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03-26-2014, 10:43 AM   #46
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Great choice!

03-26-2014, 12:41 PM   #47
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bagga_Txips Quote
In the end I decided to get the 100WR, because it would also act as a tele lens, and later I might even get the 1.4 teleconverter. But they had absolutely no macro lenses in stock at my only dealer in town, so I shall use my 18-135 together with my M1.4 with some cheapo extension tubes. Oh well, that saved me some cash I suppose.
FYI: Extension tubes are tricky with zoom lenses because the focus point typically changes drastically when you zoom (as you zoom with an extension tube in place, the image will go far-far out of focus). This does NOT happen with a close up lens on a zoom. You'll probably get best results with either the 50mm f1.4 or the 70mm f2.4 (I would recommend the latter). Mount lens + tube then MOVE BACK-AND-FORTH to focus. The focusing ring will be usable only to change the magnification.
03-27-2014, 12:12 AM   #48
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QuoteOriginally posted by WPRESTO Quote
FYI: Extension tubes are tricky with zoom lenses because the focus point typically changes drastically when you zoom (as you zoom with an extension tube in place, the image will go far-far out of focus). This does NOT happen with a close up lens on a zoom. You'll probably get best results with either the 50mm f1.4 or the 70mm f2.4 (I would recommend the latter). Mount lens + tube then MOVE BACK-AND-FORTH to focus. The focusing ring will be usable only to change the magnification.
These are very interesting posts, WPRESTO. For starters, why do you like the DA 70mm/2.4 for this? I ask because I have one now as part of my virginally new Pentax K-3 kit. Would you think it's also a good candidate for taking a quality close-up lens? Obviously, close focusing is not this lens's strong suit unaided. At present, I have the Sigma dual-element apochromatic close-up lens (52mm); I'm keeping an eye out for a deal on a Nikon 4T, or whatever (?). Some of my longer MF Nikkor lenses are reputed to do a swell job with the 4T -- the 200mm/4 AI-S... the 100-300mm/5.6 AI-S... maybe the 105mm/2.5. One reviewer particularly cited the Sigma with the 200mm.

I am very eager to learn more about all the various options for close-up and macro, lens reversals, stacking lenses, etc. -- the whole shebang, really. Back in the '80's when I worked in CT, there was a book at the public library that exhaustively explained and illustrated, with copious numbers of close-up B&W photos, all the "old school" techniques for field/nature "technical" photography. It had a rather out-of-date graphics/typeset presentation even then, but it was by far the best source of information on this sort of thing I've ever run across. To my immense frustration, I cannot recall the title and author! Man, would I like a copy of that book now. Er, any ideas? You seem to have a handle on this.

In the "It Came from Out of Left Field" department, this question: I acquired late last year a Fujifilm GW690 II 6x9 from Japan (at auction, late at night, it turned out to be too sweet a deal to pass up -- only about 1000 shutter activations!). Since it has a fixed, but sharp "modern" multi-coated 90mm lens, I am curious -- at the risk of asking a "stupid" question -- if there is some way I can stack some other high quality lens onto the Fuji's own to extend my effective field of view into the telephoto range on the 6x9 format? Or, I'd like to know about any other crazy, but potentially useful, ways to extend the utility and flexibility of this nice, easy handling camera. At least, at this juncture, I still believe that 6x9's have yet to be shoved out of the picture by hi-rez digital DSLRs! It's my first medium format camera. I got so excited by that, I also picked up a one-owner bargain Yashica MAT•124G! I'll probably somewhat regret that... Anyway, thanks for any assist and regards, Fred

Last edited by Kayaker-J; 03-27-2014 at 12:23 AM.
03-27-2014, 04:48 AM   #49
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Why the 70mm? It has excellent IQ so it should hold up well with extension. Other SFL lenses you have also have excellent IQ, but the subject-to-camera distance will become awkwardly short. Try it with the 40mm compared to the 70mm. You'll get even more camera-to-subject distance with the 55-300mm, but as noted, the focus goes screwy if you attempt to zoom. I would try your Sigma 52mm close-up filter on the 55-300mm with a 52-58 adapter, AND on the 70mm with a 52-49 adapter, although you won't get the same image size with the 70mm. I don't know the diopter value of the SIgma close-up unit, but if it is less than +1, it probably won't give sufficient close focus with the 70mm, but will give good close-ups on the 55~300 set at about 200mm.

Fuji made several expensive, highly regarded "medium format" roll film cameras. These "super Leicas" as they were called generally have fixed, non-interchangeable lenses because of linkage to between-the-lens Compur-type shutters (Hasselblad is about the only camera that successfully tackled Compur-shutter linkage). The Fujis generally had normal or slightly wide lenses. Filter-thread mounted focal-length changers, available in multiple diameters from about 2X tele to fish-eye wide, are intended for VIDEO. They degrade IQ significantly, but in video recording, slightly different detail is recorded in sequential images, and your brain assembles these into a single image of much better IQ than any one image if viewed by itself. I used both 2.2X and 0.7X units on an early Fuji super-zoom digital (28~300mm equivalent). The wide was better than the tele, the latter being little better than just enlarging & cropping an image taken without device.
The Fuji 6X9 is best suited to carefully composed, tripod-mounted B&W landscape, stationary subject & studio photography. It is capable of producing deeply detailed negatives with wide, subtly graded tonality. If you want to include more or less, move the tripod. Do not try on-the-lens devices. It is a camera for thoughtful photography - sort of a compact, portable view camera without the adjustments.

