6 Best Protection Filters for Lenses | UV, Skylight and Protective Filters

So, you just purchased an expensive camera lens only to notice scratches and stains within just a few days of use. Feel the pinch, right?

Well, you can certainly protect your valuable lenses in the future by investing in a good-quality protection filter. That being said, with the availability of a variety of UV and skylight protective filters, choosing the right one may seem a tad difficult. And to be honest, it definitely is.

In fact, professional photographers also face the same challenge, even after having years of experience in the field. But you have no reason to worry!

We have come forward with this guide, providing detailed reviews of the 6 best lens protection filters to simplify your search. Furthermore, we have included a comprehensive buyer’s guide to help accelerate your decision-making process.

So, without further ado, let’s dive in.

Best Protection Filters for Lenses

Whether you’re a professional photographer or an enthusiast, these filters will help you keep your lenses safe and performing at their best. So, without further ado, here’s the list of the 6 best protection filters for lenses.

  1. Hoya Ultraviolet UV(C) Haze Multicoated Filter – Best For Versatility

Hoya Corporation, a leading Japanese company, dealing with the manufacture of various optical products using wavefront technology, comes forth with our topmost recommendation. This UV filter from Hoya, featuring a unique thin design, is a valuable camera accessory for photographers that shoot mostly in broad daylight.

Hoya HMC UV Digital Slim Frame Multi-Coated Glass Filter,52mm
  • Ultraviolet filters allow you to correct for the...
  • A good choice for digital photography

Why Did We Like It?

This UV filter from Hoya is a valuable addition to every photographer’s kit of camera accessories. Why? Well, its UV haze multi-coating not only protects lenses from dust, moisture, and scratches but also acts as a life-saver during outdoor shoots. Absorbing UV rays, the filter ensures well-balanced color and a sharp contrast to your stills.

Apart from this, with its thinner design, it provides transparency and 97% light transmission for minimized reflection, suppressed ghosting, and unclouded photography. And that’s not all; Hoya also provides an additional filter case that can be used when required or worn permanently. 

One of the best features of this multi-purpose fine-weather filter is its availability in a wide range of sizes. That being said, it is an ideal choice for digital photography. In fact, amateurs can benefit a lot by using this particular accessory.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Truth be told, the Hoya UV(C) filter serves its intended purpose well, and we didn’t really come across any significant drawback related to it. However, try and refrain from using it near lights at night as it may lead to ghosting. Nonetheless, it works like a pro in broad daylight!

  • Crisp, sharp, and unclouded photography
  • Includes a filter case
  • 97% light transmission
  • Protects lens from scratches
  • Suitable for most digital cameras
  • Not ideal for night photography
Filter Type: UV(C) Haze | Coating: Multicoated | Material: Optical Glass
  1. Gobe UV Japan Optics Filter – Best High-Level Transmission

Suitable for telephoto and professional lenses, the Gobe UV filter is built with Japan Optics glass to ensure high-level light transmittance. That being said, its increased optical clarity and color fidelity is what paved its way to the second spot on our list of recommendations.

Gobe 62mm UV Lens Filter (2Peak)
  • GOBE IS NOW URTH | We changed our name to better...
  • IMPROVE SHARPNESS | Reduces haze, sharpens your...

Why Did We Like It?

Being dedicated to the well-being of our environment, Gobe promises to plant five trees for each of its products sold. And with that said, let’s now talk about one of its high-quality products, the Gobe UV filter.

Now, like any other UV filter, this one also prevents flaring and ghosting during outdoor shoots in broad daylight. But that’s not all; equipped with a 16-layer multi-resistant coating, the filter is scratch-resistant, water-repellent, oil, and dust-resistant. In fact, with an extra touch Magnalium frame, it serves as a durable option that you should consider buying. 

