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Author Topic: Lee Bellows Shade  (Read 8583 times)
Mike Guilbault
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« on: April 23, 2013, 09:02:11 PM »
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I'm putting together a Lee filter system with the "Foundation Kit".  I'm interested in their bellows lens shade too, but a little confused with their offerings.  They seem to have a couple of models that will attach to the standard Foundation Kit (the filter holder), or a couple of models that have the filter slots built in.  I can't seem to find which is what though.  Does anyone have any of these shades, and how exactly do they work?
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Paul2660
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« Reply #1 on: April 23, 2013, 09:31:29 PM »
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Hello Mike:

Lee makes two hood styles that I am aware of, the wide and normal.  Both are excellent hoods.  They also make 3 versions of each of these 2 hood styles.
1.  Hood with no filters
2.  Hood with 1 filter
3.  Hood with 2 filters.
The wide hood is meant for wide angle lenses, and its opening is 5.5 x 7.  The standard hood normal lenses to telephoto.

All the versions will mount to the camera with a adapter ring, same ring that you would use to attach the basic filter kit.  The adapter rings are sold separately.
The rings come in various sizes, and in wide angle and normal.  

One key thing to remember.  If you use the Lee setup, and use the wide angle adapter rings, be careful not to mount a CL-PL on the lens.  This is because the Lee Wide angle ring is designed to fit over the end of the lens, (to keep the distance at a minimum).  The Lee Wide Angle ring will thus cover the CL-PL and you won't be able to remove it, since it will spin freely, (by design of the CL-PL).  The standard Lee rings screw inside like a normal filter and can be removed.

You can buy the Hood  with 2 filters and remove, 1 or both of the filter adapters.  

Overall it's a great system for wide angle lenses, except for the issue of the use of a CL-PL.  

If you want to use a CL-PL, Lee makes a 4 x 4 2mm that will fit in the filter holder, however this most times will not allow use of a ND grad filter, but is fine with a solid.  Lee makes a ring that will mount to the front of the hood 105mm.  This allows you to purchase a 105mm CL-PL and put on the front side of the hood.  This is the solution I use.  

I was impressed enough with the Lee setup, to sell my Arca compendium hood and start using the Lee setup.

Hardest thing is to find the hoods in stock somewhere.  

Paul Caldwell

« Last Edit: April 24, 2013, 08:10:53 AM by Paul2660 » Logged

Paul Caldwell
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« Reply #2 on: April 24, 2013, 05:04:14 AM »
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Hi Mike
As paul said always go for the W/A adaptor ring and fit without anything on the lens . I use the system without a hood but shade the lens with the black pouch the filters come in.
Lee are good to deal with even though stock can be short but bear in mind the draws are hand made from the making of the resin sheet to the dipping of the grad .

regards

Jon
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #3 on: April 24, 2013, 05:47:10 AM »
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the part I'm confused about is the 'Foundation Kit', with up to 3 slots and the hood with one or two slots.  If I get the Foundation Kit can I still put a hood on it? In which case, do I get the hood without any slots and just use the slots of the adapter. If I get the hood with slots, does that mean I don't use the foundation kit and use the slots in hood?  My thinking is that the slots in the hood wouldn't be much good for grads since if you twist the hood you could get vignetting. If you use the Foundation kit for filter slots and get the hood without slots, can you rotate the filters without rotating the hood?  The site doesn't seem to explain how they all work together.

I was thinking of the hood so I could use it on all the lenses and save having to pack three or four shades that came with the lenses.  I have the 17-35mm, 24-70, 70-200 (all 2.8's) the 85mm PC (older version) and 50mm 1.4.  Sounds like I'd need the separate WA hood for the 17-35 though.

I guess I'm looking for recommendation - just the filter slots, slots and hood, or just the hood?  What's the most versatile?  I have a good B+W CL-PL, (77mm) but I was assuming i wouldn't be able to use it with the system and would have to purchase theirs.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #4 on: April 24, 2013, 07:37:44 AM »
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the part I'm confused about is the 'Foundation Kit', with up to 3 slots and the hood with one or two slots.  If I get the Foundation Kit can I still put a hood on it?

Hi Mike,

The "Standard hood" slots into the foundation kit. The other hoods come with the adaptor connector already mounted, with or without filter slots.

The "Universal hood" comes assembled with two (configurable) filter slots, but has no provision for adding vignetting slots on the front (neither has the Wide angle hood).

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In which case, do I get the hood without any slots and just use the slots of the adapter. If I get the hood with slots, does that mean I don't use the foundation kit and use the slots in hood?

The foundation kit is only needed for the "Standard hood", to allow connecting to the adaptor ring. The others already come with a connector for the adaptor ring.

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My thinking is that the slots in the hood wouldn't be much good for grads since if you twist the hood you could get vignetting. If you use the Foundation kit for filter slots and get the hood without slots, can you rotate the filters without rotating the hood?

