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Canon EOS Crop Sensor for HD
APS-C sensor cameras including the 80D, 70D, 7D Mk. II, 7D, EOS M and Rebel models for HD video recording.


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Old September 9th, 2010, 10:51 PM   #16
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I have the Singh-Ray Vari ND, and I have a still shooter friend who had the LCW Fader ND Mark II, so I've had both in my hands at the same time. LCW Fader degraded the image to where I wouldn't use it (especially on the telephoto lengths). Vari ND has a slight softening effect. I would say it is negligible, and I use it on most exteriors.
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Old September 10th, 2010, 01:30 AM   #17
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Are you sure it was a Mark 2 and not the original? Apparently that was why the Mark 2 was introduced.
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Old September 10th, 2010, 02:05 AM   #18
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I bought the LCW Fader ND about nine months ago. I don't know which version it is.

If your shooting in bright sunlight obviously you need something to stop the lens down, and using the Variable ND filter has enabled me to get shots I might not have been able to get without it. But I have noticed that if I try to shoot wide open at f./2.8 using a stronger ND the image is a little soft. Often softer than I can use.

At first I thought it was me not paying enough attention to focus, but the more I used it the more I noticed the problem, the video looked like it was in focus but it wasn't as sharp as it should be. It seems if you stay away from the extremes, f./5.6-8, less ND it works better. As lame of an excuse this is, the variable ND's are so easy to use that I'll often set the f-stop and adjust the ND to get the right exposure, which often leads me to really dialing up the ND.

I'd hope the more expensive Sing-Ray would be better, but I have not used one.
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Old September 10th, 2010, 02:30 AM   #19
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Yes, it was because of the claims about the Mark II by LCW to that effect that my friend bought one. The LCW degradation was pronounced.

Last edited by Dave Therault; September 10th, 2010 at 02:32 AM. Reason: I am referring to Manus Sweeny--"Are you sure it was a Mark 2 and not the original? Apparently that was why the Mark 2..."
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Old September 10th, 2010, 03:06 AM   #20
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Ok.. so seems the Mark 2 didnt do much to solve it then.. Its a good reminder that often these things get tested and reviewed and hyped as working great and as good as the competition when theyre released and then 6 months or a year later the average Joe users start to notice, hang on a minute, my video looks awful when i use this thing!
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Old September 10th, 2010, 04:33 AM   #21
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Not to be overlooked that all of these are polarizing filters. When I was running some quick tests on the LCW Fader ND at first I thought it was doing something hideous until I realised it was doing what any polarizer would do. Keep in mind that rotating the front element has the same effect as rotating any polarizer.

It'll be fairly difficult for me to test the LCW on our 5D but I can try to do it on my EX1. The tricky part will be ensuring nothing in the test scene is polarized else that'll skew the results.
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Old September 10th, 2010, 07:57 AM   #22
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If it helps, I posted a mini-review of the Fader-ND from LCW (Review: Fader-ND from LightCraftWorkshop) exploring the colour issue. The shots I posted in the review clearly show a greenish tint.
I too noticed a softness in the shots, but I assumed it was because I was hand-holding the camera, and couldn't guarantee it was stable (on a tripod, mirror up, delayed shutter release).
If anyone is interested, let me know and I'll plant the camera and re-do the "test" to remove the wobbly hands factor.
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Old September 10th, 2010, 09:30 AM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Manus Sweeney View Post
Ok.. so seems the Mark 2 didnt do much to solve it then.. Its a good reminder that often these things get tested and reviewed and hyped as working great and as good as the competition when theyre released and then 6 months or a year later the average Joe users start to notice, hang on a minute, my video looks awful when i use this thing!
In my experience, just putting either filter on the lens, even in the "minimum" position had the degrading effect. If my memory serves me, dialing up the density did not affect this. It would make sense if the glass used in the Singh-Ray is of better quality than that used in the LCW product.

Slightly to the side here, the Genus ND Fader housing looks identical to the LCW. Are they made at the same Chinese factory to the same spec?
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Old September 16th, 2010, 03:26 PM   #24
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I'll just chime in and say that I have had both the SIngh-Ray Vari and a genuine LCW Fader (mark II) and used them on my 5D Mark II.

Personally, I prefer the LCW to the SR and found the SR produces a very slight green colour cast. The LCW in my use of it doesn't appear to. However, if I dial in the density all the way up to max, I do get the cross pattern, but this is normal.

Personally, I'm happy with the LCW. There are fakes out there, so I would not buy from eBay. Go to their website, that provides a list of offcial distributors who stock it. Buy from them direct...

It's easy to reproduce the same packaging for the rip-off merchants.
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Old May 10th, 2011, 08:47 PM   #25
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

I am sorry to drag up an old thread, but I found the thread via search, and I can't believe no one pointed this out:

Based upon what you described, the softness you were experiencing at 2.8 was most likely due to the *lens*, not the filter. A lens that is at its widest setting often goes soft.

The easiest way to check for this is, of course, to use the same lens wide open in a lower light situation, where you don't need the ND filter to take down the light. If your images are still soft, please don't blame the ND.

Note that I don't work for anyone in this space; I just want to find good info about NDs, and in this case I think one was probably being unfairly maligned.
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Old May 11th, 2011, 05:03 AM   #26
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

You're are right Chris, though too much ND can cause softening due to infrared contamination - so Chuck might also be right.
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Old May 12th, 2011, 08:34 AM   #27
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

There seems to be another overlooked option for a Fader ND.

Schniederoptics (known for high quality) also dearer than the Singh-ray at $580.

https://www.schneideroptics.com/ecom...D=466&IID=8088

Myself, being a humble amateur use the Genus one - and I've been pretty happy with it.
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Old May 15th, 2011, 03:01 PM   #28
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

I got the Fader V2 recently and it looks ok with the limited use I've put it to - no colour casts and 'seems' sharp enough with shorter lenses.

However the test I've used with filters for the last 30 odd years is to hold at an acute angle and look through with the naked eye at a complex scene. A perfectly parallel filter with good glass will show virtually no distortion of the scene, nor will the scene appear to 'shift' due to optical problems.

Trying this with the Fader and the scene distorts noticeably and unevenly around the filter. I'd bet on it introducing significant distortion when using longer lenses, and possibly evident with shorter lenses too under rigorous pixel peeping.

FYI for stills shooting using the likes of Cokin resin filters is ok on short lenses say up to 85mm, but at 200mm the ones I've had degraded the image so much it was ridiculous. SinghRay resin ones - I bought a few - they were much much better than the Cokin, but at a price premium.

That said, the footage I've taken so far with the Fader looks nice enough, but its been mostly with a 24-70 on a 7D and not much with longer focal lengths. I will be very wary though.
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Old June 12th, 2011, 04:55 PM   #29
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

back to say - got the Tiffen ND fader filter, and it is fantastic - but, I've now realised that I cannot fit my lens hoods over it!
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Old June 13th, 2011, 10:44 AM   #30
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Re: Fader ND filters - Any recommendations?

Read through this:
The best Variable ND filter I have used? | Philip Bloom
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