What Lens Hood Do I Need

By | 19/10/2022

A lens hood is a plastic accompaniment that comes with everything from the cheapest kit lens to the most expensive professional lenses.

It’s a uncomplicated device that’s cylindrical and attaches to the front of your lens – usually via a spiral thread.

Despite their basic form, they serve an essential part of the photography procedure.

What’southward more than, there’s a range of third-party and aftermarket lens hoods that come in all shapes and sizes.

Some photographers tin can’t exit home without their lens hoods, and others turn their noses up at these simple camera accessories – let’s detect why.

What Does a Camera Lens Hood Do?

The master reason for using a camera lens hood is to reduce the amount of lite coming into your camera’s lens. This allows yous to command lens flare and maintain clarity and contrast in your images, even on bright days.

Lens hoods tin can likewise help to protect your lenses from damage.

Here are 5 reasons for using a lens hood with well-nigh every lens you own:


1. Block sunlight and avoid lens flare

Guide on when to use a lens hood: blocking strong light is one of the main reasons for using a lens hood as it stops lens flare.

Too much sunlight – particularly direct sunlight, such as in the epitome above – can have a detrimental impact on your pictures.

Imagine being out on a sunny day, and the sun’s bending makes your eyes squint. Instinctively, y’all hold your hand upward to shield confronting the harshness of that light. A lens hood works in precisely the same manner.

Inside the lens, there are upwards to twenty glass elements all grouped and aligned to attain focus, zoom and image clarity, and to reduce aberrations and distortions.

Lenses besides command the management of calorie-free travelling to the image sensor.

Sunlight hitting the lens direct or at an angle impacts your image with lens flare – bright spots and streaks on your image.

The light coming in at sharp angles from the side of the lens is a large problem as those waves will bounce around inside it, much similar the issue of light leaks.

Obviously, sunlight isn’t the only light source that a photographic camera lens hood can help block – perhaps yous’re shooting under bright street lamps, or maybe it’southward the strobes in a studio setting – whatever the case, a hood tin can be the reply to unwanted glare.



2. Prevent damage to the lens drinking glass

Most types of camera lenses are expensive – some of the best ones can cost tens of thousands of dollars. Despite existence a pro and knowing what you lot’re doing, there’s always a risk of adventitious damage to the lens element or lens face.

I’ve bumped the front of my lens several times when out on a shoot. It’south especially like shooting fish in a barrel to exercise when the camera is slung over your shoulder on a camera strap or hanging in forepart of you.

If you harm that front drinking glass element of your lens, you might every bit well replace the whole lens or send information technology off for repair.

Fitting a camera lens hood provides an additional layer of protection and insurance. Recall of it as a bumper bar on a automobile – the bumper will take a knock in a car park, but the residuum of the motorcar volition be fine.

Y’all can live with a few marks on your lens hood, but you can’t live with a damaged lens.



3. Shield lens from the elements

A lenses hood can have the purpose of protecting it from averse weather conditions. This is another reason for using a lens hood.

Some lenses have weather sealing allowing you to use them when information technology’s raining, snowing or in dusty conditions.

Existence out on a wildlife excursion with a atmospheric condition-sealed camera and telephoto lens all but guarantees a stunning shot of a snow leopard. But all that pricey gear is worthless when the front of your lens is caked in snow and ice.

The simplest manner to manage this is with photographic camera lens hoods. They provide a natural overhang that’s normally deep plenty to shield your lens from the elements.



iv. Avoid smudges on your lenses

We’ve all had the result of finding fingerprints on the front drinking glass of our lenses.

Well-nigh of the fourth dimension they’ll be our ain, as we oft attain for a lens only to discover the lens cap is missing and we’ve just smudged our fingers across it.

While lenses are being treated with all sorts of smart coatings to proceed the forepart element clean, you can’t defeat the sticky finger.

A simple way to manage this is with a lens hood. Much like the previous two points, the hood grants a layer of protection from fingerprints and any other surface that volition leave an oily smudge.



5. Increase contrast and clarity

assorted lens hoods

While some may say that a photographic camera lens hood does little for image quality, the reality is it can make all the difference.

