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Old Jun 17, 2008, 10:39 PM   #1
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More than a year ago I had back surgery. This has made it difficult to shoot Landscapes and Portraits. So I'm developing an interest in Macro Photography. Might be a little easier to sit in a chair or lay down on a blanket and shoot in Macros.

Anyway, I have some decent prime lenses geared toward portraits... the 50mm F1.4 and the 77mm Limited lens. But none that close focus as a macro. I'm also a bit short of cash not having worked in over a year. So my choices are limited, at least till I can more some of my less used lenses on E-b.. and buy one of the better macros.

So, I can purchase a set of tube extensions and maybe use my 77mm limited(sharp as a tack) or pick up one of the cheap zoom "Macros" you see on Eb.y. 70-210 80-200 etc. Thats about all I could afford at the moment.I don't need professional results but I would like some nice sharp macros.

Whats the best way to go? I have read tubes can be a pain to use but if they work well with my 77 limited I would assume the pics might be worth the effort. What are the best tubes to get? I shoot mainly AP so having the electrical contacts would be nice but I'm willing to try going completely manual. Thanks in advance for any advice you might be able to give. I have ZERO knowledge when it comes to Macro.


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Old Jun 18, 2008, 3:36 AM   #2
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Spiritbro77 wrote:
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More than a year ago I had back surgery. This has made it difficult to shoot Landscapes and Portraits. So I'm developing an interest in Macro Photography. Might be a little easier to sit in a chair or lay down on a blanket and shoot in Macros.

Anyway, I have some decent prime lenses geared toward portraits... the 50mm F1.4 and the 77mm Limited lens. But none that close focus as a macro. I'm also a bit short of cash not having worked in over a year. So my choices are limited, at least till I can more some of my less used lenses on E-b.. and buy one of the better macros.

So, I can purchase a set of tube extensions and maybe use my 77mm limited(sharp as a tack) or pick up one of the cheap zoom "Macros" you see on Eb.y. 70-210 80-200 etc. Thats about all I could afford at the moment.I don't need professional results but I would like some nice sharp macros.

Whats the best way to go? I have read tubes can be a pain to use but if they work well with my 77 limited I would assume the pics might be worth the effort. What are the best tubes to get? I shoot mainly AP so having the electrical contacts would be nice but I'm willing to try going completely manual. Thanks in advance for any advice you might be able to give. I have ZERO knowledge when it comes to Macro.

Hi,

I sympathise with on the back problem, I too have a herniated disk, that gives me sciatica problems, but so far I've avoided surgery. Perhaps the Vivitar Macro focussing Teleconverter would help you, The PKA model would be best, theres' also a Panagor unit similar. I have the manual Vivitar and it does a good job with The SMC-M 50/1.4. three links for you below scroll right to the bottom of the lens page for info on both of the above. Hope this helps ... Jack

http://www.jr-worldwi.de/photo/index.html?lenses.html

http://www.jr-worldwi.de/photo/index.html?lenses.html

http://www.jr-worldwi.de/photo/index..._shootout.html

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Old Jun 18, 2008, 6:27 AM   #3
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Sympathy indeed for the back injury. I have avoided surgery thus far, but time will tell.



My first venture into the macro world was a reversing ring, which allows you to mount the 50mm lens backwards on the body (got to have an aperature ring on the lens). Great results, but a bit hard to use.

The next step was a set of k-mount extension tubes. These work really well (again, you need a lens with an aperature ring), but if you put 50mm of extension tube with your 50mm lens, you get a 100mm macro lens which will do 1:1 (or as near as possible)

The only criteria is to remember to stop down the lens before shooting.

There are, of course, the macro filter set. Not too expensive, and I think they are +1, +2, +4, +10. People have had good sucess with the +10 on a zoom lens.



Good luck and take it easy.



Dal


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Old Jun 18, 2008, 2:13 PM   #4
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It's funny that you should mention this - I spent a little time Sunday playing around with both the Vivitar Series One 105 macro lens and my old K-mount 135mm Tak and a home-made extension tube, just playing around with them. My original intention was to see if I could get close enough with the Tak/tube combination to get more than 1:1, but promptly forgot about that while I was playing with them.

A few words about the equipment - the Viv 105 is an A lens. The Takumar is a manual K-mount that came as one of two kit lenses with my Pentax ME camera in 1980 and has a rather poor reputation. Mine is tack-sharp, though as an uncoated lens, it suffers from flare in certain lighting conditions. My home-made extension tube started out in life as a 2X TC, also K-mount. Who knows when my father bought it, but by the time I got it, it was so soft it wasn't worth using. I took out the glass and have a nice, very cheap extension tube.

The first thing that surprised me was that I really liked using the manual metering with the Tak/tube combination. I shoot lots of flowers, they usually have a great deal of dynamic range so I tend to use spot metering. With the manual lens, I can point it first to there I want to meter, push the button, and forget about exposure -concentrating only onthefocus. I find the green button on the K20 easier to find than the AE-L button on the back, so I don't always remember to fix the exposure and if I take too long to focus without having the button half-pushed, the camera clears the exposure lock.

