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Two new ND gradations

15 Stops – Super Stopper

Neutral Density

Our range of Neutral Density Graduated Filters are used to balance the exposure within a scene – typically between the bright sky and considerably darker land. Full range of ND Standards also available.

Watch the ND Grads Videos

Inspiring Professionals

Joe Cornish introduces the expanded ND Grad range

For a number of years we have been making ND Grads with custom gradations for professional photographers including Joe Cornish.

Now they are available to everyone and Joe explains the unique characteristics of the new Very Hard and Medium ND Grads.

Medium ND Grads Very Hard ND Grads
  • Soft

  • Medium

  • Hard

  • Very Hard

Handmade, really handmade:

Precision

Our skilled UK team gradually builds up the ND gradation by dipping optically correct resin in baths of dye and continuously monitoring the results. Each filter represents up to an hour of skilled work.

Range

Because of our exacting process we are able to create four different gradations to give photographers complete creative control.

No filter

Without a ND Grad

With a LEE 0.6 Very Hard ND Grad

With LEE 0.6 Very Hard ND Grad Mark Bauer

Precise Creative Control

Soft Neutral Density Grads

Gently balances exposure when there is no definite transition between sky and foreground, for instance woodland, mist & interiors.

Medium Neutral Density Grads

Filter the sky with minimal impact on the land. Ideal when elements like rooftops and mountains protrude into the sky.

Hard Neutral Density Grads

Perfect for horizons, or any hard transition between the sky and land. Gives great control over the exposure.

Very Hard Neutral Density Grads

Perfect for very defined horizon lines such as seascapes. The very sharp transition allows for precise separation between areas of the image.

Professional hints:

ND Grads on Mirrorless Cameras

Photographers using large diameter lenses on mirrorless cameras may need to use the 100mm system (as opposed to the Seven5 System designed for these cameras).

Because the sensor is smaller on these cameras the graduated part of the filter should be tighter. To achieve this with the 100mm system simply choose a harder grad than normal.

100mm System
Very Hard Grad
Hard Grad
Medium Grad
Soft Grad
equivalent to
equivalent to
equivalent to
equivalent to
Seven5 System
Hard Grad
Medium Grad
Soft Grad
N/A
ND Grads for the Seven5 System

The Seven5 System is designed for mirrorless cameras and our Neutral Density Grads for this system have tighter areas of transition than the larger-sized filters of the 100mm and SW150 Systems.

This results in a comparable effect between a 100mm Grad on a full frame camera and a Seven5 Grad on a mirrorless camera with a crop sensor.

No filter

Without a ND Grad

With a LEE 0.9 Medium ND Grad

With LEE 0.6 Very Hard ND Grad Mark Bauer

A Practical Guide to ND Grads with Joe Cornish

A great introduction to ND Grads from landscape photographer Joe Cornish. He explains why he uses them and demonstrates how they work in practice.

In this video he focuses on just Soft and Hard ND Grads and explains how to select the right gradation and strength for the dynamic range in your scene.

Soft ND Grads Hard ND Grads

You can view all our videos with Closed Captions and Translations on our YouTube Channel LEEfiltersTV

Professional Hints

Combining ND Grads

For almost limitless options remember you can combine different ND Grads in the same holder.

You might use them at different angles to create a staggered gradation effect or to subtly reduce contrast in different parts of the frame.

Creative Combinations

ND Grads can also be combined with other filters for innovative creative effects.

For instance they can bring subtle control when using a long exposure Stopper filter or simply combined with a Polariser or Warm-up filter. The possibilities are endless.

With a Little Stopper

With a LEE Little Stopper

With a Little Stopper AND a 0.6 Very Hard ND Grad

With LEE Little Stopper and a 0.6 Very Hard ND Grad Mark Bauer
LEE ND Grad Example
Chris Prescott

James Pearson climbing 'Rhapsody' at Dumbarton Rock near Glasgow, one of the world's hardest climbs.

Chris Prescott Filter Diagram

The ND Grad is rotated vertically to balance the exposure between the rock face and the background.

Xposure 05 - Click to read our latest online magazine

Xposure Issue 05 Highlights

  • Joe Cornish talks about influences, inspiration and his latest book, 'This Land'.
  • Sarah Hatton explains the thrill of the world's most remote places, and why only the widest lenses will do.
  • A LEE Workshop - in the snow.
  • Fashion & Portrait compositions with David Kai-Piper
  • Anatomy of a Minimalist Image.

Xposure Past IssuesView previous issues

PDF downloadDownload PDF (34MB)

Metering

Basic metering

Basic Metering (through the lens)

This can give very acceptable results with a high rate of success.
  1. Establish your foreground base exposure

    Set camera to manual. Point lens at foreground and take average centre weighted meter reading through the lens.

  2. Take a sky reading

    Note the exposure difference between ground and sky.

