Best ND filters for Mavic 2 Pro

Best ND filters for Mavic 2 Pro

September 30, 2019

Mavic Pro 2 ND Filters 101

DJI is a team of popular Chinese drone-creators who launched the Mavic 2 Pro following great enthusiasm from thousands of pro aerial photographers worldwide. The team designed the new drone with the goal of offering artists longer flight times, more range, improved anti-collision sensors and an advanced 1” CMOS Hasselblad camera. With such a sophisticated range of features and systems, this latest version of the Mavic drone series is growing in popularity daily, making it a #1 choice among photographers and videographers worldwide.

If you’re anything like most new Mavic 2 Pro owners, you’re likely already searching for accessories that’ll maximize your experience and probably are looking into ND filters. 

What is an ND filter, and why should you care? Well, if drones are part of your life or career, you’ll know that the DJI Mavic 2 Pro is one of the best drones available on the market. If you care about capturing top-notch images and videos that scream “professional quality”, ND filters should be on your priority list. It’s the best purchase you can make for your DJI Mavic 2 Pro drone (after spare batteries, of course). Short for “Neutral Density,” ND filters act sort of like sunglasses, limiting the amount of light penetrating the lens. The result? Cinematic footage that’ll have you saying: “Did I shoot that?”

You might know the general rule of thumb when shooting manually - shutter speed should always be double the frame rate to avoid “choppy” footage. With ND filters you will never have to worry about increasing shutter speed to maintain exposure. Furthermore it is important to understand the meaning behind ND filter markings:

  • ND4: Reduces exposure by 2 x f-stops (best for overcast weather)
  • ND8: Reduces exposure by 3 x f-stops (cloudy daylight conditions)
  • ND16: Reduces exposure by 4 x f-stops (normal daylight)
  • CPL: Short for Circular Polarizer Lens, this filter eliminates reflective surface glare, from water to snow to glass windows.
  • ND8/PL: A hybrid filter - reduces exposure by 3 x f-stops, saturates colors  prevents glare.
  • ND16/PL: Reduces exposure by 3 x f-stops, saturates colors & prevents glare.
  • ND32/PL: Reduces exposure by 4 x f-stops, saturates colors & prevents reflective surface glare in sunny conditions.
  • ND64/PL: This hybrid filter reduces exposure by 5 x f-stops, saturates color, and prevents glare. Best suited to extra-bright and sunny conditions.

We Put ND Filters to the Test

 Contrary to popular belief, not all ND filters are equal. There are several things you’ll want to look out for, like high-quality glass, extreme color shift capabilities, and more. On a mission to analyze our own filter sets, we put various ND filters to the test by shooting a color chart with and without ND/PL filters (of varying strengths). We were searching for things like:

  • Colors Shifts
  • Sharpness Loss
  • Polarizer Quality
  • ND Accuracy
  • Filter Build Quality
  • Relative Illumination
  • Durability
  • Quality Optical Glass Construction
  • NO Gimbal Damage
  • Ease of Installation
  • Carry Case Convenience

By the end of the test, we had three clear victors. On that note, here are our top three picks when choosing ND filters for your Mavic 2 Pro Drone!

Our Top Three Picks

3rd Place: Tiffen for Compact DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone

 

Compiled by Tiffen exclusively for the DJI Mavic 2 Pro Drone, this 6-filter ND/Polarizer kit offers multiple aperture and shutter speed options for drone enthusiasts. You’ll enjoy more variety with 0.6, 0.9, and 1.2 Neutral Density filters, reducing light by 2, 3, or 4 stops respectively.

All 6 x filters are made from optical glass, with scratch and waterproof multi-coating. You’ll find that you can adjust contrast and intensity easily while reducing glare from reflective surfaces. Users note that clarity and color fidelity are never lost.

These three filters “darken” images overall, empowering artists to photograph with a wider aperture, slower shutter speed, and more depth of field control. The filter mounts are built from aluminum, with a rectangular shape and circular polarizer filters (with a rotating ring). A bonus metal case carries and protects your filters.

Summary:

  • Multi-layer, hydrophobic coating offers protection against scratches and water
  • Kit features ND 4, 8, 16, 4/PL, 8/PL, and 16/PL
  • Equipped with metal carry case and microfiber cleansing cloth
  • Low reflection rates

 VIEW AT AMAZON

 

 

2nd Place: Freewell All Day (4K Series) 8-Pack

Freewell Gear is a pioneering supplier and manufacturer of professional filters and accessories for DJI purchases. If you’re a professional photographer and/or videographer who needs to capture high-quality images and footage in various daylight conditions, the DJI Mavic 2 Pro Filters All-Day 8-Pack is for you.

