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12-29-2008, 08:51 PM   #1
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Close Up filter any GOOD for macro?

I am thinking of getting a hoya pro1D close up filter for my DA*50-135mm. Anyone used this setup?

12-29-2008, 10:35 PM   #2
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You can try and you will be likely to be impressed by the images for about 3 days or so...

Then you will be likely to be troubled by the limitation of aperture f8 to get clear images with the inflexibility of fixed focusing distance in order to get an image. Dim view finder and hunting autofocus will give you plenty of headache too...

Still, they are rather cheap to get but not a long term solution to macro works.
12-30-2008, 01:29 AM   #3
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You can get a cheap hoya set from ebay which includes 3 filters (+1, +2, +4) to experiment with though one thing to keep in mind is that the focusing distance for your lens changes and you wont really be able to take anything but pictures up close with the filter on. But I do think they are a cheap alternative to a dedicated 1:1 macro lens...not the same but it gives your current lenses more versatility.
12-30-2008, 03:49 AM   #4
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I'm quite satisfied with close-up lens sets for occasional use. Indeed, my Tiffen set has served me well for some time now. Clearly not as grand as a dedicated macro lens, but adequate for most basic needs.

By the way, since they filter nothing, it's more accurate to describe these as close-up "lens" sets rather than "filter" sets. They simply attach like filters.


12-30-2008, 08:07 AM   #5
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I have a close-up lens with me, most of the time, when I cannot or will not take one of my macro lenses with me. If you use a high-quality achromatic lens (I use an older Minolta Achromat, but the likes from Canon are quite as good), you won't loose too much quality. As the depth of field gets quite shallow you'll want to step down the aperture anyway, which further improves quality. I sometime add this achromat to my Voigtländer 180/4 close-focus lens, which is of very high quality and must say, that I am still impressed with this combination.

If instead of a good achromatic lens, you go for these cheap ebay 3-lenses-sets, you will certainly notice a loss of image quality, when you scrutinize your images. In any case, when using close-up lenses you won't have a dim viewfinder, as they don't chnage the length of the focusing tube (as extension tubes would do).

12-30-2008, 09:37 AM   #6

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I have a Pentax close up lens #1, and rarely use it. its just to hard to get proper focus (and maintain it) even at smaller apertures. the slightest movement and its all over. (unless you have a tripod). the DOF becomes so thin its almost not worth using. if you do have a tripod, and don't want to shell out for a dedicated macro lens, then I would suggest a bellows. a much cheaper alternative, and you can use a simple 50mm and get great magnification and tack sharp photos. as for using something on the 50-135mm, I don't know, but Ive heard good things about the Raynox.
12-30-2008, 09:40 AM   #7
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I recently purchased a Raynox M150 Macroscopic lens which is essentially a closeup "filter" lens similar to what you're considering. The main difference is that it comes with an adapter which makes it usuable with lenses having different sized objectives, unlike the screw-on type. I've only experimented with it sparingly at this point, attaching it to the front of a Sigma 70-300 APO DG "Macro" lens which by itself does a decent job of capturing butterflies, etc, from a distance of about 3 feet away. I'm impressed, however, by the pictures posted here and elsewhere which are detailed enough to allow you to count all the hairs on a gnat's derriere, and decided I needed more magnification than the Sigma provided. I wasn't prepared just now to spring for a dedicated macro lens, and having read postings by Pentaxians who seemed satisfied with the Raynox, decided to give it a try. My experience thus far has left me less than enthused. First of all, with the Raynox on my Sigma in macro mode, I now have to get within about 10 inches of the subject, and of course the camera has to be mounted on a tripod. Focusing is difficult, and must be done manually, because the Sigma when fully extended is at f 5.6, and adding the Raynox bumps it up to f 8 or so I would guess. Moreover, because of the limited effect of the Sigma's focus ring with the Raynox attached, it's necessary to focus by moving the tripod back and forth until the subject is reasonably well in focus and only then using the focus ring to sharpen the image. Oh, and did I mention that the DOF even at F22 is very shallow. Things are a little easier with the Sigma at 300mm and not in macro mode, but not by much. Interestingly, I've found that I'm much happier using a Kenko 1.5X teleconverter on the rear of the Sigma than the Raynox on the front of it. There's not quite as much magnification, but I don't have to get nearly as close, and it's easier to focus and shoot hand-held. I'm still impressed by many of the macro images I've seen, and may yet break over and purchase a dedicated Macro lens. There is, after all, no rational explanation for LBA. One thing I can't help but wonder about, though, is what do you do with all those pictures of bug's eyes, etc., assuming that you haven't been hired to illustrate a textbook on entomology. Surely you're not going to print them out and hang them on your living room wall???
12-30-2008, 10:25 AM   #8
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I use the extension tubes and the close up lenses from time to time, mostly for static, semi-abstract macro shots. I think that going with an inexpensive set of +1, +2, & +4 diopter lenses adds a great bit of variety for playing with imaging things up close.

I've found that the tradeoff of using all the light captured by the lens vs losing that light with an extension tube sometimes makes a big difference.

Yes, the DOF gets thin. It's part of the challenge.


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