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Filtration: Beware Of The Reaper Of Cheap Glass

Reaper

Reaper

Making HD look like film has a cocktail and one of the essential ingredients to this flavorful recipe is Neutral Density.  You have to keep your exposure on a 5D around a 5.6 to get that beautiful shallow depth of field.  The 7D should be around a 2.8, and the 1D around a 4.0.  This gives the focus puller a chance and still keep a beautiful fall off of focus.

The Canon cameras allow what has never been achieved before with most of the HD platform cameras.  They never had a vista-vision sensor in them.  It was always a 2/3 chip sensor or a 35mm sensor size with more depth of field than anyone would want or know what to do with.

I recently did a slew of tests for the Bandito Brothers Production Company and we discovered how cheap ND (Neutral Density) limited our color correction options.  Green is one of my favorite colors but not what bad green filtration does to a beautiful image with depth and color.

Hoya ND

Hoya ND

top-image

We had a test where I was shooting five 5D’s side by side with different ND filtration from a variety of manufacturers.  The color difference was astounding.  Muddy, green and flat was the feeling I was getting from an $11.00 HOYA filter. www.hoyafilter.com/products/hoya/oef-05.html

Schneider ND

Schneider ND

Schneider logo

When I moved to the next camera it had a Schneider that seemed somewhat clean, but not perfect. www.schneideroptics.com/industrial/filters/Neutral_Density.htm?gclid=CM_NhqTH258CFRJinAodS1XdGQ

B + W 77mm

B + W Filter

Then onto the B+W, which has a color that was very close to the Schneider.www.schneideroptics.com/filters/bw.htm

Cameras 4 and 5 had Tiffen Water White  1.2ND’s which looked the cleanest of all of them.  This filter was specifically designed for the HD world.  When you ND so much to get the exposure that you love it increases the IR levels that your sensor is taking in.  This filter counteracts that. BUT what I have found is that the Canon DSLR’s have very powerful IR filters on their sensors so the standard IR filtration in the HD world is not needed.  Testing has shown that when you go into the 1.5 to 2.1 range you do need a little IR compensation but no where near what the filter manufacturer’s have laid in there.  So my go to is the HV Tiffen Water White 77mm ND’s Indie: 3,6,9,1.2, Indie Plus:1.5,1.8,2.1 pola, or the HV Tiffen Water White 4 x 5 Pro: 3,6,9,1.2 and Pro Plus: 1.5, 1.8, 2.1 with 138mm Pola Kits.  For detailed information, please contact Jill Conrad at NYC Tiffen at 1-631-609-3215 or email jconrad@tiffen.com or Robert Oralndo in LA at rorlando@tiffen.com, they both will be able to direct you to a dealer to get you all set-up. The kits come with belt pouches that hold the 77mm or the 4×5 filters.  They are sweet and very user friendly.    Tiffen has also up their ND levels to 5, 6, and 7 stops.  These are now available in WW IR ND and WW Straight ND  1.5, 1.8, and a 2.1.  This is essential for getting that amazing shallow depth of field out of your Canon 5D, 7D, and 1D cameras.

HV Indie and Indie Plus Kits are 77mm Water White Straight ND’s

HV Pro and Pro Plus Kits are 4 x 5 Water White Straight ND’s

When we compared all the cameras in the color correction bay, the Tiffen Water White  ND quickly moved to the top. The Water White filtration is expensive, but you get what you pay for. What a difference!  So, my recipe for filming is to use the Tiffen Water Whites ND’s across the board.

What types of ND filtration do you use?  What gives you the best results?  What problems have you dealt with?

Author: Shane

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174 Comments

  1. Great post!

    I’ve been changing the shutter speed to achieve my desired stop. I understand this changes for example the way rain appears (though i don’t mind it), but what other downsides are there when using this method? In other words, why not change shutter speed to achieve the desired stop rather than ND? (sorry for the ignorance, i should know this already!)

    thanks again for the great blog and info

    Post a Reply
    • keidrych wasley, by changing the shutter you make your video look like video. I never shoot higher than a 1/50 of a second. This gives you the equivalent of a 200 degreee shutter in 35mm motion picture. By staying a 1/50 your HD will look more filmic and cinematic.

      Post a Reply
  2. I once tried experimented using a cheap 4×4 ND filter kit from Ebay which included a N3 / N6 / N9. The filters were OK, while using wide lenses, but as soon as I jumped to a longer lens I noticed a great deal of vertical or horizontal streaking depending on the orientation of the filter. Now I test all filters with a variety of lenses! The high end Tiffen filters rock!

