Monday, 9 September 2013

Hoods for prime lenses

One of the big advantages of the Micro Four Thirds system is the small prime lenses available. Many of these don't come with any hood supplied in the box. I don't think that using a hood with these lenses is a big deal from an optical perspective, but many people like to use hoods anyway. For lenses like the Lumix G 20mm f/1.7, I have noticed that some like to use a Leica like 46mm screw in hood.

Personally, I think the barrel shaped screw in hoods are a bit too bulky for the small pancake lenses. So I prefer to use a 46mm to 37mm step down ring as a compact hood.

Below is a picture of the Sigma 19mm f/2.8 lens with the original hood (left), and 46mm to 37mm step down ring as a hood (right):



Sigma 19mm f/2.8 with original hoodSigma 19mm f/2.8 with 46mm to 37mm step down ring as hood

But for keeping out light, which is better?



To try to answer this, I have superimposed images of the original hood, and the 46mm to 37mm step down ring used as a hood:



We see that the original hood keeps out light coming from more than 56° angle, while the step down ring only keeps out those coming from more than 70°. Hence, the original hood does a better job of keeping out light from outside the field of view.

I still choose to use the 46mm to 37mm step down ring as a hood, since it keeps the lens profile small. It also makes me feel safer using the lens, avoiding accidentally touching the front lens element with foreign objects. If you go this route, you will also need a new 37mm front lens cap.

Other lenses


I also use the 46mm to 37mm step down ring as a hood on the Lumix G 20mm f/1.7 and Lumix G 14mm f/2.5.

On the Sigma 30mm f/2.8 EX DN, I use a 46mm-28mm step down ring as a hood. Given that the Sigma 30mm lens has a smaller front lens element, and a more narrow field of view, this hood works very well. I also got a 28mm front lens cap to use with the custom hood. I don't feel the need to always use the cap, though, since the step down ring protects the front lens element quite well.

Unlike most other Panasonic zoom lenses, the compact Lumix X PZ 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 does not come with a hood supplied. As a simple hood, I use a 37mm stand off ring, essentially a cheap 37mm filter where I removed the glass. It works fine as a protector, and does not cause any vignetting:



The Leica 45mm f/2.8 1:1 macro lens also has a quite small front lens element, so I use some stacked step down rings as a quite effective hood:



There's a 46mm stand off ring, a 46mm to 37mm step down ring, and finally a 37mm to 28mm step down ring. You could skip the 46mm stand off ring, and only use the two step down rings. That works well too.





16 comments:

  1. Is it possible to use a step down ring 37mm-28mm for the Olympus 14-42mm?I`m afraid of vignetting.Thank you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You can't use a 37-28mm adapter, that will cause vignetting. But what you can use is a 37mm stand off ring.

      I use that on the Lumix X 14-42mm f/3.5-5.6 and it works fine.

      Delete
    2. Thank you for the answer.

      Delete
  2. Is it possible to use this one for the 14-42mm?I like metal lens hoods.

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/JJC-LH-37EP-37mm-Leica-Style-Lens-Hood-for-Olympus-M-Zuiko-Digital-17mm-F2-8-/261284624222?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3cd5c6f75e

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think that hood is most likely too narrow to be used with the 14-42mm lens. I think it is likely that it will cause vignetting when using the lens at 14mm.

      But this hood is rather inexpensive, so if you feel lucky, you could order it and test! If you want to be on the safe side, though, it is probably best to skip it.

      Delete
    2. I used this one:
      http://www.ebay.com/itm/JJC-LH-J40-Black-Olympus-LH-40-Replacement-Lens-Hood-for-M-Zuiko-14-42mm-Lens-/261284623587?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3cd5c6f4e3
      It worked well,but the lock mechanism broke after a few days.Do you know an alternative?

      Delete
    3. Sorry, I can't answer that. I haven't used the lens.

      Delete
  3. I found a way of using certain collapsable rubber hoods that may interest you. With some brands the hood is more or less a step down ring with the rubber part glued on. You can peel off the rubber part and smooth off the very small amount of residual glue. So then you can leave the plastic ring on the lens for protection, with your original lens cap. Plus you have the option of putting the rubber part back onto the ring, for extra protection. No step down rings required.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, I have noticed the same. Some of the cheaper collapsible rubber hoods easily separate from the plastic base. And the plastic alone can be used as a simple hood. The softer plastic material is probably also good for protection, in the case of an accident.

      Delete
  4. One more question.I`m searching for a lens hood for the wideangle converter WCON-P-01.There is no filter thread.Any idea?

    ReplyDelete
  5. Here is a solution.You can see the right box,but is this actually the right converter.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. forget the link :-)

      http://www.ebay.com/itm/Olympus-WCON-P01-wide-angle-converter-with-filters-holder-/200956222594?_trksid=p2047675.l2557&ssPageName=STRK%3AMESELX%3AIT&nma=true&si=CG0OynfnYhSrkgCPQj72gY0qn8I%253D&orig_cvip=true&rt=nc

      Delete
  6. I'd guess the 46-37 step-down ring solution would work also with the Olympus 17mm/1.7?
    How about the Olympus 45mm?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes, that solution will probably work well with the Olympus 17mm f/1.8.

      The Olympus 45mm f/1.8 already has a 37mm front tread diameter. And the front lens element is quite large. So I don't think you could step it down further easily.

      Delete
  7. Did some experimenting and I can confirm that 17mm/1.8 Olympus can take 46-37 + 37mm stand-off + 37-30,5mm rings and 45mm/1.8 Olympus 37mm + 37-30,5mm rings without vignetting. Which is nice as it gives the option to use 37mm filters on both lenses in place of the stand-off rings

    ReplyDelete