180mm Macro or 100mm 2.8 IS Macro

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by Neil S., Jul 27, 2010.

  1. Neil S.

    Neil S. TPF Noob!

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    I am looking to get into macro photography, flowers and insects and all that good stuff.

    My next lens may be one of these, I can't decide which though.

    I already own the EF-S 60mm Macro, but want something with more working distance.

    Does anyone own either the 180mm or 100mm IS macros? If so whats your impressions of them.

    The reviews seem good for both, and I probably couldn't go wrong with either.

    Do you macro guys feel that the extra working distance of the 180mm is really important?
     
  2. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I own macro lenses in the 55-60,90-100,and 180 groups. My feeling is that of all those, my favorites are the 180 first, the 90-100mm second, and the 55 and 60 macros last place. For flowers and large insects like butterflies, the working distance is nice with the longer macro lengths. The background angle of view is narrower as focal length grows longer AND background blur is greater with a longer focal length than with a shorter length lens. The 180mm length gives the narrowest angle of view BEHIND the subject, so that tends to isolate the foreground subject from its background. ANd, one gets a blurrier background at the close-up type ranges. Plus, with the 180mm length and a modern SB-800 or 580-EX II class speedlight, the camera-to-subject distance is longer than with a 60 or 90mm macro, so the flash output is a little easier to manage than when the camera and flash and subject are all really,really close.

    Overall, to me, the 180mm macro length has a huge amount of things going for it over shorter macro lenses. I started with a 55, then got a 90, then a 100, then a 60, then finally a 180mm Sigma f/3.5 APO-HSM EX macro. After acquiring the 180mm macro, I really finally was able to understand that, had it been on the market when I was acquiring my system, is the only macro lens I would have ever needed.
     
  3. Buckster

    Buckster Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I have the same 180mm macro as Derrel, and love it as well. Outstanding macro lens IMHO.
     
  4. sleist

    sleist Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I shoot Nikon so I can't comment on those 2 lenses, but I just picked up the Sigma 150mm f/2.8 macro (Nikon mount) and I think it's amazing. Take a look at the reviews - hard to find a bad one. It's worth looking at.

    Extra working distance is helpful, but that depends on the subject matter as much as anything. I've used a 105 (non VR) and now a 150 and I prefer the extra distance for the critters.
     
  5. Neil S.

    Neil S. TPF Noob!

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    Hey Derrel.

    Ya this is kind of what I was thinking too, the 180mm is a sexy lens.

    Can you please check out my thread on the 85mm 1.2L II in the equipment section. I think your expertiese on the subject is required lol!

    We had a discussion on the lens before if you remember. I changed my name from CanonFreak to Neil S. because I didn't like the old one.

    Thanks for your input on the macro lenses. :thumbup:
     
  6. Neil S.

    Neil S. TPF Noob!

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    Thanks for your input.
     

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