Polar pro filters offer 3 polarizing filters and 3 non-polarizing filters. Why? And the 3 pack only contains 2 ND filters, which I don't think offer enough stops. Maybe I'm wrong. Just don't want to pay for something I don't use.

    Question #3
    Do I need to do post color grading? Will a polarizing ND filter give me look better than trying to create one?

    Question(s) #4
    Taco-RC offers a 4 pack that goes down to a ND32. Looks like a good buy, more to what I think I'm looking for. But then there is the multicoated and non-multicoated version. I'm assuming the difference is the level of protection in the lens? Is it worth the extra money?


    The Rainbowers set scares me. I don't like the idea of worrying about counter-balancing the gimbal. I also don't want the insert lenses. That seems prone to smudges and such. Seems like a bad idea trying to find the right filter in the field.
     
  2. Stovetop

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    I think the benefit of the multi coated lens from taco is the multi coated ones minimize the glare between the lens and the filter
     
  3. Air Ontario

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    Yes on nd 32. Wish i had purchased the multi pack that went to 32 rather than the one that stppoed at 16.

    Because the nd filters allow one to get shutter speed down so you get no jello, stutter and so one can get that close up blur like when flying barely over objects like trees.
    Polarizing allows viewing thru glare and into water.

    I switched from -2-3-2 to -1 0-1 as i wanted to do less post recently.
    You can do a lot in post with contrast and brightness and even color grade to get what look you wish, depending on post software used.

    I don't use nd and polarizing together as I dont have that combo for th p3p but always,always shoot the best you can do pre post. Never become a fix it in post compromiser or always dependent on post.
    It can cause your raw footage skills to suffer.

    I would go with the pack down to 32. Coatings? I always try to go with the best optics whether scopes, binoculars, lenses, etc. and that usually means some type of coating. It really depends on your degree of obsession. Lol

    I'm not going to "load" the gimbal so I'm not going to use heavy lenses at this point. Just my opinion, yours may be different per your want/needs.

    For reference..... I did the polar pro 3 pack and love them but currently here with snow plus sun, the 32 would be perfect for me if it had been included.
     
  4. Will19

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    I've only recently discovered filters, not had my drone long.

    I am made up with the result though! Think I used nd8 on my GoPro. Results below.

     
  5. shockwave199

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    I have the Taco filters and my go-to is the ND 8 in the pack. Haven't gone higher yet. I haven't done log profile either because I don't have a crazy fast computer to handle a ton of tweaks to the footage afterwards. I choose the none profile and it seems perfectly fine. I also have custom white balance and have it set pretty low- 3,800 if memory serves. I set it to match what my eye sees and that's the setting that looks appropriate to me. I shoot at 48fps so I generally choose shutter speeds between 100-120 depending for daytime filming. The ND filter is what gets you there for that. Also, ISO is at 100 for me.The biggest thing to tweak down to -2 is the sharpness. That really helps a lot. I drop the saturation down a notch or two and I think contrast only to -1. So far these settings are carrying over well to most daytime shoots. A couple of flights now, I haven't tweaked a thing. Before I start shooting for real I hover the bird and point it around the sky as well as pitch the camera down and up to check the exposure is good. You also must have the histogram showing too, which tells you the real deal about your exposure. Don't depend on what the picture looks like just from your tablet or phone screen. This was a couple days ago with these settings on a brilliant day. Worked out well. Good luck filming!

     
  6. wheeliesteve

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    Video looks great!
     
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  7. wheeliesteve

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    Your video looks great too! I just got the polar pro 3 pack and hope the weather cooperates by this weekend so I can try and get some better video.
     
    Will19 likes this.
  8. DesignFlaw06

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    Sorry I was out of town for a few days. I appreciate the replies.

    Here is where I'm at. Please correct me if I'm wrong. Also I may be working through my thought process while typing this. Bear with me.

    1) I live on Lake Michigan. Snow is bright on sunny days. Sunshine is bright on the water. I'm going to want a ND32.
    2) I haven't seen much value in an ND2.
    3) Polar Pro 6 pack and Taco RC 4 pack MC is what I think I'm narrowed down to. Both come with ND32.

