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I am a newbie at DSLR photography and still trying to get my head around the various filters one can buy. I currently have the default 18-55mm f/3.5-5.6 AF-P VR Lens and the Tamron 70-300mm Lens. I would like to buy a CP as I have heard that one can take good landscape shots with it, however I have no clue how to go about choosing one. There are some "popular" websites that are selling these for really cheap along with a UV filter, while dedicated photography shops are selling them at a much higher price. I would like a CP that I can use with both these lenses.

I would be grateful for any recommendations.

marked as duplicate by Michael C, scottbb, inkista, MikeW Jun 14 '16 at 18:48

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  • Being a newbie, maybe the best option could be buying a CPL avoiding the really cheap ones and the very expensive too. Something in the middle, like 20/30 dollars for the CPL (without other stuff added). Then, if you find yourself using it a lot, and getting really involved in photography, you can move to the expensive level (100 bucks and more...) – motoDrizzt Jun 13 '16 at 16:04
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These two lenses have different filter sizes. This means you will either need two filters (55mm and 62mm) or a 62mm filter with a 55-62 step up adaptor. (If you use a step up ring, the smaller filter size lens will not be able to use its lens hood when the filter is in place.) The filter is useful in landscape work in some circumstances: removing reflections, and increasing the contrast between clouds and sky when shooting with the sun in the appropriate place (at 90o to the line of shot). I would not go for the very cheap filters, but any of the better known brands - Hoya, Tiffen, Marumi, Kenko, etc are likely to be fine. This does assume that you want a screw in filter - there are filter systems which allow for drop in square filters, but these tend to be most useful when using multiple filters on many different lenses. They are also considerably more expensive to get started with.

  • As a note: is it convenient or even doable to use square CPL filters? – clabacchio Jun 13 '16 at 15:41
  • @clabacchio Certainly doable - see the web site for the Lee filter system. As to convenience I have no experience with this type of system, and cannot make any useful comments on ease of use. – Chris Walton Jun 13 '16 at 15:48
  • thank you, I just asked because I've only used screw-type filters, but I've seen a friend using square gradual nd filters (also tilting them) without much hassle. Just wondering :) – clabacchio Jun 13 '16 at 15:52
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    The CPL filters used in the Lee system are round. They fit in the Lee holder and have edges that allow the user to spin them as they sit in the holder. The same is true of the Cokin system. – Michael C Jun 13 '16 at 19:38
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Chris Walton already answered how to use a single circular polarizer for your two lenses of different sizes. But I want to address the implicit question "why are there such different prices in circular polarizers?"

One of the reasons for the large difference in price between polarizer filters is quality. More expensive filters probably have better coatings to minimize reflections (which is important for polarizers, because they have 2 planes of parallel glass, which can create their own internal reflections which show up in your images as flaring or ghosting).

Another possible difference in quality that could account for price differences is possible color cast. Some manufacturer's filters tend to add a slight amount of magenta, blue, green, or amber color cast (depending on manufacturer and brand).

When you are considering specific brands or models of polarizers, search the internet for reviews and example pictures produced with them. You'll find plenty of both. That will help you make the value judgement between low-price and higher-quality CP filters.

See also:


You mention that,

There are some "popular" websites that are selling these for really cheap along with a UV filter,

Regarding UV filters, there are lots of opinions both for and against their use. Rather than run down those opinions, or insert my own opinion, here are some Photo.SE questions about them:

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