Different ways of doing macro

Wayfall

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Dec 27, 2013
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Hi

I have a Canon 450D. I am a happy user of my 50mm 1.8 STM and Sigma 105mm Macro lens.

My question is this:
Which is better? A actual physical 1:1 macro lens, a lens attached to extension tubes or a closeup filter. I presume their are other ways I haven't heard of yet as well.

What's your experience with these and your take on which you prefer for what reason?

Thanks!
 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator
Which is 'better' depends on what YOU want to do with it.

I use a combination.

All shots with a Fuji X-T1. Lightroom software.
35mm f/1.4 and 18-55mm kit lens
Item in question here is 0.85" (21.6mm) tall

An extension tube, a reverse ring, or just software.
The reverse ring literally mounts the lens backwards. In this case, the 18-55mm kit lens.

MCEX-16 extension tube:
https://www.fujivsfuji.com/mcex-11-vs-mcex-16/

Extension tube and reverse ring


No sharpening or other manipulation in software, other than cropping.

35mm, uncropped at ~15"


35mm, cropped with Lightroom.


Extension tube:


Reverse ring:

 

bjornl

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That depends on what magnification level you are shooting for. Bellows are the best way to get very high magnification although working distance (the distance from the front of your lens to your subject) becomes an issue.

For high-power macro I've used a rear mounted tele-converter (increases either magnification or working distance), a series of extension tubes (increases magnification, but costs working distance), a front mounted (high-end screw in tele-converter) which increases working distance, and sometimes a diopter (front mounted "lens" (filter type) which increases magnification (this one has the largest negative impact to image quality). All mounted on a 1:1 90mm macro lens.









Eyeball of a living snail at around 5:1 magnification
 

Wayfall

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@bjornl Err ye you haven't put your picture URL in correctly. Use imgbb.com to upload it and get a picture URL, copy it, after that come back to Toms and the click the add picture icon in the text edit box and paste it in.

Also please simplify your answer from before please as i had no idea what any of that meant.
 

USAFRet

Splendid
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I see his pics just fine.
 

bjornl

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They show just fine for me, even if I am not logged in. So it is not the URL, perhaps it has something to do with your location. The moderator and I are both in the USA.

As for a simple answer: In general a 1:1 macro lens gives the best results. I was talking about options to achieve macro images and how to achieve greater than 1:1 magnification.
 

USAFRet

Splendid
Moderator


oops, they're gone
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<Code>AccessDenied</Code>
<Message>Request has expired</Message>
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bjornl

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Oops. DPR used to allow cross-site linking. It seems that there is a timer involved now. I'll post them on imgur myself.

Macro rig - Dissassembled
Showing the various bits and pieces you can use to achieve greater magnification



Macro lens assembled. Fairly long and heavy.



Mounted on one of my DSLRs



Microscopic baby spider taken at well over 5:1
Even right next to the spider, I could only barely see it as a dot that was moving. The background is a white picket fence, not a slide in a lab or studio



The eyeball on a live snail magnification just under 5:1. The diopter lens was not used and so it is sharper.



A 70-200 VR f/2.8 (high end sports lens). I had just moved and could not find my macro lens. So I used a high quality lens because I knew the glass was very good and that magnifying the middle would not leave me with garbage for an image. I also used a quality tele-converter and 3 extension tubes. Total magnification is just over 2:1. Only light in the image is from a 40watt bulb around 15-20 feet away.



House in dew drop. Taken in natural light slightly before dawn. Droplets were very fine (small). Lens was a 90mm 1:1 macro lens.



House again this time in a larger frozen drop. Used the lens I had already on the camera. Magnification was a modest 1:3.



Some ideas on the differing effects of the options out there. Hope you found it useful.
 

Wayfall

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I guess you must have to have a very high shutter speed to stop all the movement such as a branch blowing in the wind or raindrops moving down a cobweb
 

bjornl

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The settings vary depending on the situation of course. The spiderweb was dew (fine-mist) not rain. So a the settings were modest:
Focal length: 90 mm
Shutter speed: 1/250 sec
Aperture: F22
ISO: 640
Exposure comp.: ±0.00

The snails eye was my most difficult photo. Lots of out of focus junk to get a keeper with the DOF I wanted.
Shutter speed: 1/40 sec
Aperture: F5
ISO: 1000
 

Wayfall

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When i use my Sigma 105mm 2.8 macro lens i mostly try to achieve 1/250 sec even thou i should only be aiming for 1/100 to avoid shake due to my lenses focal length.
 
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