    Post a Reply
    • Justin Cerato, The Tiffen Water White IR is by far the best. Very clean

      Post a Reply
  3. I know phil bloom and others use those fader ND’s that have adjustable density by turning the filter. I’m curious to know what you think of those. My guess is that they are not as clean. They are pricey too

    Post a Reply
  4. I’m interested to see the effects of the IR reduction in ND filters, I was recently told that IR pollution was only a concern when shooting under tungsten lights and it increases exponentially with each stop of ND. Have you seen the effects of IR pollution in different lighting situations?

    Thanks!

    Post a Reply
    • Coby, IR pollution happens especially in early morning and late afternoon, it is just a good practice to fly with these ND’s always in my experience. I have dealt with it especially at the end of day.

      Post a Reply
  5. I have been using Lee filters for ND and they hold up really well. The vari Nd’s are really easy to use and great for getting a quick exposure but for high end work don’t hold us as well. They are basically 2x polarize filters mounted together.

    Post a Reply
    • James Warren, I am not hot on the Vari Nd’s at all. They are not that clean and take skin tones and matte them, you loose all the life on a person’s skin, it takes the reflection away with the dueling polas.

      Post a Reply
  6. I agree with Carlos. I was planning to buy the fader NDs that Philip Bloom recommends. I’m interested on your opinion of those.

    Post a Reply
    • Jason, The Vari- ND’s are not happening in my book. I love skin that has life, reflection not a matte image, because of the dueling pola’s.

      Post a Reply
  7. Shane,

    In your newsletter you made mention of the fact that a 5D at 5.6 is equivalent to 1.4 on 35mm film and that nobody shoots at that aperture due to keeping focus. In this post, you mentioned trying to keep it at 5.6 (or 2.8 on a 7D). Can you clarify a bit?

    Also, you mention you never shoot higher than 1/50. I assume you mean if you shoot at 24fps, yes? If I shoot at 30fps, I should have my shutter at 1/60 or 1/50?

    Thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Scott, The 7D has close to a 35mm sensor so you would shoot around a 2.0/2.8 split to give a decent focus range but keep the background out of focus enough to battle aliasing and moiré issues. 1/50 or 1/40 all the time. I do not like to go above it. When you go at a 1/60 or higher it starts to look like video, its too sharp for me. I use the motion blur at a 1/50 and 1/40 to help with the crispness of HD and make it look more like film.

      Post a Reply
  8. Hello Shane,

    First of all, I like to thank you for all the information and inspiration you have given us. It’s great that you have made it possible for Us regular people to communicate directly to a big time DPs such as you. Such a great blog!!
    My question… I have a 5dmkii, use a bunch of screw on NDs, but hate the “blow offf dust, screw in, screw out, blow dust off filter screw another in” process. That’s why I (was) thinking of getting faderNDs (now not so much after reading your comments), or matte box with 4x4s. Matte boxes are great, but it will make the camera bigger, and for certain shoots it could get in the way of a shot,,, What setup do you use when shooting dslr? For the navy seals production? Documentary on the dslr seems to be really tough, especially if you shoot out doors and want the shutter speed the same…
    Thanks,
    takeshi fukushima

    Post a Reply
    • Takeshi Fukushima, Thank you so much for all of your kind words and support. You guys rock!!!!! http://www.birnsandsawyer.com/%5Fsales/camera%2Daccessories/ This is a link from the Birns and Sawyer website. I use the MB-105 4×5 clamp-on matte box that is lightweight, small and keeps you nimble. The matte box is on the top of that page. In regards to the screw on filters, I use them a lot. I love keeping the camera small. I have not had the dust problems that you describe and we have battled the dust on this Navy Seal movie. I would suggest a good cloth to clean them with, one that does not create static so that your dust doesn’t cling to the glass.

      Post a Reply
  9. I’ve been on Red productions but even overhere in Japan tiffen’s IR NDs seems defacto standard…

    Post a Reply
    • Takeshi Fukushima, they have to be the Water Whites, the straight Tiffen IR were all over the place in quality. The WW series is very consistent.

      Post a Reply
  10. B & H only carries the Tiffen Water White IR ND in 1 – 4 stops. Are you stacking them in daylight, or is there another place that has more variety? Love the blog! Great info.

    Post a Reply
    • Smari, I am stacking them, but just to get me to a 4.0/5.6 split at 160 ISO and 1/50 sec shutter for my day exteriors.

