Best Drone Camera Filters For Landscape Photography Explained

Using drone lens filters for aerial landscape photography will bring the quality of your images and video to the next level.  This post takes you through the various types and best camera filters, explaining how and when to use each filter.

The information here will give you a solid understanding of the various lens filters for landscape photography, whether using a drone or ground based camera photography.

Below, we have some terrific videos explaining the various types of lens filters and examples of camera filters.

Then with a bit of some practice using the different types of lens filters, you will become a real professional.

When you’re producing great photos and video with the assistance of the various types of drone lens filters, then you can enter some big aerial photography competitions.  One of the best with great prizes is the Skypixel Competition run by DJI.  The prices really are awesome.

To assist growing your knowledge on perfecting your camera settings and techniques, visit our dronezon aerial photography series of articles.

If you are looking to upgrade to the latest drone, which have the latest and greatest cameras for aerial cinematography, then check out this top drones with gps and 4k camera article.

Types Of Camera Lens Filters For Landscape Photography Explained

Lens filters have been widely used by both amateur and professional photographers since way before digital photography arrived on the scene. Most people who work a lot with photo software know about filters from these applications such as Adobe Photoshop, Lightroom and Instagram to name a few.

These applications try to emulate the look and feel of certain types of camera filters through digital means in post-production. It sometimes works, but mostly doesn’t.

Real lens filters are attached in front of the lens, so that they alter the light hitting the camera sensor. There are all sorts of camera filters: some enhance colors, while others reduce reflections, block the UV light, or allow you to capture mesmerizing infrared photographs.

Whatever the case is, the most important thing you need to remember when using camera lens filters is the fact that they change the way your camera sees the scene.  It also means that you need to adjust the settings on your camera accordingly to get a good exposure.

Types of Camera Filters

Camera filters are often categorized by the way they attach to the lens or the effect they give to your image.

Screw On Camera Lens Filters

Screw on filters come in different sizes, corresponding to different camera lenses. A lens with a 52 mm mount can only work with 55 mm filters. If you have multiple lenses of different sizes, this type of filters can end up costing you a lot of money.

The second type of filter is in the form of a sheet of glass, which slides into lens adapters. The glass itself can be used with adapters of all sizes, and the adapters are fairly inexpensive.

Now, you can also subdivide filters according to their shape. The most common type are circular filters, but you can also get square and rectangular filters.

Lens Filters Examples And Camera Filter Kits

Most manufacturers supply a camera filter kit, which would include the lens filter ring adapter, a microfiber cleaning cloth and a carrying pouch.  A lens filter kit would include something like the following;

  • Ultraviolet UV
  • Circular Polarizer CPL
  • Neutral Density (ND2, ND4, ND8)
  • Close Up Macro
  • Yellow
  • Red
  • Purple
  • Blue
  • Green
  • Orange

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Specific Drone Camera Filters

Manufacturers of camera filters design specifically for a particular camera or drone.  Len filters, for example are made specifically for the GoPro camera or DJI drones.

