Just a question

Discussion in 'Photography' started by Q89, 5 May 2011.

  1. Q89

    Q89

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    Hi ppl,

    First off, I'm not sure where this must go. If its not at the right place, please move mods.

    I want to get a macro lens for my Canon 400D. I was looking at the Sigma range(cheaper than canon), but not sure what one is the right lens.

    So any comments and advice would really be appreciated:thumbup:

    Q89
     
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  3. viper357

    viper357 Admin MASA Contributor

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    Thread moved to the photography forum. :)
     
  4. Donovan

    Donovan

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    Ok it depends on what type of macro you want to do
    i use a sigma 70-300 mm lens its pretty cool
     
  5. Q89

    Q89 Thread Starter

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    Thanx Viper!

    Just corals an insects. If I may ask, what did you pay for it @Donovan?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
  6. Q89

    Q89 Thread Starter

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    anyone else with advice?
     
  7. Slagter

    Slagter MASA Contributor

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    I also have a sigma 70 - 300 zoom lens. I bought it from kalahari.net about 4 years ago for only R1200... It was a great price, but it is a cheap lens. Personally, I battle with the thing. You need to use it on a tripod because it doesn't have any image stabilizing. Also, you have to be more than 1.5m away from the object you will be shooting.

    Seriously, if I had to do it again, I would save up for a good Macro Lens with image stabilizing. In fact, I might just start doing that.

    Hope that helps!
     
  8. Q89

    Q89 Thread Starter

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    Thanx! Will look around and find one with image stabilizing
     
  9. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Although an image stabiliser might be handy if you are chasing a dragonfly with the camera in hand (good luck with this, if you try...), but *most* macro photos are taken with the camera mounted on a tripod - and in that case, you don't need (or even want!) an IS.

    I know that Canon's new 100mm macro L is equipped with an IS, but suspect that it was added due to insistence by their sales department, and not by their lens developer to make the lens perform better :whistling:

    Talking of Canon, I can really recommend their 100mm F2.8 Macro lens - the older non-IS lens, that it... I bought one myself some years ago, and have never been sorry since that I spent more money buying the "real deal". If you can at all afford it, or wait for another few months whilst saving for it, I would suggest that this is the lens to buy.

    If you do decide to go for a non-Cannon lens, I would still advise you to choose a 100mm or longer macro lens, rather than a 50mm one. The 1:1 focusing distance on a 50mm lens is incredibly close, and you will be badly frustrated when you cannot get close enough to that coral to photograph it at 1:1, or when that bug jumps/flies away just as you get into range :eek: The 100mm/105mm lens allows you to be further away, and that helps a lot :) Of course, getting a 180mm macro lens would be even better in this respect, but it has other restrictions.

    Hennie
     
  10. tjiPPi

    tjiPPi

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    I have to agree 100% with Hennie.

    I have the Sigma 70-300 and while it's a good lens for the price, I've always struggled to get nice macro shots with it in low light. Also remember that the 70-300 is not a true macro lens. The "macro" switch can only be used in the 200-300mm range which is a limitation sometimes.

    However, this lens does work quite good for general wildlife etc.

    That being said: last time I checked the Canon 100mm f2.8 L IS USM Macro was little over R9k and the non IS version was about R5.5k.
    The Sigma 70-300 APO was about R2.5k

    I'm trying to save up for the Canon 100mm f2.8 L IS USM Macro, but will be a long wait:(.

    If you do go for the Sigma, try to get the APO version. It has some low-dispersion glass which the other one hasn't.

    But I do recommend to go for the Canon 100mm f2.8 USM Macro since your main subjects will be insects and corals.
     
  11. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Well, if you are looking at a proper macro lens, the Sigma equivalent to the Canon 100mm f/2.8 macro is their 105mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro, selling at R5 395.00 (including VAT) at ORMS in Cape Town (consistently the cheapest reputable photographic shop in South Africa). ORMS is currently selling the Canon "non L" 100mm f/2.8 Macro for only R5 295.00, which is actually CHEAPER than the Sigma :eek:

    Hennie
     
  12. Q89

    Q89 Thread Starter

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    Thanx guys, I still need to save a lot more than planned:eek:
     
  13. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    You could, of course, buy a set of close-focus "filters" - these magnifying filters screw onto the front of your normal lens (they look just like any other filter), and are *much* cheaper. The photo quality would not be all that great, but I have managed to take some pretty nice photos of my tank's inhabitants with these in the past (before buying the 100mm macro).

