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Old 10-08-2011, 15:11   #1 (permalink)
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Post Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Hey,
I'm new here, and was looking for advice concerning Macro Photography.

Am considering buying a lens, or just a Reversing Ring. Not sure what will be best.

A Lens (75-205mm Macro) may be better because it may offer a variety of options I do not presently understand.

A reversing ring may be just right, but do I need a different one for each lens (have 3 now.)

Thanks in advance for the help. Planning a purchase in the next couple of days...
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Old 10-08-2011, 15:24   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

FWIW, my take would be (in reverse order of desirability):
1. Reversing Rings - work pretty well but shallow DOF makes focus difficult. Can use existing lenses but totally manual only
2. Extension Tubes - work well despite reduced light. Can use existing lenses (usually just primes) and will allow AF (though probably not required) and Auto Exposure (very useful!)
3. Macro Lens - best results from prime macros (zooms usually don't do "true" macro of 1:1). Lens can be used for portraits
4. Dedicated Macro Lens - possibly the best solution but only good for macros

Personally, I've only tried #1 and use the remainder on various occasions (whatever suits and is most convenient)

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Old 10-08-2011, 15:47   #3 (permalink)
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Post Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markulous View Post
FWIW, my take would be (in reverse order of desirability):
1. Reversing Rings - work pretty well but shallow DOF makes focus difficult. Can use existing lenses but totally manual only
2. Extension Tubes - work well despite reduced light. Can use existing lenses (usually just primes) and will allow AF (though probably not required) and Auto Exposure (very useful!)
3. Macro Lens - best results from prime macros (zooms usually don't do "true" macro of 1:1). Lens can be used for portraits
4. Dedicated Macro Lens - possibly the best solution but only good for macros
Thanks for the quick reply!

If I got that 75-205mm MC, Macro Lens (~$65.US,) are you saying that I may be disapointed with its ability to get 1:1 or larger image? I don't want to waste money. My 3 lenses are fine for my needs, otherwise, and would be happy to spend less. I love the thought of being able to use the other lenses for macro shots!

This is an old passe' camera, and lenses are not so easy to find. It is great to find a Macro Lens, but I do not wish to buy something too similar to what I have. My macro needs (initially Auction Photo's) might easily be handled with a CHEAP Rev. Ring. (~$20.US)

Should I get a certain size Rev. Ring? (57mm=length of ring???)
=======
Concerning Extension Tubes: There are various lengths, and there are sets with various lengths. Is there a BETTER choice? Is it better to spend more, and have 3 different ones, or better to get something longer vs. shorter???

Thanks again...

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 10-08-2011 at 16:02. Reason: Learning as I go...
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:03   #4 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvidInvestor View Post
If I got that 75-205mm MC, Macro Lens (~$65.US,) are you saying that I may be disapointed with its ability to get 1:1 or larger image?
Yes, as they won't do 1:1. Don't get me wrong, you can achieve some perfectly acceptable images at 1:2 with a 'macro' zoom (as I have done in the past) but they won't be as good as could be achieved by a prime macro lens

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvidInvestor View Post
Should I get a certain size Rev. Ring? (57mm=length of ring???)
Reversing rings aren't length determined but are decided by the two lenses which you want to join together - so it's the specific lenses you want to use that will dictate the reversing ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvidInvestor View Post
Concerning Extension Tubes: There are various lengths, and there are sets with various lengths. Is there a BETTER choice? Is it better to spend more, and have 3 different ones, or better to get something longer vs. shorter???
The longer the lengths the greater the magnification - and it's the proportion of Extension to Lens that determines that enlargement factor. The rule is, the shorter the lens and longer the Extension, the greater the magnification. Basically, all it allows you do do is to focus your lens closer (I actually often use Tubes on my 500mm prime lens to focus closer).

Basically, Tubes are just spacers, hollow tubes for 'pushing' the lens out from the camera but there are two types:
1. Simple, which have no internal electrical connections requiring lenses to be manually set (aperture and AF)
2. Tubes with electrical contacts ensuring that exposure will continue to work (most modern lenses won't allow manual setting of aperture) and AF (less important for macro work)

Worth getting Tubes with metal mounts - don't forget you're sticking lenses on the end which increases the stress on the camera/lens mounts
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Old 11-08-2011, 08:16   #5 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

You could do worse than to get a bellows like Saracen did. Cost £5 and got this result with the £14 lens he bought

http://www.pixalo.com/community/macr...tml#post335449

Advantage of the bellows is that you can vary the length with it on the camera, but I don't think that you will get any with auto functionality.
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Old 11-08-2011, 12:08   #6 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

I believe that the magnification you get from that lens is 1:3.8 - ie around 1/4 lifesize. Which may in fact suit your auction needs.

I'm assuming that camera is a film camera ?

