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Described as "the most important filter you can have in your collection" by ePHOTOzine founder, Peter Bargh, the Hoya REVO circular polarising filter is the latest version of this classic accessory. Designed to give strong blue skies, clear views, and cut down on unwanted reflections, we find out how this new circular polarising filter performs.
The Hoya Super Pro1 D Revo SMC CIR-PL Filter is made in Japan, using precision optical glass and features an improved Super Multi-Coating (IS-HMC) formula. On top of this is a clear water & stain resistant coating to help you keep it clean. The filter has a low-profile aluminium filter frame, so that it is compatible with a wide array of super and ultra wide-angle lenses.
It is available in a large number of sizes, suitable for mirrorless cameras as well as Digital SLRs: 37mm,
40.5mm, 43mm, 46mm, 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 58mm, 62mm, 67mm, 72mm, 77mm, and 82mm.
The filter looks noticeably dark when mounted to a lens, matching the black bodies of most cameras. It also provides protection for the front lens element, and matches the Panasonic Lumix X Vario 12-35mm f/2.8 lens with a thin profile that is barely thicker than a standard UV filter.
Attaching the filter to the lens is straight-forward and is simply a case of screwing onto the lens thread - the edge closest to the camera is grooved so that attaching and removing the filter is easy. In use the front ring turns easily, and you are able to see the effects produced by the filter immediately on the screen or through the viewfinder. When the filter is turned to the desired position, it stays in place so that you can adjust exposure if using manual settings, alternatively using the cameras auto-exposure the camera will compensate for the change in exposure.
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HOYA REVO CIR-PL Sample Photos
Without Filter Wide | 1/320 sec | f/5.6 | 12.0 mm | ISO 200
With Filter Wide | 1/250 sec | f/5.6 | 12.0 mm | ISO 200
Without Filter Hall | 1/400 sec | f/6.3 | 14.0 mm | ISO 200
With Filter Hall | 1/320 sec | f/6.3 | 14.0 mm | ISO 200
Green Leaves Without Filter | 1/200 sec | f/5.0 | 18.0 mm | ISO 200
Green Leaves With Filter | 1/160 sec | f/4.5 | 18.0 mm | ISO 200
Without Filter Water | 1/250 sec | f/5.0 | 35.0 mm | ISO 200
With Filter Water | 1/160 sec | f/4.5 | 35.0 mm | ISO 200
Without Filter Rainbow | 1/250 sec | f/5.0 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
With Filter No Rainbow | 1/200 sec | f/4.5 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
Through glass - Without | 1/100 sec | f/3.2 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
Through glass - With | 1/100 sec | f/3.2 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
Transcend Without Filter | 1/160 sec | f/16.0 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
Transcend With Filter | 1/160 sec | f/16.0 | 33.0 mm | ISO 200
Without Filter | 1/1250 sec | f/11.0 | 12.0 mm | ISO 200
With Filter | 1/640 sec | f/9.0 | 12.0 mm | ISO 200
Starting with the first photos, the circular polarising filter can be used to dramatically improve the saturation and contrast of blue skies. It also produces an impressive effect on clouds, with the clouds in the 2nd set of photos looking much more clearly defined and detailed. It helps clouds stand out from the sky letting you more clearly see the clouds, and gives an overall much more dramatic photo. The polarising filter also improves the appearance of some plant leaves, which can give a much richer image, as can be seen in the green leaves photos, removing any glare and reflection from the surface of the leaves.
The fourth shot down shows the reflections on the water making it difficult to see the fish in the pond. Using the filter it's possible to remove these reflections and get a much clearer shot of the fish underneath. However, as the shot of the fountain shows, there are some situations where you don't want to remove the reflections, and in this shot, the photo without the filter has a pleasing looking rainbow effect in the water spray. With the filter this is completely removed.
Shooting through glass it's possible to remove a number of reflections and glare with a dramatic difference in the shot with and without the filter. It can also be used to shoot products / remove glare / reflections on plastics as shown in the Transcend USB reader product shots.
Shooting with the filter the exposure is longer with the camera automatically selecting a lower shutter speed and aperture. Quality is excellent with no loss of detail visible, and sharp results even in to the corners of the frame when shooting wide-angle. Although as the aperture can be opened wider with the filter in use it is possible that any weaknesses in your lens may become more apparent. Shooting with the sun in the frame, the filter performs extremely well, cutting down on flare slightly, without introducing much additional flare or ghosting.
Value For MoneyThe 58mm SMC CIR-PL filter has an RRP of £106, putting it in the premium filters price bracket, however it looks to be worth the investment as the quality is excellent. Alternative branded circular polarising filters start at around £35 in the same size, with alternatives including the Cokin P164 Circular Polariser for £72 which also needs a P series filter holder (around £12), or Lee Filters Circular Polarising filter is available for around £219 excluding the holder.
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Hoya 77mm Pro-1 Digital Circular Polarizing Filter
|The Hoya Revo Circular polarising filter delivers high quality results with a thin profile that works with wide-angle lenses.|
HOYA REVO CIR-PL Filter ProsExcellent quality
Works with wide-angle lens
HOYA REVO CIR-PL Filter ConsPrice
|VALUE FOR MONEY|
HOYA REVO CIR-PL Specifications
|Box Contents||Filter, Case|