Author Topic: Hoya HMC UV filters  (Read 5555 times)

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Offline WorBry

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Hoya HMC UV filters
« on: April 30, 2011, 09:04:35 AM »
Most photo/video stores in Canada are now offering a line of Hoya HMC UV filters designated UV(c) as a replacement for the original HMC UV(o) filters. The received understanding is that Hoya discontinued production of the HMC UV(o) in Japan and moved production, under Tokina, to the Phillippines. The standard patter from sales people is that, other than being slighly thinner (slimline, i.e. (c) stands for 'compact'), the quality is the same; some even venture that are actually 'better', 'improved' or 'optimized for digital', but can offer no explanation as to why.

The original HMC UV(o) filters were certainly highly recommended by many, and a comparative study conducted a few years back seemed to endorse this:

UV filters test - Description of the results and summary - Lenstip.com

Some however have cast doubt on the quality of the newer UV(c) filters. This seems to be biased somewhat by the fact that hitherto only the lower-end, uncoated Hoya filters (green line) were produced in the Philippines, with aspersions that manufacturing/QC might not be up to the same standard, possibly using a lower grade of glass. In addition, Hoya continue to list the HMC UV(o) on their website, and make no mention of the HMC UV(c) filter at all.

There are some anecdotal reports that the UV(c) do give more reflection, but others say that, side by side, they can find absolutely no difference between the two.

It does seem rather unlikely that Hoya Japan would risk their reputation by offering an inferior product for what is probably their most popular filter line, but, I must admit, the lack of any public notification from Hoya of this change is a bit disconcerting.

Does anyone have any more information on this or can point to hard evidence that these HMC UV(c) filters are in anyway inferior or superior to the original HMC UV(o) ?

Cheers.
« Last Edit: April 30, 2011, 09:06:12 AM by WorBry »
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Offline WorBry

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #1 on: April 30, 2011, 01:15:35 PM »
Just spoke to an authorized Hoya dealer who advised that they do seem to experience more defect returns with the HMC UV(c) filters - mostly retaining ring issues and uneven coatings.

Think I'll go with an S-HMC UV(o) to be on the safe side, while they are still made in Japan.
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Offline Guy Bruner

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #2 on: May 01, 2011, 06:13:55 PM »
2Filter.com is probably the most informative, independent site to do research on filters.  Yes, they want to sell you filters.  But, they tell you factual details that allow you to make an informed decision.

In particular, this page has some interesting information on it.
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 06:23:33 PM by Guy Bruner »
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Offline WorBry

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #3 on: May 01, 2011, 09:47:58 PM »
Thanks Guy. I must say, it's a bit unclear who owns who and what in the Tokina-Hoya-Kenko (THK) partnership, but it would appear that all Hoya filters are (as the 2filter.com info confirms) now made by Tokina, as are the Kenko brand; Hoya just supply the glass. The 'Hoya' branded (i.e. Tokina) 'Green' line filters, that received such bad press, are discontinued. This is the current range of UV filters distributed under THK, at least in N. America:
 
 
Filter Series Kenko E Kenko MC HMC HMC Super PRO1 Digital DMC HD Digital Kenko Zeta
Where Made Philippines Philippines Philippines Japan Japan Japan Japan
Ring Thickness 5mm 5mm 4mm 5mm 4mm 4mm 4mm
Coating Non-Coated Single Layer on Each Side 3 Layers on Each Side 6 Layers On Each Side 3 Layers on each side with Anti-Aliasing coating specifically designed for Digital Sensors Hardened 8 Layer Anti-Reflective Multi-Coating 7 Layer ZR (Zero Reflection) Multi-Coating
Threading Double Double Double Double Double Double Double
Effective Light Transmission ~90% ~94% ~97% ~99.7% ~97% ~99.35 ~99.7
[/t]
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 11:20:38 PM by WorBry »
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Offline WorBry

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #4 on: May 01, 2011, 10:54:14 PM »
.....as yet, all of the circular polarizers are still made in Japan:
 
Filter Series KENKO Standard HOYA Standard HMC HMC Super PRO1 Digital DMC HD Digital KENKO Zeta
Where Made Japan Japan Japan Japan Japan Japan Japan
Ring Thickness 7mm 7mm 7mm 5mm 5mm 5mm 5mm
Coating Uncoated Uncoated 3 Layers on each side 6 Layers on Rear and 1 Layer on Front 3 Layers on each side with Anti-Aliasing Coating Specifically Designed for Digital Sensors Hardened 8-Layer Anti-Reflective Multi-Coating 7-Layer ZR (Zero Reflection) Multi-Coating
Threading Double Double Double Single Double Double Double
« Last Edit: May 01, 2011, 10:58:42 PM by WorBry »
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Offline WorBry

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #5 on: May 02, 2011, 09:23:14 AM »
PS - I might add that, in posting this thread, I am not in anyway suggesting that digital camcorders need or benefit from additional UV protection. For the most part I am now of the 'filter-off, lens-hood-on' persuasion, but there are times, in environments where there is a greater risk of flying elements (grit, sparks etc) damaging the lens surface, that I still prefer the added protection afforded by a neutral UV filter. Evidently, however, I am not of the view that since UV protection per se is not important, a lower quality, uncoated brand will suffice. 
« Last Edit: May 02, 2011, 09:40:16 AM by WorBry »
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Offline Guy Bruner

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #6 on: May 02, 2011, 09:52:06 AM »
There's a reason why H+K filters are so expensive.  If you want to use a filter that will not get in the way of quality, they're the way to go.
Guy

Offline WorBry

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #7 on: May 02, 2011, 10:23:01 AM »
I've yet to receive the S-HMC UV(o) I ordered. Will be interesting to compare with the Kaiser uncoated UV filter that I used previously.......before "seeing the light".  ;)
 
I've read some product review comments that the S-HMC's are more difficult to clean, but I think that goes for multi-coated filters in general, and Hoya expressly advise not to use chemical lens cleaning fluids on their coated filters. 
« Last Edit: May 02, 2011, 10:27:02 AM by WorBry »
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Offline Guy Bruner

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Re: Hoya HMC UV filters
« Reply #8 on: May 02, 2011, 03:57:22 PM »
A soft lens cleaning cloth is all you should need...maybe a little water if the fingerprints are too stubborn.
Guy

 

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