Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2004/10/21

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Subject: [Leica] Re: Skylight of Choice
From: lambroving at (William G. Lamb, III)
Date: Thu Oct 21 07:18:06 2004

Well, this is always a thorny subject, but here's my $ .02.

Always used a Leitz UVa outdoors, often with good effect for scenics. There 
is so much haze often at 20N - 40N where I've done most of my shooting, 
that something stronger might have been welcome. Even used the Series VII 
which screws into the hood (12504?) of my old Type II 35/f2 without ever 
detecting any ill effect on my images. Never owned a UVa for my 50 Lux 
because it was rarely used outdoors, but mainly in clubs, theatre, opera or 
at the circus.

Over the years I've cleaned a lot of junk off my UVa's which I would not 
like to have had on front element. This past June I was in the Western 
Caribbean for a week. On my return, I noticed a 1 1/2 mm whitish circle on 
the edge of my E46 UVa on my 28 ASPH, my current favorite lens. No amount 
of careful cleaning with Zeiss lens cleaner and microfibre cloths will 
completely remove it. The glass is obviously etched. Fortunately, the 
circle is near the thread and not anywhere close to the front element, so I 
can continue to use this damaged UVa on this particular lens. Had the front 
element of my $2,000- 28 ASPH been damaged, I would not have been a happy 
bunny as I'm not living on a trust fund! :-)

BTW, the 28 ASPH, as those of you who own one already know, is contrasty 
and sharp as a tack right to the corners with minimal vignetting, great 
flare resistance, and THE most amazing lens when it comes to suppressing 
veiling glare in back-lighted situations. Use of the UVa seems to make no 
difference, even at considerable enlargement. Go figure! :-)

Having said this, with my 35/f2.0 ASPH in conditions of heavy haze and 
humidity in the tropics, I've noticed more than usual vignetting, even at 
f5.6 using a Leica UVa. I'm not sure whether it's the square hood or the 
edge of the filter thread which might be contributing to this vignetting. 
I'm currently using the old 12504 hood and Series VII (where I never had 
any problem) to see whether this vignetting is a characteristic of this 
particular lens, or with the square hood and screw-in filter.


At 10:48 PM 10/20/2004 -0700, you wrote:
>I only use a filter if I am in a obviously hostile environment, like the 
>desert or when shooting near ocean spray etc. Sand/dust isn't good for any 
>lens and saltwater can damage the coatings.
>I once took some shots of a worker using a grinder. I used an UV filter 
>for that and was glad I did, because it stopped some pretty ugly stuff, 
>which otherwise would have been on the front element. I really don't care 
>if the body gets hit.
>I don't like protective filters for several reason, the most obvious one 
>being that it is a flat surface, running perfectly parallel to the front 
>element, thus making it a perfect magnet for unwanted reflections.
>Instead use a rigid hoods, which provide all of the protection you need 
>and won't slow you down fumbling with a cap when you want to grab a shot 
>quickly. I usually toss a few caps in the bag, just in case, but that's it.