Furthermore, Gobe has designed its double-threaded filter using an ultra-slim profile. This is done to prevent vignetting on wide-angle lenses. What’s more? Apart from protecting your lens, it also manages to enhance your photography experience by sharpening stills and reducing haze.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Despite being on the higher-end side of the budget, the Gobe UV filter meets your expectations in terms of quality and functionality. That being said, Gobe may not be a well-known brand, but we assure you that its products are as good as it claims.

  • Durable
  • Double threaded and ultra-slim profile
  • Reduces haze and clouding
  • Scratch-resistant and water-repellent
  • Environment-friendly initiative
  • The brand is not well-known
Filter Type: UV | Coating: Multi-coated | Material: Japanese Optical Glass
  1. Hoya HD3 Professional UV Filter – Best Skylight Filter

With its new and improved nano-coating, this professional UV filter is another exceptional quality optical product from Hoya. And unlike the previous Hoya UV filter, HD3 ensures 99.7% light transmission, making it a noteworthy mention on our list.

Why Did We Like It?

Expect ultimate protection and cleaning of your camera lenses thanks to Hoya HD3’s all-new and improved ultra-smooth nano-coating. In fact, its 32 layers of coating make it almost 800% harder than previous versions of the filter.

That being said, you will also be pleased to know that the UV optical glass used for manufacturing this filter has been chemically enhanced. And this makes it four times stronger than normal optical glasses. 

Being the sharpest filter available with a lifetime warranty, HD3 promises spectacular photography with enhanced clarity and contrast. It doesn’t just end there. The filter is designed to be extremely resistant to scratches and stains, ensuring maximum protection for your lenses, especially during adventurous shoots.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Unlike our top-most recommendation from the same brand, HD3 does not feature a thin design for better transparency and unclouded photography. However, it definitely justifies its price tag by being one of the strongest and hardest filters out there. And that’s why it is one of our top 3 recommendations!

  • Chemically enhanced UV glass
  • Lifetime limited warranty
  • 800-times stronger nano-coating
  • Sharp and clear images
  • Water-repellent and scratch-resistant
  • Lacks a thin design for transparency
Filter Type: UV | Coating: High Density | Material: High-Transparency Glass
  1. Hoya HMC Skylight 1B Multi-Coated Glass Filter

As mentioned earlier, Hoya is a leading manufacturer of exceptional-quality optical products. Having said that, by now, you must know why we have yet another filter from the same brand on our list. Well, we believe in the best, and this Hoya Skylight Glass Filter will definitely meet your expectations.

Hoya 55 mm HMC Skylight Screw-in Filter
  • Absorbs excess blue from sea, sky, and high...
  • Excellent lens protector on bright sunny days

Why Did We Like It?

First things first, unlike the previous options on our list, this is a skylight glass filter from Hoya available in a wide range of thread sizes. In other words, it is compatible with most digital camera lenses, offering maximum protection from scratches, stains, dust, and moisture at all times.

Apart from this, Hoya Skylight 1B provides additional benefits, reducing the bluish cast of daylight commonly seen in electronic flash units. In fact, it also helps in outdoor photography, especially in the open shade of a bright sunny day. Keeping your skin free from colored reflections, enhances the overall photography experience for both amateurs and professionals. 

Furthermore, with its multi-coating, the filter also manages to offer protection against flaring and ghosting. In other words, achieving pro-level, splendid shots with enhanced clarity and a well-balanced color is a breeze, irrespective of the weather or lighting conditions.

What Could’ve Been Better?

So, even after thorough scrutiny, we really couldn’t find anything wrong with this premium-quality skylight filter. However, if you already own a UV filter, then this skylight filter may not be necessary because a UV filter is usually considered a better option for digital cameras. Nonetheless, Hoya Skylight 1B serves as the perfect fit for outdoor photography.

