Need Help: Macro-Photography

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by LifesMirror, Dec 28, 2006.

  1. LifesMirror

    LifesMirror TPF Noob!

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    I have a Pentax K-1000, and am interested in plant and fungi photography. As I was shopping around, I found this: Albinar 80-200mm f4.5-5.6 Zoom+Macro PK-A. Is this what I need?
     
  2. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    No, what you need is a macro lens or, as a second choice, an extension tube or two to use with the lens or lenses you already have. What you found is a piece of cheap Chinese junk. I wouldn't recommend it. I'm not familiar with the Pentax line but I'm sure there are some good options for macro work in the system.
     
  3. Sw1tchFX

    Sw1tchFX TPF Noob!

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    Right. I've only used extention tubes on prime lenses and they worked fine on my FE. But an actual macro lens would be better suited.
     
  4. steff

    steff TPF Noob!

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    hey, i know this is a little off topic, but i saw some macro-photography on a website a while ago, is it taking pictures of things really close up? sorry if i sound like a complete idiot, but im here to learn, afterall!!
    steff xx
     
  5. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Don't feel stupid...it's perfectly fine to ask questions if you don't know...that's what we are here for.

    Macro photography is taking pictures of things at a 1:1 ratio, or greater magnification. That means that the size of the image on the film (or digital sensor) is the actual size of the image. So yes, that is quite close up.

    The problem is that a lot of lenses say 'Macro' on them (like the one in the first post)...but they can't get enough magnification to get a 1:1 ratio...so they are not really macro lenses. It can be confusing sometimes.
     
  6. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    The common description for Macro is photography at 1:4 to 1:1 reproduction ratio. That would be from 1/4 life size to life size on the film or sensor. When the reproduction becomes larger than life size, then that is generally called Micro photography and, in fact, is often accomplished using microscopes. Modern macro lenses can focus all the way from infinity to close enough to reproduce the subject 1:1 (life size) on the film or sensor.

    The fly in the ointment is Nikon. Nikon defines these terms in exactly the opposite way. For Nikon, Micro is 1:4 down to 1:1 and Macro is repro ratios larger than 1:1. Nikonians are familiar with the Micro Nikkor lenses. Oddly enough there are also Macro Nikkors. However, they aren't part of the photographic division. Instead they are part of the micrography division.

    Another confusing issue relates to the term "macro zoom" lens. What this term actually means is that a particular zoom lens is designed to focus more closely than older version of it or than competitive lenses. Few of these will do a repro ratio any larger than 1:4. They aren't macro lenses in the normal sense of the word. To make it even more confusing, there are zooms that are true macros capable of focusing to 1:1.

    Take all this confusion without too much brain pain, please. Decide how large you want your subjects to be on the recording medium and buy a lens that can deliver it.

    A used high quality macro lens would make more sense than a low quality "macro zoom."
     
  7. steff

    steff TPF Noob!

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    thanks guys! :D you,re all gonna get alot more of my questions though!!
    steff xx
     
  8. Soocom1

    Soocom1 TPF Noob!

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    One item to think about is a bellows rail system.
    There are several available for most cameras and a few 'universal' types that use T-mounts. The thing I like about those is the precise focus ability to a literally micro adjustment. Rather than using the focus ring on the lens.
    This prevents movement eccentric to where you want the focus point. (In macro, it can add up quickly). In addition, if you have a good source, several lenses are available that can greatly enhance the macro world.
    I have used extension tubes before, and with all do respect to everyone, I like the rail macro set up better.
     
  9. LifesMirror

    LifesMirror TPF Noob!

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    Since nobody would give me an answer the first day of the post, I went to a local aftermarket shop and found what I needed. A TRUE macro lense. And damn I must say...I LOVE IT! Thanks for your help anyways guys. When I get them uploaded on my PC, Ill share some picks and an interesting story,lol.
     
  10. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Do that! Please! Yes. Send us the photos!

    And hey: WELCOME TO THE PHOTO FORUM!!!

    Sorry to hear that you did not get the answer you sought for right away - but it seems like we still know how to take our own decisions after all, don't we ;) !?!?!
     
  11. LifesMirror

    LifesMirror TPF Noob!

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    Thanks.
    While I was putting on the lens, I got stung in the foot by a flipping bee. Being a "glass is half full" type of guy, I said "Hey! What an opportunity!",lol.
    Im gonna have to find somwhere on the web to upload them to, so it will prolly be tomorrow till I get too it,lol. Thanks again for the warm welcome. I think I just found a new addiction
     
  12. LaFoto

    LaFoto Just Corinna in real life Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Try www.fastpictures.com ... it is for free and the service is good.
    Make sure you save your photos (reduced to about 800x600 px or so) at "8 - maximum" instead of "12 - optimum" (or something like that). Then their size is not going to be randomly reduced.

    (That is: random reduction happens on www.photobucket.com but doesn't when you save at 8, either --- FastPictures just does no longer load them and sends you a warning).
     

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