A reversing ring is something I've never used, but was often a way of getting high magnification. You may want to consider that lens with some extension tubes. These tend to be easy to fit and use. Would increase the magnification of the lens by allowing closer focus. Your existing 135mm could benefit in the same way from these.

The tubes normally come in a set of 3. You then add one or a combination to suit your needs.
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Old 12-08-2011, 03:55   #7 (permalink)
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Post Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
I believe that the magnification you get from that lens is 1:3.8 - ie around 1/4 lifesize. Which may in fact suit your auction needs.
May be good, and might be my choice. Good prices, and is in US already!

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
I'm assuming that camera is a film camera ?
Old Konica AutoReflex T was first offered in mid 1960's. This one is in good shape. Took my AVATAR Photo with it "Off-Hand," and you can see dentil molding on whole depth of bldg.


Scanned from 4"x 6" (10cmX15cm) print on old, cheap, scanner...
...forgive me if image is too large - any smaller loses detail.
Konica AutoReflex T (35mm Film) w/ 28mm 1:2.5 Wide-Angle Lens

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
A reversing ring is something I've never used, but was often a way of getting high magnification.
This seems to be cheapest option (~$20.US) Not sure I like the clamping idea... Not as much as the latch system of a specific Ext.Tube, you, know...

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
You may want to consider ... some extension tubes. These tend to be easy to fit and use. Would increase the magnification of the lens by allowing closer focus...
Only ones I know of that are SPECIFIC to my Konica would ship from Europe, and will be ~$60.US. A set of 3, or a specific one that seems to be near the size of longest in set, are presently available.


Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
The tubes normally come in a set of 3. You then add one or a combination to suit your needs.
Sounds good! Am really considering this, as the set is reasonable, though it will take a while to get it here!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabhand16 View Post
You could do worse than to get a bellows like Saracen did. Cost £5 and got this result with the £14 lens he bought
Only bellows made to fit my camera I know of are upwards of ~$150.US+shipping. I could take a couple hours, and check PHOTO/HOBBY Shop in nearby large city...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dabhand16 View Post
Advantage of the bellows is that you can vary the length with it on the camera, but I don't think that you will get any with auto functionality.
His result is GREAT, and I'd love to get something like that. The only specific bellows I found for my camera is more than I spent on the camera. Are there suggestions for what else I may try on this?

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 13-08-2011 at 04:28. Reason: Forgot to mention Camera Equip. used in photo...
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:16   #8 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markulous View Post
Worth getting Tubes with metal mounts - don't forget you're sticking lenses on the end which increases the stress on the camera/lens mounts
Thanks so much for the help. I am get an education as I try this different type of Photography. Equipment and techniques are different.

I had read on a thread here that someone began using a RAIL for focusing. Does that work with a tripod, or independently? I am sure I'll have every problem getting my shot as anyone else did, and would like to cut out some of that wasted time...

With what I am learning from you, I will end up spending less on things I cannot use, and maybe a bit more on just the right equipment.
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Old 12-08-2011, 05:24   #9 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markulous View Post
... won't be as good as could be achieved by a prime macro lens
Thanks for the great help. I am learning quite a bit before even starting. I don't really count the lame attempts to get a good "macro shot" with my present lenses...

BTW, is this in the category of a PRIME MACRO LENS as you mentioned?

55mm F3.5 Macro Hexanon AR for Konica

I am thinking it should fit my camera, and it is not out of the price range of the other options.
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Old 12-08-2011, 07:56   #10 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Rails are used on tripods as they allow very small changes in distance/focus - so allow precise framing of a subject

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvidInvestor View Post
Thanks for the great help. I am learning quite a bit before even starting. I don't really count the lame attempts to get a good "macro shot" with my present lenses...

BTW, is this in the category of a PRIME MACRO LENS as you mentioned?

55mm F3.5 Macro Hexanon AR for Konica

I am thinking it should fit my camera, and it is not out of the price range of the other options.
Sounds excellent to me - I see it comes (usually!) with it's own Extension Tube:

Quote:
As a dedicated macro lens it is optimized mainly for sharpness, especially in the close focusing range. As depth-of-field is extremely shallow with the close focusing distances of macro photography and such shots are mainly made stopped-down from a tripod, speed is not so important – the impressive sharpness is achieved also by means of a small optical element size and the resulting slow lens speed.

The Macro-Hexanon AR 55 mm / F3.5 was supplied together with a matching extension ring, the Macro Lens Adapter AR. This extension ring has no optical elements, it only allows for a longer extension. The Macro Lens Adapter AR did not change over time, it is identical for all lens variations.

Without the matching Macro Lens Adapter AR, the lens can be focused down to 0.25 m (97/8"). At this distance a maximum magnification ratio of 1:2 is achieved. Together with the matching extension ring, a minimum focusing distance of 22.2 cm (83/4") with a maximum magnification ratio of 1:1 can be achieved – the image on the film has the same size as the subject in reality.

