A few questions

Discussion in 'Canon Accessories' started by Lisa Chapman, Oct 14, 2018.

  1. Lisa Chapman

    Lisa Chapman TPF Noob!

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    I currently have the following....

    Canon Rebel T6 1300
    18 - 55mm Lens
    75 - 300 mm Lens
    Camera Bag

    I would like to purchase my first tripod. Any recommendations?
    A macro lens, I see some on Amazon but, I am so new I'm nervous to buy without knowing for sure what I am looking for, I would hate to damage my camera by buying the wrong thing. Recommendations?

    Anything else you think would be a good buy for a newbie? Anything fun? A fish eye lens maybe? All opinions and recommendations appreciated. Thanks!


     
  2. ac12

    ac12 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Tripods are a minefield of options and opinions.

    There is a triangle of factors that interrelate; low price, light weight, steady.
    The saying is that you can only have 2 of the 3. You sacrifice the 3rd.
    • Example1, a low cost light tripod will not be steady.
    • Example2, a light and sturdy tripod will not be low cost.
    Some recommendations have been to spend as much on the tripod and head as your camera.
    One thing to think about is that the tripod is supporting your camera. Do you want to risk an expensive camera on a cheap tripod, and have it collapse and go crashing to the ground?

    Having said that, the reality is you can compromise on things.
    • Example1, I would have loved a light carbon fiber (CF) tripod, but I would rather spend on camera and lens, at that point in time. So I got a used Bogen/Manfroto aluminum tripod via Craig's List. Heavier than carbon fiber, but saved me $$$
      • The prices of CF tripods have come down considerably, and is more affordable today than it was 15 years ago.
    • Example2, my travel tripod has to be small enough to fit into my luggage and leave me room for my clothes. So it is not as large and steady as my home tripod, so I do not use it for everything, it is a 2nd tripod.
    On important thing to consider is the height of the tripod, with the center column NOT extended.
    • The reason to not extend the center column, is that the tripod is most steady in this configuration. Extend the center column and the stability is reduced. I only use the center column for fine height adjustments of a couple/few inches.
    • The height of the tripod should be approximately to your mouth, so that you do not have to stoop over to look through the camera. More height is better, to be able to adjust to uneven ground. The more you shoot on a tripod, the more your back will appreciate not having to stoop over.
    • But for your travel tripod, you may have to go with a shorter tripod, extend the center column, and use a shorter tripod.
    In Example1, I said I went with an aluminum tripod over a carbon fiber (CF) tripod. The effect of this on weight can be significant. My home tripod, is so heavy that I will not carry it more than 50 feet from my car. A CF tripod would be lighter, and much more mobile, but more $$$. I ended up getting a 3rd tripod for when I have to carry the tripod for any distance from the car. I got this one after carrying the heavy tripod once, and deciding that it was TOO HEAVY to carry for any distance. This 3rd tripod is good enough to replace my heavy home tripod, for most purposes.

    Tripod heads are like religion. Some swear by a ball head, and other swear at it, and prefer a 3-way pan head. There is no perfect head, some work better than others for certain applications. Some work better for some people than others. I have 3 different heads: 3-way pan, ball, and gimbal. And I am looking for a 4th, a geared head. Which one I use, depends on the shoot, what gear I am using, and where/logistics. So having a tripod with an interchangeable head makes for more flexibility of using a different head, if you need/want to. And you want a tripod with a 3/8 inch stud, not the smaller 1/4 inch stud.
    Your travel tripod may be restricted to a non-interchangeable 3-way pan or ball head.

    Some tripod leg controls to extend and lock the legs are easy to use with gloves, others are more difficult. If it is COLD where you live and shoot, this should be a consideration. Levers are easier to use than threaded collars, but need checking and adjustment to prevent them getting loose.

    Make sure that the tripod is rated to support the weight of your camera+lens and a bit more.
    There are some lightweight tripods that are barely good enough for a small P&S camera.

    You will run into something called an Arca Swiss (AS) mount. This is a mount (clamp and rail) that sits between the tripod head and camera. The clamp is on the tripod, the rail is on the camera. The AS mount makes putting the camera on/off the tripod easier, faster, and safer. Safer, because I do not have to fiddle with the tripod screw, trying to get it to engage and disengage from the camera or lens. I have a camp on all my tripods and a rail/bracket on all my cameras and long lenses. You do not NEED this immediately, but it is something to think about and consider.

    Finally, along with the tripod, you should get a remote release for your camera. This way, you do not move the camera when you trip the shutter.
     
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  3. ac12

    ac12 Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    Macro lenses can be expensive.