    Here's where I'm still confused.
    I have not found an example where just a clear polarizing filter is needed. It would seem to me with the PP 6 pack, I would either use the ND8 & ND16, or the ND8/PL & ND16/PL. But not both. So it seems like I'm throwing out half of my set right there. It's also neglecting a ND4 fiilter which may be useful. It also seems confusing to me that the 6 pack seems to have a standard ND32, while the individual filter for sale is a ND32/PL. It also seems to be the only PL filter you can buy standalone. Taco-RC on the other hand has N4 - N32. No polarizing. I do find it odd that the 4 pack is the only way you can get the multi-coated lenses.

    I'd say at the moment I'm leaning towards Taco-RC. But I don't have a clear answer on multi-coating (worth it or not) or polarizing. The fact that I can't piece together my own kit also leads to me confusion / hesitancy.

    My saving grace is I will have nothing to compare to whatever I end up with. I won't know any difference between what I have or could have had. But the more informed choice I can make, the better.
     
  9. wheeliesteve

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    I contacted Polar Pro and got them to sell me the ND16 and ND32 individually since I already had the polar pro 3 pack and didn't want the 6 pack as I don't have a use for the PL filters.
     
  10. Air Ontario

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    Likely a set with an 8, 16 and maybe a 32 would be closer to ideal with bright winter sun and fresh white snow. Shoot at right angle to lighting(sun) for best results, unless you are going for a certain into sun video effect.

    One thing to remember is that there are several factors working with each other and against each other so a personal balance or taste is important for YOUR overall satisfaction. Especially when shooting video in manual to get what you want.

    For example, on a P3P if doing a lot in post, -2-3-2 is good for Sharpness, Contrast and Sat and Log. HOWEVER to satisfy the frame/shutter speed rule of thumb an ND filter comes into play which can muddy the colors even when moving the Sharp/Con/Sat settings away from the original -2-3-2 for example.

    Consider shooting some shingled roofs/privacy fencing/farm row crops, etc to set the sharpness and aliasing like you want. Decide on how much post if any you want to do then choose between Log, Cine, manual Kelvin and the other settings etc.

    Once you get your basics down AND your preferences figured out(ie. Manual mode, -2-3-2, log, vivid, cine, etc) you can then set nd filter and shutter necessary to prevent stutter/jello/rolling shutter and not get the muddy coloring. In summary footage that is technically ok, and with the look you want.

    I try to get the sky attractive with detail in the ground without muddying the colors. It can be challenging to get all the settings correct to optimize everything.
     
  11. larrythesimpleton

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    Ok Larrythesimpleton popping in here for a simpleton-style question.

    what if I'm not interested in tons of post processing stuff? I'm not artistic or creative. Or shooting in manual mode? I don't know what 2-3-2 means.
    Wouldn't a filter still be a decent idea for sunny days to prevent washed out images/videos?
     
  12. DesignFlaw06

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    Larry, I know I'm still learning. But to answer your question, I believe a filter is still necessary. The 2-3-2 is the settings decrease brightness, saturation, and sharpness if I recall correctly. You also use the Log profile. It creates a very "flat" image that is conducive to post processing. Someone correct me if I'm wrong.

    I just ordered the Phantom Pro 6 pack. Here was my logic. I used promo code SHARKPRO on Polar Pro's website. That got it down from $149 to $127. It also comes with a case on the PP website. I still don't know if I need the PL filters or not. Worst case scenario, I can decide one way or another and sell the ones I don't use. Say I get $40 for the ones I don't use. That gets me down to about the $85 the Taco RC ones would have cost. If I end up using all 6, then great. It saved me some money and another purchase down the road.

    I'll try to do a review to try and save others from the same confusion.
     
  13. PrecisionAeroworks

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    Hi Larry. Yes. Even if you intend to do little or no post-processing, some filters will help in some situations.

    If you are shooting video in the daytime (even on overcast days) an ND filter will help reduce rolling shutter (jello) effect and may make fast motion look more natural. I use an ND8 on cloudy days and an ND16 or ND32 on sunny days. If I had to pick only one, it would be the ND16. An ND filter slows down the shutter speed of the camera, and shouldn't effect color. It won't really make your stills look any different.

    A polarizing filter can help with color in some situations, and can sure help with sky shots and water shots, and will effect video and stills in the same way.

    Also, if you intend to do no post processing, you are the guy that all the built in camera color modes are made for! Pick vivid (lots of saturation and pop), cine (pretty natural looking), or whatever else you like and roll.
     
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  14. lalvar40

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    It seems you have made many tests. Have you noticed that when using d-log we loose details and sharpness, specially at trees. They get mushy. Any recommendations?