I'm interested about using ND filters with the Canon 8-15mm fisheye, but I'm not finding information about which alternatives are available. Are Format or Lee sw150 compatible with such lens?

If not, is anything available on the market?

  • Which specific lens? Each one is different. – Michael C Mar 23 '19 at 5:34

The EF 8-15mm f/4 L Fisheye lens has a gel filter holder in the rear of the lens. Gel, or other very thin media, can be cut to fit this holder. Gel ND filters are not as easy to find as they once were, but are still available from specialty companies such as B&H.

Here's a list of the Canon lenses with a 31mm rear gel filter holder:

  • EF 8-15mm f/4 L Fisheye Zoom USM
  • EF 11-24mm f/4 L USM
  • EF 14mm f/2.8 L USM
  • EF 14mm f/2.8 L II USM
  • EF 15mm f/2.8 Fisheye
  • EF 17-35mm f/2.8 L USM
  • EF 17-40mm f/4 L USM

Here's a rear view of the EF 17-40mm f/4 L. The rear of the 8-15mm f/4 L is similar.

enter image description here

There are also aftermarket adapters such as the Aurora PowerND CR Rear Mount Filter Kit for Canon EF Lens which fits the above listed lenses and allows use of Aurora rear filters. Here's a review of that system.

For some of the issues about using rear gel filters, please see this answer and the comments to Why would I use a rear gelatin filter over a front filter?

There's also this article: How to use a gel filter on Canon wide-angle lenses

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    While my answer addressed the OP's question about adding an ND to the front of a fisheye lens, your answer actually addressed the OP's need. It didn't even occur to me to remember about the rear gel holder. Nice job! – scottbb Mar 23 '19 at 16:30
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    That's because you're a Nikon guy and, as far as I know, Nikon lenses do not have this type of filter holder on the back of lenses. Too many mechanical connectors in the way. :-) – Michael C Mar 23 '19 at 17:49
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    Zing! And correct. Although interestingly, my F-mount Sigma 8mm does have a spring-clip rear gel holder, it's not like it's actually impossible on the F-mount. Oh well, another reason to ditch the F-mount, I suppose. =) – scottbb Mar 23 '19 at 17:54
  • Something to keep in mind about rear filters and NDs: lensrentals.com/blog/2017/09/… – Fábio Dias Mar 24 '19 at 13:30
  • @FábioDias ND filters are not sufficient for solar use, even when used on the front of a lens. One should use a proper solar filter. Please see: What kind of filter do I need for safe sun photography? – Michael C Mar 24 '19 at 15:14

If you are talking about true 180° fisheye lenses, then no, no regular flat filter can be used with such a lens without vignetting and cropping of the field of view, regardless of the filter size (even if it's the 150 mm or 175 mm large filters specifically for wide and ultra-wide angle lenses).

However, Tadashi Filters makes a dome-shaped 3-stop ND filter specifically for 180° fisheye lenses. It looks a bit like a smaller version of fisheye domes used for underwater photography, but doesn't require an expensive camera housing.

enter image description here enter image description here

  • hi, I'm interested about the canon 8-15mm lens. Unfortunately, I'd like to use big stopper.. – Bob Mar 22 '19 at 22:17
  • would the vignetting be visible at 8mm? – Bob Mar 22 '19 at 22:20
  • That is a 180° fisheye on a full frame camera. If you were to mount any sort of ND filter on the front by trying to adapt the Lee SW150 system, you would wind up hard-vignetting the top and bottom of the fisheye circle, and probably some of the sides as well. Not only that, you'd have heavy vignetting towards the corners. You can't mount flat filters in front of a 180° fisheye at all — you need a curved filter. – scottbb Mar 22 '19 at 22:21
  • 8mm is the absolute worst case for your scenario — it's the widest field of view. Think of it like this: hold your camera in front of you, with the lens pointed 90° to your right or left, so that you're looking at the side of the front element. With a 180° fisheye lens, you can still see the entrance pupil. If you are looking at the lens from the side, how can you put a flat filter plane in front of it and still have the optical path go through the filter and the lens? You can't. You'd need a curved filter that extends past back behind the front element. – scottbb Mar 22 '19 at 22:24

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