lens options for macro-ish stuff

Discussion in 'Macro Photography' started by pixmedic, Mar 6, 2018.

  1. pixmedic

    pixmedic The Mustached Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    particularly interested in opinions on the fuji 60mm f2.4 lens. while not a 1:1 macro, i think it might do well enough for some stuff i want to photograph.
    minimum focus distance on regular lenses means too much cropping for a good ring shot, so i obviously need something more macro-ish. as much as i would love the new Fuji 80mm 1:1 macro, i just cant justify the cost. if anyone that owns the 60mm f2.4 lens could chime in and let me know how its macro capabilities are, that would be great. also, how is the AF on that lens for shooting macro? or do you just switch to MF?

    this was an attempt at a ring shot using my 16" lightbox. I like the way the image itself turned out, but the ton of cropping needed to make it large enough in the frame just distorts the image too much.

    [​IMG]skull ring by pixmedic, on Flickr


     
  2. waday

    waday Do one thing every day that scares you Supporting Member

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    I can't give any input on the Fuji lens specifically, but when I do macro stuff, I'll use AF to get me 90% there, then switch to MF to dial in exactly where I want the focus.
     
  3. FotosbyMike

    FotosbyMike No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I don't shoot Fuji but I found this video 60 vs 80


    The 80 looks great in the video I now cost is high but macro lens can be used for much more then macro. They also make killer portraiture lens too.

    With that said the 60 has .5x magnification, focusing distance ~10.5in I believe I read that the AF is a little slow, but personally in the studio I always manually focus.

    Fuji 56mm F/1.2 vs. 60mm F/2.4 - and scroll down to Close Focus, first images is of the 56mm and the second is of the 60 and big difference.

    If you don't want to spend a lot of money yet try giving some extension tubes a try they are much cheaper and come pretty close to replicate macro 1:1 or more.
     
  4. Dave442

    Dave442 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I use a 60mm macro on my DX Nikon body. At 0.5x magnification a ring does not require much cropping. I usually go to MF for anything that is not moving around. If you added the MCEX-11 extension tube for 0.68x magnification the ring would come very close to filling the frame.
     
  5. Overread

    Overread has a hat around here somewhere Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I'd say 0.5:1 magnification should be fine if you want that in a lens and you've no further interest in photographing anything vastly smaller or insects and the like. Rings, flowers and such should come up great with such a magnification; and if you are using a studio setup then you don't need the background blurring effect that might be more apparent with a longer focal length lens.


    As for AF I've found that most cameras struggle with macro and AF. Close focus it will probably be fine, eps if the camera is on a tripod and the subject is still. But in general I find it easier to use manual focusing to get it right. If its all studio style with live-view the magnification feature of live view can help you even more.

    Note be mindful of the floor when doing indoor studio macro stuff. Nothing worse than setting everything up right and still getting miss-focused shots because the carpet/wooden flooring etc... shifted as you moved around.

    Otherwise the lighting looks good, you just need a sharper lens to get the shot crisp
     
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  6. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Nevertheless... Staff Member Supporting Member

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    I love the 60mm Fuji. I use with and without the JJC extension tubes I bought cheap from Amazon. The lens is sharp and has nice bokeh if you're into that. It does struggle to auto focus in low light/low contrast situations but for macro, you'll typically be using MF anyway. It works great with Fuji XT2 focus peaking.

    It's also a decent portrait lens, IMO. Here are some macros I shot with it and a couple of portraits:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  7. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Nevertheless... Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Portraits

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
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  8. pixmedic

    pixmedic The Mustached Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    picked up some Fotasy extension tubes on ebay. a 10mm and 16mm set for $20. they have the electronics, and they AF fine when using only one of them, but when I put the two together the AF doesnt work and it no longer reports the aperture.
    may see if i can find a slighter larger tube or just use MF.

    i recreated the above ring shot using just the 16mm tube and AF.
    i did crop to 1:1, but that is pretty much the starting size.
    the AF seemed to work just fine and for a $20 set of tubes i really cant complain, especially as the fuji brand is about $100 just for the 11mm OR 16mm.
    not really sure if i need any closer than this, but i can always try using the two tubes together and switching to MF.
    also worth noting is the focal plane. smaller, but without needing 400% cropping im getting a MUCH cleaner image.
    might have to try focus stacking. never done it before. im not even sure where to look for multi point focus settings on the fuji, or how to set it up like i did on the Nikons. have to find a video on it.
    anyway....heres the latest attempt. needs some tweaking, but certainly better than the first.

    [​IMG]SS skull ring by pixmedic, on Flickr
     
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  9. SquarePeg

    SquarePeg Nevertheless... Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Nice detail. Which lens are you using with the tubes?
     
  10. pixmedic

    pixmedic The Mustached Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    i used the 18-55 2.8-4 lens since thats what was already on the camera and im lazy.
     
  11. pixmedic

    pixmedic The Mustached Moderator Staff Member Supporting Member

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    stones dont AF as well, and i still have a difficult time with MF on digital cameras. I used focus peaking (high) on these attempts at some MF shots.
    I think what i have learned is that the 16mm extension tube gets me as close as i really need for ring shots....and that I need some practice with MF...and i need to learn how to focus stack.

    [​IMG]russian diopside ring by pixmedic, on Flickr

    [​IMG]garnet ring by pixmedic, on Flickr

    [​IMG]russian diopside/tanzanite/tourmaline ring by pixmedic, on Flickr
     
  12. jcdeboever

    jcdeboever TPF Supporters Supporting Member

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    I've used the mcex11 on the 18-55 and is shockingly good as shown above. I also have the 60mm macro, and the 80. I love the 60mm but I am trying to sell it because I bought the 80 and the 56. I love the 60 for B & W but my test with the 56 for that are just as good for micro contrast. I think the 60 is a tad sharper. I can't speak to much on the auto focus as i used it mainly in manual. I guess it is slow in comparison to the 80 and 56 but I rarely shoot AF, unless its sports or wildlife. So I am going to sell it eventually. It really was my main lens for a long time, then the 16mm kind of took that over. I don't shoot much digital really but will be back at it when the weather breaks and soccer season starts. I just prefer film at this stage of my game. Every time I use the Fuji for street, I always try to simulate film so why not just shoot film.
     

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