Neutral Density Filter Reviews

Neutral Density Filter Reviews

Hey everyone, today I wrote 3 Natural density filter reviews for the nd filters that make the most sense for a beginner and also worked for me at the beginning.

I think Natural density filters are an amazing photo accessory to have.  

Because they open up the gates to a whole new world of photography and give you even more room for your creativity.

Plus they are really affordable. Of course, you can also spend a fortune on ND filters, but you absolutely don’t need to.

As long as you don’t buy the cheapest of the cheapest you will be able to create some beautiful pictures. 🙂

So in this post you I will present you the Natural density filters that have performed well for me in the past when I started and that also don’t cost a fortune.

If you are struggling to decide which nd filter you need or want Click here and you will find everything you need to know. 🙂


Important

Even if you don’t buy the filters I recommend. Don’t buy the cheapest ones like I did the first time.

They tend to have an uneven color, get lots of scratches super fast (because of cheap material) or even lose the color. So just go with some filters that are a bit better and they will be a one time purchase.

Before you buy a natural density filter. You have to consider two things:

  1. Do you want a screw on a version that is cheaper, smaller and lighter?

    neutral density filter reviews
    Screw on build.

  2. Or, do you want a drop-in version which is bigger, more expensive but, is awesome and really the only choice for graduated natural density filters.

    neutral density filter reviews
    Drop in build.

Doesn’t matter how you decide before you purchase anything, make sure to have a look at the front of your lens to make sure you filter will fit on to your lens.

A Smart Little Trick for Screw-on Filters

In order not have to buy a separate filter for every lens diameter you have just buy the natural density filter for the biggest diameter and an adapter ring.

With that being said let’s get started. 🙂


Variable Natural Density filter

A variable ND filter is amazing and a must-have for every photographer (beginner or pro). They get brighter and darker when you turn them. However, they only work from ND2-400 which already covers a big range of filters

Gobe 2PEAK NDX Filterneutral density filter reviews

  • Glass Quality: 8/10
  • Price:$24.00-40.30 8/10
  • Sharpness: 7/10
  • The best place to buy: Amazon

 

This filter was my first serious ND filter and it performs surprisingly good for the price it costs. It is also pretty solid. Which I tested straight away when I unpacked it… Because I accidentally dropped it right away… neutral density filter reviews

  • The Gobe NDX filter covers a range of ND2-400 without influencing the colors.
  • It has a very small and solid frame which is magnesium coated.
  • Plus for every bought Gobe product there will be 5 trees planted. 🙂 AMAZING 🙂

neutral density filter reviews

Summary

This ND filter is a might not seem like something special but, if you think about the fact that there are almost no differences between this one and a $113 Tiffen Variable ND filter it becomes pretty special. Gobe 2PEAK NDX Filter works and is durable like its supposed to. It’s a great first filter.


Solid Natural Density Filter

A solid ND filter Is great for a strong stop down like ND1000(10Stops). Where variable ND filters don’t work anymore.

Gobe ND1000 MRC 16-Layer ND Filter.

  • Glass Quality: 9/10
  • Price:$24.90-59.10 8/10
  • Sharpness: 8.5/10
  • The best place to buy: Amazon

The Gobe ND1000 is solid and a pretty durable tool for your photo equipment. It is made out of High-quality materials and can compete with filters that are way more expensive.

  • The Gobe ND1000 is made out of High-quality premium Japan Optics glass. Which is also used to make glasses.
  • It has a 16 layer multi-resistant coating on the glass which significantly reducing lens flare and ghosting while making the filter anti-scratch, water repellent, oil & dust resistant.
  • Plus for every bought Gobe product there will be 5 trees planted. Again yaaaay 🙂

Summary

The Gobe ND1000 MRC 16-Layer ND Filter really is a high-quality tool for a small price. The fancy-sounding coating actually really seems to do its work and protects the glass very good. plus you even do something good for nature by buying one. 🙂


Graduated Natural density filter (drop in filter)

I will not talk about the screw on graduated ND filters for a simple reason they are a PAAAAAIN in the ass. 🙂 you can’t move the graduation line up and down as well as everytime you focus it will turn your graduation.

OK, enough hate. 🙂

The drop in ND filter will cost you a bit more because there is nothing variable. Plus you need a holder that fits your lens. Plus they are more expensive for some reason.

That aside they are really great to create pictures like this.

Left: with a filter. Right: without.

Pros for a drop-in filter:

  1. You can turn the graduation around
  2. You can move the graduation up and down.
  3. You can use all kinds of filters on the holder (Cpl or a second nd filter)
  4. You will have it way easier to focus and then put in the filter.

Cons:

  1. It’s Quite a bit bigger than a screw on filter.
  2. It will take you some time to set everything up.
  3. It’s more expensive.
  4. You really have to make sure that everything fits your lens.

I will not put a review for a cheap drop in filter for beginners in here. For the simple fact that I have tried a lot of them and sadly they are all garbage. 🙂  They are usually unsharp, increase contrast, or don’t really hold on to your lens. So there is not one drop in ND filter that doesn’t cost a fortune, that would recommend to you. 🙂


That’s already with my Neutral Density Filter Reviews. I hope you were able to find the right filter for you and If you have any kind of question or opinion please let me know in the comments. I will get to you as soon as possible. 🙂

6 thoughts on “Neutral Density Filter Reviews

  1. Lynne Huysamen

    I don’t know much about photography but I am trying to learn so I can take more pictures for my own blog instead of having to source free images online or purchase them from stock photo websites.
    I’ve been messing around taking pictures with my Nikon B500 which I bought for this purpose. I’ve taken a number of pictures that should have come out awesome but looked a little bit dull when I downloaded them to my laptop. I have to say I am so impressed with the contract between the two beach scenes. I’m now very intrigued to see whether that would make a difference to my photography!

    1. Aaron

      Hey Lynne, a great Idea to take the pictures yourself instead of buying them online. Plus it even gives your blog a personal touch. ND filters are definitely worth exploring just make sure you get some that fit your B500. something that could really improve your photography could be that you have to learn how to use light.

  2. Darren

    Thanks for writing this article, as I was wondering what the true purpose of a neutral density filter was and why a photographer would even want one.

    I’m quite interested in the graduated ND filters as well as the regular ones. Until reading this I didn’t even know I needed these for my kit, but after learning what you can do with them, now I feel like I must have them.

    1. Aaron

      Hey Darren, At first when I started I had the same question 🙂 why would I want less light? especially because back then the highest iso was 1600 and it looked horrible. I won’t say you need them in your bag, but for the price they are definitely worth a try. 🙂 

  3. Danny

    So true; the part about not buying the cheapest of the cheap. I have been doing photography a little and I even sold DSLR/SLR cameras and Camcorders and accessories at one point. What you say is the truth especially in the photography world. Some of the stuff is okay to get cheap but just keep in mind how long you would like to keep the equipment, and most times going cheap on the equipment means that it breaks to easily or doesn’t do a good enough job doing what we intended it to do. Ive seen first hand people buying really cheap stuff, only to waste gas and time buying the same product again, when they could have saved the gas and time buy just buying a better quality product.

    1. Aaron

      Hey Danny, I totally agree with you. It is absolutely not necessary to buy the most expensive version at any means, but don’t go with the cheapest version either. In most cases things are just poorly made or don’t even work and at the end you spend more money because you have to buy things twice instead of buying them once in good quality.

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