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Yellow filter for color photography

Rizwan Abbasi , Mar 22, 2009; 08:17 a.m.

I just found and got Toshiba Y48 Yellow filter that I will use for my Nikkor 18-55mm DX VR lens. I understand that Yellow filters are for B&W photography.
Can anyone let me know the advantages/disadvantages of using Yellow filter for color photography. And also, what is its main purpose.
Thanks and regards,


Luis G , Mar 22, 2009; 08:39 a.m.

It will turn everything yellow. If that's what you want, great. If not, useless.

Its main purpose in Black and White is to increase contrast slightly, darken skies a little without losing too much shadow detail.

Here, see for yourself:


Starvy Goodfellows , Mar 22, 2009; 09:50 a.m.

rizwan, put the camera on black and white mode and shoot with your yellow filter. then compare the result without the filter. in black and white there is quite a noticeable difference, however, the advent of digital cameras and photoshop has eliminated the need for these types of filters if you are able to use photoshop. obviously, if you are a film user and have your negatives developed and printed in a pro or local lab, it is useful to have the filter if you need increased contrast. i often end up using an orange filter for really old black and white film, although my old is about seven or eight years old!

Patrick Dempsey , Mar 22, 2009; 11:13 a.m.

I don't shoot digital, so this is just based on what I've been told, but apparently shooting with colored filters on digital cameras significantly reduces the information available in the final image. This has to do with the fact that there are photosites dedicated to red blue and green. If you put a red filter on a digital camera, you basically cut out all of the information available from 1/3rd of the photosites, which will raise grain and produce an effect which in general could be done and undone digitally much easier. For B&W film, it is a must-have as it produces stunning effects with skies and gives a warm "glow" to people's skin that is quite luminous.

dan Mar , Mar 23, 2009; 03:23 p.m.

what kind of camera are you using it with?

Clive F , Mar 24, 2009; 10:19 a.m.

There are a few guys on Flickr that shoot colour film with b+w filters, such as yellow, blue, etc. Have a look around. If I recall correctly, much of it is cross-processed and/or red-scaled.

carnagex carnagex , Mar 27, 2009; 07:47 a.m.

I actually use my B+W filters with my DSLRs for different effects. Example is this pic using a yellow-green filter on a Canon 5D.

JD Rose (Glen Canyon) , Mar 28, 2009; 08:38 p.m.

I guess it would be a little like this without paying $15/roll.


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