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Old Apr 3, 2006, 1:19 PM   #1
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I was just down at my local camera shop buying a new Tamrac backpack case for my trip I'm planning for Savannah, GA this week and on the bargain table, they had a set of two Tiffen 55mm close-up lenses for $20. I couldn't resist figuring if they worked at that price great and if they didn't, I wouldn't be out much. I keep my eyes out for anything that will screw directly onto my FZ-30 these days.

The kit came with two lenses, a "plus 10" and "plus 7". Both are threaded for 55mm and according to the package, they can be stacked for "plus 17". Also came with a cleaning cloth and solution.

Anyone tried these lenses? Have I found a true bargain or did I even get what I paid for? Normally, I stear clear of bargains like this when optics are involved but for $20, I figured it was worth the gamble just to satisfy my curiosity.
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Old Apr 3, 2006, 4:11 PM   #2
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IMO, there are two reasons these lens will present problems: 1) Theyhave a single glass element, which gives good focus at the center but softness towards the edges. Achromaticlens (such as the nikon 3t,4t,5t,6t) have a second element that flattens the focus out to the edges. 2) Diopter powers above +5 are very difficult to work with due to the extremely shallow dof. You might have some luck and certainly will gain some valuable experience with the +7 diopter lens but I wouldwork in the4-8x zoom range. You will focus at 5 to 6" from the subject with the +7 diopter. The +10 diopter is more powerful and that much more difficult. Combining the two for +17 will prove essentialluy impossible to deal with. In any case, you will want lots of bright sunlight. Practice on fixed objects such as coins or jewelry.

These lens will hopefully open the doorto the magic of macros. The next time you consider a close-up lens purchase, look for a +3 diopter achromatic like the nikon 4t or oly mcon40.
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Old Apr 4, 2006, 8:35 AM   #3
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fred,

You pretty much nailed my experience last night once I had a chance to play around with them (if only for a few minutes). I found an enormous amount of blurring around the edges with both lenses attached. I can see the plus 7 on it's own being fun. Thanks for your advice on distance and zoom ranges.
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Old Apr 4, 2006, 7:50 PM   #4
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http://www.geocities.com/SoHo/Worksh...tolesson3.html


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Old Apr 4, 2006, 9:11 PM   #5
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eddie_dane wrote:
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Thanks for your advice on distance and zoom ranges.
With that much power even 2x zoom will give quite a bit of magnification and a little better dof and overall quality. Macro is a lot of fun. Enjoy! Get out in the sunlight on some flowers and post a few shots. Soft edges are not totally unattractive.
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Old Apr 4, 2006, 9:13 PM   #6
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wow, thanks narmer
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Old Apr 5, 2006, 6:46 AM   #7
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would you be able to post somebefore and after shtos showing the diff made wth ur close up filters.

i have a small one at the moment +2 diopter but i am considering a larger diopter close up filter like urs. just wondering about the geometric distortion.

thanks mate

ken


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Old Apr 5, 2006, 11:21 AM   #8
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I haven't had a chance to really play around with them yet, it may be a week or so but I'm planning a trip this weekend and doing a lot of shots and will be happy to post results when I return (keep in mind, the results will be with me behind the camera and not others here that are great macro masters - but I'll do my best to produce something that would give you an idea of the results).
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