Marumi DHG Super Circular Polarizer Review

sony r1 and marumi super dhg circular polarizer

Marumi DHG Super Circular Polarizer attached in Sony R1’s built-in lens.

I lost my filters a few days ago so I believed it would be a nice moment to post my thoughts about them. This first day I’ll start with a circular polarizer. To make a long story short two questions you could have about polarizers:

  • What is a polarizer? Is a filter to control reflections, it can reduce them or accentuate them using a rotating element you have to graduated at taste. It’s quite useful to erase reflections in leaves and water that in cameras look different to what your eyes see. Also it reduce the atmospheric haze.
  • Do I need a polarizer? if you use a compact camera the answer is no; if you have a camera whose lens accept filters then you could play and have fun with one.

Said that Marumi is a company with high quality filters; the best of them are DHG, Super DHG and EXUS, the first is the one with less characteristics and the latter the filter with highest specifications. I purchased a Super DHG and a day after that Marumi announced the EXUS line, lol. With filters is better to buy the best to avoid degradation of the image quality of your lens. My camera has a fixe Carl Zeiss lens so I thought the Super DHG was the better option.

THE MARUMI POLARIZER WAS FANTASTIC FOR ME TO:

 Cut reflections

Golden waterfall

Cutting reflections in landscapes.

In the photograph above see how the leaves have not reflections and the colors are truer to what my eyes saw. One side effect is that the sky gets a dark and tenebrous blue that I’ve to correct in my laptop.

don't go

Cutting reflections in water.

In the maritime landscape I used two filters, one to create a long exposure and the Marumi polarizer to make the water more transparent. Not so exaggerated that the ships could look like they were floating.

plus

Cutting reflections in vegetation.

In gardens a polarizer can be the difference between a nice picture or a mess of bright leaves. If you see the leaves in the rose you can notice that they have pure colors and little reflections (a polarizer reduce reflections, it doesn’t erase them)

the mountain is life

Cutting reflections when shooting through car windows.

This mountains and clouds were taken from a bus in movement. One defect of a polarizer is that it blocks a bit the light, so the cheaper can get really dark and the best have a better light transmittance. The Marumi DHG Super allowed me to take photographs in movement without rising the iso and losing quality. Except in sunsets and dusk, there is better to take off the filter. I’m not sure how better is the Exus version.

Reducing atmospheric haze

give me your hand

Distant mountains rendered with quite reduced bluish cast.

In paint there is a technic called Atmospheric Perspective, it’s used to transmit a sense of distance giving the farthest objects a bluish appearance; this is natural because the color of our atmosphere at day. But when we photograph distant objects without closer ones, for example when using tele lenses or a zoom lens fully extended the bluish cast can be felt wrong. So the polarizer helps a lot. Bellow is another example.

eating a hill

Improving reflections

a blue path to nowhere

Polarizer set in minimum effect to highlight reflection of sky in water

Although the emphasis of polarizers is used in reduce reflections they can help them too, the reflection in the little stream above and the lake next to this paragraph can show you, besides you can see the vegetation has better contrast, moderate reflections and there is no much atmospheric haze.

peaceful blue

Minimum effect. Despite that the image has improved colors and contrast closer to what naked eyes saw

be careful red skies

Minimum effect to highlight the reflection on a red floor.

Accentuating rainbows

a treasure in itself

Maximum effect on polarizer to get the best definition of rainbow.

Rainbows can be hard to photograph, a polarizer is your best bet.

I LEARNED TO DON’T USE THE MARUMI POLARIZER (OR ANY OTHER) TO:

Using it in wide angles landscapes

with marumi super dhg circular polarizer at maximum

Polarizers and wide landscapes don’t mix well.

If you see this effect, an uneven polarization of the sky (unnatural darker and brighter parts), don’t trash your filter! :O, is common to every polarizer because they work accord to the sun position so in wide angles is natural that parts far of the sun position in panoramas are weaker to the polarizer effect.

The next photograph is without the polarizer:

without marumi super dhg circular polarizer

Same scene without polarizer.

Now without the polarizer the sky is much more natural, but the mountains now have atmospheric haze and the foreground has less definition. But usually I give more importance to the sky.

