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Old Jul 1, 2011, 1:47 PM   #1
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Default Macro Lens

Hi ,

I am planning for Macro photography can you recommend me lens. I have Canon 7D I was confused between 100mm L and normal lenses and how about 85mm Macro with 1:5 Magnification how are Sigma Macro lenses?

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Abhi.
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Old Jul 1, 2011, 4:15 PM   #2
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There are no bad macro lenses. Your frist criterion should be focal length. A long focal length macro lens will let you keep your distance so you don't frighten away animate subjects, but a short focal length will allow you to more easily adjust the subject and lighting for inanimate subjects.
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Old Jul 1, 2011, 5:53 PM   #3
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For true macro you are also looking for 1:1 ratio (lifesize) or larger.
Most true macro lenses will achieve 1:1.
I've been using the Sigma 150mm f/2.8 macro and it has been great.
A very sharp flat field lens.
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Old Jul 1, 2011, 7:39 PM   #4
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What kind of macro photography are you planning to do? Live insects? Products? Plants?
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Old Jul 2, 2011, 12:19 AM   #5
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Hi Abhi

As has been written above, there are a number of things to take into account when looking at a macro lens. (main one being focal length, but also AF speed, lens extension when focussing, etc). Also some now have IS (Canon) or OS (Sigma).

Canon has a number of good macros - and from these I would recommend: EF-S 60mm (only suitable for crop sensor Canon bodies), EF 100mm USM and EF 100mm L USM. I've used all these, and for my purposes I have the EF 100mm USM, which works great on my 7D. Live view can particularly useful for some macro shots (the 10x zoom in before taking the photo is very handy to nail focus!).

The 100mm L macro (with IS) is certainly a very very good lens. Very sharp and IS can help in MOST situations. However for most macro photography you will want to be using a good solid tripod also. I went with the 100mm USM because the saving over the L allowed me a very good Manfrotto tripod (and still spare cash). Both the 100mm USM and 60mm USM are very sharp, and I would rate them at 'very good' (just behind the 100mm L).

The 60mm also doubles up as a good semi-fast portrait lens, which can be handy. I didn't want the 60mm mainly as its working distance is too close for insects (which I like to shoot time to time). That is the insects can get scared because you need to be closer to take photos of them than with the 100mm.

I have the 50mm f1.8 so the 100mm USM macro for me was a more complementary lens for other things too (I find it's great for casual subject isolation @ f2.8 too, eg food, objects, etc).

The Canon 180mm macro is a huge lens, very good - but big and more 'specialist'. It is the ideal lens for insect photography. Sigma make a 150mm macro which is somewhat similar.

Sigma actually have a number of very good macros - though I have not tried any personally, I have seen many a good photo with them. For me it's important to have a lens that does not expand with focussing, I find it much easier to work macros that way. That's one of the reasons I didn't go with the Sigmas. But other people don't find this a hindrance. Check out www.photozone.de which lists & tests a lot of lenses, and I think all the Canon macros and most of the Sigma macros too.

All the best. Let us know how you go.

Paul
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Old Jul 2, 2011, 8:44 AM   #6
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either 60mm/2.8 or 100mm/2.8 will do just fine. Tamron 90mm and Sigma 105mm are very popular. you just can't go wrong with a macro lens, they all are very sharp with nice contrast and colours.
if you want to go extreme macro - get a Canon MP-E 65mm/2.8 - gives you 1x to 5x magnification without any additional attachments. great fun, but a strict macro lens.
anyway, 60mm macro either Canon or Tamron would be my recommendation as a first macro lens, as said above, works as a great portrait lens
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Old Jul 2, 2011, 3:18 PM   #7
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The Sigma EX 150mm f/2.8 macro and Sigma EX 180mm f/3.5 macro lenses are Internal Focus, they do not expand with focusing.

I do agree, that is most undesirable feature to have in any lens especially a macro.

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Originally Posted by pj1974 View Post

Sigma actually have a number of very good macros - though I have not tried any personally, I have seen many a good photo with them. For me it's important to have a lens that does not expand with focussing, I find it much easier to work macros that way. That's one of the reasons I didn't go with the Sigmas. But other people don't find this a hindrance. Check out www.photozone.de which lists & tests a lot of lenses, and I think all the Canon macros and most of the Sigma macros too.

Paul
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Old Jul 3, 2011, 8:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PeterP View Post
The Sigma EX 150mm f/2.8 macro and Sigma EX 180mm f/3.5 macro lenses are Internal Focus, they do not expand with focusing.

I do agree, that is most undesirable feature to have in any lens especially a macro.
Thanks Peter for your clarification... apologies if my previous post was misleading). I was mainly looking at the 100mm range (ie smaller than 150mm focal length macros). So in Sigma's case, the 105mm had this as a 'con' - as did the Tamron 90mm).

Cheers. All the best to the OP with decision / purchase! Looking forward to hearing the outcome and seeing photos!

Paul
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Old Jul 3, 2011, 10:05 AM   #9
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I have Sigma 105/2.8 Version1 and for another camera Sigma105/2.8 Version2 - new is Sigma 105/2.8 with OS - but for $1400 (sure soon falling down) criminal expensive.

Sigma 105/2.8 move out, that's a disadvantage - better are Tamron 60/2 and Tamron 90/2.8, they are focusing inside.

Search my pictures with Canon 550D and Tamron 60/2
http://forums.steves-digicams.com/ca...2-0-macro.html

Sigma105, Tamron90, Tamron60 are ideal for freehand, for longer and heavier lenses a tripod is necessary.



G3 + Tamron 60mm/2 macro (Canon mount) ... freehand






.

Last edited by DonalDuc; Jul 3, 2011 at 10:12 AM.
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Old Jul 7, 2011, 12:14 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TCav View Post
There are no bad macro lenses. Your frist criterion should be focal length. A long focal length macro lens will let you keep your distance so you don't frighten away animate subjects, but a short focal length will allow you to more easily adjust the subject and lighting for inanimate subjects.
Thanx TCav my main area of captures would be table tops objects.
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