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  • Andrew JK Tan

Nikon D850 - Getting even more from my Nikon D850 with NiSi Filters system

By now most of you will know how I love my Nikon D850's all round performance from physical handling to ultra fine details and even the incredible dynamic range performance at the ultra high resolution of 45.7MP

I had been using more of the D850's RAW capability recently which is definitely very impressive especially with shadows & highlights recovery. However there will still be occasions where even the D850's impressive RAW recovery performance will not be sufficient and that's where using a good filter system will help greatly. Now a good filter system for me needs to full-fill 4 very important aspects :

1. the system must be very easy to use yet robust

2. the system must not introduce unwanted color cast

3. the system must not visually degrade the image quality in terms of details and resolution

4. no vignetting when used at the 14mm end of my 14-24mm Nikkor

So far the NiSi filter system that I have been using has met my 4 important requirements easily and consistently.

The following is a sharing of my results when I used the NiSi Filter system with my Nikon D850 / Nikkor 14-24mm f2.8G ED combo at Eagle Point - Sungei Buloh Wetland Reserve during a very bright and beautiful morning.

Nikon D850 setup

- Nikkor 14-24mm f2.8G ED @14mm focal length

- Tripod setup


- Exposure Delay 0.5 seconds

NiSi Filters used

- Nano IR ND1000(3.0) 10 Stops filter (10 stops Neutral Density)

- Medium nano IR GND8(0.9) filter (3 stops Graduated Neutral Density)

- Both filters used at the same time

NiSi filter holder system used

- S5 filter holder system (150mm)


RAW image WITHOUT NiSi filters in place (UNEDITED)

ISO31 , 1/640s , f13.0

Almost blown out highlights on the right portion due to the strong sun already in a high position even at 8am.

RAW image WITH NiSi filters in place (UNEDITED)

ISO31 , 5 seconds , f13.0

Obvious that by using both NiSi filters in place , the amount of light reduced assisted the D850 to capture maximum details in the very bright highlight areas on the right.

No unwanted color cast , in fact the warmer tones in the highlights were very pleasing and the details in the shadow areas were easily retained. This unedited version already looks pretty good with a nice ambience to the image.


RAW image WITHOUT NiSi filters in place (EDITED without additional Sharpening)

ISO31 , 1/640s , f13.0

Post Produced with almost the same workflow (compared to the workflow on the RAW file with NiSi filters) with the exception of the highlights recovery which I had to additional work to recover as much as I could. Even then , I could NOT recover all the details that I wanted.

The edited version is already a significant improvement over the RAW version.

(Click on image to enlarge)

RAW image WITH NiSi filters in place (EDITED without additional Sharpening)

ISO31 , 5 seconds , f13.0

Post processing the RAW image with NiSi filters in place was easy as ALL the digital information were captured. By using the NiSi 10 Stops ND & 3 Stops Medium GND combo , I easily balanced the exposure of the overall scene and together with the dynamic range performance of the D850 RAW file , I could easily enhance and present the details in the way I wanted to in a very quick (less than 5 minutes of post processing) and easy process. In fact with the NiSi filters in place increased color tones were also captured and you can also see that the details with both filters in place remain crisp and sharp.

(Click on image to enlarge)

Hopefully the above sharing will show the benefits of using a good filter system like NiSi's all glass high definition filters. So even in extreme bright lighting conditions where most photographers will start to avoid , you can now take advantage of your DSLR's RAW capabilities and produce images that you normally would miss out on.

Can you the photographer achieve the above final result without the use of Filters ?

- Yes , you can but ,

- you would have to know how to bracket

- you would also need to know how to additionally digitally blend your bracketed captures

- after blending , you would still have to tweak the colors , contrast & clarity to your preferences

- takes a longer post production time vs. working on a RAW file produced with filters in place

- overall , you would have to do much more post processing work on your PC

Till my next adventure with my D850 and NiSi filters combo , happy shooting & experimenting.



#NikonD850 #Nikkor1424 #NiSifilter #ND1000 #MediumGND #10stops #3stops

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