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Thread: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

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    Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Previously I had posted a question about using protective UV filters on Leica lenses. Responses were posted on both sides of the question, but it was interesting to hear that some choose to use them. I am in the "too expensive to take chances" group.

    As I now have IR cut filters, can I use these same filters on an M9 to keep my lenses protected? Or do they have a negative effect on metering, color rendition, contrast, etc?
    Last edited by tom in mpls; 24th January 2010 at 08:37.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Protecting your lenses is up to you, however, there are other reasons for using a UV/IR filter on the M9. Personally, I think it is subject dependent.

    Here is a shot of a black camera bag without a filter on an M9:



    and one with:


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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Interesting; the IR filter on the M9 isn't 100% effective. Let me then rephrase my question. Assuming that I intend to use protective filters, is there any down side to using IR cut filters rather than UV(0) or clear?

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    Interesting; the IR filter on the M9 isn't 100% effective. Let me then rephrase my question. Assuming that I intend to use protective filters, is there any down side to using IR cut filters rather than UV(0) or clear?
    HI Tom
    Well - I did some testing back in the summer, enough to make me think that colour and detail in outside scenes was adversely affected by using IR cut filters . . . Mind you, I recently removed the UV filter from my MATE because I felt that was adversely affecting the image.

    The M9 built in filter is the strength it is (i.e. not complete) because making it thick enough to completely remove any IR was going to affect detail in the shots.

    The joy of finally being able to expose the wonderful leica multi-coating naked to the environment shouldn't be compromised by putting a bit of relatively cheap glass in front of it! (at least, that's what I think).

    As far as scratching front elements and using filters for protection is concerned, I'm pretty sure that adding up the cost of all the filters that I haven't bought would make a much larger sum than the cost of the one lens who's front element I've scratched!

    all the best

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    In his testing Sean Reid found that on any lens 50mm or wider the use of an IR filter with an M9 produced cyan corners, so he recommends not using them on these lenses. I have simply decided not to use any filters on my lenses. I do use lens hoods to offer some protection and knock-on-wood, I have suffered no scratches.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    The joy of finally being able to expose the wonderful leica multi-coating naked to the environment shouldn't be compromised by putting a bit of relatively cheap glass in front of it! (at least, that's what I think).
    Jono (or anyone else), Have you tried the new Zeiss filter? It is not cheap (price wise). It is also a meniscus filter that should (in principle) help with the imaging and not hinder it by focusing the light in the right areas.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    The downside to adding almost any filter is increased flare, particularly when there is a light source in the frame (ie backlighting)

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Jono (or anyone else), Have you tried the new Zeiss filter? It is not cheap (price wise). It is also a meniscus filter that should (in principle) help with the imaging and not hinder it by focusing the light in the right areas.
    HI Vivek
    No - but then on the very rare (2 occasions) when I've felt there is an IR problem, I've simply desaturated the magenta a little (something which simply didn't answer on the M8).
    Much simpler not to use filters, and really no good reason to use them. It's one of the big joys of the M9 - why on earth spoil it by muddying the water.(IMHO of course)

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Tom.

    So what is your verdict? To filter or not to filter?

    BTW, I love all your questions. You are further along the Leica M journey than me. I am still waiting for the ordered M9. I have been waiting 6 weeks and expect to wait another 6. So it has given me time to research. But, you don't know what you don't know. All your questions give me some idea on what I will need to know soon!

    The filters.... I am losing sleep over too. I recently bought a lens from this site. I actually don't like even looking at it without a filter. Having said that, the lens hoods are very good so I am considering going without. I don't think I could go to the beach and not have one on though!

    Keep those questions coming.

    Cheers

    Helen

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ricnak View Post
    So what is your verdict? To filter or not to filter?
    Thanks for the feedback, Helen. If I get an M9 I am probably going to use B+W "protection". It would be nice if I could just use my current IR cut filters, but it sounds like it introduces some changes in the image so I will switch.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    HI Tom
    Well - I did some testing back in the summer, enough to make me think that colour and detail in outside scenes was adversely affected by using IR cut filters . . . Mind you, I recently removed the UV filter from my MATE because I felt that was adversely affecting the image.

    The M9 built in filter is the strength it is (i.e. not complete) because making it thick enough to completely remove any IR was going to affect detail in the shots.

    The joy of finally being able to expose the wonderful leica multi-coating naked to the environment shouldn't be compromised by putting a bit of relatively cheap glass in front of it! (at least, that's what I think).

