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Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 05-24-2016, 07:55 PM  
Venus Optics KX-800
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 9
Views: 5,003
I'm still using this flash and still appreciate what it can do. Though on the K3II I have had an issue with it working its way loose out of the hotshoe when carrying it. It just barely fits that camera btw. I have dropped it once because of this causing the battery door to become hard to keep latched. Also one of the joints of an arm popped out during that drop. Luckily the wires were not damaged so I just popped it back in.

---------- Post added 05-24-16 at 08:56 PM ----------

I really wish the arms were removable. Like via a screw on coax connector possibly at the base where it connects to the body of the flash. This would make storage of this flash so much easier.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 05-15-2015, 10:28 PM  
Venus Optics KX-800
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 9
Views: 5,003
Well that is comforting to hear. Remember, I am comparing such a thing to what has mostly been pentax equipment throughout the years so I tend to expect that type of rugged durability but to expect that type of build quality for under 300 bucks for such a specialized piece of equipment would probably require an additional 200-250 bucks more than what I paid.

I can not figure out why the head would need to swivel at all. As long as those arms extend swiveling it any degree would be putting your light blasting the opposite direction the camera lens is facing. Those arms really extend way above the camera and lens in instances one might require it to do so. The swiveling feature on what is already a highly manipulative flash arms just seems pointless. Just curious as to why they did that even though having that option will not affect how I plan to keep using it since I will just leave it facing front.

Still though, digging on what it can do and I am not looking at certain shot opportunities with the thought of, "Ahhh screw attempting that one, I would never get the light exactly where I need it." Normally nailing the lighting early on.

I shouldn't have people not buying it due to thinking my description of this product as sounding like it is made of glass and will crumble if touched.

I am just glad I got a chance to support this fledgling company that is producing new and interesting gear that specializes in my favorite form of photography at an affordable cost. I am looking forward to seeing how well they do with their upcoming 15mm F4 macro lens. And I am hoping they support Pentax with a K mount version of these Vari-length Auto extention tubes like this. X-Pro Vari-Length Auto Extension Tube (Nikon) | Venus Optics - Specialist in Macro Photography

I will say that I am growing more attached to it with each use. Very easy to use.

I do not have any problems with the bizarre look to it. Those that have their face pressed up to a camera while their camera is being pressed up to a leaf or a twig with some small critter on it are normally going to get some strange looks from people passing by wondering, "What is he taking a picture of?" I have had some people look closely at it when I am carrying it to and from the areas where I have been shooting.

Wish they would have put a diffusion flap on the flash heads. I immediately made this flash look ghetto with tracing paper taped over the flash heads. I'd like to have the option of an easily removable diffuser since I think it could seriously work well for doing more than just macro work. It seems to have quite a bit of portrait potential as well though I'd be more prone to use one of my other external flashes for such work. My attempts at using it for portrait with the Pentax 35mm limited macro have made for some surprisingly great results.
Forum: Flashes, Lighting, and Studio 05-14-2015, 09:49 PM  
Venus Optics KX-800
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 9
Views: 5,003
I am by no means a technical expert when it comes to using flash equipment but I figured I'd give somewhat of a review of my likes and dislikes of this flash after using it for just a week. I have shot macro heavily for the last six years but still do not consider myself to be overly qualified to give a professional review of this product so take that for what it is worth. I may attempt to add a better review under the third party flash section in the future.

After reading glowing reviews of the Venus Optics 60mm macro lens, I figured I'd buy and try out their twin arm flash.

I initially freaked out a bit after receiving it due to how cheap and light it felt. Also freaked a bit in seeing that the flash unit said KR-800 rather than the KX-800 I ordered. I guess Venus Optics immediately beefed up the articulating arms after launch but have yet to change the model naming on the box or on the unit itself. So I am guessing that I am using the KX but am not entirely sure at the moment.

When first moving the flash arms the plastic on plastic articulating joints from the base of the unit on up to the flash heads would squeak with a sound that makes you wonder, "is this going to loosen up? How much do I want it to loosen up? Am I going to have another problem with keeping my lighting where I want it or am I going to fight sagging arms in the future? What kind of cheap plastic was used to make this?" Rather than pay to send it back, I decided to give it a try while being gentle in manipulating it.

