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07-23-2007, 10:30 AM   #1
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Good inexpensive macro lens?

Hey,
Can anyone give any recommendations on a good, cheap macro lens? Probably something used - can be an old k-mount, or even m42.

basically I don't want to shell out for the FA50 macro, and I'm not as familiar with the older pentax series. There must be an old macro lens out there that is high-quality, but relatively cheap. I don't mind manual focus (prefer it in fact) so no need for AF.

07-23-2007, 11:02 AM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by EdZarts Quote
Hey,
Can anyone give any recommendations on a good, cheap macro lens? Probably something used - can be an old k-mount, or even m42.

basically I don't want to shell out for the FA50 macro, and I'm not as familiar with the older pentax series. There must be an old macro lens out there that is high-quality, but relatively cheap. I don't mind manual focus (prefer it in fact) so no need for AF.
If you're on a budget, why not extension tubes?

I shot this with a 50mm SMC-A F1.7 50mm (ignore the EXIF, I just hadn't reset it), hand held, on the end of an extension tube set.

I know the lighting isn't great, but it shows you can get up quite close. That spider is 4mm or so across, including legs.

07-23-2007, 11:41 AM   #3
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Yup tubes are a good bet and should only cost you about $20-30 at the most.
07-23-2007, 02:21 PM   #4
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Aside from extension tubes, the Pentax SMC-M 100 F4 is a good lens,

WHat makes it better than a 50mm standard lens with extension tubes, are the following
-you can focus to infinity and all the way to about 8 inches away from the subject without putting an extension tube in place, and get an image projected on the sensor at 50% of life size.
- you get doubke the distance to subject for any magnification than with a 50mm

Extension tubes get you all the way to 100% and you should consider getting them as well, or use it with the autofocus 1.7x TC to give autofocus within the working range of the manual focus and lens to subject distance you have on any shot

07-23-2007, 04:29 PM   #5
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ck out the vivitar,pentax,phoenix,cosina 100(5)f3.5. build isn't that good but results are. these are all made by cosina. there's even a non AF version...
07-23-2007, 10:03 PM   #6
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Smc F 28-80

This lens gets my vote. With a little looking, you can pick them up for around $60 used. The SplosDB gives it a good rating. I have a spare, but it doesn't auto-focus which shouldn't matter if you are just shooting macros. If you are wanting a macro lens and don't care if the AF motor doesn't operate, shoot me a PM. I'm sure we can get to a reasonable arrangement.
07-23-2007, 10:12 PM   #7
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A set of extension tubes gets my vote as well. Probably one of the best purchases ive made regarding camera stuff.

Taken with a 31mm tube and my 50mm f1.8 with on board flash for fill.

07-24-2007, 03:26 AM   #8
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QuoteOriginally posted by -spam- Quote
A set of extension tubes gets my vote as well. Probably one of the best purchases ive made regarding camera stuff.

Taken with a 31mm tube and my 50mm f1.8 with on board flash for fill.
problem with EX tubes is that you also have to have a fairly good prime to go with them. i use the my tubes also but i have some good primes to use with them. my favorite is the 200mm so i get some distance from the subject.

with 63mm ex tubes


the same


07-24-2007, 03:36 AM   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by roy Quote
problem with EX tubes is that you also have to have a fairly good prime to go with them. i use the my tubes also but i have some good primes to use with them. my favorite is the 200mm so i get some distance from the subject.
Very true. Although as of late ive been using them with my 28-135 IS at 135mm and a 430EX flash and been getting some decent results.



07-25-2007, 08:09 AM   #10
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thanks for the suggestions... I guess I'll try out some tubes before dropping the cash on a dedicated lens. Any suggestions on where/what brand to get? (I know nothing about them) I'd be using them on my 40/2.8 ltd most likely.
07-25-2007, 09:37 AM   #11
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A dedicated Macro lens would be an excellent one time investment. I would suggest Vivitar Series 1 105mm macro which is available for around 220$ from Trader Jim on ebay.
07-25-2007, 10:35 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by EdZarts Quote
thanks for the suggestions... I guess I'll try out some tubes before dropping the cash on a dedicated lens. Any suggestions on where/what brand to get? (I know nothing about them) I'd be using them on my 40/2.8 ltd most likely.
i'll have a set next week that will be coupled to the aperture as in a 'M' lens.
07-25-2007, 10:11 PM   #13
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Does that Vivitar Series 1 105/2.8 operate on " PK-A Mode " like Pentax "A" lens ?? Thanks
07-26-2007, 04:41 AM   #14
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QuoteOriginally posted by dantuyhoa Quote
Does that Vivitar Series 1 105/2.8 operate on " PK-A Mode " like Pentax "A" lens ?? Thanks
yes and it also works well with ExTs
07-26-2007, 08:15 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by EdZarts Quote
I'd be using them on my 40/2.8 ltd most likely.

Most cheaper tubes, unless you get "A" tubes with electrical contacts, will always stop down DA lenses to minimum aperture, so be wary of that.
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