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Testing for Flare

Flare is of two types: veiling flare (haze), and ghosting flare (bright shapes of various kinds). There is also one type of ghosting flare that forms an arc which I call “arcing flare”.

Both kinds of flare can be induced by a filter, especially a less than spotless one, so always test a lens for flare without a filter. Even the best filters cause some flare under some conditions.

Testing for flare

Both types of flare can be tested for in a similar fashion. Unless you will be shooting without the lens hood, always test for flare with the lens hood attached.

Modern lenses with state of the art lens coatings generally show very impressive resistance to flare, but some have extreme susceptibility under certain conditions.

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Intrigued? See Focusing Zeiss DSLR Lenses For Peak Performance, PART ONE: The Challenges, or (one topic of many) field curvature.

Zeiss 21/2.8 flare

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