There are a lot of common knowledge items in photography that are highly contested. While some people will tell you that they’re unforgettable items that are vital to your success as a photographer, others will insist that they’re actually nonsense—a uselessly perpetuated myth. One of the topics that give rise to some heated discussions is the use of UV filters. Here’s a video that aims to clear things up about them:
In the video, photographer Karl Taylor says up front that he’s not into UV filters. He considers them a relic from the days of shooting on film. In those days, it actually did make sense to use such filters, but nowadays it’s not as useful. He exemplifies his views by taking a couple of shots both with and without the applied filters. Here is his result:
As you can see, there is virtually no difference between the two photos. As Karl explains in the video, one of them is slightly darker because the conditions on the ground changed ever so slightly in the time required to take the filter off and take the second shot.
Personally, I don’t feel it’s obligatory to use an UV filter on a lens in order to block out harmful rays of ultraviolet light. And if you’re very careful with your equipment, I don’t even see the point in using them as a protection for your lens. However, if you’re like me, and you frequently bump your camera into things, it wouldn’t hurt to have an added layer of protection. This, of course, only if you find the price to be worth it.
What do you think? Are UV filters worth it?