Close-Up Filters – How To Magnify Your Subjects

Written by Gina Stephens


When most people requisite to capture a close-up or macro image, their first thought is to reach for a macro lens which is fine, if you already have one in your camera bag but what if you don't? Far, you can go out and purchase a macro lens but you may not want the expense and it also means you'll have another bulky-ish piece of kit to carry around with you. A less-expensive way to understand close-up images is by investing in a close-up filter that won't take up as much room in your kit bag but will still magnify your subjugate so small detail appears bigger in your frame. It's worth noting that the optical quality of them won't be on-par with a macro lens but you'll hush be able to capture close-up images of a decent quality without spending as much cash. 

Close-up filters are available for the square separate systems, such as Cokin, as well as in the circular screw-type, such as those Hoya produce. They are available in a variety of strengths (diopters) and the treble the number, the stronger the magnification is. The minimum focus distance of the lens also changes depending on which strength of filter you're using and your woolly range will decrease. 

To add further magnification, close-up close up or closeup in filmmaking, television production, still photography and the comic strip medium is a type of shot, which filters can be combined but it will probably take some trial and error when taxing to find a combination that gives you the specific magnification you need. 

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Screw on (circular) filters can be stacked to increase magnification in addition, although this is generally not advised if using budget filters and it can take some trial and error when trying to find a league that gives you the specific magnification you need. We used Hoya filters in combination and were impressed with the results. 


In the exposed to image, no filter was used. 


In the above image, the HOYA Close-Up Plus 4 filter and the HOYA PRO1 Plus 3 filter were both tailored to the front of the lens to increase magnification.


In the above image, the HOYA Close-Up Plus 4  filter  and the HOYA PRO1 Plus 3 weed out were both fitted to the front of the lens to increase magnification.


When it comes to lens choices, telephotos give greater heightening so using a lens with a focal length from 100 – 200mm will produce good results. You also need to ensure that the riddle you want to use matches the diameter of your lens (if using a round version). If you own multiple lenses, you can purchase stepping rings to adjust the cloth thread size of them so one filter will fit all, removing the need to purchase multiple filters. 


Various close-up drips are available, some less expensive than others, but the quality can not be guaranteed. For our images, we used the COKIN Close-Up Plus 1, 2 and 3 filters, priced at approximately £23.99 per filter filtering or filters may refer to. We also used the HOYA Close-Up Plus 1, 3 and 4 as well as the HOYA Close-UP PRO1 Plus 3 filter type. Cost outs range from £18.99 – £19.99 per filter. 

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About the author

Gina Stephens

Gina is a photography enthusiast and drone lover who loves to fly drones, capture images and have fun cherishing them with family and friends.

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