I'll be the first to admit I'm a bit OCD when it comes to the performance of the oil and filters I put in my vehicles. Oil is the vehicle's lifeblood, absolutely critical to the performance and life expectancy of the hardware it protects. I've never understood people trying to "save money" with cheapo oil and crappy filters that shorten the life of their vehicles. You can have the best and still save money in the long run.
As an oil tech enthusiast, I've read lots of informative oil filter studies over the years. I'm not one to fall for marketing propaganda or biased tests; I seek out independent tests by enthusiasts like myself. I wanted to share a recent one that I found to be particularly informative.
I understand that most people find tech like this rather dry, so allow me to sum up this study's findings. The most effective and best-built filter is from Royal Purple. Thankfully, they can be found at Pep Boys' stores and on Amazon.com - much easier to source than the 2nd-place Amsoil filters.
You can see for yourself how well each filter cleaned contaminants out of the oil by looking at this compilation of close-up testing paper images.
As far as oil is concerned, I use Pennzoil Ultra which thankfully is available in money-saving 5-quart jugs from Walmart and some auto parts stores, and even better in 6-quart packs from Amazon.com. It's a consistently high performer in oil tests while still priced significantly less than other premium synthetics. If I find some useful oil studies, I'll share them here.
See? You can still have the best and save money!