ND filter- how many stops?

Discussion in 'Sony RX1 Forum' started by Adub, Dec 28, 2013.

  1. Adub

    Adub New to SC

    3
    Dec 28, 2013
    Hello,

    I purchased the RX1 and the plan is to shoot it wide open the majority of the time. Curious if a 3 stop ND is enough when at ISO 100 while in the direct sun on the water, white sand, etc?

    Thinking the 6 stop may be a better idea as I could always bump up the ISO if need be? Thoughts?

    Thanks.
     
  2. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    a 3 stop is rarely not enough. Cameras that have built-in ND filters have 3 stoppers. When I use my X100 at f2, the built-in ND filter has always been strong enough, but if you're often in blinding light situations like snow or white sand, you may be better served by something with more light-stopping power.
     
  3. TraamisVOS

    TraamisVOS SC Hall of Famer

    Nov 29, 2010
    Melboune, Australia
    I just had a look at the RX1 specs, max shutter speed is 1/4000. In this case, a 3-stop ND filter is advisable when in bright midday sunlight. I've never needed 6 stops of filter though, that's quite a hell of a lot of filtering for me even though I'm shooting wide open at f/1.1.

    If you had a camera that had a max shutter speed of 1/8000 you'll probably only need maybe 1-2 stops.

    But like Luke said, you may need more if you're in blinding light situations. I assume those sorts of situations are rare but you did mention sun-on-water and white sand.
     
  4. ReD

    ReD SC Hall of Famer

    Mar 27, 2013
    Not forgetting that higher values are extremely useful for long exposure shots - eg 12 - 16
     
  5. TraamisVOS

    TraamisVOS SC Hall of Famer

    Nov 29, 2010
    Melboune, Australia
    Or just get a variable ND filter, that'll cover you for any and every situation.
     
  6. Duane Pandorf

    Duane Pandorf SC Top Veteran

    868
    Apr 25, 2011
    Western NC
    I've been using a 3 stop ND for the last year on my camera with lowest ISO of 160 and max shutter speed of 1/4000 and there's only been a couple times I needed more.
     
  7. Luke

    Luke Super Moderator

    Nov 11, 2011
    Milwaukee, WI USA
    Luke
    I bought a high quality 3 stopper and a cheapo variable for special effects.
     
  8. Adub

    Adub New to SC

    3
    Dec 28, 2013
    Thanks all for the input
     
  9. biglouis

    biglouis SC Veteran

    401
    Aug 4, 2013
    Adub

    It may be expensive but I really can recommend the Lee RF 75 filter system for the RX1. I use it for most of my landscape work. There is a ten-stop 'Big Stopper' which I particularly like to use to create creamy clouds or smooth water flows. I also use ND grads as well to balance the ev difference between skies and foreground.

    LouisB