How to take macro shots - the cheap way
Hello this is my first post on the blog here, and i decided to explain something about how to take macro shots, without a true macro lens. Because i have a Nikon camera i will exemplify with some accessories for Nikon.
You can take macro photos of insects or any other small object with the help of:
- extension tubes + lens
- extension tubes + reversed lens
- reversed lens
- macro lens (the ideal solution but also the most expensive one)
The extension tubes are very easy to use and the main advantage is that the tubes contain no optical elements. That's why they are tubes and not teleconverters wich are very commonly mistaken with. The disadvange is that you will need even more light (longer exposure time) to take photos with them, than with just the lens directly attached to the camera. There are 2 types of extension tubes: with AF contacts and without AF contacts. The advantage of the ones with AF contacts is that they will keep all the lens functions and you will be able to use the A, P and S modes without problems (with a normal atached lens, NOT a reversed one).
If you want to reverse a lens you will need the BR-2A adapter from Nikon to reverse the lens. You can use either zoom lenses or prime lenses but the primes will get you sharper photos and are easier to use. Lenses with an aperture ring are also easier to use, the ones without it will be a real pain. The wider the lens the wider the magnification, for example a reversed 50mm gives 1:1 magnification, 28mm 2.1:1, 24mm lens gives 2.6:1 magnification, and a 20mm lens gives 3.4:1 magnification. Remember that a reversed lens will be used only in M mode.
For a good depth of field (DOF) you should use an aperture of f/16, f/22, although you can also use f/8. Be very careful that at f/16 the viewfinder will be almost black and if you don't have a very good eyesight you will get yourself an out of focus photo.
Below i will post some photos i took with the above pieces of advice, but unfortunately the sales are low or none.
Hope the info i said here is accurate and useful, also if you have something to ask please be my guest. (Oh and sorry for the english mistakes).
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Photo credits: Radub85.