Darken the skies

La Paz's Little Miami

Sky darkened to a dismal aspect.

I know that photographers like that effect of dark blues in skies. To me is unnatural and disgusting, but that’s a personal opinion. I guess that it’s from the film days when a polarizer could help to avoid cyan skies in bright days, but perhaps I’m guessing so much. But now I can  reduce that effect modifying the blue color o even better using to the minimum the polarizer effect.

The next photograph originally had that dark blue but I modified to a more realist effect in relation with what I saw:

the art of adobe

Blue color modified to dark to a softer, beautier and realistic sky in software.

CONCLUSIONS

Pros

  • There is no impact on image quality.
  • Has a high light transmission.
  • Easy to rotate with its textured ring.
  • It’s slim so you can stack more filters.
  • Zero color casts.
  • Resistance to flare.
  • Hard to get dirty, I cleaned it lightly no more than ten times in almost one and half year.

Cons

  • The storage box is quite simple, it got broken after some months of normal use.

VERDICT

This filter was perfect to me. So I’m considering to replace the lost one with another Marumi, an EXUS this time. If you have doubts about this filter you can see that next photograph, it’s one of my favorites and I could make it with the Marumi filter.

there is a blaze in you like burning suns

Faithful to our eyes.

Wayra – About Wind

Wind is…

Breeze

… a whisper

…invisible motion and movement.

Mill of dusks

… the hand that makes rotate a tired world

… Verba volant, scripta manent, that meant that oral words are divine because they can fly.

powerful wings

… the spirit breaking limits

… the shared desire to soar the skies in dreams; Daedalus, free to create.

yellow end of the world

… what makes sing to trees

… the memory that bring us the objects we have forgotten.

into the cold a warm color

… the tremble of the petals

… the sound of you alone with you.

red watch

… a patient and eternal sculptor

… sometimes a destroyer, sometimes a creator.

fuoshhh

… a force that wipes out the world

…. the invisible hand calling you.

contemplating

… a premonition, something is going to happen.

 

Wayra (pronounced why-rah) is the aymara word for wind.

Arequipa A – Volcanic rock upon the Valley

The color is in the people

white architecture for a colorful world

Arequipa is a city in the Peruvian southwest in a valley in the north of Atacama’s desert. It was relatively a new city founded during the Inca Empire. After that Spaniards came and change the name misspelling it to its actual shape. Probably meant originally their location related to Misti volcano. I believe it could be a signal that it was a city planned to the future so its name could mean more something like place of tomorrow.

Mountains

There are three important mountains that are seen from the city: Chachani, Misti and Pichu Pichu. I climbed the last of them… but that’s a post for another day.

speaking to u

speaking to u (Chachani)

snow covering misti

snow covering Misti

wake up pichu pichu

wake up, Pichu Pichu

 

Volcanic rock

This is the most western city upon Peru, as native that means that I feel a bit foreigner in that city. I don’t understand the raison d’être about certain foods and traditions, but if you are from Europe I think you could feel this city closer to you. Mostly my friends there, just a few, are from the old families, mostly the population now has a great percentage of sons and daughters of newcomers and to prove their new identity can be a bit harsh with people from other cities. I went there because studies, if I would know about that characteristic I think I would chosen another city.

The city is built with white volcanic rock. In colonial times it was painted with a lot of happy colors but in twentieth century a mayor decided to let the city with white walls; what could be a terrible mistake because the Sun is strong. It’s the city with the second world strongest solar radiation after Cairo.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

let me protect you, madame

doubts

doubts

Hacedor de sombras

hacedor de sombras

business meeting

business meeting

blue night

blue night

But there is a revival to recover colors:

Shades of Vermillion

shades of vermillion

_DSC5037_v1-XL

two brothers

Red Paint under Blue Midday

Red Paint under Blue Midday

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absence

Among the merits Arequipa could shine in two: it’s probably the cleanest city in Peru, that because the people take care of the city; the second one is the cultural activity is powerful and there are artists and thinkers in several fields.

Upon the valley

Arequipa is a city whose economics are strongly linked to the agribusiness so the countryside is in the center of the city, omnipresent.

