02-22-2014 10:01 AM
"What the optimum strategy with respect to using UV filters as a protective element depends on what the photographer is shooting.
If he is working largely without a strong light source in the frame, and assuming the lens hood is effective then a good quality filter is unlikely to have any detrimental effect even if the subject is heavily back lit; he may thus elect to fit protective filters and only remove them if including a strong light source.
Someone habitually including strong light sources in the frame may find it prudent to not fit a filter unless he finds himself working in a hostile environment.
My personal situation is the former where the value of a protective element fitted by default covers 99% of my photography.
Finally it should be noted that any lens is likely to flare if the luminance difference between a light source and the scene is large enough."
Conclusion from an extensive test done by The Holding Tank
In reality, as PP has been elevated to where it is today, filters are really a thing of the past. The two remaining exceptions are the CP and protective filters.
Now you have two differing views, cheap insurance and reduced cleaning of your front element or sans filter and hope for the best.
02-22-2014 01:20 PM - edited 02-22-2014 01:23 PM
Ssans filter unless it's actually needed, means no risk of image degradation at all, in any situation, and always use a lens hood for real protection. Or semi-permanently stick a cheap, thin piece of glass (that might get broken and actually cause damage to a lens) between you and your subject and hope that the loss of image quality isn't too great.
The perspective depends upon which side of the fence you are standing on, doesn't it?
Me, I spent a lot of money on lenses in hopes of taking great photos with them. I try to compromise as little as possible. Particularly with digital (where a UV filter serves little purpose, unlike it did with film), my lenses go filterless most of the time, and somehow those lenses have survived for many years. So far they've never melted down or exploded from lack of a pertekshun filter!
I do use filters.... when they are actually called for. Now shooting digital almost exclusively, C-Pol, UV (protection) and Neutral Density are all I carry (Thank heaven! I used to carry more than 200 filters when I was shooting film). Well, I still have some Graduated ND in my kit, too... though I'm not sure why. I almost never use them any more.
In find I use a C-Pol filter far more often than I need to use a "protection" filter. So I'd put my money into a C-Pol, before blowing it on a protection filter.
But it's a never-ending argument... to filter or not to filter, that is the question.
Just be aware of the "risks" both ways, if you do decide you want ot use a filter be sure it's a good, multi-coated one, conduct some tests for yourself, and then do what makes you happy.