suggest please; macro lens options for canon rebel XS

Discussion in 'Digital Discussion & Q&A' started by Moodyville-ain, Oct 1, 2009.

  1. Moodyville-ain

    Moodyville-ain TPF Noob!

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    I really like macro shots, obviously my kit lens isnt gonna cut it :(. So what are some good macro lens options? (approximate price is appreciated). Are there any inexpensive options? as I am a hobbyist, not a professional.
     
  2. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What is your budget?
     
  3. bigtwinky

    bigtwinky No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Canon is coming / has come out with a new L macro lens, the EF 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM. Should be about $1000.

    While this may be out of your range, this will push down the price of their current 100mm macro, and maybe have more avaible used on Craigslist and such. The older macro (which is a damn fine lens) is the EF 100mm f/2.8 USM which should be around $600 new.

    Cheaper options usually mean a shorter focal range.

    EF-S 60mm f/2.8 is about $400. You will have to be closer to the subject that the 100mm, so it depends on what you want to do macros of. Objects, should not be an issue. If you are doing bugs, you will want something longer

    Sigma has some decent macro lenses, such as the 105mm f/2.8 which is about $475.
    Their 50mm f/2.8 macro is about $300.

    Really though, the Canon glass is really nice. I would suggest looking for the 100mm f/2.8 used.
     
  4. grafxman

    grafxman TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Actually the lens you have should work just fine. You just need to get a Kenko Automatic Extension Tube Set DG. They're available on ebay for under $150. They're also available from bhphotovideo for $170.

    You may soon discover that squinting through that little eyepiece is a real hassle whenever you attempt photographing low lying objects such as lichens sprouting from a fallen tree branch or mushrooms and toadstools. The best solution to that situation is to buy a camera with live view.

    If the macro bug really bites you, as it once did me, you'll want a set of 4 way macro focusing rails and a tripod like the Manfrotto 190XPROB which has a horizontal column feature that allows the tripod to reach extremely low positions. Then you'll have to have a micro adjustable Manfrotto 410 Junior Geared Head for the tripod. Thus the madness that is macro photography begins.:lol:

    My lens of choice for macro work is the Sigma 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5 DC IF Macro Lens. It works great as a normal or as a Macro lens. You should lurk in this forum:

    Canon SLR Lens Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

    They have a Weekly Macro/Close-up thread there which is pretty good.

    Hope this helps. Good luck. I hope your bank account survives. :D
     
  5. Moodyville-ain

    Moodyville-ain TPF Noob!

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    Budget is less then $500 I doubt I will ever be selling my photos ;)

    But the 50mm sigma at $300 is more my range :blushing:

    In terms of quality, how much noticable difference is there between the 50mm sigma and the others? Focal distance isn't too big of a concern with me. The quality of the photo in the end is what concerns me.

    I'm fine with getting close to my subjects I was less then a foot away shooting bumblebees with my a650, I'm not easily squeamish. If my subject is life threatening, then I probably wont bother :lol:

    Thanks very much for the replies :)
     
  6. UUilliam

    UUilliam TPF Noob!

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    we arent talking about how close you want to get to the subject, its how close the subject wants to let you near it before flying / running away...
    I have never done true macro before but my guess is to get a shot with a 50mm macro you need to be about 1 - 2 foot near your subject...
     
  7. Moodyville-ain

    Moodyville-ain TPF Noob!

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    Thanks grafxman. I have heard of using tubes. but being a complete noob when it comes to photography and equipment. Could you explain how an extention can make my lens better at macro? Go ahead and explain it like I'm an idiot :D

    The problem I have with my lens is that the ultra fine detail is lost ie. the fine hairs on a bee, or pollen on a flower. I usually switch to my a650 as of now to take a macro shot.
     
  8. Moodyville-ain

    Moodyville-ain TPF Noob!

