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  1. #1
    macandal's Avatar
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    Filters (recommendations)

    I'm taking a B&W class and my instructor said that it would be a good thing to invest in filters because the ones at school may not be the best. The way they maintain their sets is that, if one filter is lost from set A, they will try to get one from another incomplete set. Besides that, they're old and they've been used to death. Anyway, I wanted to know which kinds are the best and how much should I expect to pay. I hope they're not too expensive; I would like to get a set. Thanks.

  2. #2

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    Price of filters depends on brand, size, and type of coating.

    Multi-coated one from B&W at 77mm would cost you quite a bit where as non-coated one from Tiffen at 52mm can be had for ten bucks or sometimes even less.

    I took a middle ground and bought a set made by Hoya, multi-coated, and 77mm for about $50 each. I use adapter rings to mount this to smaller lenses.

    I also have a set from Cokin where there is a bracket and I can slide in various square resin filters. I found these to be a pain to use, so I don't use them anymore.

    If you have access to a set already, I'm not sure if I'd invest in my own. Unless they are in very bad shape, filter quality does not affect the image quality all that much, if any. You might want to play around with your school's filter for a while and get a feel for your own needs first.
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  3. #3
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    Last edited by Jeff Bannow; 10-11-2012 at 03:19 PM. Click to view previous post history.
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  4. #4
    Nicholas Lindan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macandal View Post
    I'm taking a B&W class and my instructor said that it would be a good thing to invest in filters because the ones at school may not be the best.
    'Invest'? When used in this context 'invest' means you are going to spend money you don't have to. Save your money to buy film and paper - a far wiser investment in your education.

    I take it you are talking about contrast filters for B&W printing.

    Any old set will vary the contrast but the steps won't be even unless the filters match the paper. Ilford sets go with Ilford paper and Varycon sets go with Efke paper (and probably the other East European papers).

    If you are taking pictures with a Holga I don't think it matters much the condition of the printing filters.

    Perfectly good sets are available on ebay. Or you can 'invest' more money for a new set of Ilfords.
    DARKROOM AUTOMATION
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  5. #5
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nicholas Lindan View Post
    'I take it you are talking about contrast filters for B&W printing.
    Good catch Nicholas - didn't see that this is in the enlarging forum. Yup, I would go with a used set from here on APUG or from eBay. If you can post a "want to buy" here in the classifieds, you could probably get a nice set for a very reasonable price.
    - Jeff (& sometimes Eva, too) - http://www.jeffbannow.com

  6. #6

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    Is he talking about MultiGrade filters for variable contrast paper??
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

  7. #7
    Jeff Bannow's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tkamiya View Post
    Is he talking about MultiGrade filters for variable contrast paper??
    Yup.
    - Jeff (& sometimes Eva, too) - http://www.jeffbannow.com

  8. #8
    David Brown's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by macandal View Post
    my instructor said that it would be a good thing to invest in filters
    Wouldn't asking your instructor specifically what to buy be the most direct approach?

  9. #9
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    Contrast filters can fade with time. A very old, beat up set from a school may be problematic. A 2.5 can become a 2.2, or a 2.0, over time. In a set that has been pieced together, they may not change in even steps.
    Jeff's right. Place a WTB ad here.

  10. #10

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    Unless OP is going to setup his own darkroom at home, I wouldn't "invest" in one....

    Most commonly used ones today are made by Ilford and they are not that expensive.
    http://www.adorama.com/searchsite/de...&category=1184

    Depending on size and location, they range from 27 dollars to 70 dollars.

    Scratches here and there doesn't actually degrade images visibly. Unless you really want one of your own, I'd just use the one the school has....
    Develop, stop, fix.... wait.... where's my film?

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