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Tips & Tricks

The Basics of Filtration for Video Shooters/Photographers: ND and GND Filters

By Hanssie on September 22nd 2014

Filters are one of those small photography tools that can dramatically change an image. Like a pair of sunglasses, filters reduce the amount of light coming into the lens to help you properly balance your exposure without having to rely on correcting it in post. It can help you get the look you want, while preserving the data in camera, not trying to recover data after the fact. There are a variety of types of filters that can be used for different purposes, and that can be overwhelming.

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The video below, from Caleb Pike of DSLR Video Shooters, is the first in a mini-series of videos about filtration. Pike covers the reasons to use a filter, the different types of filters to choose from based on your needs, shape (rectangular vs. Fader ND vs. Round), sizes, price and popularity.

Pike discusses the two most popular types: Neutral Density (ND) filters which controls how much light is going into your lens and Neutral Density Grads (GND), a gradual ND and mentions the following filters in the video:

There are so many options when it comes to purchasing the right filter for your needs and budget. Pye recently talked about his favorite Neutral Density filters and gave a list of his favorite filters with a side by side comparison test. Check out that article here: OUR FAVORITE NEUTRAL DENSITY FILTERS | GEAR TALK EPISODE 5.


Some of our other articles on different uses for ND and GND filters can be found here as well.

The Video is about 13 minutes long. If you’re new to filters, this video is a good place to start.

You can see more on DSLR Video Shooter’s website here.

What is your favorite ND/GND filter? Comment below!

[Via No Film School]

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Hanssie is a Southern California-based writer and sometimes portrait and wedding photographer. In her free time, she homeschools, works out, rescues dogs and works in marketing for SLR Lounge. She also blogs about her adventures and about fitness when she’s not sick of writing so much. Check out her work and her blog at Follow her on Instagram

Q&A Discussions

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  1. Chuck Eggen

    I have a LCW Fader in 67mm and 77mm for video. Not so good for stills.

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  2. Brandon Dewey

    Cool video, I use Lee and B+W filters and love them. I bought the Tiffen Variable ND filter and I would not recommend it. Its ok at 2 through 4 Stops but 5 through 8 stops I started to get a purple X across the middled of the image.

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