Protective Filters

Clear and ultraviolet

Clear filters, also known as window glass filters or optical flats, are completely transparent, and (ideally) perform no filtering of incoming light at all. The only use of a clear filter is to protect the front of a lens.

UV filters are used to reduce haziness created by ultraviolet light. A UV filter is mostly transparent to visible light, and can be left on the lens for nearly all shots. UV filters are often used for lens protection, much like clear filters. A strong UV filter, such as a Haze-2A or UV17, cuts off some visible light in the violet part of the spectrum, and so has a pale yellow color; these strong filters are more effective at cutting haze, and can reduce purple fringing in digital cameras. Strong UV filters are also sometimes used for warming color photos taken in shade with daylight-type film.

While in certain cases (such as harsh environments) a protection filter may be necessary, there are also downsides to this practice. Arguments for and against use of protection filters include:

For:

If the lens is dropped, the filter may well suffer scratches or breakage instead of the front lens element. One can clean the filter frequently without having to worry about damaging the lens coatings; a filter scratched by cleaning is much less expensive to replace than a lens.

Against:

Adding another element degrades image quality due to aberration and flare. It may reduce the use of lens hoods, since threading a lens hood on top of the clear filter might cause vignetting on some lenses, and since not all clear filters would even have threads allowing a hood to be attached. Additionally, users of UV filters must be careful about the quality of such filters. There is a wide variance in the performance of these filters with respect to their ability to block UV light. Also in lower quality filters, problems with autofocus and image degradation have been noted.

. Click a link below for availability & latest prices

Protection Filters
  B+W Protection Filters
Natural Clear 007 Multi-Resistant Coated (MRC) Glass Filter. A B&W 46mm Clear (Colorless) Multi-Resistant Coated (MRC) Glass Filter is for color as well as black and white films. It also serves as a permanent lens protector. The value of a clear filter covering a lens has been well-documented over the years. How many stories have we all heard about photographers dropping lenses and smashing front elements? With a front lens protection filter on, the chances of preserving the valuable glass in your lens increases many fold. Shall we call it a form of inexpensive insurance?
#007 Protection Clear MRC (Multi-Coated) Glass Filter Slim.
Skylight KR-1.5 Filter (1A). This filter also blocks UV radiation, however it also has a delicate reddish-yellow tone designed to counter-act the high blue cast in the shadow portions of color photographs caused by light coming from a blue sky. It produces a warmer image tone and reduces the haze in distant scenes. The exposure factor amounts to only ¡.¡, so for practical purposes it can be ignored. Because of its very faint color, a Skylight Filter can be kept on a lens constantly for protection, as long as a slightly warmer color rendition is desired, as it would be with color reversal films that tend to produce cooler colors.
Skylight 1A (KR-1.5) Multi-Resistant Coated (MRC) Glass Filter.
UV Black (403) Filter. Not to be confused with UV-blocking filters that photographers normally refer to as “UV Filters”, this one passes UV A radiation (320 to 385 nm), but blocks visible light and looks pitch-black to our eyes. It is used with appropriately sensitized films in such applications as ultraviolet reflection photography in forensics or in materials research, but also as filters on UV-emitters for fluorescence photography. Depending on the illumination and on the film’s sensitization, its filter factor is in the range of 8 to 20.
UV Haze 010 F-Pro Filter This UV Filter blocks the invisible UV component of light from the sky, which can cause blur and to which many color films react with a blue cast. These filters should be called UV-Blocking Filters, because there are filters for technical applications that pass UV radiation and block all the other wavelengths. Nevertheless, the short term “UV Filter” has become established among photographers. UV Filters are ideal for photography in high altitudes (in the mountains), by the sea and in regions with very clean air. The pictures gain brilliance and disturbing blue casts are avoided. Because the glass is colorless, color rendition is not altered, aside from the elimination of the unwanted blue cast, and no increase in exposure is required. That makes a UV Filter very suitable as protection of the front element of the taking lens against dust, flying sand, sea water spray and the like, and it can be kept on the lens at all times. It is recommended for analog color- and black-and-white- as well as digital photography. UV Filters from B+W are also available in SLIM mounts for wide-angle photography without vignetting. Other UV-blocking filters with special characteristics.
UV Haze 010 Filter (Extra Wide).. The filter ring is made from brass yielding a stronger product. Brass filter rings are also less prone to jamming. In addition, the seal between the glass and filter ring is exceptionally strong giving the filter added strength and durability. The excellent Schott Glass used in the manufacturing of this filter is legendary and synonymous with the highest standards of filter production. It comes with a solid 10-year warranty. The MRC coating on this filter adds to its durability - particularly under less than optimal weather conditions. In addition, the hard coating makes cleaning the filter easier - especially when it comes to removing fingerprints or surface dirt. Moreover, this filter benefits users of digital cameras whose shorter focal length lenses are more susceptible to dirt and other contaminants on the front lens element.

