This is my first time purchasing filters, and there are so many (hoya, fuji, etc). is there a particular one that works best over the other?
For what its worth, I am against filters for protection unless in a hostile enviornment. Your basically adding another element to the lens that was designed to operate without it. Two more air glass surfaces to add to flare, etc. A hard shade is protection enough, for me anyway. Use the lens cap except when shooting.
If you do use one, buy the best multicoated one you can find and keep it "clean".