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Old Nov 19, 2002, 10:22 PM   #1
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Default Macro and ring flash

I am purchasing a 7i or 7hi (still a little undecided). They seem to offer the most for the money. I am planning on using it especially for surgical pictures to assist with lectures and conferences. I was wondering if someone could help me out with a few questions.
1) Is there another macro lens that is necessary, or is what it has standard enough?
2) Are there other ring flashes that are compatible, or do you have to buy the expensive macro 1200 ring flash and flash controller kit?

Thanks :?:
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Old Nov 27, 2002, 12:28 AM   #2
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Depends on the magnification you need. It's pretty good for macros as is. You can fill the frame with about 2 1/4 " if I remember correctly. And here's an example of what you can do with a Canon C-8 240 close-up lens ($25.00 or less on eBay)--you'll need a 49mm to 48mm step-down ring to use that one.

http://www.pbase.com/image/3933907 (Two Cheerios and a Q-Tip)

Remember that the (most usable) macro setting is at maximum telephoto zoom. You get the macro shot without having to get so close to the subject. You may be able to do much better with existing light or with a lamp or spotlight of some kind than with the flash. I would expect operating room lighting to be quite sufficient without the flash.

And, yes, you'll avoid a lot of headaches if you stick with the Minolta flashes that are designated for the camera. It doesn't communicate well with other flashes.

There's at least one dentist using the Dimage/ring flash combo successfully.
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Old Nov 27, 2002, 7:42 PM   #3
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While it is true that you can fill the frame with a half dollar with no accessory, it is also true that the macro is limited to the ends of the zoom range so making minor adjustments of cropping is a matter of altering subject distance. In some cases, where working space is limited, you might benefit from using a simple +diopter lens allowing the camera to focus more closely at all zoom settings. For my work with coins, I have benefitted from a +4 but your subjects might change that to another strength. Fortunately, these are easily available in 49mm thread and not at all expensive. I'd suggest trying the camera as it comes and remembering that problems that might arise are probably solvable with a little thought or a note to this forum.
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Old Nov 28, 2002, 1:55 AM   #4
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Macro examples, without/with a +3 diopter close-up lens:

Consider also the SRElectronic ring flash:
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Old Feb 11, 2003, 5:55 PM   #5
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I have the 7i and also purchased the 1200 ring flash. I think is 7i is great for macro. I purchased the ring flash to photography live butterflies, flowers and other small objects. I agree with the silver dollar filling up the frame with macro. Closeup lens diopters that screw on the lens are cheap, excellent, don't change the light characterics, and would allow you to get closer. You can get a set of +1, +2, +3, AND +10 and cover about any situation.
The ring flash is great, although expensive I paid $380 w/the computer controller). You need the controller too, so don't think you can get by without it. They come together although the ring can be purchased seperately in case the ring flash was damaged and you just wanted and flash without the controller, I guess. The ring flash actually has 4 flashes that can be controlled individually-on or off. This gives you the possiblity of side lighting or top lighting for shadow or depth. The glass over the flash is diffused, e.g. frosted glass, so you don't get the glare and hot spots of regular flash. Similiar to putting tissur over a regular flash. The flash is TLL and exposers are dead-on. The flash mounts easily and securely. The manual says you get 400 shots on a set of 4 AA. I took 300 on a set of batteries and the batteries are still good and ready to go. And added feature is the 4 focusing lights that you can turn on to assist in focusing. This was enough light to allow the autofocus to work on the camera for all the photos I took. If you have the focusing lights on and press the shutter the focusing lights go off while the flash is on and then come back on after the exposure if you wish (it has many adjustments as to how long the lights stay on, whether they come back on after exposers,etc).
I never had a ring flash with my 35mm SLR's although I kinda always had one on my wish list. I'm glad I purchased the ring flash. You could get by without one or probablely use a minolta 3600 or 5600 flash, but with more work and maybe you'd miss some shots that the ring flash would get for you.
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