      Post a Reply
  11. Agree again. Tiffen filters always- for the prices you pay you get a lot(superb filtration that are made tough and last years). Tiffen is about to release an affordable ND kit(N6-12), with an IR filter(if you can) and a Pola, maybe along with N3 and all are good to go.
    Mr. Hurlbut, awesome thread as always. I’m curious about your take on diffusion filters. I’m not even sure if you carry those in squares when you shoot on film or other HD alternatives(as some DPs are filter nerds while some only use color corrections, Pola and NDs), but I personally noticed the other day that it works similarly even on HDSLRs(i.e. 1/4 Mitchell Classic Soft or 1/4 Gold FX for CU of actress face), except that anything beyond 1/2 would actually soften overall image too much. Though there are several ways to manipulate images digitally, good make up person and maybe a glass filter or two still feel right…!

    Post a Reply
  12. Hi shane! nice filter review but you don’t speak about the lee filter, they also sell a very small mounting filter kit http://www.leefilters.com/camera/products/finder/ref:C4756775B6C7AE/ I was thinink to buy this one and some 4×4 nd, Mb are to big for me!

    I wanna ask you something else, I’m gonna shot a lot of car scene whit a 5d but I don’t know what kind of suction cup I could buy to use it (I’m not intrestead in any kind of gyros beacuse i want the vibration from the car, like in collateral), you think that the cullman clamp set could be ok? or it’s better to take bigger suction cup? I will use mostly lens between 21 and 85 all still lens.

    Thanks in advice!

    Post a Reply
    • Federico, the Cullmann clamp suction is not beefy enough you have to go with a 6″ or an 9″ suction. You will still get the vibration you want.

      Post a Reply
    • Federico, I have never been a Lee filter guy. But I will look into it. My favorites are Schneider and now Tiffen.

      Post a Reply
  13. hi shane,
    two questions:

    A:i have read that under 0.9 nd grade there is not a lot of problem with IR pollution.
    do you think so?

    B:tiffen made two IR filters:
    Tiffen Full Spectrum IRND filters and the new T1 filter that is expecially used for cameras like sony ex1,ex3,f35 that have IR problems also without ND filter.
    i have read that T1 filter can be stacked with standard ND’s up to a 0.9(ALSO 1.2 I HAVE READ) and be effective in blocking the far red pollution. From a 1.2 and upwards, you will most likely see some IR pollution and therefore IS recommended using the Tiffen Full Spectrum IRND filters.
    do you have tested if canon 5d has the same problems even without nd filters?
    if all what i have wrote is true ,don’t you think that is more cheap to buy T1 tiffen filter and normal nd filters(under 1.2 grade)?
    i wait your opinion

    Post a Reply
    • ivan marasco, it seems to make sense but stacking filters is a recipe for disaster. The more glass you put in front of the lens the more you degrade the image. Then when you stack 2 you are asking for weird flaring issues and internal reflection issues. The Water White filters are the ones that I feel are the best. Yes, I have found that the 5D has some of this IR contamination.

      Post a Reply
  14. Hey I like your blog found you on google and its good to see that there are honest people out there.

    Post a Reply
  15. Just caught your FXGuide Red Centre podcast, fantastic.

    I was warned about cheap filters so I went for HOYA Pro1 Digital ND DMC Range, although you did a cheap HOYA did you test the DMC range, just wondering how they faired.

    Cheers, great blog.

    Post a Reply
    • diffid, thank you so much. No I did not test the Hoya Pro1 Digital. I was trying more to prove a point that you need to spend some cash for good filtration, and the Tiffen IR Water Whites impressed me. How do you find the Hoya Pro deals with the IR pollution.

      Post a Reply
  16. Hi Shane,
    Any advice on the use of a circular polarizer for the dslr? I like the polarizer because of the control it allows for reflected light and it cuts a stop or more.
    thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Rob, the Pola is an awesome tool, jut watch if you have a subject in the frame it tends to take the reflection off of their skin and make them lifeless, matte, but for landscapes it is amazing. I use it for wide shots and then when I get in close on a face I lose it. On The Greatest Game I chose to use it all the time to create a period look and feel with the matting of the skin tones. It’s your creative choice.

      Post a Reply
  17. Shane,

    I’m before buying ND’s, so this is great I found this post. In europe I haven’t found a Tiffen dealer in Europe, but I also picked the b+w filters. What do you think, combined with an IrCut filter, could it give the same performance as the Tiffen?

    thanks

    Post a Reply
    • huski, yes, but when you double stack filtration and you are dealing with sun flares you can get double imaging other than that I think you should be fine. I have been using my Tiffen White Water IR ND’s down in the Dominican Republic at sunrise and sunset and it cleans up the IR so well, also using tungsten light mixed with daylight the filter really delivers.

