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PolarPro DJI MAVIC FILTERS - CINEMA SERIES 6-PACK
3456 11 2017-3-6
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Boenaparte
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Flight distance : 1089393 ft
Hong Kong
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Hi Guys, I can feel that I'm gonna get a fair amount of flack for this post but I'll do anyway, because I am at a loss and need some help. Yes I know I should have done it before buying but.....I did not.

I bought precipitously a set of the new PolarPro filters for the mavic because I'm going in holidays in 10 days and I wanted to take my mavic with me and filters. The price is steep and in all honesty I did not do enough due dilligence before.
To make the story short I have now 2 sets that according to the notice seem to be used in the same situation :


For example :
ND8/PL Filter (1.31g): Reducing the camera's shutter speed by 3 f-stops, the ND8/PL is the perfect filter for partly cloudy days. The polarizing aspect of this filter reduces glare and increases color saturation.
vs
3-Stop Neutral Density Filter (ND8) (1.06g): The ND8 filter is what we use on partly cloudy to mildly sunny days where we need to knock the shutter down by 3 f-stops to achieve a shutter speed of 1/60th.


And :
ND16/PL Filter (1.31g): Our go to filter when it is sunny out, the ND16/PL reduces shutter speed by 4 f-stops and polarizes the scene for capturing vivid colors on bright sunny days.
vs
4-Stop Neutral Density Filter (ND16) (1.06g): The ND16 filter is what we use on very bright days to reduce shutter speed by 4 f-stops.  We generally use the ND16 filter while filming in the desert or over snow.  



So my question is when to use one vs the other and should be my deciding factor, please note that I am a starting amateur and do not have background in photography (I do understand that the shorter the sutter speed the less light in gthe film, but that ratios are inverted)?
Screen Shot 2017-03-07 at 11.40.34 am.png
2017-3-6
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NoSale
lvl.4
Flight distance : 460958 ft
United States
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I am in research mode as well and have looked at the PolarPro and Taco RC models.  Since you referenced the PolarPro, I'll offer you some of the information and observations I have gathered.

The ND filters will effectively reduce your shutter speed down, as you have learned, to provide more cinematic results filming at a lower shutter speed (adding more natural blur).  However, when are the PL/ND filters appropriate?  I see two scenarios; 1) when glare, reflective light or haze needs to be removed out and 2) to improve color saturation.  The biggest issue with polarized ND filters is you can't just slap them on and get perfect polarization.  There are lots of article that describe the best ways to filter polarization, but it essence, you need to turn the polarizing ND filter to the optimal angle to the polarizing light to get the best reduction of glare and/or pull out blues (skies/water) and greens (foliage).  In photography, every direction you point the lens could merit turning the polarizing filter to address the polarizing light direction.

I plan to use polarizing when glare situation arise and do the best I can to rotate the lens to best address the glare from my estimations at the time of take off.  It will still be hit or miss.  Where polarization is not as necessary, I will simply use ND.

Ultimately, I think its going to be trial and error for an amateur, such as myself.  Hopefully other more experienced can shed some light on the subject.

I will be traveling to the AZ desert soon and will likely try both ND and PL/ND, but believe I'll be using PL/ND to not only reduce shutter speed, but also pull color out of the desert.  I'm hoping I get some good evening (and maybe early morning) clear sky sunlight.


I have heard the PolarPro filters fit very tight.  So tight they can be difficult to take off.  It makes me wonder how easy they are to rotate once firmly on the lens.  I believe I have heard the suggestion to partially attach the PolarPro, rotate it to the desired position, then snug it on.

BTW - PolarPro offers a free app to help you determine the right ND filter to use given the ISO and shutter speed you camera is trying to use without a filter.  Put the suggested ND filter and the shutter speed should match your fps x 2 (1/50 or 1/50)
2017-3-6
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Boenaparte
lvl.2
Flight distance : 1089393 ft
Hong Kong
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NoSale Posted at 2017-3-6 20:17
I am in research mode as well and have looked at the PolarPro and Taco RC models.  Since you referenced the PolarPro, I'll offer you some of the information and observations I have gathered.

The ND filters will effectively reduce your shutter speed down, as you have learned, to provide more cinematic results filming at a lower shutter speed (adding more natural blur).  However, when are the PL/ND filters appropriate?  I see two scenarios; 1) when glare, reflective light or haze needs to be removed out and 2) to improve color saturation.  The biggest issue with polarized ND filters is you can't just slap them on and get perfect polarization.  There are lots of article that describe the best ways to filter polarization, but it essence, you need to turn the polarizing ND filter to the optimal angle to the polarizing light to get the best reduction of glare and/or pull out blues (skies/water) and greens (foliage).  In photography, every direction you point the lens could merit turning the polarizing filter to address the polarizing light direction.

Darn Nosale, that's what I call a very helpful answer, thanks a bunch.

Noted on the app for the filters and now I'm getting a bit clearer, as I suffer a lot from the haze living in Hong Kong I'm going to try the PL/ND first.
I do have a follow on quotation: are you saying that if i turn/rotate (once on the drone camera) the polarized lenses, I will have different effect on the video?

Lastly, on the question on tightness: I tried them on  yesterday on the drone and while it's pretty snug, if you don't hold too tight the lenses when taking it off  ( and hence applying pressure on the side) it comes out fairly easily.
Thank you again on the response, really helpfull I appreciate.
2017-3-6
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NoSale
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Flight distance : 460958 ft
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Boenaparte Posted at 2017-3-6 22:36
Darn Nosale, that's what I call a very helpful answer, thanks a bunch.

