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11-05-2009, 08:54 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Wheatfield Quote
As with the standard lens thing, you are missing the point of terminology.
We have terminology with relatively fixed meanings to aid communication. Shoot down definitions at your whim, call them arbitrary if you like, but these definitions are required for the purpose of ease of communication.
Fine. I have no problem with definitions, arbitrary as they may be. My point is, a lens doesn't have to fit that definition to be capable of yielding very good results in closeup situations - a 1:1.5 or 1:2 or even 1:2.5 lens might be quite useful, too. While the *definition* of macro as 1:1 might be a black&white thing, the real world has shades of gray. Kind of like batting averages in baseball. A "300" hitter (.300 batting average) is considered good. That doesn't mean one who hits .289 isn't pretty good, too. Someone arbitrarily picked 300 as the magic number to hold up as a standard - as much because it is an easy-to-remember number as because, just as someone arbitrarily picked 1:1 to be the standard for macro lenses. That's fine; I agree to not point to a .289 hitter and call him a 300 hitter, and I agree to not point to a 1:2.03 lens and call it a macro lens. But that doens't mean the .289 hitter wouldn't be a fine addition to most baseball teams, or that a 1:2.03 lens wouldn't useful for taking closeups.

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BTW, growing up in the photo business, I was taught that the term macro was a fairly loose definition that meant focusing closer than what a normal lens would do, but 1:2 was considered minimum performance for a lens to be a macro.
So in other words, you agree that there is room for some wiggle room... a lens doesn't have to 1:1 to be useful for the purpose of taking closeup pictures. That's all I'm saying.

11-05-2009, 08:56 AM   #17
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QuoteOriginally posted by adwb Quote
Marc, thats what I thought, so now perhaps instead of saving for a very very expensive macro lens, one can just save for a good prime of a reasonable focal length that will allow you to get a initial large image of the insect but will not have you right on top of it and of course give you a decent DOF.
I think you'll find, as newarts says, that in practice, primes that aren't macro lenses just won't get you close enough to yield satisfactory results. At least, not without the aid of an extension tube or closeup lens attachment like the Raynox 150.
11-05-2009, 08:57 AM   #18
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QuoteOriginally posted by Marc Sabatella Quote


So in other words, you agree that there is room for some wiggle room... a lens doesn't have to 1:1 to be useful for the purpose of taking closeup pictures. That's all I'm saying.
It can be useful for taking close up pictures, but this doesn't make it a macro lens. 1:2 is borderline macro, 1:4 is just close focusing.
This also doesn't take into account such things as field curvature, which is very important when considering a lens for close focusing work.

Last edited by Wheatfield; 11-05-2009 at 10:17 AM.
11-08-2009, 03:31 PM   #19
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thanks to every one for their thoughts, its been very enlightening
Alistair

11-09-2009, 11:36 PM   #20
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Superzoom

QuoteOriginally posted by newarts Quote
The most cost effective way by far to achieve high quality macros is to use $10USD delivered extension tubes and a reasonably good manual lens (maybe $35USD).

On the other hand, used high quality macro lenses are not all that expensive, less than $100USD.
Actually the most cost effective way to get into the field is with a superzoom point and shoot. They are not true macros but the multiplier effect and extended depth of field you get with the tiny sensors make them ideal for getting started. I've seem some amazing bug photos shot with a 400-600mm equivalent from a couple feet away. I say that having spent the money for a 100mm 2.8 1-1 Pentax macro lens. I'm not sorry I did but find that it's actually harder to get as good a shot with it as with a Lumix Z28 point and shoot.

michael mckee
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11-10-2009, 12:15 AM   #21
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Moved, this is about lenses not style or technique.
11-10-2009, 12:33 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by mysticcowboy Quote
Actually the most cost effective way to get into the field is with a superzoom point and shoot. They are not true macros but the multiplier effect and extended depth of field you get with the tiny sensors make them ideal for getting started. I've seem some amazing bug photos shot with a 400-600mm equivalent from a couple feet away. I say that having spent the money for a 100mm 2.8 1-1 Pentax macro lens. I'm not sorry I did but find that it's actually harder to get as good a shot with it as with a Lumix Z28 point and shoot.

michael mckee
My Port Townsend A City in Photographs
yes that was my thought also [see post 6 in this thread] which lead me to ask the question "best non macro lens" which has turned into a lengthy thread,
Alistair
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-slr-lens-discussion/78912-best-non...close-ups.html
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