Soft and hard graduated grey filters have a grey gradient from the filter edge to the filter centre. Reverse graduated grey filters have a hard grey gradient to the centre and a soft grey gradient to the upper edge of the filter. Depending on the density degree, the filter can be lighter or darker. This means that part of the image is darkened. This is especially useful if the conditions have significant differences in brightness, e.g. A bright sky with a dark landscape or sunrises. Our eyes can adapt to differences in brightness and contrast in the environment at any time.
On the other hand, cameras do not have this ability. Even the very latest models only have a limited ability to capture a certain amount of light and dark areas in the image. Graduated filters are used to compensate for this "flaw". An overly bright sky can therefore be darkened by the filter, making the overall picture harmoniously exposed without losing any details. A soft graduated filter is perfect for subjects such as landscapes or skylines where the horizon is not clearly defined (e.g. as a result of trees, mountains or houses).
The result is impressive images with detailed clouds in the sky and a properly exposed foreground. A hard graduated filter is perfect for subjects with a clearly defined horizon (e.g. the sea). The result is impressive images with detailed clouds in the sky and a properly exposed foreground. An inverted (reverse) graduated filter is perfect for subjects with a bright centre of the image (e.g. sunsets or sunrises). The result is impressive images with properly exposed light and dark areas.