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Lee’s new Elements filters series offer ‘quick and easy’ on/off action, use fluid mechanics for smooth, silent rotation

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Filter and gels manufacture Lee Filters has introduced a new system of circular filters aimed at still and video shooters. The Elements system comprises Big and Little Stoppers, a circular polarizer and a pair of variable neutral density filters in sizes from 67mm to 82mm. This is the first time the company’s Big (10-stops) and Little Stopper (6-stops) filters have been available outside of a holder system, with circular screw threads to attach them directly to the lens.

The company doesn’t specify exactly what makes these Elements filters so easy to put on and take off, but it says the process can be achieved with gloved hands and that they come off and attached quickly. Pictures of the filters show just a couple of lines of thread, so perhaps they are quick to screw in.

The mounts are made from black anodized aluminum and the frames are slim enough that they can be used with wide angle lenses. The filters all feature threads on the front as well as the rear so they can be stacked together for enhanced effects.

The Variable ND filters come in 2-5- and 6-9-stop strengths, and each features graded full stop marking on the mount for accuracy as well as mechanical stops to prevent accidental cross polarization. The two rings of the filter have been given different textures to make them easy to identify to the touch, and the company claims that fluid mechanics makes rotation smooth and silent. The same design is used for the rotating parts of the circular polarizer.

The filters are due to ship this month with the Big and Little Stopper costing from £228/$270, the VND from £270/$340, and the circular polarizer from £162/$200. Each comes in a hard case for storage. For more information see the Lee Filters website.

Press release:

LEE Filters launch LEE Elements range of high-performance circular filters

Innovative new filter range includes LEE’s renowned Stopper, polariser and ND technologies, allowing content creators working in stills and video to employ LEE’s creative tools in an easy-to-use form factor

LONDON, England (1st November, 2021) – LEE Filters, a leading manufacturer of high-quality lighting gels and photographic filters and part of Panavision’s end-to-end offerings for image makers, has introduced LEE Elements, an all-new range of high-performance and quick-to-deploy circular filters for photographers and videographers.

Available in four standard sizes of 67mm, 72mm, 77mm and 82mm, LEE Elements comprises five filter types: Little Stopper (offering 6 stops of light reduction), Big Stopper (10 stops of light reduction), CPL (circular polariser) and two densities of VND (variable ND, providing 2-5 or 6-9 stops of light reduction). Each LEE Elements filter incorporates the highest quality multilayer coated optics, providing class-leading optical performance, including with wide-angle lenses, and making them ideal complements to the latest lenses and camera sensors. The filters feature a rugged and robust black anodized aluminium frame, and their innovative design enables quick and easy attachment and operation without the need for a filter holder, in any environment and even when wearing gloves.

“With LEE Elements, we’re bringing our experience and know-how to a new range of quick and easy-to-use circular filters, providing the quality and performance that customers expect from LEE in a form factor that can streamline their creative process, whether they’re capturing stills or video,” said LEE Filters Managing Director Paul Mason. “With the quality of the glass and the high-performance coatings across the range, LEE Elements offers photographers and videographers class-leading optical performance.”

For the first time, LEE’s renowned Stopper filters for long-exposure photography are available in a circular format ideal for grab-and-go shooting. The LEE Elements Little Stopper and Big Stopper also feature stackable housings, allowing them to be combined to meet users’ creative needs across a variety of shooting conditions. For further flexibility, the rotating CPL and VND filters—which feature increased front rings to ensure optimal edge-crop performance—can be stacked in front of a Stopper.

The fluid rotation mechanics of the CPL and VND filters ensure smooth, silent operation, ideal for videography. Additionally, the VND filters feature a bracketed design with a rotational limit that eliminates the risk of cross-polarisation anomalies. The VND filters’ clearly marked numeric stop positions—tuned to LEE’s tight tolerance standard for ND filters—support stills and video content creators with real-time exposure control in dynamic lighting situations and also provide another creative option for long-exposure photography. LEE Elements CPL filters draw on LEE’s expertise in polarisation for ultimate reflection and contrast control.

Beyond the filter range’s scratch-resistant and anti-reflective coatings, LEE Elements features hydrophobic and oleophobic coatings equivalent to those found on Panavision’s PanaND and LEE’s ProGlass Cine IRND filters, providing enhanced protection against moisture and fingerprints. The filters also feature a knurled finish for an enhanced all-weather grip. Additionally, the front and rear sections of the rotating CPL and VND incorporate differentiated grip patterns to provide users with tactile feedback as the filters are adjusted.

Each LEE Elements filter comes with its own single-piece, impact-resistant protective hard case with custom foam insert. The curved, single-piece design allows the case to be held comfortably in one hand as the user removes or replaces the filter, and the cases are sized to be able to fit into a pocket or occupy minimal space in a camera bag. Each filter also comes with its own cleaning cloth.

“LEE Elements will introduce new customers who might still be in the early stages of their image-making journeys to the high-quality, rugged and easy-to-use filter systems that LEE is known for,” Mason said. “As those image makers continue in their creative pursuits, we’ll be there to further support them across a whole range of lenses with our LEE85, LEE100 and SW150 filter systems for still photography and our ProGlass Cine IRND line of neutral-density filters for cinematography. Whether a customer is shooting stills or video content, LEE Elements offers a versatile solution that empowers them to simply go and create.”

LEE Elements is available globally through LEE Filters’ dealer network and in the U.K. through LEE Filters dealers and LEE Direct.

About LEE Filters

Since 1967, LEE Filters has maintained a market-leading position as a premier global manufacturer of professional lighting gels and photographic filters that are used by photographers, cinematographers and lighting designers around the world. Ongoing R&D and extensive product testing keep the company at the forefront of new technologies, responding to and anticipating the ever-evolving needs of its customers. LEE’s extensive offerings include high-quality technical, diffusion and colour-effect filters for lighting; resin and glass lens-filtration solutions, such as the innovative Stopper range for long-exposure photography and ProGlass Cine IRND for high-end cinema production; and the versatile LEE85, LEE100 and SW150 camera filter systems. To learn more, visit LEEfilters.com.

LEE Filters is part of the Panavision Group’s end-to-end offerings for image makers, complementing the services provided by such renowned divisions as Light Iron, Panalux and Island Studios. For more information and locations worldwide, visit Panavision.com.


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