---------- Post added 03-27-14 at 08:01 AM ----------

There are many-many books on taking macro photos. Two of the best that I have were published by Kodak (!). They are filled with technical information, graphs of depth-of field versus diffraction degradation over a range of f-stops down to f64 (present on some "process" lenses, notably the highly regarded Red-Dot Artar). Advice in some of these no longer applies. For example, compiling fragments from two different images by cutting and pasting prints then rephotographing, reprinting, and touching up rough spots in the final print with something like Spotone.

A really good on-line site for macro - BUT DO NOT BE INTIMIDATED BY THE TECHNICALITIES AND EXOTIC LENSES:

Extreme Macro Photography


AND, once you get a 100mm macro, it will trump any/all other methods for IQ and convenience for my perception of your photo interests.


Last edited by WPRESTO; 03-27-2014 at 05:06 AM.
03-27-2014, 06:45 AM   #50
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I think there may be some ambiguity in WPRESTO's post. I think he is recommending extension tubes for the M50, because it has aperture control on the lens itself. However,cheap tubes on the 70 would be of limited use because the lens has no aperture ring, so all shots would be wide open unless the tubes fully linked the lens to the camera body.

None of my zooms have aperture rings, so the same problem occurs.

As to close up lenses, I wouldn't want to use them because of the degradation of image quality they impose. I am tempted to buy a Raynox 150, but results from other photographers show problems sometimes.

So I will use my M50 1.4, stopped down to between f2.8 and f8, with only a short extension tube, and that should do the trick.
03-27-2014, 08:09 AM   #51
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QuoteOriginally posted by Bagga_Txips Quote
I think there may be some ambiguity in WPRESTO's post. I think he is recommending extension tubes for the M50, because it has aperture control on the lens itself. However,cheap tubes on the 70 would be of limited use because the lens has no aperture ring, so all shots would be wide open unless the tubes fully linked the lens to the camera body.

None of my zooms have aperture rings, so the same problem occurs.

As to close up lenses, I wouldn't want to use them because of the degradation of image quality they impose. I am tempted to buy a Raynox 150, but results from other photographers show problems sometimes.

So I will use my M50 1.4, stopped down to between f2.8 and f8, with only a short extension tube, and that should do the trick.
Bagga-Tpxis is correct with his criticism of my casual recommendation v-a-v extension tubes. I have two sets, one an ancient S-mount, the other a K-mount set that has aperture control linkage, so I forget that there are K-mount extension tubes that lack this feature. I would seriously try to get tubes with the aperture linkage, The Kenko "unitube" of 25mm length has both aperture and AF linkage, but the K-mount version SFAIK is out of production. It is best suited to modest telephoto lenses. AF is not especially useful for macro, and few who do a lot of macro use it.
The general rules for IQ in macro are: macro lenses trump any other method (down to 1:1); tubes extending a good quality lens are better than any close-up filter; achromatic close-up filters are much better than single element and work best on lenses of 100-200mm focal length; single-element close-up lenses purpose built to fit specific lenses are OK and best for near normal focal length lenses (30~60mm focal length) but are poor on long focal length lenses. As I think I mentioned somewhere above, I have used a Pentax No. 1 close-up filter on a 50mm f1.4 Takumar on a Spotmatic to take many, many B&W images of specimens that were subsequently published in technical journals. I later used a Vivitar Series 1 90mm macro that was really excellent, and built so it could hold up a house. I had a 100mm bellows-Takumar pre-set that never gave satisfactory IQ mounted on a bellows, but gave excellent results reverse mounted on a 200mm SMC. This rig provides 2X normal size images. Used @ f11~16 on the 200mm, bellows lens @ f4, you get auto diaphragm and good images of small lively subjects. I still use a similar rig, although with a newer 200mm SMCA in K-mount and the later K-mount 100mm bellows lens.

John Shaw published a decent book on "Close ups in Nature." His best advice by far: EXPERIMENT WITH WHAT YOU HAVE FIRST. Strange combinations may yield unexpectedly good results, such as a normal range zoom reverse mounted on a 28mm SFL lens, or it might work better with the 28mm atop the normal zoom. An old 28mm S-mount Takumar reverse mounted directly on the camera can produce outstanding macro images. Don't pre-judge. Give it a try. You're not wasting film. Unacceptable images are gone with the press of button.

Last edited by WPRESTO; 03-27-2014 at 08:16 AM.
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