Archive for Lensmate

Using Filters on the Canon G11

Posted in Photography Gear, Techniques with tags , , , , , , , , on February 8, 2010 by Darwin

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When I owned a Canon G9, I bought the conversion lens adapter that Canon made for the G9. I simply attached my Cokin P-holder to the Canon lens conversion adapter using a Cokin 58mm adapter ring and I was up and running using my Singh-Ray filters on my G9. So when I bought the Canon G11, I also purchased Canon’s Conversion Lens Adapter LA-DC58K (the G9 version would not fit of course – thanks Canon!). I assumed that I could simply attach my Cokin P-holder to the new G11 adapter and be off filtering my photos (see photo below).

Well… guess what? The adapter that Canon makes specifically to attach supplemental lenses and filters on the G11 vignettes at the widest lens setting on the G11–see top image in the photo below! What the hell? Why would Canon make an accessory for a camera that does not work properly? Thanks Canon. And to add insult to injury, once a Cokin P-holder and a Singh-Ray drop-in polarizer is added to the set-up, vignetting gets even worse (see bottom image of the photo below).

A solution to the vignetting problem inherent in Canon’s (poorly designed) conversion lens adapter is to buy a 72 mm filter adapter made by Lensmate. This adapter fits onto the Canon G11 in two parts and allows use of 72 mm filters without vignetting. I tried the Lensmate 72 mm filter adapter without any filters and as promised it did not vignette at all. But when I attached my Cokin P-holder with a 72 mm adapter ring and used a Singh-Ray drop-in polarizer vignetting occurred at the widest focal-length setting on the G11.

According to Lensmate, the only way to get around vignetting issues and still use a Cokin P-holder is to slide the P-holder onto the bayonet mount of the Lensmate 72mm adapter and then use a thin mount screw-in polarizer in the threads of the Lensmate adapter (see photo below). If you use this set-up then you have room for one extra drop-in filter in the Cokin P-holder. When I tried this configuration I did not get any vignetting even at the widest focal length setting on the G11. Finally!

With my Canon G9, I could use three filters in my Cokin P-holder. But with the configuration suggested by Lensmate, I can only use two filters with the Canon G11. This limitation is not too serious considering that the Canon G11 has a built-in ND filter (the third type of filter I would normally add). I can still use a polarizer and a grad together on the G11. The main problem with the Lensmate solution is that I needed to buy a separate 72mm polarizer specifically for my G11 – ouch my pocketbook!

If you do not want to spring for an extra polarizer  for your G11 and you already own a drop-in polarizer for your Cokin P-holder then simply understand that you’ll need to zoom out slightly from the widest setting on the G11 to avoid vignetting with the Lensmate and a Cokin P-holder (the price you pay for saving money). So for those photographers interested in using filters on the Canon G11 (or Canon G10), the Lensmate System will work perfectly but it will hurt your wallet especially if you need to buy a separate 72mm thin-mount polarizer.