How to Use ND Filters: Beyond the Basics


In the following video, Larry Becker presents the second installment of his Neutral Territory series on neutral density filters. This segment provides a more in-depth approach to working with ND filters, including alternative reasons for their use other than slowing down your shutter speed. Becker also touches on working with graduated neutral density filters and variable neutral density filters. The video closes with a helpful checklist for shooting with an ND filter, and how to go about achieving desired and consistent results, as well as a quick preview of what to expect in the third and final video in this series. We hope you enjoy the video, and invite you to view the wide selection of other instructional and informative videos at




When using 10 ND do you meter when the shot includes sky and landscape?  If meter for sky the landscape will be to dark, if meter for landscape the sky will be blown out....

These are some great videos - thank you for making them! I realize this is a nitpicky point, but when using a tripod, you should turn off a lens' Image Stabilization (IS) feature. There are two shots toward the end of the video (5:23-5:40) with this setting still engaged.

AND just saw that this was included later in the video. Please ignore - sorry folks!

can this filter be used when taking a picture of the eclips ?


I too am curious if this is safe for photographing the sun and the eclipse.

Great tutorial, thanks. You mention using a chart to change the exposure based on the filter's stops. Why can't I use my camera's internal through the lens metering?

You can, if the necessary exposure is not off the scale. Consider two cases:

1. Your meter tells you that without the filter you need 1/500th wide open, then +ten stops is 2 seconds wide open, which your meter will tell you.

2. If your meter tells you that without the filter you need 1sec wide open, then +ten stops puts you at 16 minutes. That's a bulb exposure, and your meter probably doesn't relate any exposure longer than 30 seconds, or at least a 5D4 doesn't. So you use a chart, count on your fingers, etc doubling the exposure time.

Great video, very good explanation. May I suggest to put the check list that you mention at the end of the video, so we can have it written in some way. It would be very helpful to bring the written list to the field and practice with it. Thanks.


A great tutorial, I learned so much and gave me information I was not aware of. I'm in the learning process and I already know which ND I would go for after seeing all the options. I will be back to watch these tutorials once again. Gotta love B & H Photo

Thanks for stopping by, Suzin!