so, What are diffusion filters?
A diffusion filter main purpose is to spread out, or “diffuse”, the light rays entering the lens and the camera sensor. The result is this soft, hazy look. It has been used for a long time in cinematic footage, but as a result of the older lenses combined with film. This look has to some, a more pleasing and more “organic” feeling to it that newer digital tech have taken distance from. So, voilá! The diffusion filter enters the stage.
While I have been tested out various vintage lenses from mostly the Olympus OM-mount. The type of softness it produces can be a little too much. And I think it’s because of the softness of the details that makes it not as pleasing to work with. The benefit of diffusion filters in my opinion is that the details are still there but the light is scattered and diffused.
Sound of music (1965)
The Moment Cinebloom 10%
While there are many different brands of diffusion filters out there, like the Tiffen Pro Mist, the Moment Cinebloom caught my eye. The red design striked me as well as only two options to choose from made the decision easier. It comes in two variations: 10% and 20%. I choose the 10% and here is why I think you should do the same.
The 10% variant offers the perfect amount of diffusion for my taste. Its never too much and the camera has never a hard time focusing due to too much softness. During my days of shooting with the Cinebloom filter, I think it has given my images new life.
I spend a lot of time in Lightroom after every photo sessions, tweaking the images to suit the mood I was in when the photos were taken. And I mostly end up mimicking the looks of different film stocks. Most recently the Portra Film stock.
And this filter surely gave the images the final touch of organic look I have been aimlessly trying to produce with either the “Clarity” slider in Lightroom or the “Diffuse Glow” in Photoshop.
Another great thing with the 10% is that you can adjust the amount in post with the Haze-slider. This way you can increase the diffusion that is already there. And I think that thats a better option than if you have to reduce it, say you get the 20% variant.
How it looks
Down below I showcase a few of my images taken with the Cinebloom filter. As you can see there is a lot of effect, even for the 10% variant.