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Quadna71 Mar 3, 2012 10:28 AM

Making good time...
I tried to take a clear macro shot of this trooper on my patio. After taking about 30 shots, even this one (the clearest) isn't tack sharp. Aside from slowing the lens down a little, is getting a dedicated macro lens the answer?
Making good time... by Quadna71, on Flickr

penolta Mar 3, 2012 9:11 PM

From the looks of the narrow band of sharp sand grains, you have very little depth of field. Try using a smaller aperture and fill flash.

Quadna71 Mar 4, 2012 5:44 PM

Thanks penolta - a very good idea. I'm have a very topical thread going elsewhere in the forum that hits that exact point! I've been exclusively using only Aperture Priority or Manual mode on my camera for the past 4 or 5 months as I not only know it gives me more control but think it helps me understand the process and might ultimately help me improve. But - I'm pretty new to this whole "close up" thing and was just using the Macro mode. After seeing all the comments on my other thread I've been convinced at the very least I should stick to Manual mode and work to improve from there. I'm not sure why I thought the Macro mode would have some "magical" settings to help me out but clearly that wasn't the case! :)

Thanks for the advice - I'm definitely going to be taking it to heart while working on my closeups.

Clint501 Mar 4, 2012 6:38 PM

Aside from slowing the lens down a little, is getting a dedicated macro lens the answer?

Yes and No

A dedicated prime macro lens will give you the potential for a sharper image but you still have to overcome some obstacles as with any lens. From your example above, no matter what the lens, you have some challenges to face. A moving target (and a long one at that), speed (even though it's a worm!) You probably couldn't get the whole worm in focus unless you used a "telephoto" lens and stood back at a greater distance.

A flash would help in a "macro" shot. You can "freeze" the motion, use a low aperture setting (f11-f13 and up, what ever is your lens capabilities) which give you greater DOF, and use ISO 100 to lessen "noise".

I see by the EXIF data the camera used f/4 aperture - that gives a very shallow DOF. If at all possible I try at least use f/11 to f/16, that's where the flash really helps.

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