URTH Magnetic Lens Filters 

INTRODUCTION

Every photographer likes equipment that makes it as easy as possible in the field. There are a myriad of things to do when trying to create your masterpiece and any help is always appreciated.

Circular screw-in filters have been the staple of most photographers’ diets for many decades, certainly for our entire careers which started in the early 80s. There has always been an enormous variety of different circular filters to cater for photographers’ needs, however, there has never been an easy or quick way to attach these types of filters. Occasionally, they can be frustratingly difficult to remove and they are always easy to drop. For those that shoot in sub-zero temperatures, they can be even more annoying to attach. We’re sure every photographer has had those ‘hold your breath’ moments when trying to attach a screw-in filter followed by a sigh of relief when the threads match up and you know that you are not going to drop the filter – this time. Even removing circular filters from a lens raises our blood pressure surprised

Urth Promo Code

In recent years magnetic filters have been growing in popularity. So it was only a matter of time before Urth launched a small range of magnetic filters. As we’ve mentioned in previous posts, Urth usually releases the most commonly used filters needed by photographers rather than a huge range and this time is no exception.

If you’ve never heard of Urth, you may be more familiar with the brand Gobe. We’ve been using Gobe/Urth Filters for quite a while now and love their quality, price, and contribution to the environment through tree planting in some of the most deforested regions of the world. If you are going to recycle the box, take a few moments to register your product to plant 5 trees. Your unique code resides on the inside of the lid on the kits and inside the flap of individual filters.

Urth was kind enough to send us the 77mm Magnetic Essentials Filter Kit Plus+, 72mm Duet Filter Kit Plus+, 77mm Magnetic Adapter Ring, and 77mm Magnetic Lens Cap for this review. Please read our disclaimer at the bottom of this post.

Silence Corner Atoll

To read our review of the Silence Corner Atoll click here. We strongly recommend this product for those that frequently use a tripod.

WHAT ARE MAGNETIC FILTERS?

Magnetic filters, in reality, are no different to the screw-in type filters you’re probably currently using. The only difference is how they attach to the front of the lens. Rather than being secured using a thread, they are magnetized and connect to an appropriate-size adapter ring which is first attached to the front of the lens. 

DO I NEED MAGNETIC FILTERS?

Yes and No. The results achieved in your image will not change whether you have a screw-in or magnetic filter. Using the magnetic filters, however, will be much quicker to attach. So if you want a filter system that is much quicker and easier to use then, yes, you do need magnetic filters. Balls in your court!

Peak Design Everyday Sling Bag

HOW TO USE URTH MAGNETIC FILTERS

It is rather simple. All Urth Magnetic Filters are provided with a magnetised adapter ring. Just remove any existing filters from the front of your lens and screw in the provided adapter ring. If you are purchasing the UV filter, you have the option to screw this in instead of the adapter ring.

Make sure you purchase the correct filter thread size for the lens. If you do not want to purchase multiple filters for different lens threads, we suggest that you buy a filter for the largest thread size you have and then purchase a step-up ring for smaller thread sizes. Keep in mind that this may cause some vignetting.

As mentioned, the magnetic UV filter is the only magnetised and threaded filter, so you don’t need the adapter ring to attach the filter. We could not work out why this was the only filter to have a thread considering the fact that when using other filters such as a CPL, ND etc. you always remove the UV Filter in which case you would need the adapter ring to attach these filters. We concluded that photographers who shoot film may want to keep the benefits of the UV filter while at the same time being able to stack another filter to the front without the need for the adapter ring. As digital shooters, we prefer using the adapter ring and removing the UV filter before attaching another filter as the UV filter for us is only there to protect the lens element.

Note: If you remove the UV Filter from the lens you MUST attach the adapter ring for any other magnetic filters to connect.

Important: The Urth Magnetic CPL Filter Plus+ works a little differently from a conventional CPL filter which will usually have a rotating ring. The Urth filter works similar to a CPL that is used in a Square Filter Holder, whereas the whole CPL filter rotates to achieve polarisation. Having a CPL without the rotating ring allows the filter to be much slimmer and therefore reduces excessive vignetting. Although the polarization works effectively the rotation is not as smooth as a conventional CPL filter.

Skylum Luminar Neo

THE FILTERS

For this review, we requested the Urth Magnetic Essentials Filter Kit Plus+ as this contains 3 of the filters that you can also buy individually. It also includes the Magnetic ND8 Filter Plus+ but you cannot purchase this as an individual filter. So, it made more sense to review the kit.

Similar to Urth’s non-magnetic filter kits the Magnetic Essentials Filter Kit Plus+ arrives in identical packaging. The only difference is the colour of the packaging which is charcoal for all the magnetic filter products. The only other difference is the omission of the xGOBE text on the packaging, so it looks like this is the first packaging that has no reference to their old brand name. As per usual, inside you will also find a microfibre cleaning cloth.