  • 97% light transmission
  • Protects from UV rays
  • Absorbs bluishness during shots
  • Suitable for all weather and lighting conditions
  • Not required if you have UV filters
Filter Type: Skylight 1B | Coating: Multi-coated | Material: Optical Glass
  1. Tiffen Wide Angle UV Protector Glass Filter

Tiffen is a leading American manufacturer of imaging accessories with over 80 years of experience. And with a promise of delivering accurate and consistent lens filters, it brings you this wide-angle UV protector, fulfilling its mission of helping photographers create the world’s best images.

TIFFEN 62WIDUVP 62MM Wide Angle UV Protector Glass Filter
  • The most popular protection filter.
  • Provides basic reduction of UV light.

Why Did We Like It?

Being one of the most popular UV filters out there, this Tiffen lens protector is designed to reduce vignetting and bluish cast when used with wide-angle lenses. And not only this, but it also absorbs UV light during broad daylight to prevent flaring and ghosting. That being said, you can expect clear and sharp images, even in high altitudes and around water bodies.

Apart from this, the glass filter is designed to ensure maximum transparency for better light transmission. In fact, you no longer have to worry about scratches and damage to your expensive camera lens. Why? Well, the filter is multi-coated, offering resistance against dust, moisture, scratches, and damage caused by cleaning. 

Furthermore, it is backed by a 10-year warranty from a reputed brand such as Tiffen, making it a reliable investment option. Both amateurs and professionals can opt for this camera accessory as it offers value for its price.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Now, coming to its drawbacks, the Tiffen wide-angle UV filter is slightly bulkier compared to our previous recommendations. And this may be an issue for those with a camera bag, lacking sufficient storage space. Apart from this, we did not find any other downside to an otherwise perfect lens protection solution.

  • Can be kept on the lens
  • Multi-Coating
  • 10-year warranty with brand reliability
  • Suitable for high altitudes
  • Slightly bulkier
Filter Type: UV Protector | Coating: Multi-coated | Material: Low-Profile Aluminum Ring
  1. K&F Concept UltraSli UV Filter

Finally, with the K&F Concept UV filter, we complete and conclude our list of the top 6 lens filters. Having said that, as a reliable brand dedicated to the camera accessories industry for years, K&F keeps its promise of delivering high-quality products by introducing us to this ultra-slim optical filter.

K&F Concept 43mm MC UV Protection Filter with 28 Multi-Layer Coatings...
  • 【Dual Functionality】This UV filter serves a...
  • 【Premium Optical Glass】Crafted with imported...

Why Did We Like It?

Being one of the most valuable options on our list, you can never go wrong with the K&F Concept UV Filter. Made using optical glass, featuring an 18-layer anti-reflection coating, it ensures up to 99% light transmittance with no color deviations. And this results in optimum clarity and color fidelity, especially during outdoor shoots under the clear blue sky.

Apart from an exceptional photography experience, the lens filter ensures durability, especially while traveling. With an aluminum frame and metal sealing ring, it offers better tightness and security. In other words, unlike plastic metal rings, it does not get loose or fall off.

We were also impressed by its ultra-slim design, which makes it the perfect permanent lens protector. It also provides better exposure brightness, allowing you to achieve desired results for colored and black-and-white films.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Despite being the last option on our list, K&F Concept does not fail to impress! It not only protects your wide-angle lens, but it also ensures clear, sharp, and well-balanced colored stills. However, the only issue we had with it was related to its color shift function, especially when you reduce the brightness.

  • High-level light transmittance
  • Permanent lens protector
  • Aluminum frame for durability
  • Metal sealing ring
  • Issues related to color shift
Filter Type: UV | Coating: Multi-coated | Material: German SCHOTT Optical Glass

Best Protection Filters For Lenses Comparison Table

Product Filter Type Coating Material
Hoya Ultraviolet UV(C) Haze Multicoated Filter UV(C) Haze Multicoated Optical Glass
Gobe UV Japan Optics Filter UV Multi-coated Japanese Optical Glass
Hoya HD3 Professional UV Filter UV High Density High-Transparency Glass
Hoya HMC Skylight 1B Multi-Coated Glass Filter Skylight 1B Multi-coated Optical Glass
Tiffen Wide Angle UV Protector Glass Filter UV Protector Multi-coated Low-Profile Aluminum Ring
K&F Concept UltraSli UV Filter UV Multi-coated German SCHOTT Optical Glass

Buying Guide For The Best Protection Filters For Lenses

So, by now, you must have gone through our list of the top 6 lens filters out there. But did you make a choice yet? Well, don’t stress yourself out, even if your answer is no.