In an prototype, a flare hitting the lens at the right angle can seriously launder out all the detail and contrast available. Colours tin can become severely faded and muted, turning what would be a punchy paradigm into one that’south unusable.

It’south like driving your car on a sunny solar day, and the light is shining in your eyes. You lot see a pocket-size amount of detail, enough to drive safely, but the clarity is gone, and the glare is intense.

With a lens hood, the devious light that attacks the forepart element of the lens and causes the flare disappears.

What’s more, your images volition do good considerably every bit the low-cal is held at bay to allow for contrast and clarity to be evident, such as in the paradigm above.

  • Is a Lens Hood necessary for 50mm?

It depends on the type of 50mm lens, and what yous are trying to preclude by using a hood. Some 50mm lenses have a front lens element that’due south recessed so there’south no need to protect it with a hood.

However, if y’all’re using a hood to forestall unwanted light from affecting your picture, and so yes, lens hoods are necessary for 50mm and other focal length lenses likewise.

Practice Lens Hoods Really Work? six Photos With and Without a Camera Lens Hood

Hither are some lens hood before and subsequently shots then you can meet exactly what they do to a photo.

lens-hood-examples
lens-hood-examples

lens-hood-examples
lens-hood-examples

How to Put On a Lens Hood

To attach a lens hood to your camera lens, only line upwards the grooves inside the hood with those on the front of your lens, and twist until it clicks into place.

When not in employ, you can flip the hood around and mount it in opposite on the lens to salvage some space – this is useful when packing your camera in a pocketbook.

What are the Unlike Types of Lens Hoods?

Petal lens hood and cylindrical hood lens protector.

Left: Petal Lens Hood. Right: Cylindrical Lens Hood.

There are a few different types of photographic camera lens hoods, including those offered past the lens manufacturer in the box and those you can purchase separately for prime and zoom lenses.


  • Cylindrical (Round) Lens Hoods

A cylindrical lens hood will usually have a bore that’s only slightly wider than the widest office of the lens – they besides have a straight front edge.

That way, you can mount the lens backwards when non in use and it volition stay snug against the lens butt. Lenses with a long focal distance (35-90mm) or longer telephoto lenses volition normally have a cylindrical lens hood.

These lenses take a compressed field of view, so y’all won’t see the tips of the hood in your paradigm.


  • Petal Lens Hoods

Some lenses volition take a petal-shaped lens hood – otherwise known as tulip-shaped. These take four curved petal-shaped edges and when mounted are longer at the acme, bottom and 2 sides.

The design of these hoods allows optimal calorie-free while avoiding flare. You’d use this type of hood with a broad-bending lens – some of them have a considerably wider diameter than the front chemical element to preclude the edges of the hood from appearing in images.

If you’re comparing a tulip lens hood vs circular, it depends on your needs – a tulip hood is better for wide-angle lenses. They’re also designed to block more lite from the four corners of an prototype, making them marginally more effective than a round hood.

  • Square Lens Hoods

Why utilize a square lens hood? To block more ambience light. Square or rectangular hoods aim to replicate the shape of your photographic camera sensor, and in doing so, block whatsoever devious light from inbound it. Foursquare hoods likewise take a retro entreatment to them, so you’ll sometimes see them on Leicas or Fujifilm cameras.

  • Bayonet Lens Hoods

A bayonet lens hood is a term used interchangeably for all types of lens hood, but usually refer


  • Rubber Lens Hoods

Why utilise a rubber lens hood? Rubber lens hoods feature collapsible segments so yous tin hands store them. They tin too be stretched around the front lens element, pregnant yous tin can use one hood for all of your lenses.

  • Metal Lens Hoods

Some aftermarket starting time-party lens hoods tin be a premium product fabricated from blend or metal to complement a specific lens.

Fujifilm offers several metal lens hoods that mount with a circular thread only take a rectangular class – reminiscent of a videography lens.

  • Are camera hoods universal?

In general, camera hoods are not universal – you cannot screw a hood from a Canon camera onto your Sony lens, for example. However, there are certain third-political party manufacturers who offer universal hoods which are usually made of rubber, to conform to the different lens diameters.


What type of lens hood is best?

