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filter education?


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#1 ross e lea

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 08:31 PM

am looking for education/opinions on a good
set of filters to have for important
reasons. (16mm)
right now all i have is a ND filter
and an 85B.

others? and why?

whats a good one to soften up skin so
pores, etc dont show up so much.

thank you! :)
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#2 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 09:33 PM

A Pola would be good to have.

There are so many types of diffusion; it all depends on the look you want. If all you want is to soften details without any telltale diffusion effects (halation, loss of contrast) then a good choice is the Tiffen Black Diffusion-FX, probably the lightest (#1/2 or #1). It pretty much doesn't look like anything, just softens. The lightest Schneider Classic Soft is also good.
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#3 ross e lea

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Posted 19 June 2007 - 11:56 PM

thank you mr. mullen. had no idea that a filter would be over $100 smacks though......wow!
is post-production capable of doing the same thing as well?
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#4 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 June 2007 - 12:44 AM

Pola has to be done in camera, not in post, but diffusion can be done in post, digitally. Looks a little different -- one problem with digital diffusion is that it tends to blur the grain, which is great if you don't want graininess, but not so great if you are mixing diffused and undiffused shots together.
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#5 Alex Wuijts

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Posted 20 June 2007 - 06:01 AM

How about diffusing during the scanning process? How does that differ from on the lens diffusion?

Best,
Alex
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#6 David Mullen ASC

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Posted 20 June 2007 - 10:05 AM

Do you mean diffusion placed inside a telecine? Some allow that but others don't, so find out in advance.

That's a form of optical diffusion, but if you are transferrring negative, the bright (clear) areas of the film are the shadows, not the highlights, so the blacks will glow (halate) not the whites. Can look pretty but it would be tedious to use for some close-ups and not other shots and you may not be able to fine-tune the strength as well as with camera filters. Also, telecine diffusion may also affect the grain structure, just like digital diffusion does, though not as much. You're softening part of the film and its grain structure itself, rather than softening reality in front of a lens before it hits the film.
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#7 Dan Salzmann

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Posted 20 June 2007 - 11:09 AM

To answer the original question .3, .6, .9 ND filters, 85N3, 85N6, 85N9, 81EF are all filters that are very frequently used.
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