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Old Nov 2, 2003, 10:52 PM   #1
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Default Close up's - macro mode

I was just looking at the "Digicam's Closeup's Page" and I'm amazed at the closeups out of the Nikon Coolpix camera's. These pictures helped me decide to get the Coolpix.

In macro mode I can't get closer than about 6" which isn't really close enough to get the kind of detail I'd like - like the kind of detail in the closeup's here.

How can I tell if I'm doing something wrong or if there's something wrong with my camera? I don't think there's really a whole lot of setting's to choose from on the coolpix camera's - I don't think. Aren't these pictures basically just taken in the "point and shoot" mode?

Please enlighten me!
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Old Nov 2, 2003, 11:13 PM   #2
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With the info you have given, it seems to me that you may *not* have the camera in macro mode. You will have to read the manual on exactly how to do this with your camera, but all Coolpix cameras must be manually placed in macro mode before the macro focusing capabilities can be used. This mode is indicated with a flower icon in your display. In addition to placing the camera in macro mode, you may also have to zoom the lens in or out until the flower icon turns yellow before taking any fotos. If the lens is zoomed to far in or out, the flower icon will turn white indicating that the lens is not in the correct macro zoom range. Your manual will explain this.
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Old Nov 3, 2003, 12:59 AM   #3
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Default Re: Close up's - macro mode

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Originally Posted by Becky0669
In macro mode I can't get closer than about 6" which isn't really close enough to get the kind of detail I'd like - like the kind of detail in the closeup's here.
My question: how do you know you are in macro mode? Does the flower icon appear on the LCD? With all Coolpix cameras, one must push a button, usually marked with mountain/flower icon, to enter macro mode unless your camera has a scene mode setting in which case you have to use the Close-Up mode. If your camera has the mountain/flower icon, you should zoom the lens to the middle so that the flower icon turns yellow (or green). Once you do that you should be able to shoot macro in about 2-3cm.

If you are using 2500/3500 cameras with a scene mode setting, please refer to my Coolpix 2500 user guide. If your camera has a mountain/flower setting, please refer to my 995 user guide. I don't have a close-up section for the 4500, and I don't have a user guide for the 5xxx series either. But, the concept is all the same because Nikon has made all Coolpix cameras similar operationally.

CK
http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam
Nikon Coolpix 950/990/995/2500/4500 User Guide
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Old Nov 3, 2003, 4:57 AM   #4
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"In addition to placing the camera in macro mode, you may also have to zoom the lens in or out until the flower icon turns yellow"

Thanks. The flower turning a color was a good cue. I was going a little too fast. I only read far enough in the manual to figure out how to turn the macro on but I skipped over the rest. What I was doing was putting it in macro, getting really close to the subject and then zooming in on it but the zoom has to be fully retracted to work in macro (I'm not sure if I said that right).

Shene -

Excellent manual. I wish you had something on the coolpix 2100! I think I'll be able to pick up a few pointers anyway but my main concern now is the flash in macro mode which washes the image out badly enough that it's kind of a joke to even use. And this is what I need most from this camera.
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Old Nov 3, 2003, 5:37 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Becky0669
my main concern now is the flash in macro mode which washes the image out badly enough that it's kind of a joke to even use. And this is what I need most from this camera.
With such a close working distance, the use of the on-camera flash is not a good idea. In addition to washed-out results, the flash output will not illuminate the portion you are trying to photograph. If you do indoor work with a working distance, the distance from the front end of the lens to the subject, that is very close to the minimum, flash is almost useless. I also believe your subject would be very small so that you could move your camera so close. If this is true, you could use Nikon's SL1 Cool-Light. However, the SL-1 light is very weak and many people do not like it. If this is also true to your work, you could consider the stronger Samigon FRL-1 Halo ring light. Both are discussed on my user guide. They are listed in the Odd Stuffs section near the bottom of the home page.

Hope this helps.

CK
http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam
Nikon Coolpix 950/990/995/2500/4500 User Guide
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Old Nov 4, 2003, 12:49 AM   #6
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Quote:
With such a close working distance, the use of the on-camera flash is not a good idea. In addition to washed-out results, the flash output will not illuminate the portion you are trying to photograph.
I got an idea to cut a sheet of fabric softener into a strip, quadruple it and then tape that onto the flash. It helps, so long as the item isn't shiny. I'm not experiencing the "half illumination" phenomenon that's shown in your manual and that you mention here. I tried the same with a dollar bill. Maybe because the flash is situated in a different spot? I don't know. The "mega" flash on mine in macro mode is ridiculous though. I'm going to check out the flashes you mention. I'm not crazy about the idea of having to juggle a bunch of equipment just to take a simple, non-professional shot. I'm starting to wonder if Nikon makes a lousy flash intentionally - that way you have to buy more stuff just to get a decent image!

Thanks again for your help
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Old Nov 6, 2003, 8:57 PM   #7
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I solved macro lighting with a Vivitar 285HV and a Lumiquest Promax Pocket Bouncer. I tilt the head forward to the 45 degree mark and the bouncer is horizontal and just over the end of the lens then I set the VariPower to 1/16.

My 5700 is on manual exposure with a shutter speed of 1/250th or faster and start the aperture at f/7.4. These settings will minimize any ambient light. The flash is so fast I don't need to support the camera.

I found that Wide Adapter setting in the Lens menu limits the telelphoto range to the end of the Macro range.
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Old Nov 8, 2003, 2:29 AM   #8
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Default Re: Close up's - macro mode

Quote:
Originally Posted by Becky0669
I was just looking at the "Digicam's Closeup's Page" and I'm amazed at the closeups out of the Nikon Coolpix camera's. These pictures helped me decide to get the Coolpix.

In macro mode I can't get closer than about 6" which isn't really close enough to get the kind of detail I'd like - like the kind of detail in the closeup's here.

How can I tell if I'm doing something wrong or if there's something wrong with my camera? I don't think there's really a whole lot of setting's to choose from on the coolpix camera's - I don't think. Aren't these pictures basically just taken in the "point and shoot" mode?

Please enlighten me!
In addition to the macro setting that others have mentioned, you may want to try tacking on a macro adapttor lens. you can get as close as 3" with it.
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