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Do you really need a lens hood?

To be quite honest, I almost never use a lens hood. On the other hand, I know photographers who never take it off their lenses. In this video from Adorama, David Bergman will tell you why you should use a lens hood on your lenses. Do you agree with him?

In the video, David answers a question from a follower who asked him whether or not he should use lens hoods. “I have them but never use them and I don’t think I’ve had a problem,” he writes. However, David suggests that it’s a good idea to always have a lens hood on. When the light hits the front element at a certain angle, it will create flare and give the image a low-contrast, washed-out look. This is probably most obvious when shooting backlit images.

But what I mention above is just one specific lighting situation, right? So why should you leave your lens hood in other shooting scenarios? Well, David argues that it should remain there for protection. With the lens hood on, it’s easier to protect your front element from fingerprints or from bumping into something.

You can use lens hoods on all types of lenses. Flat ones are designed for primes and longer lenses, whereas petal-shaped hoods are made for wider and zoom lenses. There are two scenarios when David suggests that you should take them off. One is when flares and washed-out look are your creative choice. The other is when you use a pop-up flash if you ever have the need to do that. In all other cases, he advises you to leave the hood on. Even when the camera is resting in your bag.

Personally, I almost never use a lens hood. First of all, I rarely shoot in lighting scenarios that cause the flare to appear. When it happens, I just create a shade with my hand. How about you? Do you use lens hoods and how often?

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[Do You Need a Lens Hood? | Ask David Bergman | Adorama]