Haida Slim Pro II MC ND1000 Review

spirit of wayra

Exposure of 25 seconds

Today I’ll continue my reviews of the filters I lost. In this occasion is the turn of  the Haida ND1000. Let’s begin with general questions:

  • What is a ND 1000 filter? Is a dark or Neutral Density filter that reduces the light forcing the camera to take longer time exposures capturing the motion; indeed it forces the camera by a factor of 1000 (one thousand or ten f-stops) so if your camera normally would take a photograph in 1/1000 of second with this filter will take the same scene in one second, if normally it requires 1/250 of second with the filter it will need 4 seconds.
  • Do I need a ND filter? It depends, if you like to photograph the motion of people, wind, or water then it could be quite useful to you, otherwise it could end forgotten in a bag.
  • Which one to buy? You get what you pay for. They aren’t specially expensive but, if your lens can accept filters, I suggest you to play with the cheapest filter you can find and if you like the effect then buy one of the highest quality. This kind of filter is easy to introduce color casts in your images that are hard to edit even in raw so a good filter as Haida pays its price quickly with the security to shot more outside than be in from of a boring screen.

The Haida ND1000 got great reviews in internet compared with the best brands but with a more affordable price so I purchased one online, I wouldn’t guess that it would be a filter I would use so much. My lens starts with 24mm (equivalent to aps-c sensors) and as I usually stack it with a polarizer I got the slim version to don’t end with heavy vignettings in my photographs.

This is how it looks in the field:

portrait of a fujifilm x-e1


As you can see it’s like a black hole in the camera :D With longer exposures a tripod is a must so I have a lightweight tripod. Well, enough of technical details: let’s go to the pics!

Capturing the motion of water
A light that shines in the dark forest

Exposure of 30 seconds

Longer exposures renders the water in an almost dreamy way, it emphasize the gentle movement. Usually used with waterfalls it can get a nice effect in any body of flowing water.

sinking hand

without filter: exposure of 1/2000 of second

subtle fingers

With filter, same scene exposure of 4 seconds. I reduced the aperture to get a longer exposure. There is no color cast but I set warmer white balance to get a warm atmosphere.

I like both photographs, simply they have different composition, one works with surfaces and the other isolate an static element in middle of the flow of the water.

Avoiding color casts
Tree thinking about the river

ten seconds exposure

If you want to know if your filter is of low quality you can discover it seeing if your photographs look like shot under the red Sun of Krypton. The magenta cast is synonym of cheap and besides artistic intentions you shouldn’t use it in your lenses. Said that the Haida are definitively excellent considering that ND 1000 filters usually have color casts, even the ones from the big names. You just need to be aware to do one thing: Set your white balance to auto. Manually I didn’t get nice results and took a bit more time to edit. Despite that there is a minimal cast, although it’s so little that sometimes I don’t see the need to correct it.

Singer stream

without filter, exposure of 1/125 of second

Bow my branches to the sound of the water

with filter. Exposure of eight seconds. Note how the clouds are less prone to clipped highlights. The color is intentionally warmer

I like both photographs but after shooting the first one I noticed that despite the use of the polarizers the elements under the stream weren’t highlighted as I wanted so I used the filter to allow me to “erase” details to the stream.

Capturing the wind and time
akapana wayra

Exposure of five seconds and a windy day

I'll wait for you an eternity and one day more

Exposure of 30 seconds

Other uses are to reduce people in touristic places but I didn’t get a chance to try that option.

When the light is poor
old port

8 seconds exposure

Actually at twilight the filter can take several seconds or minutes but that’s overkill, you could get the same effect with a ND filter of less intensity. The photograph above was quite dark so the next ones needed much more time.

When stacking with another filters
don't go

30 seconds exposure stacked with circular polarizer to give some transparency to the water

In this photograph I stacked the Haida filter with my also lost Marumi circular polarizer, I can see a little of vignetting. I tried with a graduated filter but it was tough to position it in the composition because the ND 1000 is black. You can set the focus manually and with care set the graduation of the circular polarizer but with a square graduated filter you are better serviced with a square ND 1000 filter, so you can put in position the filters and after that slide in the ND 1000 filter.