Bestseller No. 1
ND Filter Set for DJI Mini 3 Pro, 6-Pack Drone Camera Lens Filter Accessories Polarized CPL Filter with Aluminum Alloy Frame & 32-Layer Coating HD AGC Optical Glass (CPL,ND8,ND16,ND32,ND64,ND128)
  • Compatibility: This drone filter set is specially designed for DJI mini 3 pro. Including: CPL, ND8, ND16, ND32, ND64, ND128. Royal blue filter that belongs to the blue sky
  • CPL Filter: CPL filters enhance color and contrast. You can adjust the light by adjusting the scale and eliminate non-metallic reflections such as water and glass reflections, which helps to capture clearer, more detailed images
  • ND Filters: When taking pictures, it can enhance the color saturation and prevent overexposure and enhance the clarity of the picture in different strong light environments. When shooting video, you can reduce the shutter speed to enhance picture comfort
  • Ultra-light Aluminum Alloy Frame:The filter frame is made of aluminum alloy and non-slip design, easy to install and remove. The filter is only 1g heavy, it can better protect the drone lens without affecting the flight of the drone
  • Environmentally Friendly Optical AGC Glass: The filter is made of 32-layer coated AGC glass, which is waterproof, oil-proof and scratch-resistant. Reduce lens flare and reflections while maintaining sharpness for better protection of drone footage. Light transmittance up to 98.5%
Bestseller No. 2
Lens ND Filter Set CPL ND8 ND16 for DJI Mavic Mini/Mini 2/Mini SE Drone 3pcs Lens Filter Set Multi Coated Filters Combo Camera Lens
  • Filter specifically made for the DJI mavic mini,DJI mavic mini 2,Mini SE Camera.
  • This lens filters accessories set features sharp AGC glass made in Germany with excellent grinding process, good physical and chemical properties,reduce reflections and glare effectively to improve the aerial shooting of DJI camera.
  • Multiple coating optics: minimize reflections, flares and improves image quality, Hydrophobic Nano coating reduces fingerprints fog, water, and dust.
  • High quality unique designed for easy installation and removal,0.76-0.8g Ultra-Light design ,Does not affect gimbal calibration!
  • 3 Types for your choice includes CPL,ND8, ND16.
Bestseller No. 3
CZFRIEND Camera Lens Filter Set Accessories 6-Pack for DJI Mavic PRO Drone Quadcopter – ND4+ND8+ND16+ND32+CPL+MCUV
  • Waterproof, anti-oil, scratch, effectively protect the lens
  • Easy install on and off, portable and durable
  • Make sure the filter is installed in place, otherwise the PTZ can not pass the self test
  • Exquisite high-end packaging, small size, can carry
  • What You Get: 1 X ND4, 1 X ND8, 1 X ND16, 1 X ND32, 1 X MCUV, 1 X CPL. Our 1 year warranty time and friendly customer service. If there is any question, please feel free to contact us.
Bestseller No. 1
SOONSUN 6-Pack Lens Filter for GoPro Hero 12 11 10 9 Black (ND8, ND16, ND32, CPL, Magenta, Light Red Filter), Neutral Density Circular Polarizing Diving Lens Filter Kit for GoPro Hero 9 10 11 12 Black
  • The 6-pack camera lens filter kit is compatible with GoPro Hero 12 Black / Hero 11 Black / Hero 10 Black / Hero 9 Black camera.
  • The package Includes ND8, ND16, ND32, CPL, Light Red, Magenta filters and a hard plastic case to protect the filters.
  • ND filter (Neutral Density) reduces the amount of light coming into the camera sensor. It also helps balance the image contrast and capture rich color sharp footage under various daylight conditions.
  • CPL filter (Circular Polarizing) helps to remove unwanted glare and ghosting from reflective surface such as reflections of water, snow, metal, and glass windows. It also provides color and contrast enhancement by reducing glare of water or the sky.
  • The light red snorkeling / diving filter is perfect for color correction for blue water or clear freshwater at shallow depth of 2-25 feet; the magenta filter provides color correction in green and fresh waters at depth of 12-75 feet.
Bestseller No. 2
SOONSUN 4-Pack Lens Filter CPL ND8 ND16 ND32 Filter for GoPro Hero 5 6 7 Black, Neutral Density and Circular Polarizing Lens Filter Kit Lens Protector for GoPro Hero 5 6 7 Black Camera
  • This lens filter pack is specifically engineered for GoPro Hero 5/6/7 Black, Hero(2018) cameras. It does not fit other camera models.
  • Includes CPL, ND8, ND16, ND32 filters along with hard plastic protective case.
  • Made of high grade multi-coated optical glass which provides crystal clear footage, and the accurate size makes it fit for GoPrp Hero 7/6/5 Black camera perfectly.
  • CPL filter (Circular Polarizing) helps to remove unwanted glare and ghosting from reflective surface such as reflections of water, snow, metal, and glass windows. It also provides color and contrast enhancement by reducing glare of water or the sky.
  • ND filter (Neutral Density) reduces the amount of light coming into the camera sensor. It also helps balance the image contrast and capture rich color sharp footage under various daylight conditions.
Bestseller No. 3
GEPULY 4-Pack Camera Lens Filter ND8 ND16 ND32 ND64 Compatible for GoPro Hero 12/11/10/9 Black, Neutral Density Lens Filters, Multi Coated HD Optical Glass,Protector GoPro 12/11/10/9 Accessories
  • NOTE:ONLY compatible with GoPro Hero 12/11/10/9 Black/10 Black Bones/11 Mini camera lens.It does not fit other camera models.
  • The filters are made of high-definition optical glass with good light transmittance and suitable for high-definition video; Waterproof, oil resistant, and anti-scratch, providing crystal clear footage.
  • The main function of ND mirrors is to reduce the amount of light entering the camera. A dimmer can block a large amount of scattered light. When shooting in cloudy or rainy environments, it can increase the color saturation of the image, and the reduction of scattered light can also make the image appear more transparent.
  • ND8 provides 3 stop light reductions, we recommend to use on cloudy days that light is not so strong. ND16 provides 4 stop light reductions for normal weather. ND32 provides 5 stop light reductions for sunny days. ND64 provides 6 stop light reductions on very bright days.
  • What You Get:Package includes ND8, ND16, ND32, ND64 filters in a protective hard plastic case, 4x safety tethers, along with a cleaning cloth.

You can view the various types of drone camera filters available on the below link;

DJI drones are by far the most popular drones on the market.  They have over 70% of the consumer and aerial cinematography market.  Therefore you can see a huge range of camera filters designed for DJI drones.  It’s another reason for going with DJI.  There are many aerial landscapes which only a filter can capture perfectly.

Drone Camera Filters For Landscape Photography

Camera Filters Types For Aerial Or Ground Photography

Strickland Falls Shadows Lifted Using Landscape ND Filter

You can buy all types of lens filters, but only some of them are widely used for landscape photography.

