Using a Light Pollution Filter

I have been thinking about getting a light pollution filter for shooting astro photography. I asked around and no one I knew has one or used one in the past. After doing some research, I purchased the Haida Clear Night filter. Luckily, I was able to get it delivered before shooting the Milky Way two days later. 

A few of us went to Haller Pass near Mt. Rainier for the new moon in July. We had really clear skies and perfect weather that weekend so it was perfect. While we were waiting for the Milky Way to show up, we set up our tents, ate some dinner and prepared for the show. 

The stars arrived along with the Milky Way so I got out the filter and started getting some shots. The photo on the top is taken without the filter and the photo on the bottom is with the filter. I used my Tamron 70-200 G2 for these photos. All the green in the photos is the air glow we had that night and not caused by the filter.

The photos of the Milky Way are edited exactly the same and the photos of the Space Needle are straight from he camera with no editing.

 No light pollution filter.

No light pollution filter.

 Light pollution filter.

Light pollution filter.

After shooting the Milky Way that night, I wanted to test it on the city at night. I went one night to Alki Beach to shoot the sunset then city lights. While waiting for the city to light up, I knocked the filter off my camera and it landed on the rocks. Needless to say, I had to wait for my new filter to arrive before shooting the city.

Once my filter arrived, I had a good chance to shoot the city. The photo on the top is taken without the filter and one on the bottom is with the filter.

 

 No light pollution filter.

No light pollution filter.

 Light pollution filter.

Light pollution filter.

Using the filter requires the exposure to be about 0.5 stops brighter, I like the overall results and the editing is much easier. One thing about the filters is they enhance reds so a red building will be more red in the photo and red foliage will be very red.

Overall, I think the light pollution filters are a nice tool to have in my bag. Are they worth the price? That is for you to determine. I like the results and will continue to use it while shooting at night whether it is city or stars.

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Thanks for reading and remember to fill the frame with what you like, unless you are being paid.