A Better Alternative to Old-Fashioned Gelatins
Gelatin filters can be a real pain: They're prone to buckling and dimpling. They're highly susceptible to nicks and scratches. And they're virtual magnets for dust and grease, yet can't be cleaned! All that means you end up throwing gels away when you think their condition might injure the image — or you shoot with a dirty filter and hope for the best.
Optiflex filters put an end to that gamble. Available in 3×3- and 4×4-inch sizes, in a full range of CC, CTC, ND, and black-and-white types, Optiflex filters are made from the same dyed-through optical resin as rigid Hitech filters, so they deliver the same superior image quality.
Optiflex filters are just 0.3mm thick. That means they're thin enough for use in gelatin filter holders, but still rigid enough to prevent warping and buckling. Their resin base also makes them much more scratch-resistant than gels. And you can clean them just like a glass filter.
Especially important for budget-conscious photographers, Optiflex filters cost significantly less than gelatins over their lifetime. Especially if you need to work in a wet environment, where gelatin filters have an annoying tendency to dissolve!
Frequently-Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is the difference between Hitech and Optiflex?
Hitech and Optiflex are both made from the same dyed-through Optical Resin substrate. The only difference is thickness: Hitech is a rigid filter 1.5mm in thickness, while Optiflex is a flexible filter 0.3mm thick. Because of this difference, graduated and special effects filters are not available in the Optiflex line.
How do I clean Optiflex filters?
Optiflex filters clean nicely with either a lens cleaning cloth, or a filter and lens cleaning solution.
Can Optiflex filters fit into Hitech holders?
Technically, yes, the 4×4 Optiflex filters will fit into the 100mm Hitech holder. However, because of the difference in thickness, there is the possibility that the Optiflex filter could slip out of the holder, or may not be held perfectly flat. That being said, there are many photographers who will place 4×4 Optiflex into a Hitech 100mm Holder, if they are conducting tests, trying different filtration, or are just in a bind!