    As far as scratching front elements and using filters for protection is concerned, I'm pretty sure that adding up the cost of all the filters that I haven't bought would make a much larger sum than the cost of the one lens who's front element I've scratched!

    all the best
    Jono: Any idea how much it would cost to replace a Leica front lens? I'm one of those paranoid people who can't leave the store with a new lens unless it has a UV filter on it. Cheers.

    http://mdriscoll.zenfolio.com

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jklotz View Post
    The downside to adding almost any filter is increased flare, particularly when there is a light source in the frame (ie backlighting)
    I think, then, that this is the heart of the matter. Increased risk of flare (shooting into a light source is always risking flare, no?) vs increased risk of damage to the front element. I don't know if this is intended or not, as it may just be my sensitive hide, but I feel like I'm being told by some who choose not to use them that I'm really not a true and serious photographer should I consider putting on a clear filter. I react to it as a sort of "purist" snobbery. Unless I can be shown how it makes a difference in most or many settings, which I have not seen.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    With respect I submit that this question (uv filter for protection vs. naked lens) has been asked in almost every forum and about every conceivable camera/lens combination, that I have ever read. Since neither side of the filter/no filter debate has ever produced any hard evidence of either A: Lens saved! (filterers) or; B. Enhanced lens performance! (no filterers), I'm convinced it falls under the category of personal preference. Whatever you decide, it doesn't make you a bad person. If it feels good, do it!
    Last edited by TRSmith; 25th January 2010 at 03:17.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    The joy of finally being able to expose the wonderful leica multi-coating naked to the environment shouldn't be compromised by putting a bit of relatively cheap glass in front of it! (at least, that's what I think).
    You can always use expensive filters :

    http://www.schneiderkreuznach.com/fo...ition-gold.htm

    "The F-PRO GOLD series is an exclusive edition of the classic F-PRO line of filters. This limited edition filter is produced in Bad Kreuznach from carefully selected materials. The gold colored version is strictly made from highly transparent, MRC-coated UV protective glass. Each filter is given a serial number as well as a certificate of authenticity, then delivered in a luxurious wood case."


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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hacker View Post
    You can always use expensive filters :
    Would you then need another "cheap" filter in front of the expensive one to protect it?

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Tim, I now get what Jono said.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Hacker View Post
    "The F-PRO GOLD series is an exclusive edition of the classic F-PRO line of filters. This limited edition filter is produced in Bad Kreuznach from carefully selected materials. The gold colored version is strictly made from highly transparent, MRC-coated UV protective glass. Each filter is given a serial number as well as a certificate of authenticity, then delivered in a luxurious wood case."
    Oh, drat. No IR cut version?

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by TRSmith View Post
    Would you then need another "cheap" filter in front of the expensive one to protect it?
    A very good one
    Osman

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    I think, then, that this is the heart of the matter. Increased risk of flare (shooting into a light source is always risking flare, no?) vs increased risk of damage to the front element. I don't know if this is intended or not, as it may just be my sensitive hide, but I feel like I'm being told by some who choose not to use them that I'm really not a true and serious photographer should I consider putting on a clear filter. I react to it as a sort of "purist" snobbery. Unless I can be shown how it makes a difference in most or many settings, which I have not seen.
    HI there Tom
    I'm answering this question rather than the one you directed at me because it's more interesting! As far as front element replacement, I've no idea - expensive I imagine, at least after the passport warranty runs out!

    So - the interesting bit is the 'purist' snobbery point. I think there are various aspects to this, and I guess it really is preference.
    When my MATE arrived recently, it came with a leica slim UV filter on it - so I left it on, but I actually did think it created flare . . . so I took it off again, and like my other lenses, don't use them. I do also feel that the amount of effort that goes in to doing specific multicoating of the lenses designed for the particular lens must be compromised by sticking on a filter.

    On the other hand (and quite inconsistently) I don't use lens hoods (except the built in kind on the longer focal lengths). Why not? Because I find the increased size and the encroachment in the viewfinder irritates me. I shelter the lens with my hand when I'm shooting near the sun (and I've got pretty good at that). The 28 'cron turns from a behemoth to a tiny lens

    Back to the 'purist' snobbery - I find it astonishing and depressing that leica can't sell the lovely summarit lenses, and I can only put this down to the 'purist' snobbery argument. . . but of course, I don't feel that way about filters, because I agree with not using them

    I think that Tim has it - these things are down to personal preference, but, like you I really deeply resent the idea that you can't be a 'real' photographer if you don't do it 'properly'. In fact, I suffer from this all the time from 'real' landscape photographers who don't believe that you can take 'proper' landscape photographs without MF and a tripod. We all have to make compromises - otherwise everybody would be using 10x8 cameras!