  3. Select a ND Grad

    Select the right ND grad to correct exposure difference to within 1 stop. For example, if the sky is 3 stops brighter than the ground, add a 0.6 ND (2 stop) grad filter to the sky only.

  4. Slide the filter into position

    The grad transition line should be visible through the viewfinder or on the LCD screen. Stopping the lens down and using the depth of field preview can make the grad transition line easier to see.

  5. Shoot

    Expose image using base exposure already established.

Advanced metering

Advanced Metering (hand-held spot meter)

A hand-held light meter gives more control and enables changing light to be monitored without repositioning the camera. The essence of this approach is: expose for the mid tones, allow for the shadows, filter the highlights.
  1. Establish your Base Exposure from mid-tones

    Lock camera in place on tripod. Take readings from scene mid-tones.

  2. Allow for shadows

    For detail to be retained in shadows they should be within 2 stops of base exposure. If necessary increase base exposure slightly.

  3. Take a reading from bright part of sky (not the sun)

    Note the exposure difference between ground and sky.

  4. Select a ND Grad

    Select the right ND grad to correct exposure difference to within 1.5 stops. Anything more than +2 stops will be burnt out in final image.

  5. Slide the filter into position

    The grad transition line should be visible through the viewfinder or on the LCD screen. Stopping the lens down and using the depth of field preview can make the grad transition line easier to see.

  6. Shoot

    Expose image using base exposure already established.

LEE System Match Ad

LEE System Match

  • Select your lenses (over 500 Indexed)
  • See the Adaptor Rings you need
  • System recommendations for each lens

We have indexed over 500 lenses so you can quickly find the LEE System that's best for you.

Use our quick select menus to locate your lenses and discover which System we recommend for each lens and which Systems are compatible and not compatible. You'll also learn exactly what Adaptor Rings you'll need to get started.

LEE System Match Screenshot LEE System Match

No filter

Without a ND Grad

With a LEE 0.9 Hard ND Grad

With LEE 0.9 Hard ND Grad

Viewpoint

We regularly invite leading landscape photographers to share their inspiration, advice and technique in our press adverts.

Here we've gathered together some of the most interesting examples.

Click the preview to view full screen.

You might also be interested
in our eBooks for iPad:
Inspiring Professionals Inspiring Professionals 2

Inspiring Professionals

Viewpoint

We regularly invite leading landscape photographers to share their inspiration, advice and technique in our press adverts.

Here we've gathered together some of the most interesting examples.

Click here to take a look.

You might also be interested
in our eBooks for iPad:
Inspiring Professionals Inspiring Professionals 2

Inspiring Professionals
Shot with a LEE 0.6 ND Soft Grad
Chris Prescott

Dave MacLeod climbing a new route 'Transition' at Beinn Udlaidh.

The ND Grad is rotated vertically to balance the exposure between the rock face and the background.

Chris Prescott Filter Diagram

Quick Start Videos

Get up to speed fast with our videos that explain the LEE Filter System and how to use it

Workshops

Inspirational courses with leading landscape photographer Jeremy Walker

Product Directory

Complete product information for filters, holders, kits, sets and accessories

Neutral Density Standard Filters

Why use a ND Standard?

Our ND Standards reduce the exposure equally across the frame. This increases shutter speeds and blurs movement.

We offer ND filters with a full range of stopping power

Our range extends from the 0.3 ND (1 stop) all the way to the new Super Stopper (15 stops).

Ultimate flexibility

ND Filters can be stacked together, or used with other filters, so you can respond to almost any lighting situation.

ProGlass: Specialist filters for digital

When shooting digitally, light at the infrared and ultraviolet ends of the spectrum can be problematic. The ProGlass range of filters has been designed with this in mind, absorbing more infrared and ultraviolet light than traditional ND filters. With digital cameras the result is a punchier image, with less discolouration in adverse lighting conditions.

No filter

Before LEE ND Standard

With a LEE 0.6 ND Standard

After LEE ND Standard Mark Bauer
Shot with a LEE 0.9 ND Hard Grad and LEE 0.9 Standard ND
Paul Gallagher

Sunset at Lonsfjordur - South Iceland.

LEE Stopper App

Our new app makes it easier than ever to calculate the correct exposure when using a Big, Little or Super Stopper.

100mm Hard ND Grad Set

0.3 ND Hard Grad (1 stop)

0.6 ND Hard Grad (2 stops)

0.9 ND Hard Grad (3 stops)

Inspiring Professionals

Reimagined for tablets these new eBooks take you through stunning landscape photos and the exact filters and techniques used.

The System

  • Adaptor Ring

    screws onto camera lens

  • Filter Holder

    attaches to the adaptor ring

  • LEE Filter

    slides into the filter holder

More info

LEE Filters Quick Start Videos

You can view all our videos with Closed Captions and Translations on our YouTube Channel LEEfiltersTV

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