    Secondly, if you have an old lens lying around, you could just mount it in reverse in front of your normal lens (perhaps tape the two together).

    A third (and better) option would be to buy an extension tube - Canon makes two, a 12mm and a 25mm, currently selling at Orms for R795.00 and R1290.00 respectively, whilst Kenko makes a set of three tubes. You use an extension tube by mounting it between the camera body and lens. In doing so, you will lose the ability to focus to infinite, but will gain the ability to focus much closer than with the normal lens, in effect thus making it a "near macro" lens. One can even mount both extension tubes, one behind the other, to focus even closer.

    Here is some interesting reading:

    Macro Extension Tubes & Close-up Lenses

    ShutterFreaks - Macro Photography for Beginners

    Hennie
     
    Last edited: 7 May 2011
  14. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    Here's an example of what a 25mm extension tube can do, mounted on my old 20D, with a common (old) Canon 28-135mm f3.5-5.6 lens:

    [​IMG]

    I just grabbed the first small thing that I could lay my hands on, and took the photo in very dark conditions - so dark, in fact, that I did not get the focussing quite right :eek: but it should suffice to demonstrate the point.

    EXIF detail:

    Make Canon
    Model Canon EOS 20D
    Date/Time Saturday 7 May 2011
    Artist H. Landman
    Exposure Time 0.04 sec
    F-Number F5.6
    Exposure Program Aperture priority
    ISO Speed Ratings 400
    Exposure Bias Value 0 EV
    Metering Mode Multi-segment
    Flash Flash did not fire, auto
    Focal Length 135.0 mm
    Custom Rendered Normal process
    Exposure Mode Auto exposure
    White Balance Auto white balance
    Scene Capture Type Standard

    The quality of jpg compression was set to only 50%, which explains the rather poor quality of this photo.

    One thing which was recorded incorrectly (due to the extension tube) is the focal length. The lens was set to 70mm, and not 135mm as shown above.

    Hennie
     
  15. seank

    seank

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    This ain't a Macro lens ;)
     
  16. Reef Maniac

    Reef Maniac MASA Contributor

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    True. A real macro (or micro, as called by Nikon) lens is defined as one that can reproduce a life size image onto the film or sensor, also described as 1:1 magnification. This means that the size of (say) a fly would be exactly the same size on the sensor than in real life.

    In reality, this results in a huge magnification when viewed on our screens, or when cropped to 100%.

    Hennie
     
  17. animalia

    animalia

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    I saved up and bought myself on Bid or Buy a CANON EF 100MM F2.8 (NON L) Macro USM lens for R 2 800- oo less than a month ago - it helps to watch the Auctions. It was in impeccable condition original packaging and works like a charm. People may not agree with me but I believe - if you had the money to buy a Canon Camera make sure you buy the lenses that is made for that camera - I will NEVER buy a Sigma/ Tamron etc lens as I did not buy that type of camera.

    I have a Canon 450 D camera with Canon Lenses. Still looking for a decent landscape lens - 10 to 20 mm but I will get there.

    Here is a pic I took with my Macro lens:
    [​IMG]

    F 5 shutter opening
    ISO 400
    AV 1/10
    focal length 100 mm (35 mm equivalent 162mm) Manual Focus
    I used a tripod
     
    Last edited: 8 May 2011
  18. SteveZi

    SteveZi

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    I don't understand why they call this a macro lens?
    If I'm 1.5m away from my subject, say a fly, surely I cannot fill the viewfinder with the subject?
    Is there any difference between having the lens set to MACRO vs just zooming in normally?
     
  19. tjiPPi

    tjiPPi

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    In this case they used the term "macro" as a sales gimmick.

    The macro switch on the lens enables you to be closer to the subject and still be able to focus.

    When you zoom in on the subject you wouldn't be able to get a 1:1 ratio on the sensor (if the fly is 5mm big, the image on the sensor will be 5mm). You'll have to be too close to the fly than the lens can focus for.

    Now for a macro lens it will allow you to get close enough to the subject and still focus to get the 1:1 or bigger ratio.
     
  20. SteveZi

    SteveZi

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    I agree with you tjiPPi - this is the sort of thing that must be adressed with the new Consumer Protection Act.


    I got this lens as a gift a while back - the macro function can only be enabled when you are zoomed in (between 200-300) - you cannot focus once you move closer irrespective of whether the macro is enabled or not.
    so, the end result is the same either way...
     
  21. Slagter

    Slagter MASA Contributor

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    @sean_koekemoer

    It has a macro function on it. But only between 200 and 300mm.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: 26 Nov 2015
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