This particular pack, as its name suggests, offers 8 different Mavic 2 Pro filter types. Let’s take a look at those in more detail:

  • D4: Slows shutter speeds down by 2 x f-stops, perfect for capturing clear shots in fairly cloudy or overcast conditions where low daylight is a concern.
  • ND8: Slows shutter speeds down by 3 x f-stops, perfect for capturing sharp and realistic images in cloudy conditions with compromised daylight. ND8 works by intelligently reducing the amount of light hitting your camera’s sensor.
  • ND16: Like its 4 and 8 counterparts, this filter also reduces the amount of light entering the lens - but by 4 x f-stops. This proves useful when trying to balance beautiful imagery and sharp footage under normal daylight conditions. But - slowing down the shutter speed is just the beginning. This ND filter also eliminates the dreaded “Jello” or “Wobble” effect - distortions often found in footage produced without the use of high-quality ND filters. 
  • Pro CPL: Great for reducing undesired glare from reflective surfaces and bodies like water, snow, and glass windows during outdoor flight time.
  • ND8/PL: Restricts the amount of light entering the camera by 3 x f-stops, supporting clearer, sharper images in extra-bright sunny weather. Also reduces unwanted glare.
  • ND16/PL: By reducing the amount of light hitting the camera sensor by 4 x f-stops, 16/PL helps artists capture cinematic imagery in extra-bright and sunny conditions, like with early-morning sunrise or in the late afternoon. Reflection protection is an added bonus.
  • ND32/PL: Decreases your camera’s shutter speed by 5 x f-stops, empowering you to capture sharper and more vivid imagery that preserves and fuels color - even in the brightest weather conditions. 32/PL also helps artists capture that stunning “motion blur,” protecting images from glare while maximizing cinematic appeal
  • ND64/PL: Slows down your camera speed to its lowest possible option, adding gorgeous “motion blur,” eliminating undesired reflection, and more - all without compromising image or video quality.
    If that’s still not enough for you, there’s more. The Freewell All-Day Pack also features the DJI Mavic 2 Pro Bright Day Filter - perfect for capturing cinematic-quality drone videos when the sun is being particularly unforgiving.


This pack’s ND filters effectively slow down your camera’s shutter speed by restricting the amount of light that enters the camera’s lens. This specific kit does so gradually. The pack’s CPL filter works to prevent unwanted reflections found through naturally-reflective surfaces, like windows, water, and snow. With this kit, your images won’t be affected by reflective outdoor conditions.

By incorporating the kit’s hybrid filters (ND/IPL), you’ll enjoy crystal-clear imagery and footage when filming outdoors. Without the distractions or frustrations of reflective surfaces, and more control than ever before, you can focus on what you do best - creating art through the lens.

VIEW AT AMAZON

 

 

#1 WINNER: PolarPro Cinema Series 6-Pack Filter Set


Ladies and gentlemen, we introduce our top ND filter pick - PolarPro for Mavic 2 Pro. This phenomenal kit features three ND filters and ND/PL hybrids, all neatly supplied in a stylish magnetic filter case (redesigned for more efficient filter access).

Each filter has been carefully engineered to quickly and easily screw onto your DJI Mavic 2 Pro, in place of the stock UV filter, without gimbal strain. This kit controls the light entering your lens, opening the iris, reducing shutter speed, and empowering artists to film with longer exposures.

The result is breathtaking imagery no matter how bright the weather outside. You’ll also find less glare from reflective surfaces, with additional support from polarization reference indicators. These are laser-etched into the frames for intuitive alignment.

Like with other packs, you can expect the following f-stop reduction per ND filter:

  • ND4: 2 x f-stops
  • ND8: 3 x f-stops
  • ND16: 4 x f-stops
  • ND4/PL: 2 x f-stops (+ reflection reduction)
  • ND8/PL: 2 x f-stops (+ reflection reduction)
  • ND16/PL: 2 x f-stops (+ reflection reduction)

One of PolarPro’s winning features is its production-grade, multi-coated glass, with additional perks that’ll blow you away:

  • Ultra-lightweight
  • Hydrophobic coating to repel water and oil
  • Quality ND coating for optimal transmission without compromising color profile
  • Water and scratch resistance
  • Increased surface hardness for added durability
  • Aircraft-grade aluminum construction
  • Precision threading

VIEW AT AMAZON

*****
Investing in a Mavic 2 Pro is no joke, and we know how important it is for you to get the most out of your investment. We hope the above advice helps you find and buy the best ND filter pack for your needs, whether you shoot for fun or full-time. Don’t forget to subscribe to be the first to know about our latest blog releases. Also don't forget to check out our Lightroom Preset Packs that we made for DJI drones!


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