Review - The Sirui Professional Landscape Filter Kit
Sirui recently gave me as an emerging landscape photographer the opportunity to test out their new Sirui Professional Landscape Filter Kit.
As a landscape photographer filters are an essential piece of your kit, and a quality filter kit will make your life easier post production.
So the last 3 weeks I have been road testing the filter range in a variety of settings to see how the new range compares. I’ve tested in a range of locations from low light in some of NSW waterfalls to chasing the harsher lighting conditions in the Victoria regional areas.
So lets take a closer look:
SIRUI PROFESSIONAL LANDSCAPE FILTER KIT (STARTER KIT)
Price: $499.00 inc. GST
The kit contains:
1x Sirui Square Filter Holder – 100mm (with integrated CPL holder)
1x CPL (circular polarizing) Filter
1x Sirui Soft GND16 (1.2) (4 stop Graduated Filter) – 100x150mm
1x Sirui ND1000 (10 stop Neutral Density) Filter – 100x100mm
Adapter Ring 67-82mm
Adapter Ring 72-82mm
Adapter Ring 77-82mm
Padded Carry Bag
4x Short Allen Screw
Upon opening the box, there were a number of positives that stood out in terms of build quality and features. The filter holder is lightweight without compromising the quality of the materials (high quality aircraft grade aluminium). The adapter rings are a great feature for photographers that have a variety of lenses and or are looking to upgrade lenses in the future, this means there will be no need to ever replace your filters (futureproof).
The adapter rings screw onto the front of the lens without sticking and incorrectly threading, with the addition of the rotating CPL simply screwing into the adapter ring this is a great feature when combined with filter holder.
The filter holder itself has some great features… the position of the polariser cogs to easily rotate the CPL into the right position was a great feature and easy to use. I personally really liked the visible anchor points for the holder to clip onto the adapter rings, because I’ve seen beginners attach the holder incorrectly and break filters, so the visible anchor points would be great for those new to photography and filters. The three filter slots gives you great flexibility to combine filter combinations to all creativity to capture the image you are after.
Putting it to the test…
After receiving the filters, I decided to put it to the test straight away, I packed everything into my bag and headed off to a waterfall on the Central Coast. I found attaching the adapter ring and CPL to the lens relatively easy however if I was getting technical, I didn't like that the pouches were all seperate for the holder and filters etc. In saying that, it could be something that Sirui is maybe working on and or I am sure I could purchase one online, so a minor issue, but as a landscape photographer that likes to get everything out of there bag and climb, I did often forget to grab a filter I would end up requiring.
A feature that stood out for me was the ease in which I was able to use the rotating CPL. I really liked the placement of the dial to rotate the filter and it was easy to move and felt it was in a natural position.
The filters are a snug fit, which helps reduce the chance of light leaking in a long exposure. But the other feature I was most impressed with was that the light baffle was located on the filter holder itself, rather than the ND Filters.
Overall I think the image quality was excellent, although there is a slight cool colour cast (minimal), it is not really an issue and can be easily fixed in post production. There was no evidence of a vignette being present whilst using the filters and in daylight did not notice any visible banding whilst using the CPL.
I tested the filters in a variety of conditions including bright harsh daylight and in darker low light conditions and it is my opinion the filters performed to an exceptional quality and the overall image quality was fantastic.
The built in CPL and the position of the rotating dial on the holder.
Visible anchor points.
Light baffles on the filter holder.
Awesome value for money for any photographer.
Almost no colour cast.
Easy to use.
To have a travel pouch that gives you the flexibility to have all you filters and kit in one place.
A lens cap that will fit over the CPL to allow you to leave the adapter ring attached to the lens.
I really enjoyed putting the Sirui Professional Landscape Filter Kit through its paces in a variety of conditions. In my opinion this kit is great in terms of lightweight design, quality and lack of colour cast (slightly cool). This kit would without doubt a benefit to beginners through to professional photographers and the price point would be more appealing to those on a budget looking for a quality filter kit.
I really liked some key features on the Sirui Kit such as the location of the dial for the CPL and the fact the light baffles are on the holder. I like this feature only because I have had to replace the baffles a couple of times on my other filter kit, but that said I would be interested to see what there durability would be in this location. So whilst I think its a positive, I am not sure I can say one way or another without a longevity test.
Overall, I believe the Sirui filter kit is a great addition to any photographers kit, I am making this recommendation based on the tests I performed over a 3 week period and my own personal photography style. The price point makes Sirui a great option to a budget savvy photographer looking for a quality filter kit.
Thanks to Sirui Australia for allowing me to test the filter kit. I am happy to answer any questions you have.