The flash was fairly easy to figure out. Normally I would read the instructions that came with a newly purchased product but the instruction booklet that arrived with this flash was entirely in Chinese.

Having fought flash bracket articulating arms in the past when using the overpriced, Novoflex Flash Bracket with Two 19.5" Flexible Arms which I couldn't hardly adjust nor keep in place, I was wondering if I just dumped another 280 bucks into macro lighting gear which was going to be buried in the back of my closet along side my Pentax AF160FC Auto Macro Ring Flash and some broken Wimberley articulating flash bracket arms.

I noticed that the top of the flash unit that the modeling light and flash arms are attached to is capable of swiveling 180 degrees in either direction. Maybe further but do not want to try it and have no need to swivel it at all.

First outing was night time with pentax K5IIs body, 100mm Pentax WR Macro lens, with raynox DCR250 and raynox MSN505 diopters.

After the first few shots using it, I decided to diffuse the flash heads down more by taping some tracing paper over them. Then ran out into the dark to snap some shots of some orb weaver spiders out on their webs. The modeling light was a very nice feature. The articulation was smooth on it making me immediately wish that Venus would have used the same material on the flash arms as what was used on the modeling light. I do not know the exact name of that material but would compare it to the metal articulating material you'd find on many clip on lamps. Adjusting the brightness of the light was a breeze and I hardly ever had to take it beyond its lowest setting due to it having the reach to extend over the 100mm while it was fully extended to 1:1. I also didn't want to crank the modeling light up since I haven't diffused the lighting on it as of yet.

I was easily able to see my subject while being less than an inch away.

Adjusting the flash arms required care but I was able to achieve a wide range of movement and distance in front of and behind my subject. Luckily the flash heads hardly weigh anything so on the the plus side, the arms do not seem to have to hold up much weight. I didn't have a problem with the arms sagging or falling down though a couple of the segmented plastic joints near the flash itself feel loose in comparison to most of the other overly creeky sounding ones.

Flash brightness adjustments between left and right was as easy to manipulate as it looks in the pictures on their website. Due to how far these arms can reach out past/over/under my lenses, I hardly ever felt a need to bring the brightness beyond the third or fourth mark. These settings resulted in excellent lighting and extremely quick recycle speeds. What felt like 1/2 second . I have not tested how long it would take to run through a set of fully charged Eneloop AA batteries yet but I have shot for three to four hours and hundreds of shots per outing without having to change out so far.

Other things I should note.

Be gentle with loading and unloading the batteries. The sliding plastic outside cover requires that you press down the batteries (which are resting on fairly high tension springs) while sliding and locking the cover into place. I can see this so easily breaking if someone is being overly aggressive.

Also the arms are not something I trust in being able to fully collapse down into wedging it into ones camera bag. I'd make room for it. I am currently keeping it in a second bag by itself with the arms loosely bent over towards the front of the base of the unit.

I seriously hope this lasts for at least a few years because it is so nice to actually achieve brilliant lighting in and around leaves or branches in which my insect subjects often lurk around. I primarily prefer to snap 1X-5X without use of a tripod. It is the lightest flash setup I have used and has now replaced my previous preferred Metz 58 AF-2 mounted via Wimberley duel jointed articulating flash arm.

I'm glad I bought it though I am hoping they do more to increase the durability of this product. The performance of this flash is as advertised.

Here is some sample shots.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/76357727@N08/17661853862/in/dateposted-public/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/76357727@N08/17477960649/in/dateposted-public/

https://www.flickr.com/photos/76357727@N08/17477914139/in/dateposted-public/

I would have uploaded some samples but apparently I ran out of room to upload on this site.

I hope some of this information helps in determining whether or not this is the right flash unit for you.

---------- Post added 05-15-15 at 12:13 AM ----------

I should have added that I am more easily able to achieve desired lighting with the lowest ISO values of 80-160 while stopping down to F18-F32 using the pentax 100mm DFA WR macro lens with raynox attachments. Though I do not normally go to F32 due to diffraction. I can quickly adjust the position of the flash arms to move or eliminate certain undesirable flash hot spots.

Even though the arms currently hold their desired position the flash heads will wobble back and forth like they are on stiff springs when moving the camera but the bonus of having the lighting where I want it and as close as I need it is allowing for faster shutter speeds without inducing any additional image blur.

Since there is not a high speed sync flash option that I am aware of on this product, 1/160 sec is about the max shutter I have been able to run. That is plenty fast for me when snapping hand-held.

I am not concerned with the lack of PTL since I have always primarily manually adjusted the brightness values of previous flash units.
Forum: Lens Clubs 09-14-2013, 07:48 AM  
*Macro* lens club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 4,072
Views: 546,963
First time using a Minolta 25mm micro bellows lens. This is a grasshopper eye.

312 Shots
F2.5
Pentax K-5 body
Pentax bellows 140mm extension.
No clue what the magnification was. My guess was around 7-8X.
I could have calculated the magnification but I didn't really care what it was exactly.
Stackshot was used.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-25-2013, 02:50 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
Wow! That is pretty darn cool. I wonder what they cost? I didn't want to bug them by requesting a quote. If you do not know off of the top of your head then it is no big deal since I'd still imagine it being out of my price range. Most likely it would cost more than the 645D which is out of my price range.

Speaking of blowing my budget, I bit the bullet and just bought a 40 and a 25mm luminar that were packaged together at a reasonable cost. It came packaged with a 50mm enlarger lens as well though I do not know any information on it since none was really stated. It didn't really matter since I was after those two luminars. The entire package came out an estimated 200-300 bucks less than had I bought them both separate so hopefully I can have some fun with those. They should get me in the magnification ranges I was looking for. The original package deal had the 63mm luminar in it as well which would have been nice and would have been a good deal at 1200 bucks I'd imagine. I do not know how much the prices of those lenses fluctuates though so who knows, for the 800 bucks I paid I may have gotten taken. I still plan on playing with some enlarger lenses though in the near future.

And if a home desktop SEM ever falls into my price range...

Lucky you Kozlok on getting to use one for work. Sounds like you have a fun a job.

Thanks all for your help.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 07:24 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
lol I wish. That would be pretty sweet. Probably a large learning curve to operate. I think I need to master capturing images with photons before I move onto electron bombardment.

But don't think I haven't looked over used SEM parts on ebay in the past. Just for S&Gs.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 02:36 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
Thanks. What JML are you using?

7X for the componons. cool. That is the type of info I was looking for. I hope I didn't take up too much of your time.

Thanks again.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 01:58 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
I have a trinocular microscope but the objectives on it are not all that great from what I understand. I will be trying it out shortly though once some of my stuff I have ordered arrives.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 01:55 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
Thanks.

Yes google is my friend but a lot of that information is scattered to the four corners of the web. Though I do see some brands that do crop up more than others. I just was hardly finding much information on what magnifications were being achieved via certain enlarger lenses nor information on the working distance when using them. Though I very well may not have been looking in the right places or missed some of that information so please forgive me on that.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 01:50 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
Thanks. Nope, unfortunately I got the flat M42 to RMS adapter. I guess I could order the cone one in the future.

I have mounted a vanguard ball head to the platform I was using and have rotated everything I was using into portrait (Stackshot rails, camera, and lens) and felt that I almost needed to put a set of outriggers on the platform to keep it from tipping over. There was a lot weight I was leaning when doing that. I probably need to build a vertical stacking station anyways since this current one takes up too much space.

I guess when I said cheap I was not thinking 20 bucks cheap when it came to the lenses. I would pay a couple hundred or so if need be but I wasn't wanting to go on up to the cost of some of the better Nikon objectives, luminars etc... So it sounds like if I am ever wanting to push beyond 10X then I would have to go by way of microscope objective on a tube lens (if infinity corrected) or straight to bellows if using finite. Those magnification levels can not be achieved via enlarger lenses eh?

Good to know on the OEM Pentax M42 adapter. I have not used it yet. What would you suggest that I use instead to eliminate that problem since I really could not deal with having any movement if I were to do this right.

If enlarging lenses do not take me as far as I may want to go in the future, do you have any suggestions on decent microscope objectives that won't break the bank. I know I shouldn't be so tight when it comes to that technology considering they are specialized lenses that are probably worthy of the cost considering what I have paid for regular prime lenses in the past.

Forgive my ignorance. And thanks again.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 12:02 PM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
I guess I should have said what camera body I am using. For these it was the K5iis but once the bellows arrives I will be using my older K5 since I do not want to run the risk of bellowing any dust into my newer body. I have heard of using a tc to between the bellows and body to prevent dust from entering the camera but...ya know...more glass and all. I'd rather avoid that.

To tell you the truth, I do not even know what all magnifications are possible when using different enlarger lenses. If it was overly wishful thinking in wanting to get anywhere around the 5-30X range then forgive my ignorance. If that can only be achieved through use of microscope objectives then I guess I'll have to bite the bullet and save up for some while eating nothing but ramen noodles. :P

With those shots up above using just the 100mmWR and the MSN505 at full lens extension I had about 20mm worth of working space between the subject and lens. Not sure what magnification was achieved since I haven't calculated it. I have seen the formulas. I'd be happy if I can achieve that much working space but could go down to 10mm if I had to.

Thanks again if anyone can tell me from personal experience some lens options and the results they achieved. :)
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 10:56 AM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
Thanks.

I guess it was a little misleading posting image stacks that were taken with the Raynox MSN505 when the title of the post is about enlarging lenses but I posted those images to show what I am currently at and what I'd like to move beyond while using enlarging lenses.
Forum: Photographic Technique 07-24-2013, 10:14 AM  
Enlarging lenses
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 29
Views: 7,976
I have been looking into going beyond the capabilities of what my 100DFA WR with Raynox DCR-250 and Raynox MSN-505 can do. I have been reading on enlarging lenses quite a bit lately but I was looking for some suggestions on what you may use if you were to try and go anywhere from 5X-30X magnification.

I have looked into microscope objectives but man, the cost of those things are insane for the quality or sharpness I am looking for. I am not prepared to spend a ton of money on something that wouldn't see everyday use. I already shucked out a small fortune (for me) on a stackshot rail system. Now I feel I need to be using it more often than what I currently do. I do not like lugging it around for field work so I have mounted it to some fiberglass panels that were used for an old computer case. It is stable and I have stacked some images using the raynox diopters just to play around. Will post them below.

I figured I'd get some cheap enlarger lenses to play with. I hear it is addicting. Heck, I just get a thrill off of changing out raynox diopters so I can imagine the thrill in playing with a bellows and different enlarger lenses. It makes ya feel like you are doing some super science or something. lol

I am curious what kind of working distance some of you have gotten using enlarger lenses for certain magnifications. What cheap to moderately priced enlarger lenses would you start off with?

I have

a Asahi Pentax Bellows Unit, M42 mount on the way that I purchased via ebay auction.
M42 to RMS adapter from when I thought I was going to go with microscope objectives. I do have some amscope objectives I will play with. I hear they are not overly great.
K mount to M42 adapter
extended Stackshot rail system with controller and all the goodies

I know I will need to get an M42 to 39 adapter. No big deal there.
And I will be getting some led lights to diffuse before I melt my metz flash

So if you could list what enlargers you use, what magnifications you get from them (You do not have to be precise), and what working distance you have between the lens and subject (doesn't have to be overly precise either) then it would be greatly appreciated. It seems like a lot of this information is strung out over a ton of threads on a ton of different sites. I wish there was a consolidated forum or listing of enlarger lenses with the statistics or what can be achieved with them but I have yet to find a good one even though there have been a few attempts at it.

Yes, I know going the way of ELWD Nikon objectives or Mit objectives or luminars etc... is apparently the best but I'm looking to have some fun while not going through a long buyer's remorse phase of, "OMG, I just had to sell a kidney to get that just so I could make some shots that I probably won't sell."

:P

Thanks in advance.

Oh and here are those stacks. A lot of CA and edge softness on some of these due to the raynox diopters. Great lenses but I'm ready to step up if I can. Forgive some of the stacking software artifact. I did the best I could in post on some of these. These were done using the MSN505 that a friend gave me for free.
Forum: Lens Clubs 07-16-2013, 01:14 PM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
Yeah I plan on getting a bellows and enlarger lenses or microscope objectives here soon. Just shooting and stacking with what I have laying around.

I plan on getting LED lighting since I do not want to burn up my flash doing photo stacks. I have read on specialized microphotography forums and I am always looking on ebay for some good enlarger lenses. I'd really like to get a 63mm luminar but they are pretty expensive.

My plans are from being able to go up to 15x within this next year.

I was just posting these shots since I was messing around with raynox diopters. Just showing what is possible since that is what this thread is about. Plus I got that MSN-505 for free so I might as well play with it right? lol

Thank you very much for the information. Here is a photo stack I played around with last night of a horse fly. 113 photos at F8 using the MSN 505 and the 100mm WR. I stopped the stack after awhile when I saw how badly this fly's eyes were. I only cropped just a small amount over to the left. This was shot at full extension of the 100mm lens or minimal focal length.
Forum: Lens Clubs 07-15-2013, 12:09 PM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
A friend of mine sent me an MSN-505 for free. :D I had been wanting to try out the 202 or the 505 for awhile but I didn't know if it would work as well as the 250 on my 100mm WR so I wasn't going to chuck out the cash for it. Even if it did work well, I primarily shoot hand-held so I figured it still wouldn't work well for that. I did take out for a spin the other day while attempting to shoot without the use of a tripod. It is quite rough for sure. I will primarily be using it for stacking but here a few shots (The first three) I pulled off with it when shooting by hand using the K-5IIs body. Only the second one was cropped I believe. The rest were frame filling. Though I may want to go back and check. It has been a couple of days.

The fourth shot is of the stacking bench I just setup for it. After I get done with what I need to do on the farm today, I will grab some subject to stack away on.

Last night I tried it out on a cocoon using the DCR 250 and went way overboard in stacking 325 shots of this crystalis.

DOF is an issue that we all know about. Razor thin with this thing for sure. Also getting my external flash in the right position due to lack of working room is really rough. It can be done though.

I do not suppose anyone knows off the top of their head what the magnification is when the lens is fully stretched to 1:1 with that diopter on? If not then do not sweat it. I just have been too lazy to figure it out or to snap a shot of a ruler. lol
Forum: Pentax News and Rumors 05-12-2013, 11:06 AM  
New Pentax cameras 2013
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 1,305
Views: 216,934
Did ya have to post an image of one of their cheaper tractors? :P
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-25-2013, 11:34 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
Excellent! You are shooting in RAW right? The underexposure on that shouldn't be an issue since it isn't very underexposed. Easily fixed in post unless it was way underexposed and you brought it back to those levels. Either case, nice bro!
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-24-2013, 07:37 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
That is odd. They are not showing up for me. I will check back again in a bit. Maybe it is something on my end. Forgive me for taking so long to reply. I get caught up in things and forget to check back in. Have been snapping a pantload of macro shots lately. I look forward to seeing your shots once they turn up for me.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-17-2013, 08:00 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
And thanks. Sorry for the confusion. I am not normally the type to spread wrong information so please forgive me for that post. I thought I was getting some lens distortion from the raynox but apparently I was wrong.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-17-2013, 07:57 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
Culture read my last post on that. I corrected what I said by saying this, "As for my focusing technique I guess I was wrong. I thought I was getting a slight amount of lens distortion with the 250 but apparently I am just getting most things I want to fall within a flat focal plane. I do not know what made me think I was getting an ever so slight fish-eye effect in the past. So please forgive the misinformation on that if that is what you were asking me to elaborate on. And I guess the backing off of the subject some instead of shooting in maximum telephoto/minimum focal distance has been putting more of the subject near the center hotspot of the Raynox rather than completely filling the frame and getting softness at the edges. I am sure that running the lens at F22-25 is the reason why I am getting that much of subject in focus then. "
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-12-2013, 10:05 PM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
I stacked those shots by bracing the front of the raynox to the light pole it was standing on and then just moved ever so slightly forward and backward while keeping steady. That is probably the most shots I have stacked hand-held with it. Normally I can only pull off about two or three if I am lucky and I normally have to manually align and blend the images in photoshop to correct for very slight perspective changes. Luckily in that stack, photoshop auto aligned and blended fairly well. I did have to /place and blend in one of the images again where it fuzzed stuff up a bit. Hand-held stacking is rough but if the subject is in a nice position and not moving and I am able to brace myself fairly well, then...that is what you get up above. The subject was above my head so approx 7 foot off of the ground. I was careful not to lean on/put too much weight onto the lens.

As for my focusing technique I guess I was wrong. I thought I was getting a slight amount of lens distortion with the 250 but apparently I am just getting most things I want to fall within a flat focal plane. I do not know what made me think I was getting an ever so slight fish-eye effect in the past. So please forgive the misinformation on that if that is what you were asking me to elaborate on. And I guess the backing off of the subject some instead of shooting in maximum telephoto/minimum focal distance has been putting more of the subject near the center hotspot of the Raynox rather than completely filling the frame and getting softness at the edges. I am sure that running the lens at F22-25 is the reason why I am getting that much of subject in focus then.