    Just a final note on the idea of the filter as protection. These type of insurance arguments are difficult to bottom out. With our computers at work, we don't every buy extended warranty - If I cost that out over the last 20 years, I'm pretty certain we could replace every one of our current computers with the money we've saved by not paying for the 'peace of mind'. I could certainly buy a small car by the money I haven't paid out on extended car warranty (driving 25,000 miles a year as I do) (if I hadn't already spent it on photo gear)

    all the best

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Tim, I now get what Jono said.
    Basically Vivek I will support ANYTHING to which you can apply the word 'naked'

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    ...I feel like I'm being told by some who choose not to use them that I'm really not a true and serious photographer should I consider putting on a clear filter. I react to it as a sort of "purist" snobbery.
    I was feeling a bit testy yesterday after our Vikings literally dropped the ball.

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    On the other hand (and quite inconsistently) I don't use lens hoods...
    Turn in your membership card, Jono. Actually, though, I am very pleased to hear that. I do so love the compact nature of the M system, and am relieved to have permission to go hoodless (is that a form of going naked?)

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    I was feeling a bit testy yesterday after our Vikings literally dropped the ball.
    No worries - I didn't take it personally, because generally speaking I really don't feel that I do it (the purist snobbery bit).


    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    Turn in your membership card, Jono. Actually, though, I am very pleased to hear that. I do so love the compact nature of the M system, and am relieved to have permission to go hoodless (is that a form of going naked?)
    Absolutely - back to basics! (I've recently rediscovered how completely brilliant the leica carrying strap is)

    all the best

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    SNIP ...
    I think that Tim has it - these things are down to personal preference, but, like you I really deeply resent the idea that you can't be a 'real' photographer if you don't do it 'properly'. In fact, I suffer from this all the time from 'real' landscape photographers who don't believe that you can take 'proper' landscape photographs without MF and a tripod. We all have to make compromises - otherwise everybody would be using 10x8 cameras!

    all the best
    Tom,
    My wife conducts the Victoria Civic Chorus and because she sleeps with me, gave birth to our twins, doesn't give a hoot how much I spend on camera gear, and is the perfect wife, I photograph her concerts for her. (I know I know, did she get the short stick on this deal or what ) Anyway her concerts are either in a church or auditorium with mixed sources of light and the chorus singers are all dressed in black! With the M8 (and I assume with the M9 too,) I have to use IR cut filters at these concerts because tweaking each keeper takes far too much time (and frankly, my correction profiles "ain't that good".) So I have either a Leica or B&W cut filter for each lens. My point is there are reasons to keep those cut filters handy if you are shooting under conditions that will produce lots of magenta cast.

    In my morning walks with my dog I try to stay away from filters because - as has been pointed out earlier - filters will cause light reflections. BUT, those light reflections are much easier to correct so if I forget to take the filter off, no big deal.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by victoriapio View Post
    Tom,
    My wife conducts the Victoria Civic Chorus and because she sleeps with me, gave birth to our twins, doesn't give a hoot how much I spend on camera gear, and is the perfect wife, I photograph her concerts for her. (I know I know, did she get the short stick on this deal or what )

    My wife is just the same as yours . . . except that it was 3 separate boys and I ride a horse with her instead of photographing concerts.
    Quote Originally Posted by victoriapio View Post
    Anyway her concerts are either in a church or auditorium with mixed sources of light and the chorus singers are all dressed in black! With the M8 (and I assume with the M9 too,)
    Don't assume that you have to with the M9 as well - it isn't a good assumption.
    Quote Originally Posted by victoriapio View Post
    I have to use IR cut filters at these concerts because tweaking each keeper takes far too much time (and frankly, my correction profiles "ain't that good".) So I have either a Leica or B&W cut filter for each lens. My point is there are reasons to keep those cut filters handy if you are shooting under conditions that will produce lots of magenta cast.
    The M9 really is a different beast in this respect - you CAN SOMETIMES see some magenta - especially in bags and suchlike, but in 3 weddings I never saw it once, and the only time I've seen it 'in anger' it took a small magenta desaturation to remove it. With the M8 filters were vital - even outside (if you didn't want nasty yellow greens).