      Post a Reply
  18. thanks:) Well…I’ll order a few filters, lets see:)

    Post a Reply
  19. Thanks for the information. Do you have a recommended place for ordering? Also what is the price range for the cheapos and what is expensive? Thanks.

    Post a Reply
    • Marco, Abel cine, B and H, Film Tools, for a 77mm IR WW ND, $140.00 for one piece of glass. Cheapos are $11.00

      Post a Reply
    • dtmp, I am not a big fan of the fader ND. Check it out on a face, because it is 2 polarizing filters it will suck all the refelection and sheen off of one’s face and render it lifeless. I love the glow, the sheen that comes from one’s face. Experiment and see what works best for your project.

      Post a Reply
  20. Hey Shane,

    I understand that there’s a tradeoff in quality that comes in price, and I would love to buy the Water Whites if I could afford them. However – it’s really not a possibility, and I was wondering if you had other ND filters you could recommend that are more within an indie filmmaker’s budget – with the understanding, of course that I’d be trading off quality for price.

    Post a Reply
    • Kevin, try getting a straight Tiffen IR filter and then some Schneider or B & W ND.

      Post a Reply
  21. Hi Shane,

    I’m a little confused after reading all these comments. In response to one post you say you use screw on filters all the time for daylight. Then in response to another you say that stacking filters is a recipe for disaster. To be clear, “stacking” filters applies to both threaded screw-on filters as well as 4×4′s correct? So say I have a collection of lens, wouldn’t I be better off using a matte box with 4×4 Tiffen water white filters so that I don’t have to buy a bunch on screw-on’s for all my different lenses? And in order to get a proper exposure for daylight, wouldn’t I have to stack multiple Tiffen 4×4′s NDs?

    Thanks!

    Post a Reply
    • Micah Smith, the stacking filter issue were in regards to stacking Pola’s, not ND’s. I use the 77mm WW IR ND’s when I want to be lightweight without a matte box and then 4 x 5 WW IR ND’s when I need a matte box, but I do not stack the IR ND’s, so it requires WW IR ND set and also WW ND without the IR set, double IR gives you a very weird color space.

      Post a Reply
  22. I have been trying to find the “77mm IR WW ND” with no luck on B&H Photo. Is this two separate filters or one? Can you post a direct link to it. Is it a 2×2 filter? if it is a 2×2 filter do you have to have a matte box or filter holder?

    Post a Reply
    • Jesse, Yes it is 77mm, not 2×2. I would try the Tiffen website to see where you can purchase them. I called Tiffen directly. You can buy them separately if you want. You can get a straight IR filter and then the WW ND filters.

      Post a Reply
  23. Hey Shane,

    Thanks for your commitment to sharing – have you tried/tested the singh ray vari-nd. If yes, any thoughts?

    Cheers

    Post a Reply
  24. Shane,

    I love all these lens related articles, and have two suggestions/requests:

    1) A discussion about and comparison of Focus Throw on various lens types, ie zeiss compared to nikon ai/ais, and on and on.

    2) A discussion about (brace for shitstorm) zoom lenses to use with the 5d/7d for documentary work, ie manual v modern af, internal zoom lenses, etc…

    Cheers,
    Thomas

    Post a Reply
  25. Shane, I’ve been playing with various filters this week and also realizing how much of a difference they make, even basic UV Haze. Thanks for sharing your knowledge and democratizing our world of filmmaking.

    I’ve also been on Tiffen’s website, B&H, AbelCine, and after spending some time searching can’t find the specific Tiffens you’re writing about. Do you have a model # on those, or a link?

    Abel and B&H have a 77mm T1 IR Filter, which is what is described in the Tiffen ad at the top of your post, but it’s not combined with ND. They indicate you can stack one of their NDs on that, but I take it you don’t suggest doing that, or is that a viable option for when we’re not using a matte box and keeping it light?

    There are 4×4′s or other drop-in filters that are both IR ND, so just wanting to see if you or others had some clarification on what you were using in the test, and what you recommend.