The filters have the same ultra-slim magnalium* rim design that is prevalent with ALL the Urth circular filters. The UV filter is single-threaded and magnetized whereas all the remaining filters are only magnetized. The inner rim markings denote the URTH brand, the thread size, and the number of layers of nano-coating on the filter (in this instance it is 20L or 20 layers for the ND8, CPL, & ND1000 filter and 30 layers for the UV), and a small lightning bolt which denotes it is magnetic. The outer edge of the rim is inscribed with the type of filter eg. ND1000.

Photography Planner

When you purchase the filter kit, the adapter ring will be included in the stack. The stack also includes a magnetic front and back ‘Magnetic Lens Filter Cap‘. Keep in mind that if you are using the front magnetic cap as a lens cap on the camera you will no longer have a front cap to protect your other filters. Alternatively, you can either use your existing lens cap, albeit we found it’s not very secure, or purchase an additional Magnetic Lens Filter Cap (we found this rather irritating as you will need to spend another AUD$55.00 (72mm) for another set of magnetic lens caps). Funnily enough, when the UV filter is used with the adapter ring along with the magnetic lens filter cap, we found that the UV filter was also removed when we took the magnetic lens cap off.  If using the UV as a screw-in (without the adapter) we found no problem. The other 3 filters in the kit remain on the lens when removing the magnetic lens cap. Lastly, with the lens hood attached, it is difficult to remove the magnetic lens filter cap, but you may want to check this for yourself as all lenses have different lens hoods.

*Magnalium is an aluminium alloy with 5% magnesium and 95% aluminium. Alloys with small amounts of magnesium (about 5%) exhibit greater strength, greater corrosion resistance, and lower density than pure aluminium – Wikipedia

Topaz Labs banner

The optical glass is manufactured with premium German Schott B270. As mentioned above, the filters have 20 layers (or 30 layers) of nano-coating which give them better protection against water, oil and scratches. The nano-coating also provides a higher maximum light transmission and a more consistent transmission curve resulting in sharper images, finer colours and greater depth.

All of Urth’s products have a Lifetime Warranty.

For best results when using the filter always make sure that it is clean and free of any fingerprints. This can be achieved using a blower brush for removing larger particles, cleaning fluid that will not damage nano-coated optical glass, and a microfibre cleaning cloth. Urth produces a Glass Cleaning Kit which contains all these items in a handy travel-ready recycled nylon case.

VIGNETTING?

All testing for vignetting was performed with our full-frame Sony A7Riii mirrorless camera with the 24-105 f/4 and 16-35mm f/4 lenses. No editing has been performed in the ‘before and after’ images below other than lens correction in Lightroom.

Attaching the magnetic adapter ring and the UV filter has already introduced minor vignetting at 24mm on our Full Frame sensor camera using a 24-105 f/4 lens. This can be fixed by zooming to about 26mm (see image below). Stacking two magnetic slim-rim filters has even more vignetting, but this has disappeared by about 30-32mm. With the camera in APS-C mode at these focal lengths, naturally, there is no vignetting due to the crop factor. If you are shooting on an ultra-wide-angle lens on an APS-C or Micro Four Thirds sensor camera we would suggest you test for vignetting.

Please Note – vignetting will vary from lens to lens and will depend on the focal length. Ultra-wide-angle and wide-angle lenses will always be more challenging when using Circular filters.

Peak Design Micro Clutch

Above Left: Sony 24-105 f/4 lens @ 24mm with no filter. Above Right: With the adapter ring and UV filter attached. The vignetting is fixed by zooming to 26mm.

Above Left: Sony 16-35 f/4 lens @ 16mm with no filter. Above Right:  The filter thread on this lens is 72mm so a 72-77mm step-up ring has been used with the adapter ring and UV Filter. Vignetting is fixed by zooming to 17mm.

If you have purchased the correct sized filter for your lens, then vignetting will possibly be similar to the previous image, but we cannot confirm this as we only have the 77mm size for this review.

Adobe Photoshop AI

HELP SUPPORT US

Urth rarely offers discounts on its products so if you find this review helpful, please click on the links in this post if you want to purchase. It costs you nothing extra to purchase the item using these links but will help support us so we can continue writing these reviews. 

Thanks so much for your support!

