The Bokeh Masters Kit turns light into shapes. By definition, "bokeh" refers to the nature of the blur that can be created using light. It refers to those parts of the image that are out of focus - generally those sections of the photo that are found beyond the measured depth of field.
You will see the effect most pronounced when using point light sources such as candles, street lights, flashlights, etc. However, you will find this system works in most lighting situations. Just remember, it is designed to be most effective with areas of your image that are out of focus.
This kit contains 21 custom shaped discs including stars, hearts, a happy and sad smiley, animal icons, sports icon and several signs. In addition, you receive eight blank discs with which you can cut your own patterns. Using the included holder, you mount it on the lens, insert your selected disc and shoot your portrait. In this way, you can tailor your special effects to your portrait needs. The Bokeh Masters Kit is designed to work even if it is not 100% flat to the lens.
Generally speaking, the "Bokehtinator" works best with lenses of filter size up to 62mm and with apertures of 2.8 or wider. However, the Bokehtinator may also work with other wide-aperture lenses of similar thread size. Testing is recommended.
Reviewed by 4 customers
I used this kit with my Canon 50mm f1.4 and my Canon 100mm f2.0 It does cause vignetting, so leave room for cropping. Unless the bokeh is very bright, the hearts will be hard to see, if visible at all. Not a fault of this product, just a reality of optics. It works best if the background has small bright lights. To get a feel for the product, try it on your lens, put the lens in manual focus, then slowly de focus and watch the shapes appear -if you have small, bright lights in the background. To get portrait shots with these shapes, you'll need to setup a "Christmas lights" background. As a side note: the folded info paper has a funny note about doing math I quote: "There is a bit of math involved, the easiest way is to divide the focal length by the F stop. If the number received is around 2.6, there is a good chance the lens will work. For example, for a 50mm F/1.8 lens, we will have 50/1.8 = 2.7" I'm not sure what they were really intending to calculate. Maybe if the aperture of your lens is about 26mm. (Not 2.6) Anyway, the holder is sized for a lens that takes 58mm filters. If you want to use this on a zoom lens that has an F stop of 3.5 or larger, don't expect too much. As a preliminary test, before ordering the kit, open your lens to its widest aperture aim it at something small and shiny, then manually de focus until you see a bokeh pattern. If you don't see bokeh, this won't work with your lens.
I very much wish I had known about the full frame vignetting issues before I bought this. On my Nikon D800 I had serious vignetting with both the 50mm f/1.4D and the 85mm f/1.8D. I had no vignetting issues on my cropped sensor D90 with either lens. I agree with other reviews that the material is cheap (I knew this going in so not an issue for me) and that the tenancy of the shape to rotate with the lens during focus is quite annoying. It is a neat product that will get occasional use from me (less than planned with the FF limitations).
The Bokeh Masters Kit is a wonderful DIY product that saves you time by providing you with well over a dozen pre-made designs, but gives you several extra discs to make your own as well. It's something fun to add that extra bit of creativity to your work without the hassle of trying to create the same effects in post. It won't work for every lens, but for those it does the effect is pleasing.
I don't usually leave reviews for products, but this one is a lot of fun. I'm a professional photographer, but this is definitely easy enough for anyone to use. It's a great way to practice your creativity and to see light in a new way. I'm not sure why the last reviewer was so angry. He said the tabs would break in a matter of time, but then he said he only used it for 20 minutes before he gave up. I've used it for months and the tabs are holding up fine. I don't think you could tear them off if you tried. A bit of advice for the last reviewer: you can't master a new accessory in 20 minutes, you can't even fairly evaluate it. Don't give up so easily. It took me a few hours over two nights trying out different ideas before I fell in love with it. I think that's pretty fast. Not 20 minutes fast, but pretty fast for a fun accessory that I've since used countless times. I wouldn't mind if it was made of metal instead of plastic, but then it wouldn't be so inexpencive. This was a really nice gift from a close friend. I say if you don't give up after 20 minutes you'll have a blast with this thing in no time.
While a neat concept, in practical terms it is a dud. The disks interfere with a lens abilitity to AF, as well as if it is used on a lens where the focus ring turns when focusing, it is useless. It is very flimsy plastic and only a matter of time before the mounting tabs break. overall, it has been a waste of my time. I played with it for 20 min and have not touched it since.