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02-03-2011, 08:54 AM   #1
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Raynox macro- a few questions before I buy

HI,
I've been looking at Raynox macro lenses today and am impressed, just have a few questions-
1. Do you really need a tripod if using the 250? I've read a few people saying that they use it without one.
2. I'm better off using it with my 18-250 lens instead of my 17-50mm f2.8 lens based on what Marc said here (https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/34711-new-macr...x-but-one.html) True?
3. Which is preferred- the 150 or 250? I've read that the 150 is easier to use.
5. how does it compare to a macro lens? I'm guessing it's more convenient as I just clip in on and it takes up less space in my bag.
Anything else to note?

cheers,
pa.


Last edited by dinneenp; 02-03-2011 at 08:57 AM. Reason: detail
02-03-2011, 09:21 AM - 1 Like   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by dinneenp Quote
HI,
...
1. Do you really need a tripod if using the 250? I've read a few people saying that they use it without one.
That mostly depends on magnification and light levels - at equivalent high magnifications and low light levels a tripod is needed for either adapter.

QuoteOriginally posted by dinneenp Quote
HI,
2. I'm better off using it with my 18-250 lens instead of my 17-50mm f2.8 lens based on what Marc said here (https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/34711-new-macr...x-but-one.html) True?
3. Which is preferred- the 150 or 250? I've read that the 150 is easier to use.
I prefer the 150 on a long zoom lens because of the greater working distance which eases lighting problems and doesn't scare bugs away as easily.

The 150 on your 18-250 gives a wider range of magnifications than does the 250 on your 17-50.

QuoteOriginally posted by dinneenp Quote
HI,
5. how does it compare to a macro lens? I'm guessing it's more convenient as I just clip in on and it takes up less space in my bag.
Anything else to note?
..
Image quality in the center (a top to bottom circle) is excellent if you start with a good lens; images are soft at the edges, but that seldom matters for natural subjects because macro depths of field are so small.

Viewfinder images are brighter with the Raynox than they would be with extension tubes or bellows at the same magnification and automatic features like flash continue to work.

I have good macro lenses but always carry a lightweight, compact versatile, Raynox 150 "just in case"; if you get one, you'll likely keep and use it even if you buy a dedicated macro lens later.

Dave
02-03-2011, 09:47 AM - 1 Like   #3
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1. A tripod is helpful but might not be required if you have steady hands and good lighting. This applies to just about any macro lens, dedicated or add-on diopter. You can adjust the magnification rate when using a Raynox on a zoom lens - decreased magnification is more forgiving for handheld.

2. I agree that the 18-250 sounds like a better match than a 17-50. The Raynox is so easy to attach you can try it with both lenses, though. I personally use the Pentax 55-300 at the 300ish end with a DCR-150. You can get a wide range of magnification levels by changing the main lens zoom and focus. (in simple terms, with the Raynox your main lens focus and zoom influence magnification, while actual focus is controlled by distance to the subject)

Does the 18-250 experience zoom creep? You may have the lens facing down for many macro shots. Zoom creep would make it more difficult to use less than maximum magnification.

3. The Raynox DCR-150 is easier to use than the 250 because it magnifies less. It should be a little more forgiving. Any handheld shake will be less noticable. You also get more working distance with the 150.

4. [There was no question #4 in the OP.]

5. True, the Raynox takes up less bag space than a "real" macro lens. Many macro lenses will give you more light but less magnification than a Raynox. A good macro lens will also have more even focus at the edges; the Raynox can blur a bit as you move away from the center. Macro lenses generally max out at 1x magnification while the Raynox can go higher.

Other comments:
- For handheld, the DCR-150 is probably better than the DCR-250. You might not be able to effectively use the 250's max. magnification handheld.
- For ~$50 you really can't go too wrong with either Raynox.
- What do you want to photograph?
02-03-2011, 09:48 AM - 1 Like   #4
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Personally own a 250.

Tripod depends on situation and magnification. I know if I use it on my 300mm or even 200mm focal length lens I need the tripod to get stable. On the Kit lens of 55mm I can occasionally do handheld.

Like all close up filters. You get the most magnification at the longer focal length. So yes the 18-250 would be the better choice. However, at the 250 range you will have lots of movement. So be warned.

150 vs 250. I believe the difference is the working distance. The 150 is less powerful and thus easier to work with. I would go with the 150 as the 250 needs more stability to get god shots without motion blur.

Compare to Macro lens. I don't know never owned one but I would guess that the macro lens would be much much better. As your ability to focal is much easier. Also sharpness should be better as one less piece of glass to transmit light through. However, price into consideration the raynox isn't a bad deal at all. The photos from the Raynox club thread is amazing.

02-03-2011, 10:05 AM   #5
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nothing specific to shoot- just to play around with and shoot anything that could be good- toothbrush head, sliced fruit, snow flakes, match etc.
02-03-2011, 10:51 AM   #6
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I have the 150, work well with my 100mm macro making it slightly more than 1:1, the working distance is good enough, i can handheld a 100mm with the raynox on, but with the 210 i probably need a tripod.
02-03-2011, 11:01 AM - 1 Like   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by dinneenp Quote
HI,
I've been looking at Raynox macro lenses today and am impressed, just have a few questions-
I often use Raynoxes with DA 70mm , so I will answer accordingly
Here are some photos with those by the way
Alper Alaca Photography : Photo Keywords : raynox dcr250 | SmugMug

QuoteQuote:
1. Do you really need a tripod if using the 250? I've read a few people saying that they use it without one.
No, just bump ISO
or TaV comes very handy with Raynox setups,
set shutter according to focal length ~1/60 , set aperture high , f/13 is good,
and leave ISO to body.
It is hard to work with it though, patience is required

You may have to use tripod or flash with ~200mm focal lengths.


QuoteQuote:
2. I'm better off using it with my 18-250 lens instead of my 17-50mm f2.8 lens based on what Marc said here (https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/34711-new-macr...x-but-one.html) True?
Yes

QuoteQuote:
3. Which is preferred- the 150 or 250? I've read that the 150 is easier to use.
For 70mm , 250 gives magnificiation closer to true macro hence is for bugs, detail;
150 is good for close-ups, flora..

with 200mm ; Raynox 150 may be a better choice?


QuoteQuote:
5. how does it compare to a macro lens? I'm guessing it's more convenient as I just clip in on and it takes up less space in my bag.
Anything else to note?

cheers,
pa.
It does quite well actually, I was surprised with the bees photos when I tried the Raynox 250 first time.
It is very practical as you pointed, you turn a lens into a macro-like lens in a second. However it does not replace a true macro lens.
One who is keen on macro will eventually get a macro lens,
but Raynoxes are very handy and give satisfying results.
02-03-2011, 01:39 PM   #8
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I use my -250 on a subset of my few AF lenses: DA18-55, DA18-250, F35-70, FA50/1.4, and FA100-300. (I should probably get a -150 one of these days) or on whatever lens-of-the-day when appropriate. With the AF lenses, I often use a cheap ringflash, especially at longer focal lengths.

As mentioned, even corrected Raynoxi as well as cheap +dioptre closeup strap-ons are softish away from the center, the Raynoxi less so. Also as mentioned, the softness and aberrations just might not be bothersome for much handheld work, where edges aren't critical. If edges ARE critical, buy a good dedicated macro camera lens (if affordable), otherwise use extension (tubes+bellows) and cheap enlarger lenses.

So, a suggestion: First get a cheap set of cheap +dioptre closeup strap-ons, sometimes called closeup or macro filters. Used, those are often under US$10. These will give you a taste of the experience. See how you like getting close. Then, buy either the -150 or -250 or even both!

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