THE MAGNETIC RANGE

Urth Magnetic Filter Adapter Ring

Urth Magnetic Filter Adapter Ring

The Magnetic Filter Adapter Ring allows you to connect the magnetic filters. As the adapter rings are included with the individual filters and kits you will only need to buy these for additional lenses with the same thread size.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$19.00 – $25.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic UV Filter Plus+

Urth Magnetic UV Filter Plus+

The ubiquitous UV filter, in our opinion, should be the first filter you buy after purchasing a lens. These have, and always will, live on most of our lenses.
Note: This magnetic filter also features a screw mount and magnetic base so a magnetic adapter ring is not required. So does not include the adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$55.00 – $135.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic CPL Filter Plus+

Urth Magnetic CPL Filter Plus+

The CPL (Circular Polariser) is the second filter that most photographers will buy. It is ideal for reducing reflections and increasing saturation and contrast in your image. We generally have one for all our lenses except the fisheye lens.
Note: Individual magnetic filters include a magnetic adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$69.00 – $185.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic ND1000 Filter Plus+

Urth Magnetic ND1000 Filter Plus+

The ND1000 (10-stop neutral density filter) will reduce 10 stops of light from reaching your sensor. Ideal for slowing your shutter speed during the daylight hours to create motion blur.
Note: Individual magnetic filters include a magnetic adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$65.00 – $145.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic Essentials Filter Kit Plus+

Urth Magnetic Essentials Filter Kit Plus+

The Magnetic Essentials Kit includes 4 of the most popular filters – the UV Plus+, CPL Plus+, ND8 Plus+, and ND1000 Plus+. If you are not interested in ND filters then consider the Duet Filter Kit.

Note: Magnetic filter kits include a magnetic adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$125.00 – $319.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic Duet Filter Kit Plus+

Urth Magnetic Duet Filter Kit Plus+

The Duet Kit includes the 2 most important filters – the UV Plus+ and CPL Plus+. This kit is ideal for those who do not require ND filters for long exposures.

Note: Magnetic filter kits include a magnetic adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$95.00 – $269.00
Buy:
Click on the ‘Buy Now’ button below to get a great price on any Urth product

Urth Magnetic ND Selects Filter Kit Plus+

Urth Magnetic ND Selects Filter Kit Plus+

The ND Selects Kit includes the 3 most commonly used ND filters – the ND8 (3stops), ND64 (6stops). and ND1000 (10stops) This kit is ideal for those who only want ND filters.

Note: Magnetic filter kits include a magnetic adapter ring.

Sizes: 37mm – 82mm
Price: USD$115.00 – $225.00
Buy:
Click on the Buy Now button below or the floating banner above to get a great price on all Urth products.

Urth Magnetic Filter Lens Cap

Urth Magnetic Filter Lens Caps

The dual-purpose magnetic filter cap can be used as a lens cap and also as a cap to protect your magnetic filters of the same size. Keep in mind that if using one cap for the lens you will only have one cap protecting your other magnetic filters.

Sizes: 37mm – 95mm
Price: USD$35.00 – $55.00
Buy:
Click on the Buy Now button below or the floating banner above to get a great price on all Urth products.

ON1 Photo Raw 2024

THE FINAL WORD

There’s not a lot of difference between Urth’s regular non-magnetic circular screw-in Plus+ filters and the range of Magnetic filters. The packaging is a different colour, however, the quality of the materials used is identical and the amount of layers of nano-coating is the same. The only real difference is the ease and speed of attachment. Other than relieving you of that nervous tension when trying to attach a screw-on filter there’s no winning lottery ticket here! Our only concern is the slight vignetting we encountered using the magnetic adapter ring and filters on our main 24-105mm lens. However, this may not be an issue depending on the lens/camera system.

If you are new to photography and looking to purchase your first filters then we would definitely recommend purchasing the magnetic filters.

For existing photographers that already own filters, unless you are looking to decrease the amount of time that it takes in the field to change filters then we would suggest that you stick with your current screw-in filters rather than replace them. For any new filters, we would suggest you give the magnetic filters a try, although keep in mind that stacking non-magnetic filters with magnetic filters will not work.

As the current range does not include all the filters that you may want to use you will still need to purchase the regular screw-in filters eg. diffusion, night, graduated nd filters etc.

Regardless, we think that the magnetic filters that Urth is offering will cover the majority of shots that many photographers take, and who knows, the range may be expanded in the future. Only time will tell!

RATED: HIGHLY RECOMMENDED 

Peak Design Travel Tripod

If you are interested in reading any of our other reviews of the Gobe/URTH Filters click on any of the posts below. Alternatively, we have a dedicated URTH Filters page on our website which you can check out here. For any of our other product reviews click here

Disclaimer:  Although we are affiliated with URTH Filters and receive a commission on any sales, this review is totally unbiased (we are also NiSi Resellers). As Professional Photographers we would never recommend the use of any product unless we have used the product ourselves. We always strive to give you our honest opinion in order to help you make the best choice. We did receive the product with compliments of URTH but were not paid for this review. We may also receive commissions on other links in this post.

Was this article helpful?
YesNo