    Post a Reply
    • Paul, You are so welcome. The filtration that I am using is brand new. It is called White Water. It is a specific type of glass that does not contain all the browns and greens tones that their old filtration used to. It is a much cleaner glass for HD color space. Call a Tiffen Rep off of their website. Robert Orlando was my contact out of Glendale, CA. He is awesome and very accommodating. The 77mm are so easy. Tiffen makes this really cool Documentarian kit that straps to your belt and holds up to 4 ND filters. It kicks ass.

      Post a Reply
  26. Also, appreciate your clarification on the Fader NDs. Everyone raves about them because they’re about as convenient as it gets, but I also can’t stand how it dulls the image. In fact, “Fader” ND is a good description, because it pulls the life out of my subjects. For vérité docs where at times you have to move so fast in and out of different lighting conditions and instinctively as to not miss the story (story is everything), I’m still trying to find better options.

    Post a Reply
    • Paul, I am sorry I cannot stand the Fader’s. Try this Tiffen pouch for your Doc’s. It works so well.

      Post a Reply
  27. Shane, magnanimous artists like you are rare; don’t know if you’re getting recognition for it but I think that your passing on of knowledge will leave as big of a stamp and legacy as your own work. Few can make time to reply to blogs and messages when being so caught up in their craft. So much appreciated, mate!

    Will definitely check that kit out and also give Tiffen a call. All the best, and happy shooting.

    Post a Reply
    • Paul, again you are so welcome. This is a personal blog, not an advertisement page. Everything that my Elite Team and I have learned in the field goes up on the page. I answer every blog personally. At Hurlbut Visuals we set ourselves apart from most of the 5D noise, by making a difference, going the distance, to educate and inspire.

      Post a Reply
  28. Few artists are as magnanimous as you, Shane–the knowledge you’re sharing, while helping create a smaller footprint, might just leave a bigger legacy than your films. I hope everyone appreciates the time you’re taking from a busy professional schedule to help us out with invaluable suggestions as these.

    Will definitely check out the kit and call up Tiffen. All the best!

    Post a Reply
    • Paul, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. That comment made my year. I sling it out there, with working as much as I can to educate and inspire people with all that I have learned as well as finding a balance with my two kids and beautiful wife. It has been an incredible year so far and I thank you and everyone that has supported me and embraced this technology. You now have a voice and I encourage you all to dream and create.

      Post a Reply
  29. Sorry for the duplicate post. Definitely meant with unfeigned respect. Shane, in the exhausting MFA program I finished, we had many talented professionals come in who were so absorbed to the extent that their personal lives were a mess. That balance between art, family, and mentoring others to develop their talents is something I wasn’t taught or had access to, but have been in search of. So thanks for showing it can happen both on and off the screen. Keep on.

    Post a Reply
    • Paul, it is always great to hear from you and thank you.

      Post a Reply
  30. Hi, I am currently doing some research for an article that I am typing for my own website. I’ve found this post extremely useful and I would like to enquire if I may link to your post as it will be of great interest to my readers? Thanks. Melissa Suffield

    Post a Reply
  31. For anyone interested, thought I’d drop another line to say that I put an order on a set of these filters, the 77mm IR ND’s. Sandie Stern from Tiffen–their specialist on filters out East–was a dream to work with and nailed down exactly what I needed. In case you think those are it, note that the Tiffen T1 filters aren’t the same ones Shane tested; they also have the hot mirror and Canon DSLRs already have that built in–so you don’t want to go that route. That would work well for like say your Sony XDCAM EX camcorders, and of course those have built in NDs.

    She recommended two distributors: I ordered through Stan Wallace at the Filter Gallery in NY, a great place for all things filters if you want that specialization and nothing else. Abel Cine can also help place an order, and of course they’re great for all your production needs.

    Can’t wait to try them out and dump the Fader ND.

    Post a Reply
  32. Shane,

    Great post, as usual. Thanks for all the generous help.

    I’m resisting the hype machines of giant matte boxes and trying to stay light. You are reviewing screw-in round filters, which I’m assuming you’re also using. I’m trying to decide between a Cokin P or Z series filter holder and hood that fits on my different lenses with adaptor rings. FYI, the P series is for 3×3 inch filters which fit up to 86 mm sized lenses. The Tiffen Z series are 4×4 or 4×5 glass, what motion picture cameras use. I’ve found the Walter White tiffen ND filters 4×5 (Z sized), but none for 3×3 (P-sized) filters.

    Specific questions:

    1. do round, screw-on filters deliver better results than square filters?
    2. the 3×3 filters and gear are cheaper and lighter than the 4×4 filters. Are there 3×3 filters that are as good as these Tiffens? Or do I need to go up to 4×4?

