Posted on April 29th, 2015
Cokin filter sets, yay or nay? 5 reasons why it’s a good investment and my modification
I have always loved Cokin filters, the high quality of the products and a mount that fits all sizes of lens makes it a great investment for all photographers who regularly use filters. The reason for this article is due to a conversation I had with The University of Winchester lecturer Richard Trebilcock who is always an interesting man to talk to about anything related to cameras, due to his experience in this field. Anyway, we began talking about filters and if there is a need for them with all the post process filters and gradients. To some extent I agree with this as colour and effects filters can usually be applied in post with more control and the ability to turn them off ( that’s always nice) BUT I tend to only really use ND, polarizing and UV filters that apart from a few stops of exposure cannot easily be mimicked in post. After this conversation I decided I would create a list of why my Cokin filter set is still a valuable addition to my kit.
- Control over sky exposure using ND (neutral density) filters has to be the No.1 reason for me to reach for my filter set. Tip 1 is to try pushing a standard ND filter halfway into the holder, this creates a better contrast line for your horizon (this will only work for some photos e.g. Seascapes but try it out as you never know till you try)
- Daytime Long exposures. Some if not all my favourite photos of rivers and the sea use long exposures to create that fluffy look. When shooting in the day this look is almost impossible to achieve without an ND filter. The Cokin filter set allows you to invest in one good filter and use it on every lens you own.
- fit all my lenses
- Custom mount. As you may know I do a lot of experimental photography and some of which requires me to mount things such as Custom Bokeh shapes to the front of my lens. I simply cut the shapes out of card and side them into the Cokin filter holder.
5. Fits all my old round Filters?!?! Filter adapter!!
Yep you heard me! Before I invested in the Cokin filter set I used standard round filters and as I already had polarizing filters never got the Cokin one. Anyway I had a car shoot planned and suddenly realized my polarizing filter for that thread size was damaged. This is when I had a stroke of genius and realized that I could just mount them to my Cokin holder.
What you need:
· I round filter (bigger size the better)
· The Cokin holder with the mounting ring for the lens you want to use
· The Cokin mounting ring for the tread size of the filter
What to do:
Simply mount the holder on the lens then screw the round filter onto the other mounting ring. Next just slide the round filter with the mounting ring into the holder and you are ready to go with no damage to any of the products. If you own Cokin mounting rings for all your lenses the chances are you have a mounting ring for your round filter size anyway.
If you are new to Cokin filters I recommend looking at the 3rd party sets like this one. They are very affordable and a good stepping stone to professional filters.
hope this helps everyone interested.