Image quality is outstanding in technical terms
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Old 12-08-2011, 10:37   #11 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

If that 55mm is available with the Adapter in a similar price range to other options, I'd go with that.

1/2 size without and actual 1:1 with it. Best option in my opinion.

I'd go for the other lens and possible the tubes if price is different. But you'd get best results from that lens I believe on your camera.
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Old 13-08-2011, 04:10   #12 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisa View Post
If that 55mm is available with the Adapter in a similar price range to other options, I'd go with that...
Thanks!

If I understand what you are saying, this 55mm F:3.5 Macro would give best result of the options I mentioned till now. I saw another that one has the adapter included. I'll know in a couple of days if I can get that one (open auction.)

There are dents on the front of lens (other one in auction, too - mid 1970's items) but I'm assured it would not affect image.

I found a GOOD price and availability on a Konica Hexanon AR 1:1 Macro Lens Adapter. Would this help me get macro shots from my present lenses like an Ext.Tube would?

Thanks again for the time each of you have taken to help me get an idea of what to purchase for this purpose. Sorry for so many questions, but this is going to save me from learning the hard way I had bought the wrong thing...
=======
Each of the lenses I have been considering are about the same price, as are the Ext.Tube Set, and Ext.Tube 26 pictured earlier. This separate 1:1 Macro Lens Adapter is about half the price of the other options.

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 14-08-2011 at 18:06. Reason: Clarify & Add price info...
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Old 13-08-2011, 15:38   #13 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markulous View Post
Rails are used on tripods as they allow very small changes in distance/focus - so allow precise framing of a subject

Sounds excellent to me - I see it comes (usually!) with it's own Extension Tube:
Thanks for this help, Mark. Soon noticed a couple others: one has Ext.Tube (this one apparently doesn't,) and another seems to be in good shape, comparatively.

If I wait a couple of days, I'll have a chance at the others... Open Auctions are going to end, and I'll have put in my bid.

Thanks again - you have been a great help.

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 15-08-2011 at 10:30.
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Old 16-08-2011, 00:49   #14 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by AvidInvestor View Post
Open Auctions are going to end, and I'll have put in my bid.
Thanks again - you have ALL been a great help.

I found a complete Lens Set that includes Lens, Adapter & Case with 30+ year old paperwork. It was in the price range I had identified a half-dozen other options, and I got up early this morning to be the only bidder in the auction.

Should arrive this week, and I'll start experimenting with MACRO Shots!


Once again, thanks to all of you who so graciously helped.

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 17-08-2011 at 04:06.
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Old 16-08-2011, 08:58   #15 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

I'm not sure whether the Konica Hexanon AR 1:1 Macro Lens Adapter is usable on any other lenses other than the 55mm from a quick glance read. I guess you can try that out.

I think what you went for is the best option. Good luck with you shots.
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Old 17-08-2011, 15:54   #16 (permalink)
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Post Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

Quote:
Originally Posted by Markulous View Post
... don't forget you're sticking lenses on the end which increases the stress on the camera/lens mounts
Have been thinking about why TWO of these Macro Lenses should have similar dents in the same front edge. The type and placement of these dents makes me think it MAY HAVE BEEN the use of a Reversing Ring.

In something over 30 years old, it is hard to be sure about the history without clear info from the owner. It could be anything, but I have thought this is more likely the CLAMPING SCREWS of a Rev.Ring.


The design of this mechanism is certainly the cheapest way to join a couple of lenses, but a better way is to NOT have the screw go toward the center of the lens. It could be more like a HOSE CLAMP, and have the screw operate perpendicular to this, and put even pressure all around.

That is just the designer in me - "over thinking" the simple - but it may spare a lot of expensive lenses some unnecessary damage!

As a separate issue, Focusing Rails are 2 Way and 4 Way. I can see the advantage of the 4 Way, but is it worth three times the price? Here is the CHEAPEST one I found:


What is the screw in the slot intended for? ...a bellows? Also, is the left/right adjustment critical enough to justify the extra cost? (3x) I'd buy one of these in a heartbeat if it would work alright in a situation where a few extra seconds or minutes are not critical.

Last edited by AvidInvestor; 18-08-2011 at 12:16.
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Old 17-08-2011, 16:14   #17 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

I've not seen a reversing ring that has a screw clamp. Usually they have a thread that screws into the filter thread.

Can't answer your focus rail question as I've never used one.
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Old 18-08-2011, 00:58   #18 (permalink)
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Re: Macro Lens vs. Rev. Ring

I use a 4-way slider. It's a Velbon Super Mag Slider. It's very stable and secure - fine adjustments. The advantage of a 4 way is that you can compose the image easier - both back and front and left and right.

You can get two way ones - manfrotto for example.

I'd beware of cheap sliders - they are often very coarse in the adjustment.

See this thread - http://www.pixalo.com/community/gene...der-44318.html
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