The (Linear grad) filters can only be used rotated without the ("Standard") hood attached in its own 2mm slot. All other hoods have the filter holders fixed in place. So you either use the foundation kit with the Standard hood attached or not, or use a separate foundation kit and a separate (slotted or not) hood.

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The site doesn't seem to explain how they all work together.

I agree. The poor availability also makes it difficult to first see the actual things at a dealer, before deciding.

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I was thinking of the hood so I could use it on all the lenses and save having to pack three or four shades that came with the lenses.  I have the 17-35mm, 24-70, 70-200 (all 2.8's) the 85mm PC (older version) and 50mm 1.4.  Sounds like I'd need the separate WA hood for the 17-35 though.

For anything shorter than approx. 24mm focal length, a Wide hood is required, the other lenses should be fine with the non-wide versions. Depending on how the filter mount of the 24-70mm is positioned, a Wide angle adaptor ring may be better for the 24mm focal length setting. For the 17-35mm I would recommend the Wide angle adaptor ring anyway.

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I guess I'm looking for recommendation - just the filter slots, slots and hood, or just the hood?  What's the most versatile?  I have a good B+W CL-PL, (77mm) but I was assuming i wouldn't be able to use it with the system and would have to purchase theirs.

For ultimate versatility, you could get the Foundation kit (which allows to rotate a 'grad' without hood) and a "Standard" hood which can be added onto the Foundation kit. But for the wide angle lenses you'd still need a separate Wide-angle hood to replace the foundation kit. Life usually becomes much easier if you do not use 'grads' but use exposure blending instead, and you only have to decide between a slotted or not slotted hood.

I don't like the straight line 'grad', because the images look fake when used on anything but straight line (horizon) transitions. That's why I use a single slotted hood, mainly for the "Big Stopper", and it can also be used as a hood only (one can optionally remove the slot with a screwdriver if only needed as hood). For optical reasons, I also don't like stacking filters.

Cheers,
Bart
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Paul2660
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« Reply #5 on: April 24, 2013, 09:41:10 AM »
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As Bart points out, there are actually 3 hood sizes, the standard, universal, and wide angle.

I had forgotten the universal, since when I was looking to purchase it, no one had it stock or even listed it.  I just double checked a few sites and still can't find it.  I only found it on
Lee's store site. 

I have the standard hood with the two filter slots behind the hood.  One thing to note, these filter adapters are not removable, at least I can't find a way to take them off.  It appears that the standard hood comes with the slots attached or designed with the clips so that it will just clip on to the foundation kit taking up one of the 2mm slots.

The wide angle hood can be purchased in many configurations, no slots, 1 slot, 2 slots.  You can remove the slot from wide angle hood and just use the hood.  So if you are looking for the wide angle hood I would get it with 2 slots.  You could also totally remove the filter holder from the hood, by unscrewing the 4 front screws and then it would just be the same as the foundation kit.  As I am mainly using wides, I felt this was the best solution for me. 

From looking at the pictures of the universal hood it seems you can also remove the holder from it just like the wide angle hood.

It might be a better overall solution for you as you are looking for only 1 hood. Only problem is finding one.  It seems that some places may call the universal hood the "medium" hood.  It's a bit confusing.

I would recommend giving 2filter.com a quick call, ask for Andrea.  She knows the Lee product line up very well, and if you want the universal hood she should be able to order it for you.

I use the soft grads quite a bit, both Lee and Singh-ray Daryl Benson reverse grads.  With the Wide angle hood on, you can easily rotate these grads 25 to 30 degrees with not hood vignetting. 

I also don't like to stack the resin filters, but will often use the solid glass ND's that Lee makes in conjunction with the 105mm CL-PL.

Paul Caldwell
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Paul Caldwell
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« Reply #6 on: April 24, 2013, 05:14:10 PM »
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I stack Lee grads without issue, often in conjunction with a Big Stopper.

I've got the standard hood and can use it even on the 17-40 on a 5D3, as long as you don't extend it too far vignetting isn't a problem, it helps in wet conditions to keep the front element, and filters, clear of rain.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #7 on: April 24, 2013, 07:29:39 PM »
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Thanks guys. 
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bill t.
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« Reply #8 on: April 24, 2013, 07:32:21 PM »
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OK, Mike said Thanks so now I can hijack...

Bah!  Has nobody here heard of Photoshop?  A coupla brackets, simple graded masks on layers.  Same result, less PITA.

Filter fiddling in the field flummoxes photographers.  And a heavily filtered camera file limits what you can do later on.  And trying to second-guess filter selections and adjustments during the fleeting seconds of a good sunset or sunrise is a recipe for a bad shot.  And let's not talk about the effects of wind and rain on filter packs and hoods.  Shoot brackets, get creative later.  Walk away from your well-bracketed scene in the comforting knowledge that all interpretive doors still remain open for you in the forgiving embrace of LR and PS.