  • High quality filter.
  • Almost no color cast setting in auto white balance.
  • Affordable price.
  • It has a square version too both made of great glass.
  • Good presentation.
  • The coatings work.
  • The ring has no texture so it could be hard to separate if is attached to another filters.

This filter allowed me to photograph movement so I could say this is an essential filter. It has characteristics of the famous brands so if you are an amateur like me this is probably your best choice. Now I’m going to try a brand called H&Y so I’ll tell you if that is an option too. A pair more from the Haida meanwhile ;-)

difussed and quite light in the remains of an empire

Exposure of 2.6 seconds

Blended sky and earth

1.6 seconds of exposure under an intense sun and the landscape turned with more contrast and definition :-)

16 thoughts on “Haida Slim Pro II MC ND1000 Review

  1. que bonito y muy profesional, FR…:-) un bonus que me encanta mucho:”el tiempo del amor, de los amigos y de la aventura…” – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ITYVXUvMtHI

    Es el tiempo del amor
    el tiempo de los amigos
    y de la aventura
    cuando el tiempo va y viene
    no pensamos en nada
    a pesar de sus heridas
    Pues el tiempo del amor
    es largo y es corto
    dura siempre
    lo recordamos…
    Se dice que a los veinte años
    se es el rey del mundo
    y que eternamente
    tendremos en nuestros ojos
    todo el azul del cielo…
    – – –
    Pues el tiempo del amor
    os mete en el corazón
    mucho calor y felicidad…
    Un buen día viene el amor
    y el corazón late más deprisa
    pues la vida sigue su curso
    y somos completamente felices
    al estar enamorados…
    Es el tiempo del amor
    el tiempo de los amigos
    y de la aventura
    cuando el tiempo va y viene
    no se piensa en nada
    a pesar de las heridas
    Pues el tiempo del amor
    es largo y es corto
    dura para siempre
    lo recordamos…

  2. Thank you very much for this review – I’ve been thinking on and off about obtaining a set of ND filters.

    1. You’re welcome, Kristerp. If I’m not wrong you have a D800E (my camera is a humble R1 from 2005 XD) so I suggest you to have the best filters to don’t degrade the amazing iQ of your camera. I live near the equator so actually the light is quite strong so to me just make sense to have one filter, in this case the ND 1000 filter and when it’s late it’s enough to me then I set the aperture to f8 or even f5.6. Then again you are in a Nordic country and if you tend to shot in conditions of low light then you could have more use of a ND 64.

  3. A very interesting and informative review of the use of ND filters, with beautiful and special images. Have you tried to isolate a building or plaza from people passing by in the evening? I did it, just for fun. Because I like people on my shots. :-) I used the ND1000 filter and used an exposure time of over 30 seconds. In the end I had Wells Cathedral and no people in front of it. All (moving) people in front disappeared. The same happens to ducks in a river or birds in the sky. I have to use this technique more often, but it’s not easy carrying a tripod all the time. Thanks for another fabulous virtual walk enriched with helpful information about filters. Hope you get the lost ones replaced soon. All the best, Reinhold

    1. Thanks Reinhold, I enjoy too your long exposures compositions and they inspire me to use them for architecture. I did that one in a plaza, but the filter was a plastic one so I discarded the file, I hope to use a long exposure filter when I can go again to Machu Picchu, the place is always crowded with us, tourists.
      Agree with the tripod, so I get the cheapest and lightest I could get from Sony but still it adds a noticeable weight, the ones with carbon fiber et al still are beyond my resources or priorities.
      I did an effort and some filter are coming from Bulgary and Hong Kong, now to be Job and wait for them :-) Hope everything is better Reinhold. Greetings from the Peruvian autumn, Francis.

      1. Things getting better here, Francis. Spring is coming, it is getting warmer and my shoulder, arm and hand are on a good way to recover. Still not able to walk around with my photo gear, but… in a few weeks I will be back on the road again. Greetings from the North of Germany, Reinhold

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