by Tim Fok | 10th November 2014
Screw-on filters are a fundamental part of a photographers kit list. Whilst the potential and versatility of image filtration needs no introduction itself, the function of the screw-on filter is often flawed; thick filters causing vignetting, poor optics leading to clarity loss and sticky threads are all common issues. Breakthrough Photography attempt to solves those issues, and you can help production with their Kickstarter for the X-Series Traction Filters. Filters are like many (if not all) bits of gear – you get what you pay for. With screw-on filters, that is often paying for thin, optically supreme and well coated filters to ensure your image is not impaired in any way. Breakthrough Photography is promising all the aspects of an expensive filter, but at a currently very affordable price. What’s more their traction frame designs look to solve the common problem of thread sticking. They are currently producing three types of UV filter, the X1, X2 and X3 (flagship being the X3). I’ll touch on how the ND lines interact later. All X-Series Traction Filters are double threaded, weather-sealed with laser engraved and serialised lettering. Multi-resistant coating starts at 4 layers with the X1, and up to 16 layers for the X3. Nano coating kicks in at the X2. All three are constructed from an ultra thin 3.5mm frame that Breakthrough Photography state completely eliminates vignetting on full frame 16mm setups. The X-Series Filters utilize similar German and Japanese optics as top manufactures such as B&W and Hoya, and aim to become available in 49mm, 52mm, 55mm, 58mm, 62mm, 67mm, 72mm, 77mm and 82mm. The unique anti-stick frame is where they get their name. Offering a traction surface around the edge (full on X3, half on X2) to ensure the frame does not stick. Made by photographers, for photographers: “Our state-of-the-art 16-layer Multi-Resistant Coating process hardens both optical surfaces, increases light transmission, reduces reflections and achieves true color neutrality while maximizing contrast fidelity. Translated simply: the filter doesn’t impart any color shift and flaring is incredibly well controlled.” Their initial goal is for $50,000, which will provide enough funds to fully produce the full line of UV X-Series Traction Filters. Their stretch goal is $100,00, which will ensure 3-stop and 6-stop ND filters in 9 of the most common thread sizes. Both types of ND will be available in X2 and X3 frames only. A further stretch goal of $150,000 will see the production of slim circular polarizers. There’s a whole host of rewards available, perhaps the most important being the initial low prices of the X-Series Filters themselves. $20 gets you an X1 UV in any thread size, $30 for an X2 UV and $50 for an X3 UV. Check out more information on the Kickstarter page.Read more
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