OK, maybe high number ND's are justifiable, but that's it and those should be the screw-on type.  Or polarizers for that hard-to-get dessicated look.
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #9 on: April 24, 2013, 08:11:10 PM »
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I, for one, I've done it both ways Bill... and more often the LR/PS route - but I enjoy the 'fiddling' in the field and would rather spend time doing it there than fiddling on the computer. That's one reason I'm looking at getting the Lee system so that I can do it in field.  I'm not one to over-filter anything though.  I find I'm using the polarizer less and less - but the "Big Stopper" ND filter has me intrigued and my buddy uses the grads quite a bit with incredible results. I've tried matching his stuff (we shoot together often) in PS after and just can't quite get it.  The nice thing is that then I'll have a choice.  If I'm not pressed for time, I can do it in the field and if I don't get it quite right, I'll have less to do in PS after. 

Besides.. when I'm on location and there's a bunch of other photographers... I'll look cooler! Wink
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Graham Welland
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« Reply #10 on: April 24, 2013, 10:15:37 PM »
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You could do worse than to visit LEEFiltersTV channel on You Tube. In particular, here's the hood overview: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qEkgfmm7Oqg&list=PL720E0A66DA1B1E37&index=8
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Graham
Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #11 on: April 24, 2013, 10:23:35 PM »
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The problem is they only talk about the Universal hood in that video and not how it works with the Foundation Kit - or even if it does.  There's video about filters and FK, and then there's video about hoods - but not so much about using them together in different combinations.  I'm sure there's not one solution for every photographer... but they're not showing what the possibilities are.
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BartvanderWolf
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« Reply #12 on: April 25, 2013, 04:26:06 AM »
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The problem is they only talk about the Universal hood in that video and not how it works with the Foundation Kit - or even if it does.

Hi Mike,

The Universal hood doesn't require a Foundation kit, it attaches directly to an adaptor ring on the lens, as shown in the video.

Cheers,
Bart
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Mike Guilbault
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« Reply #13 on: April 25, 2013, 05:35:42 AM »
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So, to attach a hood to the FK requires the Standard hood?  If you get a Standard hood with at least one slot then, after attaching it to the FK (using up one slot), then you regain that slot within the hood. 

Can you rotate the hood separately from the FK then to keep it square to the lens to avoid vignetting? 
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Paul2660
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« Reply #14 on: April 25, 2013, 07:01:33 AM »
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The universal hood comes with a foundation kit screwed to the back of the hood.  The FK has 2 2mm filter slots.  You can take the universal hood, and use it with the 2 slot, take one off, or just unscrew the entire foundation kit from the back of the hood and use it separately.  I am basing this on the fact that in the video the universal hood shows the 4 flat head screws on the front of the hood.  This is just like how the wide angle hood works.   I attached a picture of the universal hood from the Lee site, you can see the front of the hood and the 4 screws where the foundation kit is screwed to the back of the hood.

The standard hood which is about 4.5 x 4.5 comes with either (2) 2mm filter slots on the back (it's a foundation kit mounted to the back of the hood, but you can't unscrew it and use it separately due to the way the kit is screwed to the back of the hood), or the standard hood comes with clips that allow it to fit in one of the 2mm slots of an existing FK. This takes away one of the slots.  

I have totally switched from the various ND's and a CL-PL to Lee.  Lee makes excellent solid glass ND's 0.9 and 0.6 in the 4 x 4 size.  Plus they have the big stopper, at approx 10x.  These are all glass and IMO as good as anything from Hoya, or Tiffen etc.  With the Lee hood, I have a large 105mm CL-PL that will screw on the front and I have adapter rings that allow me to use this on all of my lenses.  So I have 1 set of filters that works with everything thing I carry and one CL-PL that works with everything expect my 28mm Rodenstock since I use the physical CF on it.   I used the other method for years and found this a breath of fresh air, as it also allows me to have a hood that works very well in all conditions.  And flare can ruin any series.  

The resin filters are a nice addition.  You can get some of the same effects in PS but some of the fillers especially the singh-ray reverse grads are very nice to work with.  As Bart mentioned, you need a even horizon which I don't always have,  I have enjoyed using them, especially on the 14-24 Nikon with the SW150 kit.  

I forgot to mention in my last thread, one of the reasons I picked the wide angle hood was so I could use shifting, both with a 35mm camera (canon) or the arca rm3di.  

Paul Caldwell
« Last Edit: April 25, 2013, 07:35:24 AM by Paul2660 » Logged

Paul Caldwell
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« Reply #15 on: April 25, 2013, 07:48:47 PM »
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Regarding filters, each to their own but is rather get as much as possible done in camera and maximise my time on location rather than sat peering at a display trying to put right what could have been done in seconds with filters.

Sure there are scenes where exposure blending will be preferable but in my experience they're few and far between.
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