An Astro Light Pollution Filter that Attaches Directly Over your Cameras Sensor

STC, a Taiwan-based company, has developed and produced a new niche filter for astrophotographers that clips on directly over your Canon or Nikon camera's full-frame sensor. The filter will supposedly reduce the effects of artificial light in your astro images by blocking certain light wavelengths related to city lights, such as mercury and sodium. While it will simultaneously intensifying light spectrums that are naturally present in the night sky.

STC constructed this filter along with Dr. Wei-Hao Wang, a professional astronomer and astrophotographer. The frame of the filter is built out of A2 stainless steel which is essentially non-magnetic, as to not interfere with any of the internal camera components. The filter itself is made of Schott optical glass, the same glass you will find in the famous Carl Zeiss lenses.

They do admit you can achieve similar results with conventional front lens element filters and post processing, but having the filter actually based closer to the sensor does reduce the color shift better in the corners and edges of the images, which is much better suited for wind angle lenses. As well for professional astrophotographers, it allows you to switch between various lenses with more ease, by obviously not having to swap filters with each lens change.

As you can see in the brief YouTube video, it also seems to be installed and removed from the camera quite easily. I love to shoot Astrophotography, it is one of my favorite things to photograph, but I do not do it often enough to warrant buying one of these. But if I was able to shoot stars as much as I wished, even just once a month, I would 100% order one and try it out. The sample images in the links above were very convincing.

While being manufactured by STC in Taiwan, the filter is being distributed by Hong Kong based company Cyclops Optics, and is available right now for Canon and Nikon full-frame cameras for roughly $208 (HK$1,620.00) which includes free international shipping. It also comes with an 18 month warranty on the glass, and a lifetime warranty on the filters frame.

If any readers out there have used this before, or plan on trying one out, I would love to see your results when you have them.

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9 Comments

Niels Veeneman's picture

looks very interesting would love to try it but unfortunately i have crop sensor

This seems like this would be a much easier solution for a mirrorless body. I always hated fiddling with the mirror lock up and being so careful with the sensor for cleaning. Always felt let a terrifying game of Operation.

This for mirrorless FF, APS-C, and M43 makes a lot of sense.

Justin Berrington's picture

It's really not that big of a deal. I was pretty hesitant at first as well when I had to start using a drop in filter to get rid of the horrendous moire on the 6d for video.

Justin Berrington's picture

This filter's housing design is pretty poor in my opinion. This needs a tool for install and removal. Seems too thin to make it easy to install and remove without smudging the filter. They should look at Mosaic Optoelectronics for some design ideas.

Dustin Levine's picture

I haven't used one myself, but the company stats it is made of Schott glass, and has a coating for anti smudging, easy cleaning, and is grease and water proof. I would think it would be no more fragile than a front element of a modern lens........but I like your idea about a tool for installing and removing it, that is a good idea. Not everyone has the hands to do that.

This seems simple to install and remove. But I wouldn't use this on my primary DSLR. I'd buy a used camera to use.

Dustin Levine's picture

Curious as to why? Fear of damaging your primary camera?

Yes.. Actually, I have only one DSLR right now. I have two other cameras, but they shoot film.

I am a bit confused and surprised about this article and the posted YouTube video.
The article is all about a Taiwan-based company having "developed" these filters. But the video is stolen from the German company Astronomik who has been developing and selling these filters for years.
I would better more from Fstoppers...
For a good review of Astronomik I've come across this article:
http://amitkamble.com/astronomik-filters-comparison/