Filter Step Up Rings

At first thought, acquiring a step-up ring is a simple, straightforward purchase, all you need is a metal ring that allows you to use a filter having a wider-diameter size thread than the lens on which you want to install it. What’s not so clear is the reason there are so many options for a lens attachment that, on the surface, is so basic and simple.

$5 or $50 for a stepping ring? Why is this?

The answer is in the type materials used to manufacture the ring may be aluminum, hard-anodized aluminum, or brass, the finish of the ring, may be edges that are side knurled or have a smooth, less graspable surface finish, which can make a huge contrast in how happy you may or may not be with your stepper ring choice.

Rings are manufactured by several companies. Stepper rings can be purchased online by clicking on a link below. The first number is what fits your exiting lens which is a male thread that screws onto the lens. The second number is the size of the filter which is female thread allowing a filter of a different size to be mounted on the lens. Read more below the filters. Click for smaller Size Step Up Rings

The opposite of a step-up rings is a step-down ring, which essentially accomplish the reverse: let you to adapt filters and other lens accessories with a smaller thread size to lenses having larger thread sizes. For example, attach a 67mm filter on a lens with a 77mm thread size.

Step-down rings are not used as much as step-up rings because most often a filter size smaller smaller than the lens size results in vignetting. One exception is when employing lenses and filters designed for larger-format cameras such as full-frame on smaller-format cameras like APS-C and Micro Four Thirds. In these situations the smaller image field will typically negate any vignetting or image clipping.

$5 or $50 for a stepping ring? Why is this?

Stepping rings are made by numerous manufacturers and can cost from just a few dollars to more than a hundred dollars. Why, does a step-up ring made by one company have one price, while “the same ring size” from other companies can cost more than ten times that price? The fact is that the rings are not equal.

As mentioned above, stepping rings, can be made from an array of materials, most often aluminum, hard-anodized aluminum, or from brass. While stepping rings of all materials typically achieve the same function, rings of diverse prices will often be more about the performance, consistency, reliability and durability of a particular ring.

Aluminum rings cost less than, however are not as strong as, a hard-anodized aluminum counterpart. Aluminum is a softer metal and more likely to develop dings from bumps, as compared to brass―and brass typically costs more to manufacture. What is somewhat confusing, is which of these elements—aluminum (plain or hard anodized), or brass—is better.

While stepping rings of all materials typically perform the same function, rings of varrying prices will often depict more about the performance, consistency, and overall reliability of a given ring. √


Shop for Filter Step Up Rings at these stores
Link to Adorama Link to Amazon Link to B&H Photo

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