    I know that staying light in the rig is a goal you advocate. Thanks again for all the help and knowledge.

    Post a Reply
  33. Hello Shane,

    Looking at the Zeiss CP2s, their lens diameters are just above 100mm, while the 4×5″ filters are 100mm on the shortest side. Will the 4×5″ filters fit the Zeiss CP2s nicely?

    I’ve also noticed that the 4×5″ filters are more than a hundred dollars more expensive that the 4×5.65″ filters. Might you know why the larger filters are cheaper instead of being more expensive? The Redrock Micro mattboxes take the 4 x 5.65″ filters, so is there a reason why anyone shouldn’t buy the 4×5.65″ filters? I’d assume that if the 4×5″ filters can be used on the Zeiss CP2s, the 4×5.65″ filters would work as well.

    Thanks very much for all your help.

    Post a Reply
    • Cedric Yu, I would go with the ones that fit the Red Rock matte box or the Birns and Sawyer clamp-on, which is the one that I use. The 4 x 5.65 is a Panavision size and works very well. They went with that bizarre size because they could use all of there Panavision glass as wide as a 14.5 with this size, where Arri has to go to a 6 x^ mattebox to cover that range. So it became the industry standard and that is why I think it is cheaper. Go for it. You are very welcome.

      Post a Reply
  34. Shane,

    Is this the water white T1 IR ND. You are tlaking about. Sorry Im still new and been following your blog and help me a lot with this 5D.

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, No that is not the one, you will need to call Tiffen NYC directly, here is there info. Call Jill Conrad directly at Tiffen 1-631-609-3215 or email at jconrad@tiffen.com. It is White Water IR ND 3,6,9,1.2.

      Post a Reply
    • Steve, I am getting them to offer an Indie filter kit that will include 77mm 3,6,9,1.2 in WW IR ND and then another set with 77mm WW Straight ND 3,6,9,1.2. That way you can double stack filters to get your minimal depth of field. Jill Conrad at Tiffen will be handling your requests. You can contact her at 1-631-609-3215 or email at jconrad@tiffen.com.

      Post a Reply
  35. Shane,

    Is this the Filter you are talking about. I have a Mattebox and but also want the Circular filters. i been trying find one but they dont exist for some reason only for 4×4 and other size’s

    Thanks…

    Post a Reply
  36. Hello Shane,

    thanks very much for your help! The inside-track newsletter is an awesome publication, I really appreciate all that you’re doing for everyone.

    I have another filter related question for you;
    if you could only have one or two Grad NDs, what would you go for?
    I intend to do some landscape-heavy (thinking of attempting some natural and urban night timelapses), as well as general purpose, documentary style shoots, and was thinking of going with the:
    Grad ND 1.2, both soft and hard graduation.

    I heard the hard version is better for locked of, landscape distant shots, while the soft version is better for medium shots with movement. What are your thoughts and experience with the Grad NDs? Is 1.2 a good contrast for cloudy Vancouver? Or would you go with something more conservative like a 6 or 9 if you could only have one?

    By the way, just to confirm, is this one of the IR ND Water Whites?

    Or should I contact Jill for a kit as you suggested to Steve?

    Thank you very much!

    Post a Reply
    • Cedric Yu, I am not a big grad guy. I used to be before the invention of the power window in post color correction. If I had to pick two it would the ND 9 Grad soft and hard. Then you can use your straight ND to bring the camera down where you want it.
      That is the filter at B & H but give Jill a call and tell her that I sent you and see what kind of deal she can give you. Thanks, and you are very welcome. I am so glad you like the newsletter. I try to give you as much information through what I experience on a daily basis using this camera.

      Post a Reply
    • Cedric Yu, I wanted to give you a heads up that Jill from Tiffen just emailed me and the filters on the B&H site are incorrect. They are not IR ND they are straight ND filtration. I advise everyone to contact Tiffen tech support and Jill will be contacted through them to help get these filters in your kits. All the best.

      Post a Reply
  37. Cool, was just thinking that for something like the 5D that hasn’t got a lot of post allowance, it might be better to do as much as possible in production. I’ll check out the power window and its equivalents. Thanks again for the suggestions referral Shane! (:

    Post a Reply
  38. hi shane,

    do you have tested FORMATT HD ND FILTER?

