Lens filters are an essential item that are often overlooked. People assume that if they purchase a high-quality lens, then that’s all they need. Whilst high-quality DSLR lenses certainly allow you to create beautiful photos, filters can make a huge difference.
Lens filters attach to the end of your lens and provide additional functionality. There is a myriad of different 52mm filters including neutral density, UV protection, color contrast filters, and more. Some offer additional protection, whilst others improve compositions and image quality.
We have created a list of the best 52mm filters available. This list includes some essential filters for a photographer’s kit as well as some special effect filters that are fun to use and allow you to experiment with different photography styles.
A UV protection filter is an absolute must. If you only purchase one 52mm filter, this is the one. UV filters have two purposes. Firstly, they reduce ultraviolet light which can cause discoloration on your photos.
Secondly, they add an additional protective layer of glass to your lens. The AmazonBasics UV protective filter has clear glass that protects your lens from dirt, dust, and moisture. Furthermore, as the glass is thin and clear, it does not compromise the quality of your images at all.
If you regularly head outdoors with your camera or work in dirty environments, this UV protection filter is a must-have accessory.
Circular polarizer filters are one of the most popular filters that photographers use. This type of filter has a dual purpose to improve the overall balance and colors of your photos. It helps improve and deepen the intensity of blue colors in the sky as well as reducing glare from sunlight and reflections.
The AmazonBasics circular polarizer is an affordable 52mm filter that performs its function perfectly.
The multi-coated glass reduces reflections but still provides that excellent punch for landscape photography with vivid skies. It has a top waterproof layer, and the protective glass layer helps resist scratches, dust, and dirt.
A Neutral Density filter is another widely used filter type. This type of filter is used specifically for long exposure photography and motion blur photography. The glass usually has an exposure/light reduction feature which enables long-exposures.
The Gobe 52mm ND512 has a nine stop reduction making it ideal for these aforementioned photography techniques.
It is color neutral to maintain true color balance for photos. Furthermore, it is made from premium Japanese glass with special nano-coating for additional protection and image quality. If you want to try new photography techniques, this is one of the best 52mm filters to own.
Step-up ring adapters are a type of filter that allows you to use one size filter on a different size lens. These are useful accessories that enable you to use one set of lens filters on multiple different lens types, restricting the need to buy the same filter in many sizes.
This filter allows you to use 52mm filters on 49mm lenses like the Canon EF 50mm f/1.8 STM. It has a strong ring connection and a durable screwing mechanism too. Always be aware of the size difference and that there are limits to the transitions.
Graduated ND filters are best used for landscape photography when you have a high contrast between the sky and foreground. The gradient from dark to clear glass allows you to expose both the sky and foreground evenly.
The overall effect is pleasing – skies retain their detail and do not look washed out, whilst foregrounds remain clear and detailed as well.
This ZOMEI graduated ND filter has a top build quality. It is slimline and fits securely onto your lens with a screw ring mechanism.
Warming filters are categorized into effect filters. This type of lens has a special colored glass coating that adds warmth to compositions that are washed out. The overall result is a pleasant composition with richer colors or a warmer overall photo white balance.
The Tiffen 52mm warming filter is ideal for both portraits and scenic photos. Particularly when you use an electronic flash – a flash often adds a blue tint to photos which this 52mm filter can correct.
The filter is high quality and features patented Tiffen glass technology and coatings for extra protection. This is certainly one of the more interesting 52mm filters and is great for studio photography.
Tiffen has an excellent range of color contrast filters that are used primarily for black and white photography. These 52mm filters allow control over different colors and therefore greatly affect the contrast in greyscale photos.
The 52mm red filter is used to darken blue skies and form a high contrast with clouds and the foreground. In addition, it also provides greater contrast between flowers and foliage.
This is a specialist filter and not one of the 52mm filters that every photographer needs. It can be used to create some interesting effects, and if you regularly take B&W photos, this is a handy filter to own.
Try New Photographic Techniques With These 52mm Filters
There is a range of lenses available that would be perfect for these 52mm filters. A few examples include the Nikon AF-S DX NIKKOR 35mm f/1.8G and several other pancake lenses like the Canon EF 40mm f/2.8 STM.
Don’t forget that we also have buying guides for other filter sizes including 72mm, and 58mm filter threads. Regardless of what size lens you have, you can find a good range of filters to suit. Why not extend your photography accessory kit today and start your own filter collection?