    Quote Originally Posted by victoriapio View Post
    In my morning walks with my dog I try to stay away from filters because - as has been pointed out earlier - filters will cause light reflections. BUT, those light reflections are much easier to correct so if I forget to take the filter off, no big deal.
    Cyan corners are certainly not easier to correct (Sean Reid found them wider than 50mm on the M9), nor is the rather odd colour balance that I saw using filters on the M9.

    all the best

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    Basically Vivek I will support ANYTHING to which you can apply the word 'naked'
    Better the gear than the person using it, Jono.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post
    No worries - I didn't take it personally, because generally speaking I really don't feel that I do it (the purist snobbery bit).
    Jono, don't tell me you follow American football.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by tom in mpls View Post
    Jono, don't tell me you follow American football.
    No, I'm sorry to disappoint you - I don't even follow English Football! Simply that there are lots of things I could be accused of which would make me very unhappy (the ones I'm guilty of) . . . . but purist snob isn't really one of them!

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by Vivek View Post
    Better the gear than the person using it, Jono.
    Well, I guess that all depends doesn't it?

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Yes, indeed. Back to being serious.


    CONTEXT

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by jonoslack View Post

    ...snip...
    Don't assume that you have to with the M9 as well - it isn't a good assumption.

    The M9 really is a different beast in this respect - you CAN SOMETIMES see some magenta - especially in bags and suchlike, but in 3 weddings I never saw it once, and the only time I've seen it 'in anger' it took a small magenta desaturation to remove it. With the M8 filters were vital - even outside (if you didn't want nasty yellow greens).



    Cyan corners are certainly not easier to correct (Sean Reid found them wider than 50mm on the M9), nor is the rather odd colour balance that I saw using filters on the M9.

    all the best
    Whoa..., this is good news to me... I hope. As you said, the cut filters stayed on my M8 lenses all the time, they had to. Will have to do some testing before my wife's spring chorus concert as the range of clothing used on stage varies from the highly reflective to the fine wool from your part of the world.

    I have a few lenses I've been switching back and forth between the M8 and M9 and really hadn't noticed any cyan corners, but I do not have them on the longer lenses I use for her concerts. I don't see any significant cyan corners on Jklotz's photo of the bag posted earlier in this thread. But it's always those "SOMETIMES" that worry me with this magenta business with 80 singers dressed in every shade of black imagineable on stage.

    Thanks for the heads up, will re-read the Reid review too.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by oc garza View Post
    I have a few lenses I've been switching back and forth between the M8 and M9 and really hadn't noticed any cyan corners, but I do not have them on the longer lenses I use for her concerts. I don't see any significant cyan corners on Jklotz's photo of the bag posted earlier in this thread. But it's always those "SOMETIMES" that worry me with this magenta business with 80 singers dressed in every shade of black imagineable on stage.

    Thanks for the heads up, will re-read the Reid review too.
    It's the shorter lenses you have to worry about. Feel free to leave IR cut filters on longer lenses. 50mm lenses might just have noticeably cyan corners with IR cut filters, 35mm will have definitely cyan corners but might still be OK, depending on your sensitivity and subject matters (large evenly lit neutral surfaces show up cyan corners easiest). 28mm lenses and shorter are definitely problematic. The off-colour blacks are a lot easier to deal with, even if you have a lot of pictures than trying to deal with cyan corners, a lot of pictures or not.

    The bag was clearly shot with a longer than 35mm focal length, or at least cropped tighter.

    Henning

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    In addition to the negativesof the Cut filter mentioned by Jono, there is a simple profile fix for the VERY few 'magenta leaks"
    The base profile was by jamie roberts? I think on LUF
    I tweaked for a little better color.
    Here's the result on the image above
    hope this helps
    victor

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Victor,

    I will seek out that profile. If there is a way to avoid IR cut filters on the M9 I would prefer that. My own profiles did not work out that well because of the different magenta casts produced by different light temperatures on different clothing worn by chorus members. Seems like the wool fabric had little cast to it but the new, lighter synthetic materials are prone to it.

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    just PM your email and I will send to you

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    Re: Do IR cut filters affect image on M9?

    Quote Originally Posted by henningw View Post
    It's the shorter lenses you have to worry about. Feel free to leave IR cut filters on longer lenses.
    I disagree with this quite radically - you won't get funny corners, but (IMHO of course) you WILL get less good colour in natural light.

    all the best

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