Multicoated to minimize reflection at the filter surfaces which reduces flare and ghosting. B&W Extra-Wide's are special filters for wide-angle lenses. In order to prevent vignetting, the accessory thread on the front is larger.

Ultraviolet (UV) Filter (Slim) The filter ring is made from brass yielding a stronger product. Brass filter rings are also less prone to jamming. In addition, the seal between the glass and filter ring is exceptionally strong giving the filter added strength and durability. The excellent Schott Glass used in the manufacture of this filter is legendary and synonymous with the highest standards of filter production. It comes with a solid 10-year warranty. Note! B&W slim filters are for wide-angle lenses and are 3mm thick. They do not have a front thread.
UV Haze 010 Filter (Slim) The filter ring is made from brass yielding a stronger product. Brass filter rings are also less prone to jamming. In addition, the seal between the glass and filter ring is exceptionally strong giving the filter added strength and durability. The excellent Schott Glass used in the manufacturing of this filter is legendary and synonymous with the highest standards of filter production. It comes with a solid 10-year warranty. The MRC coating on this filter adds to its durability - particularly under less than optimal weather conditions. In addition, the hard coating makes cleaning the filter easier - especially when it comes to removing fingerprints or surface dirt. Moreover, this filter benefits users of digital cameras whose shorter focal length lenses are more susceptible to dirt and other contaminants on the front lens element. Multicoated to minimize reflection at the filter surfaces which reduces flare and ghosting. B&W slim filters are for wide-angle lenses and are 3mm thick. They do not have a front thread.
UV-415 (2B) UV-Blocking Filter - This sharp-cutting, nearly colorless B+W filter blocks UV radiation up to the limit of visible light. It is used in ultraviolet fluorescence photography for the prevention of unsharpness caused by the intense UV illumination (which is due to chromatic aberration in the UV range). It can also prevent the fluorescence that may occur in the cement between lens elements. Because of the usually rather colorful fluo-rescent subjects, the delicate yellow cast in.
420 UV-Blocking Glass Filter - This even more stringent UV-blocking filter behaves like the filter 4¡5 described above, except that its filtering slope completely blocks the UV radiation all the way into the visible violet region. As a result, it has a noticeably yellow tint. It is used for fluorescence photography on black-and-white film, where it is even more effective. Its filter factor is 1.2.
Ultraviolet (UV) Filter A UV filter is the best available protection for the front element of your lens. A lens that accidentally gets dropped on its front element while hiking can potentially be saved by purchasing this item. Some people refer to them as "cheap insurance". Aside from that more-than-significant benefit, UV filters cut through some of the haze in the atmosphere rendering your photos clearer, sharper and more contrasty. For those who enjoy outdoor photography, especially distant vistas, a UV filter can produce a more distinct image by removing much of the blue tint normally associated with atmospheric haze. The filter ring is made from brass yielding a stronger product. Brass filter rings are also less prone to jamming. In addition, the seal between the glass and filter ring is exceptionally strong giving the filter added strength and durability. The excellent Schott Glass used in the manufacturing of this filter is legendary and synonymous with the highest standards of filter production. It comes with a solid 10-year warranty.
Digital Pro Multi-Coated (MRC) Ultraviolet (UVa) 010 Glass Filter - The UV-Haze filter is helpful when photographing mountain and marine scenes, where increased haze threatens to make your photographs indistinct in color and clarity. Multi-coated to minimize reflection at the filter surfaces which reduces flare and ghosting. • The filter ring is brass with a brushed chrome finish which will help with matching many point and shoot digital cameras as well as many video camcorders.
XS-Pro Pro Clear 007M Digital Multi-Resistant Coated (MRC) Glass Filter. The B+W XS-Pro Pro Clear 007M Digital (MRC) Glass Filter has been developed to minimize the risk of vignetting with today's digital wide angle and zoom lenses. The Multi-Resistant Coating (MRC) provides additional protection from unwanted flare, ghosting and other reflections which play havoc with sensor readings. The brass ring design meets the traditional B+W standard for top shelf filter design. The filter, slim in construction and black in color, still maintains front threads for supplemental attachments such as caps, lens hoods or other filters.
