Blooming, white orbs and ND filter

Started Dec 9, 2011 | Discussions thread
Billx08 Forum Pro • Posts: 11,373
Re: Blooming, white orbs and ND filter

gommm wrote:

Reading the article from dpreview on the white orb problem, from what I understand the reason Fuji recommends to use a higher iso is to have slower aperture.

So wouldn't a ND filter solve the problem? (without the noise issue of increasing the iso) and if yes, what ND filter can I buy that will fit directly on the lens without using the lens hood?

No, absolutely not. The orbs can be produced using any aperture as well as with or without an ND filter. The reason that Fuji recommends using a higher ISO is that this will allow the camera to use a reduced exposure. Sometimes this is done by using a smaller aperture, sometimes by using a faster shutter speed, and sometimes by doing both. This means that the sensor captures less light (fewer photons), making the cause of the problem (blown highlights, blooming) less likely. I want to stress this. It doesn't guarantee that the orbs will not be produced at all. It only makes the orbs less likely to be produced if they're only "mild", borderline orbs. If the bright light that allows the orbs to be produced is increased by the equivalent of at least a couple of stops, the orbs will remain even if you increase the ISO by a couple of stops. When you use an ND filter, to get the same exposure you'd usually increase the ISO, so that's why an ND filter might help. Increasing the DR% can also help, but again, it's because it forces the use of a higher ISO, and this isn't an ideal solution for two reasons. The use of higher ISOs produce lowered image quality, from greater noise and less saturated colors.

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