View Full Version : Is the supplied lens hood essential / useful?

Kenneth Tong
January 15th, 2007, 12:17 AM
The GL1 comes with a standard lens hood. Is it useful in reducing unwanted light during shooting? If yes? In what situation? I am considering not attaching it when shooting outdoors in vacation trips as I have to take it off when I want to put a wide angle on the lens. The best view might have gone when my camera is ready with a wide angle!

Don Palomaki
January 15th, 2007, 04:48 AM
Helps prevent issues arising from bright light to the side, and provides some protection for the front glass as well.

Kenneth Tong
January 17th, 2007, 02:18 AM
Dear Don,

Thank you for your reply.

The wide angle add on conversion lens that I am using is a bigger one (the one for Sony 717 cameras). Result : I have to remove the lens hood before attaching it to my XM1. When I am shooting during vacation trips, I prefer to leave the lens hood in my bag in outdoor situations. I would put on a polarizer if the sun is very bright. I may occassionaly put on the wide angle conversion lens for very wide shoot outdoor. When I am shooting in tight environments (e.g. restaurants and car compartments), I will put on the wide angle quickly so that I can capture more people in one shoot.


Benjamin Hill
January 17th, 2007, 10:11 AM
Kenneth, Don is right about the utility of the lens hood; it can be helpful. However it is not the most critical component of the camera, so if it really saves space you can leave it off and use your hand to shield if sunlight is hitting the glass. Protecting the lens is a good idea as Don says and a protection or UV filter might be a good thing to leave on the camera.

Gareth Watkins
January 17th, 2007, 10:19 AM
Hi Guys

Can't agree with Ben here... I find a good lens hood and french flag an essential bit of kit for my shooting. It improves the quality of your recorded image no end..

It's a bit like going out in the street on a really bright sunny day with a baseball cap on.. It can really help you see better. Add a polarizer and you've got sunglasses too.

Ok so you might not want a matte box on holiday, but a hood is a must, flare and extraneous light aren't a good mix on the small CCD's of a video camera...MHO.


Benjamin Hill
January 17th, 2007, 12:23 PM
Gareth, context is important. Kenneth is talking about using a prosumer-grade camcorder for filming on vacation trips. We've already acknowledged the hood makes a difference, particularly to shield the lens from lens flares. That is a given. Is it useful? Of course! Can he leave it off if he wants to? Of course!

I don't recommend it (I never shoot without it for my professional jobs), but there are no rules.

Don Palomaki
January 18th, 2007, 05:44 AM
My suggestion is to try a lot of shooting outdoors in the sun at various angles to the camera, with and without the hood, to see what effect using/not using it has on the end image. Use that informationto help decide when to use/not use the hood.

Adding filters is a mixed blessing. Because they are further from the center of the lens, any dust or imperfections in them on them will be more visible in the image, especially with any side lighting. Same if added to a wide angle adapter. So use/add fitlers with care keeping this in mind. I rarely use any filters for this reason. (The built-in ND is the exception to this).

I use filters only when the benefit exceeds the risk and it is a necessary effect that I cannot reasonably achieve in post when editing.

Kenneth Tong
January 25th, 2007, 11:02 PM
Dear Friends,

Thank you for all your advices. The original lens hood is useful and it also makes the camera look handsome.

Even without the original lens hood, the flare problem is not serious, according to my shooting experience with my XM1. I may consider to add a rubber lens hood if necessary.

With the Sony wide angle add on adaptor, flare is noticeable during outdoor shooting in late afternoons (due to side / back sunlight light?). Even with flare problem, the wide angle is very useful as it gives some magificant views of landscapes and save me the need to pan my camera too often. All I need to do is to brush off all the dust before add the wide angle on.