The lens hood that comes with your lens is usually the best option as deemed past the lens manufacturer.

If you’re purchasing a third-party lens hood, condom options allow you lot to apply them on lenses of different diameters, significant you tin often ain only ane and utilise it with all your lenses.

Every bit for the shape when buying spare lens hoods, a cylindrical or a petal shape will get the job done.

When to Use a Camera Lens Hood to Improve Your Photography

Lens hood what for - you might use one to protect your lens from damage.

The short answer is that you should apply a hood when you desire to avoid lens flare or protect your camera lens.

(Y’all should also use a UV lens protection filter if you’re concerned about protecting the surface of your lens.)

Here are some frequently asked questions regarding using hoods in photography:

  • Should I use a Lens Hood on a Cloudy Day?

No, there’s really no point to utilise a lens hood on a cloudy day since at that place won’t be much stray light entering your lens. Using a hood when it’s cloudy may actually reduce the ambience low-cal your camera sees, forcing you to use a slower shutter speed or higher ISO, which tin can take adverse consequences on your prototype.

  • Should I use a lens hood with a flash?

In full general, you shouldn’t use a hood with a flash since information technology can forestall the wink from properly exposing the lower portion of your photo. This is specially the case when using a broad-angle lens or a longer hood.

  • Tin y’all utilize a lens hood and filter at the same time?

Yes, you can employ both at the aforementioned time. The bore of the outer border of the lens filter shouldn’t be in the style when yous ready or remove the hood. However, a lot of lenses only have one indicate of attachment, so it’s either the filter or the hood, but non both.

  • Practice y’all employ a lens hood indoors?

Unless you lot’re trying to shield from overhead lighting, there’s no real need to utilize a lens hood indoors as it won’t touch on image quality either manner. That said, you might keep 1 on while indoors only to aid protect your lens from harm.

  • Do I need a lens hood if I have an ND filter?

It’due south more often than not not advisable to use a hood with an ND filter, since the hood may crusade light to enter your lens off-angle, which may adversely affect the light-filtering properties of the ND filter.

  • Do lens hoods crusade vignetting?

If you stick to the hood that comes with your lens, y’all shouldn’t detect any vignetting. Even so, if you use an ill-fitting 3rd-party lens hood or attach a petal-shaped hood incorrectly, you may run across the edges of the hood in your frame, which will announced as vignetting in the final paradigm.

  • Should I use a lens hood at nighttime?

While not essential, camera lens hoods tin be useful at night for blocking unwanted artificial light from causing lens flare on your images.

  • Does a lens hood affect exposure?

Yes, a lens hood affects exposure by stopping unwanted low-cal from overexposing elements of your epitome.

  • How should I transport/store my lens hoods?

Due to the shape and material of lens hoods, they easily vanquish if squished into a camera bag. I way to minimise run a risk and salvage space is to transport them fastened to your lens in the reverse position.

How practise I choose a lens hood?

The video to a higher place gives some proficient tips when choosing a lens hood.

  • How do yous measure for a lens hood?

The easiest fashion is to measure out the diameter of your lens filter thread. However, if you want to calculate where in the periphery a lens hood would get visible, here’southward the formula courtesy of Photo.Stackexchange:

AoV=2*arctan(d/2f)

AoV
is the Bending of View

d
is the size of the sensor/picture show in the management measured

f
is the focal length (in the aforementioned units as d)

For a circular hood, y’all would utilize the diagonal measure out of the sensor/flick

For a petal or tulip hood you would demand to calculate based on the width and height too as the diagonal of the sensor/film.

  • Practise You Really Demand a Lens Hood?

In nearly cases, yes – many photographers use photographic camera lens hoods to avoid lens flare and protect their lenses.

  • Why I don’t use a lens hood

Where a lens hood blocks excessive light and prevents severe lens flares from ruining an image, the opposite can be quite appealing.

Adding a piddling flare to your image can turn a simple composition into a more pronounced story. Lens flare can assist to narrate that it’s bright or hot, for case.

It’south only of import to call up that excessive lens flare is non your friend and that it’s best to take a counterbalanced arroyo in how often you lot introduce flare to your photos.

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Source: https://shotkit.com/when-use-lens-hood/