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09-09-2009, 06:44 PM   #1
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Extension tube + DA*200

I like macro photography a lot. Unfortunately, my only macro lens is the DA 35mm. It's an amazing lens for flowers, but not so good for insects because of the shor working distance. I looked at the Tamron 90mm macro, but I fear the working distance would still be too short. The Sigma 180 macro could be interesting, but very expensive.

Another option is to use my DA*200 with extenion tubes. Has anyone ever tryed this combinasion? Should I expect decent results from this combinaison?


09-09-2009, 08:03 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by SylBer Quote
... to use my DA*200 with extenion tubes. Should I expect decent results from this combinaison?
Depends on what you expect. There's no optics in rings to change the IQ but exposure compensation becomes a factor.

The problem with rings on a long tele lens is that it takes a looong extension to cause a true macro effect.

The general rule goes like this: e.g, a 100mm lens needs 100mm extension to go to 1:1, 50mm to go to 1:2, 25mm to go to 1:4, etc.

Having said that, I often successfully use 12 - 25mm of extension with a 200mm lens to reduce the minimum focus distance. Just take any sort of ring of 1/2 - 3/4 inch and hold it between the camera and lens to see if this will satisfy your need. If so, consider removing the optics from an AE-capable 2x TC for use as a ~25mm extension ring that preserves AE functions. The Tokina 2x works well and can be acquired for as little as $50 if you pay attention.

09-09-2009, 08:45 PM   #3
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The real bummer with DA lenses on extension tubes is that you're gonna need to find "A" style tubes which will pass aperture information to your lens - otherwise the DA lens will stay stopped down the whole time (which without looking, I'm guessing is f/22 on the 200mm). A lens with an aperture ring will allow you to set the aperture manually when using cheapo ext. tubes, but the DA's require auto tubes which are very rare (I believe Kenko has made some).

This was my experience with cheap tubes on some DA lenses a while ago, there's a chance I'm mistaken, or just didn't figure out the right way to work that system, and if so, I hope someone will let you (and me) know. The good thing with cheapo tubes, is, well, very little investment is required to find out if I'm right, and most of that can be recouped when you resell 'em in the marketplace.
09-09-2009, 09:37 PM   #4
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My experience is the same as heliphoto's. Without the "A" contacts on the extension rings you're hosed with the DA lenses. I remember somebody posting a link to a set in Poland?? I think, but they were $200 and I'm having a very hard time justifying that much money for a set of extension tubes. I have the DA* 300 but it would be the same for the 200. The DA* 300 focuses close to 4 ft as is, photos cropped from there look great, I think it would make an awesome 300mm macro lens and I would give anything for an extension tube set for it...............anything but $200 that is. I keep looking at my Pentax A 2X short teleconverter, if I could find confirmation that the optical elements screw out of the body and that the operation would be reversable, I'd use it, probably wouldn't get close to 1:1 but anything would be great.
You know, I don't complain much about Pentax, it wouldn't do any good and I feel the positives way overshadow the negatives BUT to come out with incredible lenses like the DA* 200-300 and to get rid of the aperture rings and then leave us hanging like this without any accessories is cruel. To put the teleconverter in the roadmap before the telephotos came out and then remove it after they came out wasn't right either. I need a high quality 1.4X weathersealed converter that transmits the correct focal lenght for SR. My Tamron 1.4X is ok but it's not weather sealed.

09-10-2009, 07:59 AM   #5
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Thank you all for your answers. If I understand correctly, I should not expect a 1:1 ratio with my DA*200. Nonetheless, buy using extension tubes, I should be able to focus closer at thus improve the ratio of the lens. The thing is I saw a set of vivitar automatic extension tubes in k-mount for sale on the net. Do you know if Vivitar made "auto" extension tubes that would allow me to use my DA*200 in Av mode?

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