Infinite green for two friends

infinite green for two friends

Portrait of "spots"

spots

Bow my branches to the sound of the water

bow my branches to the sound of the water

Chachani

Chachani (ghost in the sunset)

And that would be all for today, hope you find something interesting ;-)

Tuturutu

Tuturutu

Reflections about posting

This is not a blog. It’s a personal diary.

dreamt realm

It’s a diary hidden in public from friends of relatives that anyway see my work as the frenetic work of madness at best, and something not much valuable at worst. But I always have been a rebel and I like what I do, and I need to do a lot of things and don’t care if it’s not of the taste of somebody else. Writing and publishing memories is a way to let them in the past. To forget to go to the future. Microsoft erased my space account and migrated it to wordpress, and in the end I choose to post here, it seems enough discrete.

  • Essays are my written thoughts. My way to view the illusion about what we call the world.
  • Gestalt is related to my thoughts about architectural design or drawings.
  • Nayra is the aymara word for the space-time concept of Past and the space In Front of our eyes. Qhepha is the aymara word for the space-time concept of Future and the space Behind Us, because we cannot see the future. In aymara there is just one word for space and time.

I’ve more essays and tales in drafts stage; sketches of drawings and plots of comics. But my lack of will make me publish just a bit of those and use instead my diverse photographs. Photographs that I’m posting for a selfish reason. With that I don’t want to say that I don’t care the followers and likes. Far from that. A big thanks to everybody generous to give me their time and patience with my words and photographs, (actually I find extraordinary to get four likes; more than four seems surreal) and I try to post content valuable to me but also valuable to you, dear reader. I care a lot the readers, even if there is no one reader I hope that what I think or see can help somebody in the future. The ones that I don’t review usually are the bloggers whose objective is to sell content to be a rich blogger XD; and also a few ones that seems to me that actually didn’t look my content but just tried to get attention to get more followers… and a few cases when I know that my ideas are so different that it could lead to an unnecessary confrontation. Aside of those cases I take my time to read and see with calm the production of so talented artists. More than write I enjoy to read. Said that I was thinking in the feedback of my postings. I have more viewers about my photographs, some time in the future it could change. Photography is an activity secondary to the main that is just to walk, to discover and to explore. My favorites photographs in these months publishing (although my opinion tomorrow could be different) are the next ones:

a lady and the nfinite

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

DSC08724-XL

forces of day and night

La Paz

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

impossible there is no one more

there is another reality

Field of Gold

Neo Qosqo

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

DSC08932-L

afternoon light

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meditative houyhnhnm

 

 

According to statistics and feedback the favorites of readers are the next ones:

DSC01524v1-XL

 

This photograph perhaps get attention because its title is “phototropism”

Phototropism

DSC01672v1-XL

claroscuro

DSC09715v1-XL

poem in simple shapes

 

 

 

 

 

Curiously my selfie got a lot of views o_O, so it’s here in this list:

 

the hat

And that’s all. I think it just proves that everybody has personal tastes. I put in the beginning another image to feel that I didn’t just post a Frankenstein made of old posts. It’s more a reflection of these indeterminate number of days posting almost daily (remember, it’s a diary) except the day I went to Bolivia and I couldn’t find for lack of time a speedy internet connection.

Assuming you are not sleeping in this part or turned off your computer/laptop/tablet/cell pone thanks to all of you :-), hope you find more interesting posts in the future, in my case I am getting my goal to have an space where let to flow my ideas.

Cell Phone Camera thoughts: Sketches

una flor amarilla

Una flor amarilla

 

I think one reason to consider a cell phone as a useful photographic tool is its immediate answer to the circumstances, it’s already in your pocket and it’s already turned on. It has just a focal length and everything is on focus so you have just to point and shoot. In these days even there are sensor/lenses modules to add to the smartphone. In this moment I wouldn’t buy a compact camera besides my cameras with bigger sensors, instead I would prefer a simple and portable smartphone and perhaps one of those modules. Of course I say it from the perspective of an amateur, I don’t want to be carrying kilos of equipment, I want to enjoy the places I go instead of be worried about tripods, flashes, specialized backpacks, etcetera.

