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Thread: New Macro Lens

  1. #1
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    New Macro Lens

    I am looking a purchasing a macro lens and was looking at the Nikon AF 80-200mm f/2.8 D ED Macro Telephoto Zoom Lens and was hoping for some reviews or comments on this lens before I make a big purchase like this

    Thanks

  2. #2
    jiro's Avatar
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    Perhaps this link can help you decide, Debbie: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/80200.htm

  3. #3
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    if you are willing to spend more then maybe you should consider the 70-200mm f/2.8...

  4. #4
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    Debbie,

    If you're looking for a dedicated macro lens, I suggest getting something that is 1:1 magnification. I have yet to see a zoom lens that gets 1:1. If I am correct that this is the lens you're looking at, you will see that it gets a 1:7.1 magnification... that's anything but macro! Nikon's page lists it as a maximum magnification of 0.24x.

    Compare that to the AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8G IF-ED which gets true 1:1 or 1.0x magnification.

    Basically that means if your sensor is 25mm across (I know it isn't, we'll use that for the example), and you take a photo of something that is 25mm in size, if you do so at 1:1 magnification, it will fill the frame of your shot. If you did that with the 80-200, you'd only be able to fill a small fraction of the frame. Additionally, look at the minimum focusing distances on those lenses... the 80-200 is 4.9 feet, whereas the 105 is 1 foot. Now that may come into play depending on your subject... butterflies are hard to get within a foot of for 1:1 magnification (but not impossible - check out the insects or spider threads for some good bug macros)

    But in the end, if you want true macro performance, you'll need to look for something different than the 80-200. There's also a 200mm macro from Nikon, but that price is a significant jump up from the range you're talking with the 80-200 or the 105.

    - Bill

    PS: Welcome to CiC!
    Last edited by ktuli; 26th July 2011 at 02:55 PM. Reason: added a bit more info and a welcome

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    Re: New Macro Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by jiro View Post
    Perhaps this link can help you decide, Debbie: http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/80200.htm
    KR never ceases to amaze: "It is especially well suited to automotive photography because its conventional diaphragm creates fantastic sunstars on brilliant points of light (newer f/2.8 tele zooms have rounded diaphragms that don't make sunstars)." It's a rare man who can combine photography with stand-up comedy.

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    Re: New Macro Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by tclune View Post
    KR never ceases to amaze: "It is especially well suited to automotive photography because its conventional diaphragm creates fantastic sunstars on brilliant points of light (newer f/2.8 tele zooms have rounded diaphragms that don't make sunstars)." It's a rare man who can combine photography with stand-up comedy.
    Maybe, at the time he wrote that review he's into car fetish hence the inclusion of the statement.

  7. #7

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    Re: New Macro Lens

    The first question, