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05-03-2012, 11:25 AM   #1
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Macro gear suggestions on going beyond 1:1 ratio

I was curious what gear you all would suggest for me that I could somewhat easily acquire for going beyond 1:1 ratio that may go along with some of what I currently have. I am loving the 100mm DFA F2.8 WR lens but after snapping macro shots for the last several years, I am finding myself wanting to snap detailed shots of smaller insects. Like under a cm or a couple of mms without cropping the heck out of my photo.

I currently have the af160 ring flash
100mm WR
35mm macro
Pentax K-5
Velbon Super Mag Macro Tripod rails
Slik 170DX tripod
Remote

I would really like to keep a little bit of working distance between me and the subject but from what I have been reading, it looks like that maybe difficult. If the lenses I have are really suitable for going beyond 1:1 then I am open to other options as long as it isn't something I would have to wait an eternity for since Pentax took it out of production which seems to be the case with a lot of the things I wish they would start producing again. (Like a 200mm F4 macro).

I'd like to stay under the 2k dollar mark if I could. And I am doubting I can use my current lenses to go beyond that magnification while having aperture control unless there is a trick to doing so that I do not know of. Thanks in advance for your help.

05-03-2012, 12:32 PM   #2
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Simply adding extension tubes to either lens would give you a minor boost - As far as going to 4:1 or something like that, it'd probably need to be a combination of things.(Diopters+Tubes or something like that) - Unsure if there are any lenses that offer greater than 1:1 naturally, but it'd be worth a look.

Edit: Perhaps a Reversal Ring with the 100mm Mounted to Body, and the 35mm Mounted to the Ring? Wouldn't suffer too much optically, and would result in somewhere in the 3:1 range.
05-03-2012, 12:58 PM   #3
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How about a high grade enlarging lens, for example, a Schneider Componon S, and a bellows unit? The f2.8 50mm version of that lens comprises 6 elements, I think, and has a flat field. It also has a preset diaphragm mechanism, just like the old days of SLRs. And used enlarging lenses are going for really reasonable prices. You'd have no automation, but that shouldn't make any difference, since your subjects will be stationary.
05-03-2012, 03:47 PM - 1 Like   #4
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Using a Tamron 90/2.8, a couple sets of different sized tubes with electrical contacts (made from crappy teleconverters) and a Pentax 1.7x TC, I obtain the following macro ratios:

1:1 Lens only
1.8:1 Lens + TC
2:1 Lens + 50mm of extension tubes
3.4:1 Lens + 50mm tubes + 1.7x TC
4.7:1 Lens + 50mm tubes + 2 additional ex-TC tubes + 1.7x TC

There is no obvious degradation from the TC but there must be some. Measurements here made by shooting a millimeter ruler and a little arithmetic using the sensor width. Thus, the 1.7x TC gives me a 1.8:1 macro.

If I had real need for that 4.7:1 I would take the easy route and buy the Canon 5:1 macro lens.

05-03-2012, 05:32 PM   #5
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Get a bellows. That's it
05-03-2012, 09:09 PM   #6
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See this: https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-lens-articles/152336-cheap-macro-b...lose-work.html

Easiest way to get high-magnification macro optics: Reverse-stacking. Use a long camera-mounted prime (the PRIMARY) and a shorter reverse-stacked manual-aperture lens (the SECONDARY). The magnification is their ratio. Reverse-stack a 25mm MF lens onto some 200mm prime for 200:25 = 8:1 magnification. Downside: Working distance is PK register, about 4.5cm, too damn close.

You could put your 35mm macro lens on several sets of A-type macro tubes or de-glassed A-type TCs. But you'd still be working too damn close.

Easiest+cheapest way to get high magnification and a decent working distance: Medium-format enlarger lens (EL) on extension. Get a 140-160-180-200mm EL (such as from Ilex, Rodenstock, Eastman, Schneider, etc) and a bellows and LOTS of cheap macro tubes. Downside: extension eats light.

If edge sharpness isn't critical: Use a Raynox DCR-250 close-up optic on a *long* A-type or AF lens, like in the 300-500mm range. The Raynox is +8 dioptres with a working distance of ~13cm. Magnification is F*D/1000 where F is host-lens focal length and D is add-on dioptres. So at 300mm it's 300*8/1000= 2.4x and at 500mm it's 500*8/1000= 4x. Upsides: no light loss, and you retain full lens automation.
05-06-2012, 05:43 PM   #7
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What would one of these 'Raynox' adapters that I keep hearing about do when mounted to a D-FA100?

I have the Samsung branded version and I thought I'd be able to to get smaller objects to fill the frame as well...
05-06-2012, 06:52 PM - 1 Like   #8
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For starters I would pick up John Shaw's "Closeups In Nature". Its an excellent book that deals with many close up techniques. Lens stacking would get you into some extreme close up territory. My try would be Pentax M series 200mm f4 lens which has 52mm thread and stack lenses onto that depending what magnification you desire. There are plenty cheap lenses with 52mm thread out there, any make since you are not mounting them directly to the camera. It might take a little trial to get the exposure right. This set up should not set you back more than $200.

05-07-2012, 09:25 PM - 1 Like   #9
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QuoteOriginally posted by DaveHolmes Quote
What would one of these 'Raynox' adapters that I keep hearing about do when mounted to a D-FA100?
Any +dioptre closeup optic gives the most magnification when mounted on a longer lens, focused to infinity. I normally use my DCR-250 on something reaching out to 300mm.

I'm not sure of the math for using +dioptres with macro lenses, but I just tried a rough test: I put my Raynox DCR-250 (+8 dpt) onto my Vivitar-Komine 90/2.8 macro (1x) at full extenson, and focused on a ruler. Without the Raynox, it goes to 1:1. With the Raynox, it's 2:1. I haven't the DCR-150 (+4.8 dpt) but another rougher test using +5 dpt optics looks like about 1.5:1. Using either Raynox on a 100mm macro should give very similar results.

Last edited by RioRico; 05-07-2012 at 09:31 PM.
01-20-2013, 07:36 AM   #10
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Forgive me for taking so long to reply. I figured I owed thanks for the suggestions.

I took the easy route and stuck a Raynox DCR-250 to the front of my 100mmWR

Here are some of the results. Hopefully you all didn't think I was wasting your time.

This is a small fraction of what I have shot with that setup. The vast majority of the shots I have taken with the dcr250 attached to the 100mm have been hand-held. I attempted a few stacks with moderate success. I maybe pulling the trigger on getting a stackshot here in the near future. I am also looking into picking up an infinity corrected microscope objective to hopefully take it to the next level. Just trying to decide if I really want to spend that much money on a hobby.

The margin for error when hand-holding with that attachment is extremely narrow. Most of the time I was having to time my shots for when I was moving in or out. Just breathing or my heart beating alone was enough to bring things in or out of focus it seemed. Over time I got increasingly steady. The most difficult part was approaching my subjects while attempting to even find them through the viewfinder since everything would go from absolute blur to quickly focused and then back to blur. lol Frustrating at first. You do not know how many times I would have to look from the side of my camera to see if I was even pointed at my subject.

I will post some more of this summer's shots when I get a chance.

Thanks for making this last Summer very challenging and extremely enjoyable.

JP
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01-20-2013, 07:58 AM - 1 Like   #11
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And here are some more.

Man going through my albums, I forgot how many shots I took with that rig. I still have a ton left.
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01-20-2013, 08:27 AM   #12
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And here are some more. lol

Will hold off on posting anymore at the moment. Takes awhile to upload on my slow connection.

I also wanted to say what I love and hate hearing question-wise when I post these to facebook is, "What are you using to get these shots? Nikon or Canon?" My reply, "You know that other companies make cameras right? I shoot Pentax."

Second to last shot was actually a stack that I aligned in CS5.

Quite a few of these shots were featured photos on Facebook's Macro Photography page.
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01-20-2013, 09:26 AM   #13
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Wow.... Are those stacked?
01-20-2013, 09:59 AM   #14
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Superb macros Phosphene. What aperture do you normally use with the D FA 100 and Raynox?

PS Would you mind posting a few in the Raynox Club thread? I'm sure Raynox users would love to see them.
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/lens-clubs/74221-raynox-macro-club.html

Last edited by audiobomber; 01-20-2013 at 10:11 AM.
01-20-2013, 11:08 AM   #15
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Just two of those images are stacked. The second to last one was quite a few images stacked though I can't remember how many.

And sure I can post to there if you'd like.

Are you all able to see the EXIF data on those or am I the only one who can see it?
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