New Article, New Gear

Singh-Ray now has a larger version of its sprocketed LB Polarizer that will drop into either a Lee holder or a Cokin Z-Pro holder. If you are using one of these larger filter holders this means that you now have more choices in polarizers beyond the Cokin Z-164 Circular Polarizer or the Lee Polarizer. I find the Cokin polarizer to be very dark and it has a stong blue cast. I find the Lee polarizer to be a pain to use with the Lee holder. The Singh-Ray LB Warming Polarizer solves both problems (it is bright and warm) and slips easily into the Cokin Z-Pro holder. This larger filter works great with the large holders to use with lenses that have a large front filter thread (e.g. 77mm or larger) and to use with ultra wide angle zoom lenses like a 16-35mm lens on a full frame camera or a 10-22mm lens on an APS-sized camera. To learn more about my thoughts on this new filter and to see the latest images I made with the filter go here.

Also related to super wide angle lenses, if you have a Canon 17mm TS-E or a Nikon 14-24mm (both with bulging front lens elements), Lee has announced plans to make a filter holder that might work with these lenses – check it out here – hmmm looks interesting but would involve buying another size of grads – my wallet is already thin enough! Some other filter holder inventions for these lenses include this one for Nikon, this one for Canon… and I am sure there are lots more out there… heck I am messing around with my own MacGyver rig for the 17mm TS-E. Stay tuned.

Cokin Z-Pro Holder on left with LB Polarizer and Grad (P-holder on right)

14 Responses to “New Article, New Gear”

  1. Sweet! Thanks for posting this Darwin, this filter is exactly what I need. I’m so sick of missing moments while I’m screwing on/off my polarizer… problem solved!

  2. Thanks for the heads up about the Singh-Ray filter. Will it really fit into a Lee Holder? I’ve heard that the (I assume similar) Cokin sprocketed filter won’t work with the Lee holder.

    • I have used both the Cokin Z-sized and the Singh-Ray Z-sized polarizer in a Lee holder. It works OK but for sure they work better in a Z-Pro Holder (which is much less expensive than a Lee Holder). Darwin

      • Seriously? Is there a difference between a lee holder and z-pro holder?

        What did you mean by they work ‘better’ in a Z-Pro holder? (Concerned since I already have the Lee holder and polarizer is on order).


      • There is a difference in the rear slots of the Lee holder and the Cokin Z-Pro holder, the cokin holder seats the drop-in polarizer securely while the Lee one does not do as good a job. Maybe I will make a video about this and ost it. Darwin

  3. Nice article. I ordered this from a weeks back, hopefully mine will arrive shortly.

    btw, on your lee filter holder, did you configure it for 2 or 3 filters? If I just have two filter slots, will I still be able to use both slots, or is the sprocket polarizer too thick?

    Do you know where I can purchase a 9-10x ND filter for a Lee 4×6 filter holder? I have a hoya 77mm ND filter, but I wanted to get a drop in filter because screwing on/off the filter takes so long. Thanks for any advice on a 9-10x ND filter.


    • I actually mostly use a Cokin Z-Pro holder (with three slots). I do have a Lee holder but rarely use it because the Cokin Holder works better for the drop-in polarizers.

      Lee makes “The Big Stopper” that is 10 stops for the 4×6 holder!


      • Another question, does a sprocket polarizer have to sit in the slot closest to the lens? Could you use the big stopper + sprocket polarizer if you wanted?

        Have read a report of a Cokin z164 falling out of a Lee holder, how secure do you think the Singh-ray version is?

      • The polarizer fits into the slot closest to the lens and then the Big Stopper would go in the next slot but up against the polarizer. The Cokin Z164 and the Singh-Ray polarizer have the same sprocket mount so either is apt to fall out of a Lee holder (unless your really careful). Personally I would just buy a Cokin Z-holder because the polarizers are secure in that holder. Darwin

      • Thanks for the article Darwin. This stuff is so useful but not cheap. So getting some advice before making a purchase is a big help.

        Any word on whether Singh Ray is creating gold n blue polarizer for the Lee system like this LB model?

        Also, which setup in your opinion would produce less vignetting using a wide angle lens (16-35 2.8L I w 77mm ring) with a full frame sensor… a standard 105mm Lee polarizer fitted on the front of the Lee holder? or this new Singh Ray LB polarizer fitted in the first slot – closest to the lens – inside a Lee holder? I’m really on the fence about this one. I like the convenience of the Singh Ray, but I get the sense the Lee 105 might be better suited for wide angle.

      • No word on Singh-Ray making a Z-sized Gold-n-Blue but you can buy Cokin’s Blue-Yellow polarizer in Z-pro size.

        I have never tried a Lee 105 polarizer so can’t comment. I have tried the Lee holder with the wide-angle adapter ring on the 16-35mm Canon and there is no vignetting at 16mm. I have also tried that set-up with the Cokin Z-164 polarizer and still no vignetting (assuming you do not have a UV filter on your 16-35mm). So the Singh-Ray LB in Z-pro size should not vignette either (same size as the Cokin polarizer) but I do not own a 16-35mm to test it out for sure but am confident you won’t get vignetting. Darwin

      • For anyone interested in the Big Stopper from Lee, I just got back the following from Lee filter regarding the quality compared to the ProGlass ND filter (in respect to blocking UV/IR and color-cast):

        “The BS is not made using the same technology as the ProGlass, and is not as precise an ND, nor does it absorb equally across the UV and IR regions like the ProGlass does.
        It does however absorb IR and though it does have a generally blue cast, it does not give that brown-ness (is that a word? I don’t think so) to greens that other similar filters seem to give. It is more of an effect filter compared to the ProGlass, which is a perfect ND.”

        I’m thinking of going with two ProGlass 3x ND filters instead or stick with my 9x ND screw-on.

        Price was really good though, $200 CDN through

  4. Thank you for this article and for answering the questions in this detail, Darwin! Besides the fact that I appreciate your taking the time to read and answer people’s comments, the article including the back and forth in the comments, contains just the info I was missing to make an informed decision between the Z Pro and Lee systems.
    While I’m at it, I also wanted to complement you on your How to Photograph the Canadian Rockies book, which I read before a trip in early March. There are some really beautiful locations in there which I might not have found otherwise – at the very least not without spending (and losing) a lot of time at the “wrong” locations.

    @everbody else: Sorry for wasting your time ;o).


  5. tiagocena Says:

    Very good work!
    I have some doubts: the Singh-Ray LB warming polarizer Cokin Z-pro mount would fit in the Lee Foundation kit holder without any trouble? Do you have experience with the Lee 105mm accessory ring to allow the attachment of a 105mm rotating polarizer?

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