Using filters on a drone's camera separates the casual drone pilot with the pros. The difference in quality can be outstanding.
Camera filters are transparent lens-mounted camera accessories that control how much light makes it to the lens, and eventually the CCD (sensor) of your drone's camera.
There are many different types of camera filters. Here are some of the more common ones:
Polarized/CPL: Just like your sunglasses, polarized filters help reduce light glare and makes shots look a lot more sharper - perfect for shooting shots over water or in other high-light conditions. These are sometimes called CPL filters (Circular Polarized/Linear). They generally do the same thing.
ND: ND stands for neutral density filters. What they do is that they limit the amount of light that can pass through to your camera. These are especially important if you are shooting in a high-light environment such as a snowy location on a sunny day, or at a beach/ over water that reflects the sun. The different levels of ND indicated the power of the filter. 8 being less powerful and blocking less light than a 32, and so on.
These two are the most important filters you can use with your shoots. Note that there are also combinations of CPL ND filter, so take a look on google for some for sale that can fit your drone!
Note that shutter speed is a good way to control the general brightness of your photos and video, but this comes with its own limitations. slower shutter speeds, while brighter, add more blur to videos while faster shutter speeds can add distortion and grain. Shutter speed can be a totally separate post!
Below are a few examples of what an overexposed (no filter or too slow of a shutter speed), underexposed (too much filter or too fast of a shutter speed) and a good filter/shutter speed combination. The results speak for themselves!
A $50 lens can really help make your works stand out and with professional looking photos, both you and your resulting pictures will be a lot happier!
Do you have any experience with using filters? Do you have any questions regarding camera filters or other techniques you would like us to share? Put them in the comments below! Thanks for reading!
Henry is the founder and operator of Air Support Aerial Photography. Here he talks about A.S.A.P. news, drone industry news, and opinion pieces!