Matte boxes are to all intents and purposes a hangar for your camera lens and it allows you to control flares and the hardness of natural light that could destroy making of a good film into a great film. It also allows you using different kinds of filters that can really make your picture stand out and sharp.
The picture you click can be some time destroyed by excess light or lens flare but using matte box would make this flare go and control the extra amount of light entering the lens.
Clicking a good photograph/picture comes on how you control you camera, lens and the surroundings or we can say it's more of controlling the light entering the lens for manipulating the image the way you want it.
Lens Hood or Matte Box
Many would opt for a lens hood instead of a matte box thinking that it would give the same effect like a matte box and would be easy to carry around. But it's a wrong notion because lens hood and matte box are two different equipments or instruments used in photography. Matte box allows you to use different filters for creating a sharper image.
Some matte boxes for DSLRs cameras comes with a stepping down facility called 'donuts' for stepping down to a variety of lens sizes, whereas others come only with a single ring. Using universal donuts can help you save a lot of time while changing lenses and if you don t have one you may need many step down and step up rings every time you change your lens. This would consume lot of important time and would also have trouble in aligning the DSLR matte box.
Matte Box for Still Photography
DSLR light weight matte boxes would be best for shooting in crowded market places or for clicking natural moments, as it would absorb the excess light only let in the needed light according to your settings and need.
Light weight matte boxes can incorporate multiple filters like neutral density (ND), ultra violet (UV) and polarizer filters to name a few in the trays that cater to every standard filter size of the cameras lens.
These light weight matte boxes can be configured according to your needs. These matte boxes offer you with flexibility in controlling and managing the light allowing you the freedom of management of light along with flare control.