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Old Dec 27, 2004, 8:22 PM   #1
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I'm sure like everyone else and their grandma, I"m interested in taking some good macro shots. But I have a few questions before I can really decide on a lense:

1. I see people express the ratio 1:1 (and others, for that matter) often on this and other boards. Can someone explain exactly what that refers to?

2. I see fixed focal length lenses that are specified "macro" lense, but the focal lengths seem to have a significant range across different lenses. What, for example, is the benefit of having a 105 macro lense as compared to say a 50 macro lense? What are the trade-offs?

3. What's the real difference between a lense that is specifically called a "macro" lense and say, my kit lense that can be shot in "macro" mode on my camera?

4. Lense recommendations are always welcome. They are probably already on the board somewhere though so if I could just get some help better understanding the above questions I'd appreciate it.

Thanks.
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Old Dec 29, 2004, 8:25 PM   #2
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Wannabe wrote:
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I'm sure like everyone else and their grandma, I"m interested in taking some good macro shots. But I have a few questions before I can really decide on a lense:

1. I see people express the ratio 1:1 (and others, for that matter) often on this and other boards. Can someone explain exactly what that refers to?

2. I see fixed focal length lenses that are specified "macro" lense, but the focal lengths seem to have a significant range across different lenses. What, for example, is the benefit of having a 105 macro lense as compared to say a 50 macro lense? What are the trade-offs?

3. What's the real difference between a lense that is specifically called a "macro" lense and say, my kit lense that can be shot in "macro" mode on my camera?

4. Lense recommendations are always welcome. They are probably already on the board somewhere though so if I could just get some help better understanding the above questions I'd appreciate it.

Thanks.
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Wannabe,
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1. 1:1 is a life sized image on your film or digital sensor. 1:2 would be half life sized & 1:3 a third & so on.
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2. I have a 60mm Macro & I have to have the lens much closer to the subject to get a 1:1 or life sized image compared to a 105mm macro. The trade offs are if I want to shoot a butterfly it will likely fly away because my 60mm has to be closer to him. With a 105mm you'll be far enough away not to spook him.
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3. The kit lens is not a macro. It won't shoot 1:1 or 1:2. The macro setting on your camera doesn't make the kit lens macro. It just sets the shutter speed & aperature to favor a macro shot. That setting would work best with a true macro lens.
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4. If you are planning to buy a 105 Nikkor macro you have already nailed down one of the best out there. I have the 60mm Nikkor macro & for flowers & other small things it's great. If you want to shoot critters buy the 105. I've also read that the 90mm SP Tamron is a good lens too.
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Good luck,
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Chuck:cart:
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Old Dec 29, 2004, 10:35 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply, Crash. I know people get tired of answering the same questions all the time. Sometimes I even know there's a thread I've read before on a particular subject that might be helpfulbut can't find the right one anymore.

Anyway, I kind of figured that's what the ratio numbers were for. To be honest, I was talking about the 105 sigma, but would certainly look at the nikkor before I bought anything. I've seen some great looking shots with the Sigma, and I was thinking it would be cheaper but I've read at least one post that indicated that might not be true in a Macro lense. I'll have to look.

Thanks again for the info. Sometimes it's harder to get the "broad stroke" information/knowledge than it is to figure out the more technical aspects.
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