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12-05-2007, 10:37 AM   #1
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Pentax T183 close-up lens

Does anyone know where I can find one of these? I'd like the option of doing tighter portraits with my FA77, and someone on Photo.net suggested the T183. Unfortunately I can't find one anywhere; seems they're out of production and quite rare.

Any ideas where I might find one? Or are there any modern alternatives that are still in production, and still have the same quality?

EDIT: I found this at B&H. Would it have the desired effect? How is it different than the T183? Pentax | 49mm T80 Close-up Lens for 85mm to 150mm Lenses | 30452

12-05-2007, 05:29 PM   #2
Ole
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That should work, it's like a pair of reading glasses for your lens! The T80 will magnify more than the one you were looking at as I understand the specs on the B&H site.
But be warned, I have no practical experience with any of these.
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12-05-2007, 05:44 PM   #3
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Okay, I found this description of the Pentax close-up lenses:

Pentax Close-up Accessories

I don't see how the T183 would help me, because according to the link above the minimum focus distance with that lens would be 42 inches. That's larger than what the FA77 is normally!

However, the T80 would apparently give me a minimum focusing distance of 19 inches and a maximum focusing distance of 36 inches. That's a pretty narrow band of working distance, but I guess that's how close-up lenses work?

But perhaps I'm misunderstanding. Anyone here know about these?
12-05-2007, 11:21 PM   #4
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QuoteOriginally posted by switters Quote
Okay, I found this description of the Pentax close-up lenses:

Pentax Close-up Accessories

I don't see how the T183 would help me, because according to the link above the minimum focus distance with that lens would be 42 inches. That's larger than what the FA77 is normally!

However, the T80 would apparently give me a minimum focusing distance of 19 inches and a maximum focusing distance of 36 inches. That's a pretty narrow band of working distance, but I guess that's how close-up lenses work?

But perhaps I'm misunderstanding. Anyone here know about these?
Close up lenses work exactly like your reading glasses. They make infinity focus impossible, but you see clearly closer. Close up lenses can be good in the center, particularly the two element versions, but are generally quite soft at the edges and corners. Note that these lenses mount just like filters. As long as the filter size is large enough for your filter rings, anyone's versions will fit. Try Nikon and Canon's versions, they are pretty good quality. You can always use shoe polish to hide the brand name when at a Pentax convention.

Extension tubes are a higher quality choice, retaining more of the IQ of the lens. They are generally higher priced, harder to take off and put on, allow dust into your camera body, but give much better images, and still do not allow you to focus to infinity.

Macro lenses are more expensive yet, focus to infinity and provide generally the highest quality images.

12-06-2007, 06:26 AM   #5
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This 100% crop is taken with Pentax close-up lens No.1 attached to FA77.
Not sure what its T-number is but you can get Hoya equivalents from B&H.
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12-06-2007, 09:24 AM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Kguru Quote
This 100% crop is taken with Pentax close-up lens No.1 attached to FA77.
Not sure what its T-number is but you can get Hoya equivalents from B&H.
Would you mind telling me what the working distance is of the lens you have? i.e. what's the minimum and maximum focusing distance? Is it practical for portraits?
12-06-2007, 09:28 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by Canada_Rockies Quote
Close up lenses work exactly like your reading glasses. They make infinity focus impossible, but you see clearly closer. Close up lenses can be good in the center, particularly the two element versions, but are generally quite soft at the edges and corners. Note that these lenses mount just like filters. As long as the filter size is large enough for your filter rings, anyone's versions will fit. Try Nikon and Canon's versions, they are pretty good quality. You can always use shoe polish to hide the brand name when at a Pentax convention.

Extension tubes are a higher quality choice, retaining more of the IQ of the lens. They are generally higher priced, harder to take off and put on, allow dust into your camera body, but give much better images, and still do not allow you to focus to infinity.

Macro lenses are more expensive yet, focus to infinity and provide generally the highest quality images.
Thanks for your reply. I've used several macro lenses in the past, but as I don't need the 1:1 magnification ratio and I don't really want another lens, that's not an option for me right now.

I'm wondering what would be a better choice for tight portraits and detail shots of people - extension tubes or a close-up lens?
12-06-2007, 11:20 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by switters Quote
Thanks for your reply. I've used several macro lenses in the past, but as I don't need the 1:1 magnification ratio and I don't really want another lens, that's not an option for me right now.

I'm wondering what would be a better choice for tight portraits and detail shots of people - extension tubes or a close-up lens?
I suspect that the close up lens would be better - it provides softer edges, giving a rather neat effect. The problem with getting close with portraiture is the perspective effect on the face. I usually take portraits with a bit of space around what I want, and then crop down to what I want, including rotated crops to correct positions.

12-06-2007, 03:22 PM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by switters Quote
what's the minimum and maximum focusing distance? Is it practical for portraits?
Close-up No.1 on FA77: minimum focus distance ~ 14", max focus distance ~ 24" measured roughly to focal plane.
I have verified at minimum distance frame width captures ~2.5" (about 0.4x magnification); at max distance just 4.2" -- too much magnification for portraits?

No.2 & 3 work on shorter distances more magnification still, not what you want I think.

You can try fitting No.1 on the FA43, I estimate it'd give you frame width from 4" to about 7".

Last edited by Kguru; 12-06-2007 at 03:39 PM.
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