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Forums Lobby MASTER YOUR VISION - BY SPECIALTY Micro, Macro & Close-up (Public) topic #50817
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Subject: "Starting into macro photography" Previous topic | Next topic
Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Wed 17-Apr-13 06:23 PM
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"Starting into macro photography"


Naperville, US
          

I am new to nikon and am getting interested in macro. Just got a D600 and have a 105 micro on order. I have read several articles here in macro photography but still have questions. My main interest starting out is flowers but I would like to progress to insects. In have a good Manfrotto tripod. My questions:

1. Sounds like anything smaller than flowers will require > the 105, would you all agree? At this point I don't want to buy a larger Micro.
2. I saw one post where a 105 was used in combination with a 1.4 TC and extension tube and the result looked great. Is this a practical combination? I have a 2.0 TC for use with my 70-200. Could that be used with the 105 and are there disadvantages with a TC?
3. It appears the only option with the D600 and G lenses is Kenko extension tubes (assuming you want auto focus and aperture control). However the reviews on the Kenko tubes is mixed. Is there a higher quality option (surprised that Nikon doesn't offer tubes appropriate for G lenses)?
4. Given the interests I have expressed is there a good book on macro that you all would recommend? I have bought a couple of Nikonians books on other subjects, and they are great but haven't seen on on macro.

Will appreciate your help/advice, Regards, Jim B

  

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Replies to this topic
Subject Author Message Date ID
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
four eighty sparky Silver Member
17th Apr 2013
1
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Jamed600 Gold Member
17th Apr 2013
2
     Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
four eighty sparky Silver Member
18th Apr 2013
3
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Gimbal Gold Member
18th Apr 2013
4
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Jamed600 Gold Member
18th Apr 2013
5
     Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
liamtoh1ps
19th Apr 2013
6
          Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Gimbal Gold Member
19th Apr 2013
7
               Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Jamed600 Gold Member
19th Apr 2013
8
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
jordivb Silver Member
29th Apr 2013
9
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Jamed600 Gold Member
29th Apr 2013
10
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community
29th Apr 2013
11
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
Jamed600 Gold Member
29th Apr 2013
12
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
rpoyner
13th May 2013
13
Reply message RE: Starting into macro photography
slalom002 Silver Member
13th May 2013
14

four eighty sparky Silver Member Nikonian since 08th Apr 2011Wed 17-Apr-13 07:25 PM
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#1. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 0
Wed 17-Apr-13 07:32 PM by four eighty sparky

US
          

> My questions:
>
>1. Sounds like anything smaller than flowers will require >
>the 105, would you all agree? At this point I don't want to
>buy a larger Micro.

Depends on the flower. Some flowers are the size of basketballs. You can shoot those with a normal 50mm.


>2. I saw one post where a 105 was used in combination with a
>1.4 TC and extension tube and the result looked great. Is
>this a practical combination? I have a 2.0 TC for use with my
>70-200. Could that be used with the 105 and are there
>disadvantages with a TC?

I've never used my 105 with a TC, but you can increase it's mag. ratio by using extension tubes.


>3. It appears the only option with the D600 and G lenses is
>Kenko extension tubes (assuming you want auto focus and
>aperture control). However the reviews on the Kenko tubes is
>mixed. Is there a higher quality option (surprised that Nikon
>doesn't offer tubes appropriate for G lenses)?

Not really. Kenko tubes are nice because they maintain the electrical contacts between the lens and body, as well as the aperture mechanism. In addition, they have the ability to drive a body-focus-motor lens. Nikon tubes are much more solid, but they don't have those abilities. But there are ways to overcome that.

Other options are:

Close-up filters.






Extension tubes.





CU filters on your micro lens.





Extension tubes behind your micro lens.





Reverse a 50mm or wider lens.





Add extension tubes to that.





Reverse a 50mm or wider in front of you micro.





Get a bellows.




>4. Given the interests I have expressed is there a good book
>on macro that you all would recommend? I have bought a couple
>of Nikonians books on other subjects, and they are great but
>haven't seen on on macro.

I've never seen a book, but that doesn't mean they don't exists.

One reason I prefer the older D lenses is they have the good, old-fashioned, honest-to-goodness aperture rings on them. This allows me to set the lens to the aperture I want when it's not able to be set by the camera's electronics.

