Should I use a UV filter on my lens?? (test)

Started May 11, 2008 | Discussions thread
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SuperVF1
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Should I use a UV filter on my lens?? (test)
May 11, 2008

Ah, the age old question of should I use a UV filter for my lens, will it degrade my image. I haven't seen on other sites where they make a direct comparison picture with and without the filter. Rest assured this isn't one of them, but a 'test' of sorts in hopes that one can come to their own conclusion.

On to the test equipment

  • HOYA 58mm HMC UV (0) multicoated filter, brand spanking new

  • Olmypus E-510, set to manual mode

  • 14-42mm kit lens, NO lens hood

  • Velbon DF-40 tripod

Weather was a clear and sunny day around 4pm, and I decided to use the wide-angle kit lens for more susceptiblity to flares and such. Now on to the test. Set the camera to manual, ISO set to 100, and adjusted the WB accordingly

Test 1:

The obvious, trying to induce flare, pointed the lens to where the sun is (not directly at the sun) in the 12 o'clock position in relation to the lens

NO filter

WITH filter

As you can see, the filter did its job in reducing flare

Test 2:

Trying to induce sun spot or ghosting, can you spot it?? Sun is at the 10 o'clock position.

NO filter

WITH filter

There's ghosting, sun spot on the pic WITH the filter. The branches and leaves in the right half of the screen has also lost detail WITH the filter on.

Test 3:
Camera was on the shade, adjusted the WB accordingly

NO filter

WITH filter

Same thing here, lost a little detail and made the pic a tad darker. Lost some contrast in the leaves

Test 4:
Inside under flourescent lighting, adjusted WB accordingly

NO filter

WITH filter

NO filter

WITH filter

Inside and under controlled environment, color variations are negligible.

My conclusion

"Better have it and not need it, than need it and not have it." - qoute from AVP the movie

I personally just use the hood and don't use UV filters unless needed, such as extreme wind/dust, salt sea spray, etc...

For bigger pics
http://flickr.com/photos/supervf1/sets/72157604988520681/
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Olympus Evolt E-510
Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm and 40-150mm kit lens
http://www.flickr.com/photos/supervf1/
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Olympus Evolt E-510
Zuiko Digital ED 14-42mm and 40-150mm kit lens
http://www.flickr.com/photos/supervf1/

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