can i get some good macro shots with this lens?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by dearlybeloved, Jan 1, 2010.

  1. dearlybeloved

    dearlybeloved No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    im wanting to get into some macro stuff and wondering if i should update my lens. not really familiar with it so im asking.

    sigma 70-300 f4-5.1

    if so what can i do to obtain it? sometimes when i try to use it it says f003. what does that mean?
     
  2. yzrider344

    yzrider344 TPF Noob!

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    yes you can you just need to to be farther away from the subject. if you want to be close up to the subject you can use a fixed lens like a 50mm f1.8
     
  3. DScience

    DScience No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Sorry brotha, but the 50mm f/1.8 is NOT going to give you macro shots. In order to accomplish this you'll need a macro lens, one that will give you the ability to produce pictures that are life size, (ie 1:1).
     
  4. Nicholas James Photo

    Nicholas James Photo TPF Noob!

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    No you cant
     
  5. Shockey

    Shockey TPF Noob!

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    There are rings you can get that go between the lens and the body, extension rings I think they call them.
    Also you can get filters that go on the end of the lens that you can shoot macro with.
    I have used neither but they are possibilities.
     
  6. sinjans

    sinjans TPF Noob!

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    what brand of body are you shooting?
     
  7. dearlybeloved

    dearlybeloved No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    A nikon d70
     
  8. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Can you comfirm the labling of the lens - is it the Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 APO macro or the Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 macro -- or is it a much older model lens without the macro lable (there should be a macro limiter switch on the lens itself if it is a macro version of the lens).
     
  9. dearlybeloved

    dearlybeloved No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    its the Sigma 70-300mm f4-5.6 APO macro with the macro switch
     
  10. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    With a tripod (idealy) you can get some decent results out of that lens at the macro setting (infact I found it to be the lenses strongest point). It is not a "real" macro lens because it cannot achive 1:1 magnifcation (that is the subject as reflected on the sensor is the same size as it is in real life) but gets to 1:2 (half life size).

    In realworld terms this is quite a noticable difference:
    These two sets should give you a decent idea of what the 70-300mm can achive (note these were taken with the older non APO edition so yours should be able to get things a little sharper - a tripod and mirror lockup make a lot of help)
    Random G 1000 - a set on Flickr
    Random D 1000 - a set on Flickr

    Where as a dedicated macro lens can get shots like the following:
    IMG_0102 on Flickr - Photo Sharing!

    So you are partially limited in what you can get in terms of closeup work - but good methodology and setup can ensure that you still get some good results. Firstly a tripod is very helpfull (especailly if you don't have a good flash setup) and even for insects can work very well (early mornings and after rainstorms when the insects are cold and sluggish). This helps give you a stable shooting base and removes handshake as a factor.
    Secondly check your camera manual for a feature called Mirror Lockup - for macro its a great way to again remove shake on the camera setup from the equation. It works best with a remote control, but using the timer feature works just as well.
    Thirdly lighting - even a popup flash can give some good help with 1:2 macro - though I do advice diffusing the light from it a little - a few folds of white toilet paper (or similar materail) held over the flash will give the light a little softening and help to remove its harsh glare. Good ambient lighting is also very important.
    Finally there is subject movement - wind is a very big pain in outdoors macro work and whilst cable ties and sticks can help to limit movement from light wind you might also need covers and windbreaks at certain times (or just have to come back another day).
     
  11. dearlybeloved

    dearlybeloved No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    thanks so much for your help! what would you suggest for a decent macro lens without dropping a fortune
     
  12. digital flower

    digital flower No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I love my 60mm 2.8 micro-nikkor lens (the older version). It works great with the D70.
     

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my lens says macro on the outside