____________________________

My toys: A pair of gripped D600s, gripped D7100, Nikon FM2n, Nikon P7100, Sigma 8mm circular fisheye, Sigma 15mm full-frame fisheye, Tokina 17/3.5 SL, 17-35 2.8D, 20/AF-D, 24-85 G, 24-120/4G, 28/2.8 AF-D, Sigma 28/2.8 Mini-Wide II, 28-200 D, 50/1.8D, 50/1.8G, 50/1.8E, 70-200 2.8 G VRII, 70-300G, 105/2.8D Micro, Tamron 150-600, 500 f/8 Reflex: Sigma 600mm, Celestron 2,000mm: PB-6 bellows, Nikon 1.4 and 1.7x TCs, auto macro tube set: SB600: Manfrotto 055XB/804RC2/390RC2 & 560B-1: Gossen Starlite: Easy-Up AP1500: 40' WonderPole

Visit my website.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Wed 17-Apr-13 08:52 PM
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#2. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 1


Naperville, US
          

Sparky, thanks for response and photos-old 'picture worth 1000 words'. Very helpful. I assumed ext tubes only allowed for closer focus but of course you are right that they would increase focal length.

  

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four eighty sparky Silver Member Nikonian since 08th Apr 2011Thu 18-Apr-13 04:31 AM
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#3. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 2
Thu 18-Apr-13 04:31 AM by four eighty sparky

US
          

>Sparky, thanks for response and photos-old 'picture worth
>1000 words'. Very helpful. I assumed ext tubes only allowed
>for closer focus but of course you are right that they would
>increase focal length.

They do not change the focal length. They only alter the focus distance.
A teleconverter changes the focal length.

____________________________

My toys: A pair of gripped D600s, gripped D7100, Nikon FM2n, Nikon P7100, Sigma 8mm circular fisheye, Sigma 15mm full-frame fisheye, Tokina 17/3.5 SL, 17-35 2.8D, 20/AF-D, 24-85 G, 24-120/4G, 28/2.8 AF-D, Sigma 28/2.8 Mini-Wide II, 28-200 D, 50/1.8D, 50/1.8G, 50/1.8E, 70-200 2.8 G VRII, 70-300G, 105/2.8D Micro, Tamron 150-600, 500 f/8 Reflex: Sigma 600mm, Celestron 2,000mm: PB-6 bellows, Nikon 1.4 and 1.7x TCs, auto macro tube set: SB600: Manfrotto 055XB/804RC2/390RC2 & 560B-1: Gossen Starlite: Easy-Up AP1500: 40' WonderPole

Visit my website.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Gimbal Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Apr 2011Thu 18-Apr-13 09:33 AM
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#4. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 0


Toronto, CA
          

Up Close by Andrew S. Gibson is a comprehensive e-book published by Craft&Vision that costs $5.

David

Gimbal

  

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Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Thu 18-Apr-13 09:08 PM
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#5. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 4


Naperville, US
          

Gimbal, thanks for the info, I will look it up. Regards, Jim B

  

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liamtoh1ps Registered since 17th Apr 2012Fri 19-Apr-13 01:24 AM
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#6. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 5


US
          

If you have access to a public library, you can also look at John Shaw\'s Closeups in Nature.

  

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Gimbal Gold Member Nikonian since 28th Apr 2011Fri 19-Apr-13 01:50 AM
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#7. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 6


Toronto, CA
          

Yes, this is a very useful book. You can get a "very good" used copy on Amazon for $2.00.

Gimbal

  

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Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Fri 19-Apr-13 04:14 PM
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#8. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 7


Naperville, US
          

Thanks to you both, just ordered used from Amazon for $1.97

  

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jordivb Silver Member Nikonian since 01st Mar 2009Mon 29-Apr-13 03:43 PM
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#9. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 0


Manresa, ES
          

Sorry for this late reply, I'm a bit disconnected (with the except of the macro monthly contest) from the forums lately.

+1 on A.Gibson Up & Close, as many others fir other subjects at Craft and Vision.

I'd also suggest free downloads from www.macrostop.com. I found Michael Erlewine's pdf books there really useful.

Regards,

Jordi
-Barcelonian-

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Mon 29-Apr-13 05:28 PM
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#10. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 9


Naperville, US
          

Thanks to all for responses. Have bought John Shaw's Close Ups In Nature and Nature Photography (used & cheap). They are dated re hardware but very helpful and well written. Also have been to Microstop.com.
Have done some shooting with 105 Micro and added to that TC 2.0. I've been impressed with result of both. Now have Kenko extension tube set and will try that next with 105.