    THEY ARE NOT ANTI-IR,but without color shift.
    i’m searching a good nd filter in circular size(82mm).
    in this size i have only found FORMATT HD and TIFFEN DIGITAL HT filters.
    what do you suggest me?
    if i need two filters wich grade you can suggest me?
    Thanks

    Post a Reply
    • ivan, I would suggest Tiffen WWIR ND, .6 and 1.2, these are you two best filters. You can find these filters by calling Jill Conrad at Tiffen directly at: 1-631-609-3215 or by email at jconrad@tiffen.com. They will get them to you.

      Post a Reply
  39. Shane,

    Thank you for all the information. I have been hunting these down since following you blogs and having late night hours surfing your website for valuable information of what you can do with the 5D. I learned a lot from your website and I appreciate all your help especially from a Big Name DP/Cinematographer in the business and sharing it to the Little People :)

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, you are all an inspiration to me, to go out and there and push the envelope, to crack this technology and to be a responsible filmmaker. I will always continue to share, the days when keeping things close to the chest are over. Onward and upward. Inspire and educate is what the Hurlblog is all about.

      Post a Reply
  40. Awesome! thanks shane.

    Im still waiting for the email back from tiffen. Just wondering how much do they cost.

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, I think the 77mm were 160 a piece. Ask Jill to give you a good deal. She is awesome. You contacted Jill directly, correct?

      Post a Reply
  41. hi shane,
    i have contacted jill and i answered me.
    for now they don’t sell 82mm filter size,maybe next month.
    he said me that you only use 77mm filter size using step-up and step-down ring.
    do you have used the 77mm filter also to a 82mm lens?

    Post a Reply
    • ivan, That is great that Jill got back to you. Yes, I use the step-down ring from 82mm to 77mm, it does not vignette and works very well. That way you’re using one size which is 77mm for everything. It makes it easy and fast for changing filtration. We are putting a Indie kit together with Tiffen that gives you a set of 77mm WW IR ND’s 3,6,9,1.2 and then a set of 77mm WW Straight ND’s 3,6,9,1.2 so that you can double stack filtration and not be double stacking IR.

      Post a Reply
  42. Shane & everybody else-

    Thanks for your guidance on this issue of ND for HDSLRs. I ran in to a severe problem earlier this week and was caught without any ND other than a couple of grads. So I quickly called Stan @ The Filter Gallery and the man is moving mountians to make sure that not only he can get his hands on the filters I need, but that he’ll get them to me in time for my shoot in NYC on Monday. These Tiffen WW IR’s are sure hard to come by, but Stan has been first rate. So thanks for the research on the filters, and then thank you for pointing out that Stan & Able Cine Tech are pretty much the only place to get these bad boys right now. (They’re actually so hard to come by that I’m purchasing the demo 1.2 that was used at NAB by Tiffen because it’s the last one that they have on hand in 77mm- crazy!)

    Post a Reply
    • Jason F, Hi, I want to help you quickly. Call Jill Conrad at Tiffen directly in NYC, her direct line is:631-609-3215 or email at jconrad@tiffen.com. I hope this helps. It is crazy. We are putting a Indie kit together that gives you a set of 77mm WW IR ND’s 3,6,9,1.2 and then a set of 77mm WW Straight ND’s 3,6,9,1.2 so that you can double stack filtration and not be double stacking IR.

      Post a Reply
  43. Hi Shane,

    I don’t wish to beat this issue into the ground, but is there a projected launch date for this Indie Kit of 77mm Tiffen WW IR ND filters?

    That said, I shot some test footage with the 5D over the (very sunny) weekend and was pretty well hosed, without NDFs. I was able to compensate with a 1/100 shutter (Private Ryan lives!) and >10 F.Stop: the results (rivaling any off-the-shelf camcorder), as you can already guess, were somewhere South of “artsy.” Some top-flight NDs are a must — and fast!
    :-)

    Finally, been shooting with the 5D for a few short months: this site has been an immeasurable wealth of knowledge and inspiration.

    Keep up the great work, sir.

    Cheers!

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, they will be up hopefully by the end of May. You can go to filmtools.com and buy them right now. Get them quick, no more “Saving Private Ryan.” LOL!! You are so welcome. I will, and thank you for your support.

      Post a Reply
  44. Hello again Shane,

    Thank you for the referral.

    Cheers!

    P.S. Not a huge Will Ferrell fan, I recently watched Semi-Pro (you can surely guess why): the cinematography was stunning and totally not what I would have expected from a sports comedy. That one (Steadicam?) shot, where they come out of the tunnel for the big game … simply gorgeous.
    Great job, man!