Extension tubes are inconvenient because they are extra pieces of equipment and you lose infinity focus with them. It's more fiddling, but a good choice when on a budget.

The zoom macro lenses usually can't do 1:1 - they'll do 1:2.5 to 4 and still call themselves macros. Since budget is the biggest thing, I'd go for the extension tube first, especially with the 77mm as the lens. Dioper lenses might work well with the 77, too - you have a lot to work with.
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Old Jun 18, 2008, 3:09 PM   #5
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Thanks for the replys and kind words. For those with back pain putting off surgery.......Keep putting it off. At least when it comes to a full fusion. I'm a LOT worse off post op. If the Doc tells you he wants to do a fusion, don't do it unless ou just can't STAND the pain any longer. Even then don't count on anything. It's a crap shoot.
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Old Jun 18, 2008, 9:30 PM   #6
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I've read that spinal fusion isn't a sure thingas far as solvingback pain goes. I did quite a bit of reading a couple of years ago when they told me I had osteoarthritis in my back. I have good days and bad days, so I definitely feel for you.
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Old Jun 19, 2008, 3:09 AM   #7
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Spiritbro77 wrote:
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Thanks for the replys and kind words. For those with back pain putting off surgery.......Keep putting it off. At least when it comes to a full fusion. I'm a LOT worse off post op. If the Doc tells you he wants to do a fusion, don't do it unless ou just can't STAND the pain any longer. Even then don't count on anything. It's a crap shoot.
Thanks for that confirmation of what my physiotherapist tells me ... I've found my condition responds well to traction, with occasional sessions,and some daily home exercise I've kept the surgery option at bay, so far. If I opted for an expensive operation, I was told there was a 50/50 chance of success, not very good odds to my mind. ... Jack
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Old Jun 19, 2008, 8:58 PM   #8
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if you get ETs then your 50mm will be better suited with them. i've shot macros everyway you can imagine except with a bellows.. as harriet said there's a bit of inconvenience when using anything other than a dedicated macro. because of the $$ i'd suggest a tamron or sigma 70-300 because of their 1:2 macro ability. that way you get a decent half life size macro with plenty of working room and a tele zoom as well.
some thing else you can do if you have abody cap and an unused adapter ring you can throw together an adapter to reverse the 50mm.
no matter what you use you'll usually be working at f8++ minimum for DOF. an off camera flash or an external flash on the hot shoe will make a world of difference. to me flash and macro go together like peas in a pod..

ask if you want other options,
roy
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Old Sep 3, 2008, 7:11 PM   #9
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Another option: Use an inexpensive enlarger lens on a bellows. I eBayed-up three FSU (Former Soviet Union) lenses of 50, 75 and 110mm, all M39, for about US$5 each plus US$20 shipping from Kiev. The 50/2.8 (Vega-11U) and 110/4 (Industar 100U) are little guys that work just fine on the bellows, focusing from infitesimal to infinite and beyond. The 75/3.5 (Industar-58U) is like a heavy black trumpet; I devoted a couple cheap COTs (close-up tubes) to fashioning a PK base with a fixed focal distance of about 4 feet, just right for portraits.

Anyway, with a bellows and a variety of enlarger or folder or viewcam or science-lab lenses, you aren't limited to the usual commercial offerings. Any lens you can stick onto the bellows mount is fodder for experimentation, for good or ill. And try using a long telephoto. Back in the day, I put a Spiratone 400mm on a bellows on my Olympus Pen-FT, and could safely shoot rattlesnakes from ten feet away.
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Old Sep 7, 2008, 9:58 PM   #10
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jachol wrote:
Quote:
Spiritbro77 wrote:
Quote:
Thanks for the replys and kind words. For those with back pain putting off surgery.......Keep putting it off. At least when it comes to a full fusion. I'm a LOT worse off post op. If the Doc tells you he wants to do a fusion, don't do it unless ou just can't STAND the pain any longer. Even then don't count on anything. It's a crap shoot.
Thanks for that confirmation of what my physiotherapist tells me ... I've found my condition responds well to traction, with occasional sessions,and some daily home exercise I've kept the surgery option at bay, so far. If I opted for an expensive operation, I was told there was a 50/50 chance of success, not very good odds to my mind. ... Jack
I had a cervical spine fusion in 1960 at the age of 11 years old. Broke my neck in a scuffle in the swimming pool with a 16 year old that was twice my size. Worked great and no pain for the last 40+ years now. My wife had a fusion of a lumbar joint a year or so ago and so far the results are worth it. She waited 10+ years before doing it and was in pain the whole time. Now no pain. I have low back pain from time to time but I use an inversion table to solve that pain plus a once a month visit to a Chiropractor. The inversion table cost less than 200 dollars but has been more than worth the money. My back has never felt better. This is the model I bought....
http://www.inversion-table-direct.co...nversion-table

Dawg
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