Noted on the app for the filters and now I'm getting a bit clearer, as I suffer a lot from the haze living in Hong Kong I'm going to try the PL/ND first.

I suggest you google on the subject of using polarizing filters.  There are numerous good articles that explain the principle, the benefits and the potential misuse of polarization.  I'm still early in the learning curve.

In short, polarization eliminates light entering the lens from a source at a 90 angle.  In still photography, every time the photographer aims his lens in a different direction, there is usually a counteraction to rotate the polarizing lens on the camera to accommodate the angle that polarized light is filtered out.  There is also a good video on the PolarPro website that illustrates how to rotate their PL/ND filters to set the right polarization.  The caveat is that once this has been done on a drone lens, it is set for that specific lighting.  Once you start turning your drone into different directions, there is a high chance the polarization effect will no longer be optimal.  But it will still likely be beneficial to some extent.

It seems to capture a good shot with the best polarization effect, you determine the general direction you will be shooting video/stills, set the polarization, then fly that pre-planned direction.  If you are going to be navigating in differing/opposing directions, then some of that time the polarizing filter will not be achieving maximum benefit.

On the other hand, ND filters with no polarization are not impacted nearly the same when pointing the camera in different direction.  However, should overall lighting change dramatically, then you could find yourself flying with a less than optimal ND filter.

You always have the ability to adjust the EV to counteract the effect of changing light when flying with an ND filter.  I don't think changing the EV will be very useful for changes to polarized lighting.

I still have a lot to learn and am sure there are other more experienced in photography that can weigh in.  The bottom line is that there is likely no perfect solution using PL/ND, but with trial and error, I think more can be learned that will benefit most images.

Just remember, in some cases where PL serves no purpose (reducing glare/haze, pulling in more saturated color), you might be better to use the ND filters for the relevant light conditions......
2017-3-7
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superjet96
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Flight distance : 142743 ft
United States
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Following.........
2017-3-7
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Irish
lvl.2

United States
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Great info, thanks for the questions and answers
2017-3-7
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PolarPro
Second Officer
Flight distance : 315682 ft
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We have a filter calculator app that helps you determine which filter to use to get shutter speed to double your frame rate. There is also a nice video on the page that helps explain how to use it:
PolarPro Filter Calculator

When using Polarizer filters you will want to align them before flying.
Here is a quick video showing how to align the polarizer:

Let me know if you have any other questions,

-Jeff from PolarPro
2017-3-7
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Boenaparte
lvl.2
Flight distance : 1089393 ft
Hong Kong
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PolarPro Posted at 2017-3-7 09:26
We have a filter calculator app that helps you determine which filter to use to get shutter speed to double your frame rate. There is also a nice video on the page that helps explain how to use it:
PolarPro Filter Calculator

Once again thank you for taking the time to answer No Sale, your detailed findings so far. Also I really appreocate Jeff from Polarpo's help, I love when customer service do not simply wait for problems to arise but instead try to engege and trul;y help it's customer wherever they are! Thumbs up for Polarpro.

I am sure that other beginner pilot will find those Q/A useful as well.

I have downloaded the calculator, I am getting a bit clearer on the filters and I'm impatiently waiting for this weekend to try them on. But for other people I'll list below the key takeway and plz correct me if I'm wrong:
- the difference between ND8 and ND8/ PL (same as ND 1/PL and ND 16) is that they serve the same purposes in terms of shutter speed but PL stands for polarized lenses and hence the ND8 PL are polarized lenses vs ND 8 which are not
- the benefit of the polarized lenses are : remove 90 degre angle light (including reflective light on a water or snow)
- with Polarized lenses you will also increase color saturation (i.e. more vivid and deeper colors)
- you MUST at each startup rotate the Polarized lenses once installed on the camera to adjust what will be the best color for your flight, and even flying for the same spot depending on the time of the day you might have to rotate the lenses (sun morning and evening will impact differently the polarized lenses vs high noon)
- if the light is good (no haze, need of reducing glare...) then you are better off with the non polarized filter of the same rating : ND16 vs PL ND16 ....

I hope it's accurate and will help someone else
2017-3-7
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PolarPro
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Boenaparte Posted at 2017-3-7 18:00
Once again thank you for taking the time to answer No Sale, your detailed findings so far. Also I really appreocate Jeff from Polarpo's help, I love when customer service do not simply wait for problems to arise but instead try to engege and trul;y help it's customer wherever they are! Thumbs up for Polarpro.

I am sure that other beginner pilot will find those Q/A useful as well.

Yah, thats a good start to capture some great content.

And as everything else in life, the more you practice and research, the better you will get

-Jeff from PolarPro
2017-3-7
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DJI-Thor
Administrator
Flight distance : 13602 ft
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I'll try one on mine
2017-3-7
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CuaC
First Officer
Flight distance : 369626 ft
Germany
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DJI-Thor Posted at 2017-3-7 23:22
I didn't even know Mavic can have filters, because officially it doesn't have one.  I'll try one on mine

What do you mean? There are official filters http://store.dji.com/es/product/mavic-nd-filters-set#/?_k=b2vpgf
2017-3-8
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DJI-Thor
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CuaC Posted at 2017-3-8 00:44
What do you mean? There are official filters http://store.dji.com/es/product/mavic-nd-filters-set#/?_k=b2vpgf

My knowledge is outdated. When Mavic was first released there weren't  filters
2017-3-8
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