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    haha ok, I get it now :)
     
  9. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    I would look for a used Sigma 105mm EX macro lens or a used Tamron 90mm AF-SP macro lens. On the Tamron, note that the AF-SP is not the brand new, current Di version, but would be a few years older than that,and priced below $300 used.

    Macro lenses are often available used, but in like new condition; many people buy a macro lens, try it, then later sell it back to dealer like KEH.com or whoever.

    How much you need to spend depends on how long a lens you want to have; with a 55-60mm macro lens, you are often at 2 inches from a small subject with the shadow of you and your camera interfering with the light; with short macros, you have to be really,really close to subjects, which is why I am suggesting a 90 to 105mm macro lens. Searching might find more information on how to use extension tubes, or even using Nikon-mount lenses via adapter on your Canon as one way to get macro sized shots on the cheap. The lack of an aperture ring on Canon lenses takes away the option of a simply reverse-mounting a lens on the front of the camera and getting macro reproduction ratios that way.

    Macro is a whole sub-field of photography. There are many macro lenses, as well as ways to make other lenses work as pseudo macros, like + diopter lenses aka screw-in close-up filters, extension tubes, etc. The thing is--many people want to try macro, buy a lens, then find it's not their cup of tea,and hence my suggestion: always buy a macro lens used.
     
  10. Dao

    Dao No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I bought a used non-usm canon ef 100mm f/2.8 macro lens on ebay for around $300.
    And it is not bad.
    [​IMG]





    And if you want to go with a cheaper solution, the following video suggest a canon closeup filter. (But I do not have experience with)

     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 11, 2014
  11. grafxman

    grafxman TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    Here's a copy of the info on the Kenko tubes:

    Extension tubes are designed to enable a lens to focus closer than its normal set minimum focusing distance. Getting closer has the effect of magnifying your subject (making it appear larger in the viewfinder and in your pictures). They are exceptionally useful for macro photography, enabling you to convert almost any lens into a macro lens at a fraction of the cost while maintaining its original optical quality.

    The DG extension tubes have no optics. They are mounted in between the camera body and lens to create more distance between the lens and film plane. By moving the lens father away from the film or CCD sensor in the camera, the lens is forced to focus much closer than normal. The greater the length of the extension tube, the closer the lens can focus.

    The KENKO DG AUTO EXTENSION TUBE SET contains three tubes of different length, a 12 mm, 20 mm, and 36 mm, which can be used individually or in any combination to obtain the desired magnification. Kenko also makes a DG UNITUBE 12 mm or 25 mm which can be purchased individually.

    Kenko's Auto Focus extension tubes are designed with all the circuitry and mechanical coupling to maintain auto focus and TTL auto exposure with most Canon, Nikon, and Minolta lenses given there is enough light to activate the cameras AF system properly.

    Please Note
    1. When using extension tubes the lens will not focus to infinity. The focus range will be greatly limited to a very close focusing distance.
    2. There is light fall off when using any extension tube, sometimes the equivalent of 3 f-stops of light is lost when using multiple extension tubes together. This light lost can affect the camera's ability to auto focus. Manual focusing is recommended should the lens begin to "hunt" (not lock onto the subject).

    When they say the tubes will allow your lens to focus closer that is absolutely true. I have an excellent but old Sigma 170-500mm zoom. It's a great lens but will not focus closer than 12 feet. When I add a 12mm tube, it will focus to about 4 feet.

    When you are trying to macro photograph living moving things such as insects then that opens a whole different can of worms. Your best bet under those circumstances is to use a long lens that will focus close. I have used my previously mentioned Sigma Zoom Super Wide Angle AF 17-70mm f/2.8-4.5 DC Macro with a 1.4 Kenko teleconverter and, if necessary, Kenko tubes with some success. The 1.4 teleconverter makes the lens a 98mm lens and the tubes allow close focus. Thus I can keep some distance away from the insect and still focus up close on it.

    When getting into extreme magnification expect to have a very shallow depth of field. Also expect to manually focus.
     
  12. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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