These include UV filters, which improve clarity and provide additional lens protection. There are also special effects filters  such as the infrared filter, which dramatically alter the appearance of a scene to create unique visual effects.

When working with camera filters in the beginning, take notes of what each filter does with you.  Practice with each filter.

After a short while, you will know exactly which filter you need for each landscape.

Think, plan and try to vision the type of scene you will encounter before you fly. If you plan, you will know what filter to attach to your drone camera.

Neutral Density (ND) Camera Lens Filter

A neutral density filter, or ND filter, preserves colors, while modifying the intensity of light. Photographers use the ND filter o take perfectly exposed shots in situations where they would otherwise be forced to stick with a certain combination of aperture and exposure time. The most common example which comes to mind are photographs of rivers or waterfalls under bright sunlight.

A neutral-density filter allows for a long exposure time, thus creating a stunning effect of running water.  The Waterfall picture above is the work of JJ Harrison, which shows the beautiful effect of using an ND filter.

Graduated Neutral Density (GND) Camera Lens Filter

A graduated neutral-density filter, also known as a graduated ND filter, is very similar to a neutral-density filter. The only real difference is that the GND filter has a variable light transmission, making it extremely useful for pictures that include a brightly lit horizon with a darker landscape.

The filter evens out the scenery and prevents the sky from being overexposed and the landscape from being underexposed.

Graduated neutral density filters are also known as ND Grads. Here is another terrific article with videos to expand your knowledge on graduated ND filters.

Warming / Cooling Camera Lens Filter Types

This type of camera lens filter changes the color temperature of the scene, which can be used to add a bit of warmth to a cloudy landscape or to correct an unrealistic color cast.

Warming and cooling filters effect the white balance in the photo and most DSLR cameras today have a feature to automatically adjust the white balance.

However, some situations may still call for color filters, such as having to deal with unusual lighting.  If you are shooting in a RAW file format, you might be tempted to skip this filter and adjust the color temperature during post-processing, but you are risking introducing noticeable image noise in certain color channels.

More information on the various warm / cool filters below.

Circular And Linear Polarizers Camera Filter Types

Filters For Landscape Photography Explained

A polarizing filter is a must have tool for landscape photography. It is the first filter which landscape photographers buy to instantly improve their pictures.  The polarizing camera filter adds vividness and contrast to your photographs.

Polarizing filters suppress glare and reflection from surfaces such as lakes, rivers, sea, glass and even book spines. This filter can also darken a blue sky.  It also reduces the reflection of sunlight coming off shiny leaves if you were filming green vegetation in sunny weather.

It does this by reducing the amount of reflected light, which passes through to the camera sensor.  What you get as a result is a noticeably improved saturation and subtle changes to the balance of the light in the picture.

For all normal lenses which have a filter thread in the front, you can get a circular polarizing filter, also known as a “circular polarizer”. A circular polarizer is very easy to use and once you attach it on the front of your lens, all you need to do is rotate it clockwise or counter-clockwise to get a different amount of polarization.

See the last video at the bottom of this post for a terrific explanation on polarizing filter types.

Close-Up Macro Camera Filters

While you may rarely use a close up filter while doing aerial photography, it may be just well worth having a set for that once in a lifetime shot. Close up camera filters can generally be bought as a separate kit.  A close up kit generally include 4 close up macro filters of increasing magnification such as (+1,+2,+4,+10).

These close-up macro lens filters allow for detailed close up macro shots of small objects such as insects, coins, flowers, etc.  They also have a stack-able design, so you could combine filters to achieve maximum magnification. For example, +2 plus +4 will become +6.

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Lens filters are a wonderful way how you can greatly enhance the overall quality of your landscape aerial pictures. Try out the various lens filters at different times of the day and find out the filters which complement your aerial photography.  Over time your knowledge will build until you become a real lens filter professional.

Colored Camera Lens Filter Types

  • Yellow Contrast Camera Filter – Gives a subtle contrast boost and is recommended for landscape and foliage.
  • Red Lens Filter – Darkens blue creating dramatic contrast between sky and clouds.  It also creates greater contrast between flowers and foliage.
  • Blue Blending Camera Filter – Designed for bright contrasting landscapes. Selectively add blue color more precisely than polarizing filters for most natural hues.
  • Purple Lens Camera Filter – Helps with aerial photography optical resin to provide real sharpness to photos.
  • Light Green Camera Filter – Darkens sky in contrast to clouds.  It is a basic contrast filter, primarily for use with black and white film.
  • Orange Len Filter – Generally can be used for landscape and architectural photography on black and white film. Originally intended for use with black and white film, this filter absorbs blue and blue greens and renders blue tones darker as in marine scenes.

Videos – Camera Lens Filters Explained

Next up and to finish is a couple of videos with great explanations and examples on using camera lens filters for landscape photography.

This first video explains all about using polarized lens filters, which are so very important in aerial landscape photography.


Now to finish this post, here is a terrific video which some great practical examples on using various lens filters for landscape photography.