We understand that selecting a product from a vast list of excellent options is not as simple as it sounds. For this reason, we have tried to make your selection process easier by writing this buyer’s guide. So, we request you to spend a few minutes of your time going through these critical points mentioned below.

  1. UV Vs. Skylight Protection Filters

First things first, it is important to know more about these two types of filters. There is no major difference between both these filters apart from the color cast feature.

That being said, skylight filters offer the same functionality as their UV counterparts, but they come with a faint pink color cast, providing a warm tone to your images. On the other hand, UV filters are transparent, and they absorb maximum UV rays to ensure clear and sharp images, even on a bright sunny day.

That being said, many users suggest that UV filters are a better fit for digital cameras. And this is why they are more popular than skylight lens protectors.

  1. Thickness and Thread Range

You will need a filter that is compatible with your camera. For this reason, check its thread size before making a purchase. Most filters are available in a wide range of thread sizes. So, choose a size that matches that of your camera.

Apart from this, the thickness of the filter is another factor that should be considered. Keep in mind that a thinner filter offers maximum light transmission for clear and unclouded photography. It also enhances color fidelity, allowing you to achieve desired results, irrespective of the situation.

  1. Glass or Resin Filters

Filters are usually made using glass, resin, polycarbonate, or plastic material. But glass and resin are preferred more because they ensure excellent results. You can opt for an optical glass protector as it is much stronger than normal glass. On the other hand, resins are cheaper and do not break easily.

Ensure the glass comes with a multi-coating, protecting your lens from scratches, dust, moisture, and stain. This also enhances the strength of the glass, preventing it from damage or cracks in case of bumps or crashes. It should also be capable of absorbing maximum UV rays to prevent flaring and ghosting.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are protection filters necessary?

Protection filters are not necessary, but they are highly recommended if you want to protect your lens from potential damage.

What is the difference between a UV filter and a protection filter?

UV filters are designed to block ultraviolet light, which can cause haze and reduce contrast in photos. Protection filters are clear or neutral-colored filters that are used solely to protect the front element of the lens.

How do I choose the right protection filter for my lens?

When choosing a protection filter, make sure to select the correct size for your lens. Additionally, look for filters that are made from high-quality materials, such as optical glass or multi-coated glass, to ensure maximum protection and image quality.

Do protection filters affect image quality?

Protection filters are designed to have little to no effect on image quality, as they are clear or neutral-colored filters that do not significantly alter the light entering the lens. However, it is important to choose a high-quality filter to minimize any potential impact on image quality.

Can I use a protection filter with other filters, such as polarizers or ND filters?

Yes, protection filters can be used in combination with other filters, such as polarizers or ND filters, as long as they are the correct size and do not cause vignetting or other issues with the image.

Lens filters not only protect your lenses from scratches and damage, but they also reduce flaring and haze to ensure superb outdoor shots. For this reason, this is a must-have camera accessory for every amateur and professional photographer.

On that note, we now come to the end of our informative review-based guide of the top 6 protection filters for lenses. And we hope that this guide served its purpose, helping you find the best skylight or UV filter for your camera.

Before concluding, let’s take a quick look at a few of our favorites. Hoya UV(C) Multi-coated Filter, with its thin design and versatile use, makes it at the top of our list. Gobe Optics UVensures high-level transmission while Hoya HMC Skylight 1B is the best skylight filter.

And with this, we leave you to buy the perfect filter to protect your valuable camera lens.

Till next time!

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