20 DSLR Filters and Lenses For My Reef Tank

20 DSLR Filters and Lenses For My Reef Tank

6 mins read
6 mins read

Let’s get started!

In October 2021 I got my first DSLR camera, the Canon Rebel T8i, or 850D. I got it for my reef and I went all out on extras on a budget. Most things here I got from Aliexpress, some on skroutz.gr and the camera and 3 main lenses from Galinos – a high end shop for Professional photographers in Athens Greece.

I will talk more about the results, and the main body of the camera in another post.

DSLR Lenses

For my camera I can get any lens that can fit on a Canon EF and EF-S mount. There are adjusters to use lenses from other DSLR cams, but I’d rather go native.

20 DSLR Filters and Lenses For My Reef Tank

18-55mm IS STM Canon

Ok, this one came with the body of the camera. It is not supposed to be very good, I find it excellent!

It probably speaks to my amateurism… but I really like it!

55-250mm f/4-5.6 IS STM Canon

Ok, this one I bought with extension tubes to be able to shoot up close, and it is a bit harder than I thought. For anything more than a meter away it is really nice to zoom in.

20 DSLR Filters and Lenses For My Reef Tank

DSLR Filters

Filters go in front of the lens, they screw in and all the following are 58mm, as both lenses I got have this thread in front.

ND Filter – strengths 2 4 and 8 (Neutral Density)

They  reduce the amount of light that enters a lens (Source).

  • Blur Photo in high lights – the lens basicale shades the light in the lens. So if I want to show blur in a photo whilst in high light, this is the solution. Usually for surface waves or waterfalls, I will try it on waving corals.
    • Manual setting, then
    • Select Aperture, then
    • Choose shutter speed, maybe: <1″ for ND8 || 1/4″ for ND4 || 1/16″  for ND2 (I will update these as I start shooting)
    • May need to add the filter after the above steps and May need manual focus
  • Wides in bright light (photo and vid) When using a wide lesn more light comes in, and may “burn” the photo or vid. Usualy this can be fixed by the toying with the manual mode, but this is a solution too.

CPL filter – which stands for circular polarizer/linear

They reduce glare from reflections (Source). Used for landscapes and bodies of water. I am guessing they may help with:

  • Surface wave reflection – strobing
  • Side panel reflections
  • Front panel reflections

I got this as it was cheap, it might be unhelpful. Keep tunned in to know more.

Sinularia Dura - Cabbage leather coral

Color filters

This is to make photos under weird light look good. Especially interesting is the correction for the blue color of reef tanks.

  • Yellow – Light weight reef tank photography… I think, I will give more details in the future
  • Orange – Recommended for reef tank photography
  • Brown – A bit more red in the orange  – we will see if it is good for something
  • FLD purple – this is for fluorescent light, I will see if we can put this to use

UV filters

This is to take the haze out of photos in sunshine days. We will se if there is a use in a reef tank.

Telephoto filter 2.2x

This is to zoom in a detail. There might be distortion – bending, in the corners, we will see.

Wide angle filter 0.43x with macro lense

Both to zoom in and to see a wider scene… not so sure about this one. We will see (you can expect a lot of updates in this post!) I am planning on a dedicated DSLR macro lens, but I wanna play a bit first with these.

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