Macro lens - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 01:43 AM Thread Starter
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Macro lens

Which Macro lens do you guys use to get those cool shots of fish and shrimps?

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post #2 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 01:47 AM
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Tamron 90mm.


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post #3 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 01:58 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nubster View Post
Tamron 90mm.

How does it compare to a Nikon macro lens if you have one? I would really like a good macro lens Nikon or not. Do you use any tele-converter to get closer shots?

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post #4 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 02:08 AM
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I have not used a Nikkor but from shots I have seen on the internet, they are very close. The Nikkor may be slightly better but is also much more expensive (double or triple the price). Another good option is the Sigma 105mm but it's also about double the Tamron.

I have also never used a teleconverter. I would like to try some extension tubes though.

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post #5 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 02:22 AM Thread Starter
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I don't need something super expensive as long as i can see the shrimp details clearly. What does the extension tubes do? I never really hear of them.

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post #6 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 02:36 AM
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They create space between the lens and the sensor. The farther away the lens is, the closer the focus, the greater the magnification. The tubes are just empty space so there is no deterioration of image quality. The trade off is that you have to adjust for exposure because the tubes will lesson the light getting in to the camera. You can get cheap tubes that make it so that you have to operate the lens fully manual with no input from the lens. You can get more expensive ones that have contacts so that your camera gets information (metering) from the lens and auto focus. They work very well and are a good option to getting a macro lens. The better tubes usually run a little less than $200 new. The Tamron will cost about $300 used and the other lenses go up from there in price.

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post #7 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 02:40 AM
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Tokina 100mm, $500 and works for me. If I had the money at the time I would get the nikkor 105mm. One of nikon's finest lenses

extension tubes help do some macro work without buying a macro lens

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post #8 of 56 (permalink) Old 03-24-2012, 03:06 PM
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The Kenko Extension Tube Set DG for Nikon allows auto-focus. However, in addition to cutting down on the light reaching the camera sensor, extension tube significantly reduces the focusing distance, meaning that you have to move the camera much closer to the object. Extension tube also cuts down on the depth of field causing very shallow focus.

Regarding the Nikon 105 lens, instead of the current generation (Micro-Nikkor AF-S 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR), the previous generation (Micro-Nikkor AF 105mm f/2.8 D) gives a much sharper image due to the much better control on chromatic aberrations. Here is the graphic comparison.

Current generation (Micro-Nikkor AF-S 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR) chromatic aberrations:


Previous generation (Micro-Nikkor AF 105mm f/2.8 D) chromatic aberrations:


For the complete reviews , see:

Micro-Nikkor AF-S 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED VR

Micro-Nikkor AF 105mm f/2.8 D

Here is a shot with the previous generation lens (Micro-Nikkor AF 105mm f/2.8 D) on a D90:

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post #9 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 01:31 PM
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if you have a tele lens, May I suggest a Raynox 250? This photo I took with a cheap Super Takumar 70-200mm lens ($50) and the raynox. The size of the fly is 2/3 of the shrimp.


The fly by Tea.H, on Flickr


The fly by Tea.H, on Flickr
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post #10 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 02:06 PM
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canon 100mm










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post #11 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 02:30 PM
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I've heard the Canon 100mm f/2.8 or the newer L one with IS are both very solid choices. Hard to say whether the extra $300 or so for the L designation and IS is worth it, but some of the aquarium photos I've seen with those babies are superb.

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post #12 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 05:06 PM
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In the long run it's better to get the more expensive name brand camera lenses (Nikkor, Canon) if you can as they hold their value over time and are generally top quality, but getting the other lenses is good too IMO.

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post #13 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-01-2012, 07:42 PM
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post #14 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 09:10 AM Thread Starter
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wow those are some great shots. I like the pictures of the fly.

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post #15 of 56 (permalink) Old 04-04-2012, 05:07 PM
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Choose whatever your wallet can afford or whatever you have around. That Raynox looks interesting and has decent reviews. Might order one to see how it performs with out of camera images.

Here are some pics from various lenses with and without attachments.

Tamron 90mm f/2.8 Adaptall manual focus macro lens (picked up for ~$200 via eBay).




Nikon 18-70mm f/3.5-4.5 (not a macro lens...)


Nikon 105mm f/2.8 (non-VR)








Nikon 55mm f/3.5 micro


Size of the fw limpet next to tip of a Bic pen to show relative size.


Nikon 60mm f/2.8 macro


Nikon 50mm f/1.4D (another non-macro lens)




Same lens, but reverse mounted


105mm f/2.8 VR at 1:1


105mm f/2.8 VR at 1:1 with Kenko extension tubes


Baby mysis at ~0.25"


105mm VR @1:1 + all three Kenko tubes stacked


105mm VR at various magnification






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