    I suggest a low cost way to dip your toes into close up photography.
    Get a set of close up filters/lenses.
    This is a set of 3 different lenses, that screw onto your lens, like a filter. Each lens has a different focusing range, bringing you closer to the subject.
    Then you use your camera like normal, but within a closer focusing range.

    If you like it, then progress to a macro lens.

    One thing, is that for many close up/macro work, you will want/need a tripod. So get the tripod first.
    This is because you cannot hold the camera steady enough at the very close distances.
    And onto the tripod, you should get a 4-way focusing rail. This allows you to move the camera forward/backwards and left/right a few inches, to fine tune the image, without having to lift and move the tripod. You do not need it, but it is very convenient to have.
     
  4. petrochemist

    petrochemist TPF junkie!

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    The set's of close up 'filters' are usually fairly poor quality. I recommend getting a Raynox DCR150 a highly corrected close up dioptre that clips onto the front of a standard lens. On the 18-55 I will give moderate close up abilities but it should get right into the macro ranges on the 75-300.

    Raynox also make similar clip on lenses in higher powers, the DCR250 is well known but a bit powerful for the telephoto IMO. Their other models are less well known & are incredibly powerful - too much for me to handle!

    Although I have a few macro lenses the Raynox is more likely to get used, it's so much lighter it can live in my bag...
     
  5. Fujidave

    Fujidave Blue eyed and Beautiful

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    I have both the Raynox 250 and 150 the Raynox 150 was clipped on my Fuji XC 16-50mm on a windy day last year but you can get some good shots.


    [​IMG]Fly by Dave, on Flickr
     
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  6. Fujidave

    Fujidave Blue eyed and Beautiful

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    Or if you could get a good price on the Canon 100mm f2.8 L USM IS or non IS then it is great.


    [​IMG]Bee by Dave, on Flickr
     
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  7. Designer

    Designer Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    First; consult your user's manual for a list of lenses that will work on your camera. This is only the beginning of your search for additional lenses. You should see at least one macro lens listed. This has more to do with the mount and connections than how good the lenses are.

    Tripod: A very good name brand at a deeply discounted price is the way to go. I have bought two good tripods on here in the "buy and sell" forum from our own membership. Other items as well.

    As for "fun" things, just whatever kind of photography you want to try. I would say avoid the "gizmos" that go on like a filter because you still have some learning to do. When I started out (eons ago) we used to do things like stretch a plastic film over the end of a lens or smear a very light coating of petroleum jelly on the lens or purchase "star filters" and such. Please don't smear anything directly onto your lens, though, but if you want to see what it looks like, smear a UV filter so your lens remains undamaged.

    Don't overlook playing with lights. Get a speedlight and gel the light to see what you can do with colored light. Make some homemade light modifiers for fun and profit. Experiment with reflectors, doors, gobos, and placing lights in new and exciting locations. I've wanted to place a couple of speedlights behind rocks or trees and shoot the scene at night. (haven't done it yet)
     
  8. Lisa Chapman

    Lisa Chapman TPF Noob!

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    Some excellent feedback and ideas, thanks!
     
  9. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

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    A set of extension tubes could be very useful for allowing you to make the 75-300 or 70-300 into a pseudo-macro lens. An 11mm or 12mm tube would be very useful, as would a 20 to 25mm extension tube. A 36mm tube would likely be of very limited use, but _might_ be good for high-magnification close-ups.

    The Canon 500D close-up lens (a screw-in 'filter-like' device) would be useful for the 70-300 zoom; the Raynox 150 mentioned is similar. Canon also has a 250D close-up lens.

    Extension tubes, or a high-quality multi-element close-up lens (again,we're talking about a screw-in on adapter-fitted, front-of-lens filter type magnifying system) would be the most affordable way to get into close-up work with the 70-300mm zoom.

    Tripod? Used,used,used,used. Aluminum. Manfrotto. 3000-series leg set. I dunno....$65-$100 used. Craigslist,photo store,etc..

    Speedlight flash. YES, a definite fun accessory. Get one that tilts and swivels and has a zoom head. Spend $65 for a Neewer brand Made in China flash, or up to $399 for a Canon model.
     
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  10. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg hear me roar Staff Member Supporting Member

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    +1 for extension tubes! You're going to be manually focusing for macro anyway. I like the set I got from Amazon by JJC but they were for Fuji - not sure they make them for Canon.
     
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  11. Fujidave

    Fujidave Blue eyed and Beautiful

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    Not all the time would you have to manual focus, as on every single macro I have shot it has always been use BBF and auto focus :)
     

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