XS-Pro Digital Ultraviolet (UV) Multi-Resistant (MRC) Coated 010M Glass Filter. B&W XS-Pro Digital Ultraviolet (UV) Multi-Coated 010M Glass Filters are wise initial investments. They help protect your valuable investment from dust, moisture and scratches, which can lead to costly repairs. If desired they can be left on the lens at all times for protection. XS Pro-Digital filters can help digital photography by minimizing reflections which can spoil sensor readings. The "pearl" effect of these filters helps to eliminate dirt, scratches as well as water. The Multi Resistant Coating (MRC) provides additional protection from unwanted flare, ghosting and other reflections which play havoc with sensor readings. The brass ring design meets the traditional B+W standard for top shelf filter design. The filter, slim in construction and black in color, still maintains front threads for supplemental attachments such as caps, lens hoods or other filters. It has been designed for use with today's ultra wide angle lenses. Note! This filter is suitable for zoom lenses starting at 17mm wide.
486 Digital UV/IR Blocking Glass Filter. This B+W Interference Filter has a completely colorless glass carrier coated with a number of extremely thin, partially reflecting layers with precisely computed thicknesses, similar to MC coating. The B+W Filter 486 does not block by means of absorption, but by interference of the unwanted UV- and IR radiation that is repeatedly reflected between these layers, affecting the wavelengths on both sides of the visible spectrum with a steep cut-off. It is used mainly on digital- and video cameras with CCD sensors without an integrated IR protection filter, because the IR sensitivity of the CCD sensor would otherwise cause color changes and unsharpness. That unsharpness results from the chromatic aberration of the lenses that are only corrected for visible light. In the visible range, the transmission curve is very high and straight. This filter is completely clear and it requires no increase in exposure. Its filter factor is 1.
  Cavision Protection Filters
Clear Protection Glass Filter
  Cokin Protection Filters
Cokin UV Protector
Cokin Sky 1A
Cokin Haze1
Cokin Haze2A
  Digital Concepts Protection Filters
UV Filters
  Formatt Protection Filters
Ultraviolet (UV) Haze 2A Schott-Desag B270 Crown Optical Glass Filter 
Haze 2B Schott-Desag B270 Crown Optical Glass Filter
  Hasselblad Protection Filters
  UV-Sky Glass Filter
  Heliopan Protection Filters
UV (Haze) Glass Filter
UV (Haze) SH-PMC (Super Multi-Coated) Glass Filter
Skylight (KR1.5) Glass Filter
Skylight (KR1.5) SH-PMC (Super Multi-Coated) Glass Filter
  Hoya Protection Filters
UV Skylight (1B)
HMC UV Skylight (1B)
Ultra Thin UV, Skylight (1B)
Pro 1 Super HMC UV, Skylight (1B) 
Ultra Thin HMC, Neutral (Clear) 
  Leica Protection Filters
Leica Ultraviolet (UVa) Filter. The Leica UVa Glass Filter is a wise initial investment. It helps protect your valuable investment from dust, moisture and scratches, which can lead to costly repairs. • UV filters provide additional benefits of correction for Ultraviolet(UV) light, which can register on film and videotape as a bluish cast, and can obscure distant details • If desired, they can be left on the lens at all times for protection • Ultraviolet filters allow you to correct for the UV effect to varying degrees Check availability, sizes & prices at 
UVA/IR. The Leica E39 UVA/IR Glass Filter (Silver or Black) is specifically recommended for the Leica Digital M8 camera. In order to maintain maximum optical clarity, the M8—with its superior sensor—was not designed with a total IR protection filter system. This filter is designed to eliminate the pinkish/purple/reddish tint that certain black synthetic items might be subjected to when shooting under certain lighting conditions, such as incandescent bulbs. This filter can also serve to help protect the glass in your lens. Note! Leica recommends removing the attached UV/IR filters when using lenses from 16-50mm in analog photography • Infrared filter for the M8 camera which does not have a built-in complete infrared system • Helps minimize potential pinkish tint under cetain conditions; ensures neutral color • No light loss • Can also serve as protective filter • Should only be used with 6-bit coded Leica lenses. Check availability, sizes & prices at 
