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dzinndzinn Jun 7, 2013 10:30 AM

Macro without 'macro mode'

Am looking at similar cameras (as those mentioned in the posting for Camera for Travel question (e.g., Sony WX300) -- but am interesting in quality of macro -- the WX300 has no 'macro mode' (where you can select the little flower to go into macro mode). Is macro mode now unnecessary? The camera 'automatically' goes into macro mode? Any thoughts about comparative macro mode for these cameras?

ps I was using a friend's poor quality camera (can't remember which one). It had auto focus -- so the camera kept re-focusing continuously until you were dizzy with each little move of the hand/object.... Then we manually set into macro mode -- so we didn't get the annoying 'auto focus'. This behaviour has made me a bit sceptical about auto focus for macro...

Wonder if the Sony WX300 for example, can be put into macro mode?

Or maybe can take even better macro photos with new type of macro on the WX300 (or similar) cameras? (My current camera, with broken touch screen, is a Sony T200 -- and the macro on that was good enough for my purposes. But would be happy to have better macro, too).


SIMON40 Jun 7, 2013 2:19 PM

You could switch focus modes on the WX300, from the usual multi-area "auto" selection to the spot or centre area focus- effectively selecting your chosen focus area.
With regards closest focus distance- the Sony will focus as close as 5cm at wide angle (25mm).
Your T200 was very useful for macro work as it had a 1cm close focus ability- and add in the "less than wide" 35mm lens (which gets you closer by default) and you have a good little macro tool...

Canon's SX280hs has a close focus dist' of 5cm- and a "macro" button on the rear...
Panasonic's TZ30 allows you to get within 3cm- and a "macro" button also....

Ozzie_Traveller Jun 7, 2013 6:15 PM

G'day Deb

You will also find that the macro camera-to-subject focus distance will increase as the amount of camera-zoom increases ~ and this is a very useful macro-photography feature

It means that you can get reasonably close to something [ie spider in its web] and via zooming out to 10x to 20x you can get some 'real beaut' images from maybe, a metre away

So with the superzoom cameras of today, the built-in macro setup becomes a really useful tool for us


dzinndzinn Jun 7, 2013 9:43 PM

Thank you both for info.... I am learning!

Phil (& others), on the T200 when in Macro Mode ('flower' selected), the zoom had to be all the way out (e.g., no zoom). So you moved the camera in & out -- or as near to the subject as you could get.

Phil, I think you are saying that with, for example, the Sony WX300, one could get up to 5cm from the subject & then use the zoom & that effectively one will get the same result (or better?) as the macro feature on my T200?

I often photograph things that don't move (e.g., beads or jewellery), so 'closeness' to subject isn't a big issue (like it would be with a spider, for example).

Simon, you are perhaps giving me some of the 'keywords' or specifications I can use to compare cameras as the reviews, (e.g., on Steve's) don't even talk about 'macro' features of point & shoot. (Guess they assume if macro is key that one might use a macro lense, for example?)

BTW, my T200 works fine for landscape, downloading, etc, but as the touch screen controls going into macro mode (one must touch the screen, has no dials) and as touching the screen no longer seems to work.... I'm looking at a new camera.


Ozzie_Traveller Jun 8, 2013 4:29 PM

G'day Deb

In ruff-n-ready terms, each camera will focus across a certain distance range during its normal everyday use. However, as the amount of zoom increases, to the closest focus distance increases away from the camera as well

By pressing the yellow-flower, a small change is made inside the zoom lens to permit the lens to focus closer [rather than far away], but that close-focus distance will also increase as you zoom

All the camera manual will say to you is bland stuff like ...
"Focus Range:- approx 30cm - infinity [1x] ~ 2m - infinity [12x]"
"Macro Range:- approx 7cm - 2m [1x] ~ 2m - 4m [12x]"

In other words, to get 'real-real' close you need to be using 1x zoom, but as you are actually in wide-angle mode, you will see / record lots of stuff out to the sides of the subject also. However, if you back off a bit [maybe 30-40cm] and use more zoom, the subject will still be in macro range but you will now only have the actual subject with little or no extra stuff at the sides.

Hope this helps a bit

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