  

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ericbowles Moderator Awarded for his in-depth knowledge and high level skills in various areas, especially Landscape and Wildlife Photoghraphy Writer Ribbon awarded for for his article contributions to the community Nikonian since 25th Nov 2005Mon 29-Apr-13 07:05 PM
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#11. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 0


Atlanta, US
          

I'd rate Mike Moats as the top macro photographer today. He does a lot of teaching and has a great blog.

http://www.tinylandscapes.com/
http://www.mikemoatsblog.com/

Mike made the decision to focus on macro. He does a lot of presentations and workshops so he may be in your area.

As far as gear is concerned, he uses consumer level Nikon cameras - because many of his students use the same gear. His images are generally natural light rather than flash. And half of his images are at and around his home and the immediate neighborhood.

With macro, most lenses reach 1:1 magnification - 60mm, 90mm, 105mm, 150mm, 180mm, 200mm, etc. The difference is how far you are from the subject at the minimum focus distance. the 60mm lens is about 8 inches, the 105mm lens about 12 inches, and the 200mm lens about 20 inches. Added working distance lets you photograph nervous or dangerous subjects. It also lets you control your background. But you may not have room to back up 20-30 inches.

A 105mm macro lens - or anything in the 90mm-105mm range - tends to be a good starting point. All macro lenses are pretty good in terms of image quality. The 90-105mm range is very flexible, allows you to use extension, and provides enough working distance to be practical. The lens is also small enough to carry with you.

Any lens works with the Kenko extension tubes. I was recently using a 600mm lens with extension tubes to photograph birds - I needed the reach but I wanted high magnification. Everyone uses Kenko tubes because they allow full functioning of your metering and focus. You'll often use manual focus for the precision required for macro - but metering is really helpful. There is no glass in extension tubes - just a spacer ring with contacts.

In general, extension has more impact when it is used with shorter lenses - 100mm and less. It also works well to decrease the minimum focus distance of a lens which increases magnification because you are closer.

Close up lenses are essentially lenses that attach to the front of a lens like a filter. The Canon 500D is commonly used. I'll use a 500D on the front of my 70-200mm or 300mm f/4 to increase magnification. It takes some practice to get used to focusing by moving closer or further, but does the job.

The Nikon 105mm will work with Nikon teleconverters. As you would expect, you lose a little image quality but you can really increase magnification.

The biggest challenge with macro is having enough DOF. With high magnification, DOF can be fractions of an inch. So you often are shooting at f/16-f/32. While this introduces diffraction, the bigger issue is the loss of light. It's often a challenge to get enough light and shutter speed at f/22 in the shade.


Eric Bowles
Nikonians Team
My Gallery
Workshops

Nikonians membership — my most important photographic investment, after the camera

  

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Jamed600 Gold Member Nikonian since 02nd Mar 2013Mon 29-Apr-13 07:42 PM
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#12. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 11


Naperville, US
          

Eric, very helpful, thanks, Jim B

  

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rpoyner Registered since 23rd Apr 2013Mon 13-May-13 12:34 PM
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#13. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 0


UK
          

Hi James, I too just treated myself to a D600 (upgrade from D80), luckily enough I had a Sigma 150mm (FX lens) anyway, its a great lens and means you don't scare the subjects off too often, you soon learn how ot approach the more nervous ones. I have a Sigma EM-140 Ring Flash also which really helps in certain conditions. Last year I started using a monopod and bean bags for the more inquisitive subjects which really helped. I'm not as experienced or capable as most here but thought I'd share my thoughts. Thankfully the good weather is finally arriving in the UK so time to get out and about.

  

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slalom002 Silver Member Nikonian since 11th Oct 2008Mon 13-May-13 01:10 PM
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#14. "RE: Starting into macro photography"
In response to Reply # 13


Ottawa, CA
          

I had a lot of fun with macro photography years ago when I had a set of bellows for an old thread mount camera.

When I switched to Nikon, I bought a 60mm Micro. Nice lens but with the D700 and D800 too often I had to get so close to the subject that light was an issue. I recently bought a 105 Micro and I am very pleased with the results.

In addition to the print references, Ben Long has a good course on the subject.

Visit my Nikonians gallery.

  

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Forums Lobby MASTER YOUR VISION - BY SPECIALTY Micro, Macro & Close-up (Public) topic #50817 Previous topic | Next topic