To UV or not to UV.... That is the Question.

I received an e-mail asking me about UV filters on lenses.  The question was "Do I need a UV filter on the end of my lens to protect it?".  There are two schools of thought here and it really comes down to personal preference.

School of thought 1:  Put a UV filter on the end of all your lenses and leave them there.  This will protect your investment from being scratched.  -This is a great accessory selling technique for camera shops.

School of thought 2:  You paid hundreds if not thousands of dollars for top quality glass.  Why would you put a cheap $20.00 filter on the end.  It defeats the purpose of buying good glass. 

Personally I go with School of thought 2 and here is why:  I want the clearest glass I can get.  Oh, and due to the wonderful laws of diffraction most scratches cannot even be seen in the final photo.  To protect my lenses I do two things.  I am very careful with them and I always use a lens hood.

The world of professional photography is split about 50/50 on this issue.  This tells me that no matter what you decide to do you can get high quality images.  The choice is simply up to you.