The first photograph was made with a cheap camera from a generic cell phone with 2 megapixels in the Incan ruins of Chucuito. The stones are from the Imperial Period under the blue sky of the early afternoon. It has all kind of defects: noise in daylight, chromatic aberrations, corner softness (or dirty lens?) and I guess a lot of other details. But speaking in terms of composition it’s perfectly what I wanted.

In my landscape photography I want that everything is in focus, in portrait too. I’ve noted that my (female) friends are the ones that love portraits with bokeh, I guess because they’re educated with fashion photography of models in fields of medium format bokeh. A cell phone has everything in focus, with my other cameras I’ve to try to find the infinite focus and I’m still struggling with the function of stacking photos in enfuse.

IT’S ABOUT COMPOSITION:

oniric landscape

oniric landscape

I think that when a man and a woman are in the intimate moment of sex doesn’t mind if they have fifty years of studies, a degree in mechatronic, or one is legally poor, those titles are not going to go to the bed: they are nothing more and nothing less that a naked man and a naked woman. The same way when someone takes a photograph the important is not the camera but the mind behind it. Certainly anyone can press the shutter of any camera but the question is why it deserves to be pressed. I’ve seen a lot of people to take with their cell phones or DSLR cameras in mode of taking several frames per second to static subjects as if they were taking sport action… For that reason I don’t give so much importance to technical reviews, they are true but the technical needs for amateurs are covered since years ago.

IT’S ABOUT TIMING:

freeze

freeze

When you use a cell phone there is a time to turn it on, access the camera app and fire it. Usually, and now much less, it has a lag, so you have to anticipate. I fired the camera one second before for the child were exactly in that position in the photograph. That’s important because that make you think before to photograph. You are not an addition to the camera that serves to press its shutter button but you are a human with intentions and ideas, the camera is your tool, and if you know it it’s your faithful tool.

IT’S ABOUT POSITION:

aribalo

Aribalo

I’ve reading about cameras whose lens can give to an scene a tridimensional effect. I think that could be right with zeiss or fujinon lenses. But also is true that getting a 3D  effect is more about the perfect positioning of the camera, the height related to the ground, the verticality of the lines. To the aribalo I choose to frame it using an isometric view, naturally in photography it’s always a perspective but I tried to reduce the effect to a mathematical aspect.

IT’S ABOUT INFINITE FOCUS:

feast

feast

Even with a compact camera the macro function would be blurred the background. In this case I had to compose with the background as an important part of the photography, there was no opportunity to hide it with bokeh, so I had to take it in consideration for the composition. In this case to balance the intense color and to divide the rectangle in a square with the flower and the bee in its axis.

IT’S ABOUT LIMITED DYNAMIC RANGE:

destello

destello

A common camera phone has a very limited dynamic range. It could be counteracted with a graduated filter but I think that going against the idea of a tool that has to be immediate. You have to choose between to save the highlights or the shadows, there is no intermediate points. And that’s not a defect if one use it to compose an image.

IT’S ABOUT TO PREPARE IDEAS:

renaissance perspective

Renaissance perspective

A picture taken with a cell phone camera can be replicated with a different camera if someone wants more details or work better an idea that could work with a camera with a bigger sensor. Just you have to take in account the focal length of the phone (usually 35mm or wider) and the position. The first image is with the cell phone, the next is with a Sony R1 (aps-c sensor), I think I prefer the first:

renaissances perspective

Here is another one. I couldn’t replicate what I captured with the cell phone:

the eye in the forest

the eye in the forest

in the forest

in the forest

CONCLUSION:

So I believe that this photos, this sketches, hasn’t worth just because it could (or couldn’t depending of the skill) prepare the ideas for cameras with bigger sensors but they itself can produce nice sketches with esthetical value.

synchrony

Synchrony

freedom army

freedom army

warrior eyes

warrior eyes

love triangle

love triangle

street musicians

street musicians

the sun in our hearts

the sun in our hearts

viga

vigía

perpetual movement

perpetual movement

titicaca sunrise

Titicaca sunrise

the house

the house

a rose

a rose

I dare

I dare

encuentro

encuentro