Like I said, I am still learning. So technically, I am a macro newb. :P

I am now considering getting the 150 to stack onto the 100WR +250 to see if I can still pull off hand held shots on even smaller subjects like aphids and what not. I most likely will have to start using a tripod for that though. I have a stackshot I haven't much used which should be handy for that setup. I better start using the dang thing since it cost more than those two lenses combined. I really have to be in the mood to use that it though because that is a lot of gear to pack out into the field. Plus it is some heavy stuff that I do not overly trust on my current vanguard tripod system.

Ok now I am rambling. Forgive the misinformation.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-11-2013, 07:09 PM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
All of these last shots I posted the other day were hand-held. Even the stack was done hand-held since I had something to brace myself up against.

About the only time I use a tripod now is for when I am doing a serious stack of a subject that I am sure will not move (ice crystals and what not) and when I am shooting HDR landscape shots I use a tripod. I primarily like the freedom of shooting hand-held because for one, I can snap many angles of certain subjects, and I can just pick up and move onto whatever the next subject will be that I may find. Always packing a tripod was tiresome and more often than not I would get exhausted just fighting the damn legs of it which would get caught in heavy grass or weeds.

Granted, tripod shots are a heck of a lot more stable and end up being sharper but with practice you can learn to steady yourself enough to grab most shots. I am also always running a shutter speed of 1/180th of a sec which is plenty fast enough for me on limiting blur.

Your first several outings doing this will be frustrating as Hades. It just takes practice and patience as well as learning how to approach certain insects without frightening them off since you will be shoving a camera lens that probably looks like a big bird beak to them, into their faces.

Sometimes I use a ring flash but most often it is just an external flash with a cheap fotodiox attachment.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-10-2013, 09:30 AM  
*Macro* lens club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 4,072
Views: 546,963
Yeah since I have upgraded to the K-5iis I have noticed a difference in sharpness and clarity right out the gate in my macro and landscape shots. Maybe I am just seeing things but it seems like the original RAW images before edit are tack sharp.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-10-2013, 09:22 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
Here are some more taken in the last few days.

I tend to post most of my stuff to facebook. Feel free to befriend me on there if you are curious to see more shots like these. I tend to post them there first. Also do a lot of HDR stuff. I have not posted nearly a fraction of what I have taken with that combo on here.

http://www.facebook.com/jp.daugherty1?fref=ts

If you don't want to befriend me on there you do not have to. I believe most of my albums are open to the public.
Forum: Lens Clubs 04-10-2013, 09:07 AM  
The Raynox Macro club
Posted By Phosphene
Replies: 893
Views: 275,195
I haven't had to compromise much on ISO. I usually run an ISO range between 80-200. My aperture normally runs now from F22-F25 while compensating for brightness with the EV settings on the camera and on the flash. Here are some more shots I just snapped the other day.

The head shot of the banded ash borer is the only stack in this one. Was nine shots performed hand-held.

Raynox 250 with DFA 100mm WR macro
K-5IIs body. Just got it not too long ago and I think I am seeing a difference in the original RAWs on clarity and sharpness. Almost biting sharp before editing. But I maybe just seeing things.

Some other things to consider is not always trying to get the absolute minimal focal distance on every shot. Sometimes it pays to back off just a little to allow a little more light into the shot. It also helps, on occasion, to not blast the target head on with the flash. I will have a portion of the dispersed flash illuminating the front of the subject while allowing a distribution of light to bathe over the subject to allow for some background illumination. I tend to enjoy the shots more if my subjects do not always look like they were staged on a black background. But that is just me.

Another thing to consider, if you are like me and you want to get as much of the subject in focus in one shot is to use the curvature of the raynox lens to your advantage. Put the center of the lens on a slight indentation of the subject and allow the backward curvature of the lens to capture protrusions from your subject within the focal plane. I have only been shooting with it for a year but I tend to learn more and more with every shot. As you all know, lighting in each scene is different. Also backing off of the subject a slight bit at times allows more of your subject to fall within that narrow focal plane. I hope this helps.
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