These are the filters that will make a real difference to your landscape photography, from NDs to polarisers
Filters are a great way to expand your landscape creativity
Many landscape photographers carry with them a good set of filters, resulting in greater control when out in the field and less time spent fiddling around during post. Whether you’re looking to reduce glare, retain the detail in bright skies or produce long-exposure shots on a bright day, here are some of the best filters for landscape photography in 2018.
1. Lee 100mm ND Grad Soft Resin Filter Set
Soft ND grads are ideal for scenes where there’s no definite transition from lighter to darker parts, and are invaluable when trying to balance exposure across the frame. This kit helpfully combines three options, each with a different strength, and they can either be used singularly or in combination with each other. As neutral filters they also have the advantage of retaining the colour balance of the image for faithful results.
Lee 100mm ND Grad Soft Resin Filter Set
The 100mm Lee ND Graduated Soft Resin Filter Set is made up of 3 100 x 150mm ND Grad filters (0.3, 0.6 and 0.9) with a soft dark to light transition. Soft ND grads perform best in woodland, mist, or interiors. Anywhere where there is no definite transition between sky and foreground, a soft grad will gently balance exposure across the image.
2. Lee Big Stopper 10x Filter
A hugely popular filter among landscapes and seascape photographers, the Big Stopper has a ten-stop impact on exposure, which has the effect of reducing water, clouds and and anything else that may be moving to a smooth, luscious blur. Crafted from high-quality glass to keep the image as colour accurate as possible, the Big Stopper can also be used in combination with other Lee filters once it’s mounted within the separately available filter holder.
Lee Big Stopper 10x Filter
Made from high-quality optical glass, the Lee 100x100mm Big Stopper 10x Filter is a long-exposure ND filter designed to reduce the amount of light entering the lens by up to 10 stops. By greatly extending exposure times, it has the effect of allowing anything that is moving in your image to become blurred or ghost-like. The Big Stopper is compatible with the Lee 100mm Filter Holder (not included).
3. Kenko 82mm Real Pro Circular Polarising Filter
Polarisers are great for making clouds pop against blue skies and to reduce glare and reflections, and this option from Kenko has been constructed to an uncompromising standard. Black-rimmed glass and a black almite frame are used to keep reflections away from images while the slim profile also does the same for vignetting. Furthermore, the Anti-Stain Coating (ASC) ensures that moisture and water droplets easily slip away from its surface to leave your images unaffected.
Kenko 82mm Real Pro Circular Polarising Filter
The Kenko 82mm RealPro Circular Polarising Filter is designed to give professional-grade results. Treated with a water-resistant anti-stain coating, the filter is easy to clean and long-lasting. It delivers maximum light transmission with minimal reflections, and its ultra-thin frame prevents vignetting effects even when used with super-wide angle lenses. The frame is also designed with a knurling edge for a secure grip, meaning the filter won't slip out of the hand.
4. Cokin Landscape Kit
Compromising soft ND grad, blue grad and tobacco grad filters, this kit allows landscape photographers to easily intensify the warmth or coolness in the scene while keeping lighter and darker parts balanced for best exposure. The filters themselves are crafted from a lightweight, organic glass that boasts excellent light transmission and resistance to shocks, with a soft gradient to suit scenes that vary gradually across the frame. As P-series filters they’re designed to be used with the separately available P series holder and adapter.
Cokin Landscape Kit
The Cokin Landscape Kit (H300-06) contains: 1 x Cokin filter P121S gradient ND8 Soft; 1 x Cokin filter P123S Gradient Blue 2 Soft; and 1 x Cokin filter P125S Gradient Tobacco 2 Soft. The P123S Gradient Blue filter has progressive graduation from the middle to the top of the filter, with a blue hue that enhances the blue of the sky or the ocean. The P125S Gradient Tobacco Soft filter has a soft tobacco-coloured gradient that can be used to underline the dramatic effect of a landscape or intensify the sand of a beach. The P121S gradient ND8 Soft has a soft gradient with a neutral density effect that reduces the total amount of light reaching the film without affecting the colour balance. Please note that the P-series adapter ring and adapter rings are not included and must be purchased separately.
5. Kenko 82mm Real Pro ND 1000 Filter
The Real Pro ND 1000 screws directly into your lens and provides a 10-stop effect to sufficiently blur motion of any kind, making it much more convenient than equivalent square filters that require separate holders. The black aluminium satin-finish almite frame not only looks smart but keeps reflections away from your shots, and if 82mm is too large for your lens of choice you can opt for one of the many alternatives right down to 58mm.
Kenko 82mm Real Pro ND 1000 Filter
The Kenko 82mm Real Pro ND 1000 Filter has been precisely engineered to be able to keep up with the quality demands of high-resolution sensors. With an f-stop reduction of 10, the ND 1000 is perfect for ultra-long exposures and extreme creative effects. Strong anti-reflective coating prevents flare and ghosting, while Kenko's vacuum deposition technology ensures a neutral colour balance.