10 stop ND Filter, My Experience...

© Jlye
Black Glass, 10stop filter, ND1000, ND3.0 call it what you will but I have been out shooting with a BW110 10 stop filter that I purchased recently and thought I would share my experiences a little more closely than in my ast blog where I mentioned it briefly. I had been entranced by some of the images that I saw on various fora using one of these and thought that it would provide an interesting way to get RF photographs in places where it is smoetime difficult to get them.

Typically the get used to smooth out motion and achive milky flowing water or clouds and they work wonders on waterfalls and fountains. They do however unless you buy at the very top end of the market produce a fairly strong colour cast on images, I have found it fairly simple to remove these casts using either a custom white balance or using an eyedropper tool in photoshop raw to bring the white balance back to where it should be.

The application that really intrigued me though was being able to shoot city or street scenes and be able to use the for RF stock, lets face it people just get in the way, I mean how dare they be on the street when we are trying to take pictures lol. Anyway being able to shoot 1 minute exposures like the picture of the Nagytemplom in Debrecen is a wonderful case in point, I took these on a beautiful Sunday morning and the grand square was milling with hundreds of people, not that you can tell from the pictures. What you are left with is one or two "people stains" where folk stopped to take a picture but they are relatively simple to clone out leaving a simple picture of some grand architecture without the hassle of having to submit for editorial use only.

One of the draw backs is focusing, quite often the camera struggles to find focus with so little light hitting the sensor so you have to focus with out the filter on then lock it off and screw in the filter which on occasions can cause you to knock your tripod. But overall I think I am going to have a great deal of fun with this little addition to my line up even though it will see little use over the cold winter months.

Photo credits: Johnny Lye, Llareggub.

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Enjoy Peanutroaster, they require a bit of effort but really do add something :D

Thanks for the heads up Amilevin, i do not do a lot of landscape work but may be tempted to get out and have a go at a sunset or two :D


If you into sunset photography try to use this filter. It will do wonders to your images.


I ordered one on your recommendation. Should be fun to experiment with..


Glad you found it useful, I cannot recommend one of these highly enough... Being able to get such a long shutteropening time in broad daylight adds an additional dimension to the types of images that you can take whether for stock or not!


Thanks for the tip!


Great idea. Thanks for sharing. Lovely photos. That glassy water especially.
And the photos of Budapest in your prior post are fabulous.


Great idea. Thanks for sharing. Lovely photos. That glassy water especially.


Thanks for the idea - spent a long day yesterday waiting for people to move on so I could get RF and not editorial shots. Thanks - take care Bevan


Thanks for all the comments :)

@Gmargittai, it is a great idea and something that I have tried but failed as yet it requires fairly precise exposure control to be able to keep the time long enough to blur the people but not too long to make them disappear too much (if that makes sense)?

I will keep trying, I am going to have another go at it on one of Budapests busiest shopping streets in 10 days time or so and see if I can get it any better. I think shooting at a longer focal length may help a little as I have primarily used it at 18mm which exacerbates the "paralax" motion effect (in my head anyway) but having a go at 50mm with a wider aperture may help. More experiments :D


Good tip!


Thanks for sharing, this is great.


wonderful tip! going to b&h!!


Thanks for the tip, I will try it. I can see a different application although related to what you suggest, specifically eliminating the faces that turn an RF photo into an Editorial. Actually people are a good thing in an architectural photo. The trick is to make them unidentifiable or unrecognisable. Maybe using longer exposure does the trick. Or at least will make the process of photoshopping much easier.


Thanks for sharing!


Thanks for sharing,very creative use of these filters!!!


Interesting stock specific application - great idea :)


How dare they, indeed! Hahahha. But nice trick, will try it. Thanks for the tips

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