  Opteka Protection Filters
UV High Definition II UV 0 Ultra Violet Haze Multi-Coated Glass Filter
  Quantaray Protection Filters
UV Haze Filter
UV Haze Multi-coated Filter
Pro Digital UV Filter
  Schneider Protection Filters
Ultraviolet (UV) Water-White Glass Filter
Slim Ultraviolet (UV) Water-White Glass Filter
Optical Flat Clear Filter
  Sigma Protection Filters
Ultraviolet (UV) Multi-Coated Glass Filter
  Singh-Ray Protection Filters
Hi-Lux Warming UV Glass Filter
  Sony Protection Filters
UV Filters
  SunPak Protection Filters
UV  Glass Filter
  Tiffen Protection Filters
Tiffen Hot Mirror filters - Some digital still cameras can have increased sensitivity to infrared light that may cause color rendition problems. The Tiffen Standard Hot Mirror filter is designed to remedy this problem by reflecting most infrared light. • Prevents excessive infrared filtration from reaching the digital sensor of your camera • Helps provides a truer digital image 
Tiffen UV Protector Filter. A UV Protector is probably the most popular UV filter people use. As a lens protector, it should be left on at all times to guard against front element damage but also adds the benefit of rendering your images clearer. Tiffen, a leader in the filter industry, proudly makes its filters in the USA and backs up its products with a solid 10-year warranty. Check availability, sizes & current prices at
Skylight (1A), UV Haze Filter. Due to its light pink color, the Tiffen 5x6" Skylight (1A) filter reduces the bluish cast of daylight and produces a pleasing, warmer picture tone. Wise initial investments, they help protect your lens from dust, moisture and scratches, which can lead to costly repairs. • If desired they can be left on at all times for protection • Skylight filters provide additional benefits of correction for Ultraviolet(UV) light which can register on film and videotape as a bluish cast and can obscure distant details • Also used to reduce the bluish cast common with some electronic flash units. Check availability, sizes & current prices at
Thin Wide-Angle UV Protector Filtor. Tiffen, a leader in the filter industry, proudly makes its filters in the USA and backs up its products with a solid 10-year warranty. This filter uses a Wide Angle (Low Profile) mount. Wide Angle filters are only 3mm thick and are specifically designed for use with wide angle lenses. In order to help eliminate vignetting (darkening of the corners), it does not have a front thread. • Eliminates some of the Ultraviolet (UV) light which can register on film and videotape as a bluish cast that can obscure distant details • If desired, it can be left on the lens at all times for protection • Especially valuable as a general lens protector • Guards against fingerprints and scratches to the front element of your lens. Check availability, sizes & current prices at 
Tiffen Haze Filter. Safeguard your lens and absorb UV light. Film and video are more sensitive to UV light than our eyes are. This often shows up as a bluish cast in images, especially shots from high altitudes and long distances, particularly over water. Ultra Violet filters are available in a variety of UV absorption levels. Reduces excessive blue by absorbing almost three quarters of UV light. Best general purpose UV control Eliminates UV problems from most situations where increased haze tends to wash out color and image clarity Protects your camera or camcorder lens against dust, moisture, fingerprints, scratches and damage Can be kept on your camera at all times Available for Wide Angle lenses.
Tiffen Enhancing Filter. The Tiffen 67mm Enhancing Filter is a combination of rare earth elements in glass. It removes a portion of the spectrum in the orange region, increasing the color saturation of reddish objects by eliminating the muddy tones and maximizing the red hues with minimal effect on other colors. You will find that the Enhancing filter works best in early morning or later afternoon photography - when the light is intense rather than the semi-washed out illumination of mid-day. This filter is also optimized for use during the overcast days of Autumn. Try it on an old barn or wooden bridge. • Its most frequent use is for obtaining strongly saturated photographs of fall foliage • Bolsters earth tones (i.e. reds, oranges).  Check availability, sizes & current prices at
   
Shop for Ultraviolet Filters at these stores
Link to Adorama Link to Amazon Link to B&H Photo Link to ebay

Protection Filters by Brand