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, thank you so much. I am glad you liked the movie. I loved what the director and I came up with for the look. That steadicam guy, I flew all the way from Italy. His name is Roberto Deangelis. We have done 6 movies together. I love him and his passion.

      Post a Reply
  45. Shane,

    I should have mentioned that, in the end, I enjoyed the overall film very much — one of Will’s funnier works, I’ll admit.

    That said, where the cinematography is concerned, I was enraptured from the opening credits: the angles, the camera moves, the color palette … .
    My gal (also a big fan, by the way) and I kept looking at each other and saying, “are you seeing this?” She had me rewind the aforementioned Steadicam shot a few times, too. True story. :-)

    On that note, I’ve seen a few of the films Roberto’s worked on — just didn’t know who he was, till you pointed him out. Now that I know his name, I’ll be paying closer attention. Thanks.

    And thank you for taking the time to answer all these questions and offering so much insight into your craft — the world needs more Shane Hurlbuts.

    All the best, sir.

    Cheers!

    Post a Reply
    • Steve, wow!! You choked me up. Thank you for all those kind words. Whatever you need I will try my best to help.

      Post a Reply
  46. Shane,

    You’re so very welcome.

    I’ve never been one to withhold praise: when I truly appreciate something, whatever that may be, I say it loudly (just brought up that way, I guess) — often, at the risk of being written off as a gushing fanboy (or suck-up) by cynics.
    … and so what?

    The fact is your work (both on-screen and through this site) has knocked me on my ass, inspired me, and I ain’t afraid to let anyone know — least of all, the talent behind it all. :-)

    That said, you can expect a lot more flowery language from me in the future.
    I trust you can handle it. ;-)

    As for whatever I need, it’s all about information, at this point in my development as a filmmaker. This site has done a fantastic job of filling knowledge gaps — and I can’t thank you enough.

    Have a great day.

    Cheers!

    Post a Reply
    • Steve. There is more on the way and the new newsletter has answers to most frequently asked questions during NAB.
      Thank you again for those amazingly supportive words.

      Post a Reply
  47. Shane,

    Received the latest newsletter two days ago. Thanx.

    As for those “amazingly supportive words,” as always, you’re very welcome — just sayin’ it like it is. :-)

    Have a great day.

    Cheers!

    Post a Reply
  48. Shane,

    Why aren’t the WW IR NDs stackable?

    If I’m adding a 77mm Tiffen WW IR ND .3 to a 1.2 aren’t I getting 1.5 worth of ND and IR protection?

    Thanks,

    A

    Post a Reply
    • Ara, It is fine to do. I was not reacting well to it. I felt it was a little heavy handed at times. But it all works beautifully, just like it is meant to do.

      Post a Reply
  49. shane -
    thanks so much for sharing – i’ve met mouse a few times through my friend wes brown & love what you are doing at bandito.

    i just got back from shooting surfing and dust traveling lifestyle in baja with my 7d. i’ve been stacking my Tiffen 77mm ND8s & 9s to stay at 1/40th f2.8 in the hot desert sun.

    i’m been super happy with the results – keeping my neutral setting very flat – i don’t see a big color shift but i have been warming up my white balance for that “desert feel”

    i have had some issues with the “over heating warning” – not sure if others are experiencing this in challenging conditions. but for the most part – i am extremely happy with this system.

    i can’t wait to check out your recommended tiffen water white IRs – sounds like another gem of info from you.

    your generosity to other filmmakers embarking down this new HDSLR world of production is unprecedented. i truly do thank you for sharing in a world that often hordes. you rock. best. jb

    Post a Reply
    • baffa, you are very welcome. Sounds like you are doing the right thing putting all that ND in there. You will love the results with the WW IR ND. The overheating issue is a pain in the rear. It is the dual digi processor. It overheats so much more frequently than the 5D. Watch your blacks when the camera overheats. They tend to deliver this weird banding issue, where you see vertical and horizontal lines. Thank you so much for your kind words and support.

      Post a Reply

Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. PORTLAND FILM » Blog Archive » The DSLR Cinematography Guide - [...] Once you have your ND filters, there is a whole world of creative uses for filters beyond simple exposure …
  2. Color cast with ND filters - [...] filter, but the weaker ones do not have any color cast. Unfortunately, you get what you pay for. …
  3. Don’t Fear the Reaper | Trojan Horse Films - [...] http://www.hurlbutvisuals.com/blog/2010/02/filtration-beware-of-the-reaper-of-cheap-glass/ This entry was posted in Cameras, Lenses, …

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