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Robbie Carman: So earlier Rich, we talked about what a lens flare actually is. Let's start our exploration about how to control lens flares. Richard Harrington: Sure! Well, most lenses have a built-in feature to help with this. The problem is, is it's sort of deactivated when the lens ships. So, for example, a lens like this comes in the box. They have the hood reversed, so it fits more easily. Well, the first thing you're supposed to do is pop this off. Robbie Carman: Oh that's what that's for? Richard Harrington: Yes. Well, I know that you know this, but I can't tell you how many people I see out shooting who don't turn the hoods around.
And you got to reverse them in order to pack in your bag, because otherwise it takes up a lot more space. Robbie Carman: Yeah! Lens hoods come in a variety of different shapes, lengths and styles. So for example, this is just an actual rubber lens, so that I can compress back down here and pick up real cheap, but effective. You get round styled ones like this which is nice and small. You might also get sort of more squarish type ones, and then more petal sized ones like that. Richard Harrington: That have notches. This particular one, because this is a wide angle lens, when I'm shooting at a wider angle, we're concerned here--like if this was equal sized, we'd pick up the hood and get darkening or vignette at the edges.
So it's saying, oh, you know what, we probably only need to protect for flares coming from above. Robbie Carman: Right, exactly! And again, just to reiterate, lens flares are most often caused by light hitting the front element of the lens at an angle, and because we have the sort of protection around the front of the lens, we're less likely to see those actual lens flares and to get those in our shots. Richard Harrington: Yeah! So most lenses will have a hood that comes with it, if not, you could buy third-party ones, like this one screwed on with a filter.
I was on vacation. I lost it, but typically it will be included and if not, you can order replacements if you lose them. Robbie Carman: Yeah! I was going to say, some of like, you know--some of the mid priced lenses to save costs, a lot of the manufacturers don't actually ship the actual lens hood with it. It's another way for them to make money. It's like you know a $30 or $40 accessory. You can find off-brands that are compatible with your lens. The thing you want to make sure of when you purchase a lens hood, if it didn't come with your camera, is that you're matching the diameter of the front element to the lens hood and often times the hood on itself will say exactly the model number and the size element that it will fit.
Richard Harrington: Yeah, what's confusing is lot of times you can move a filter from one lens to another, because a lot of lens will have the same size thread, but the hoods are often terribly specific to that lens. So I don't think this is necessarily conspiracy of the manufacturers, but you'll find many third-party hoods, but most often you're going to be buying an OEM one from the original manufacturer. Robbie Carman: Right! And so there you go. Lens hoods are a simple and practical way to protect against unwanted lens flares.
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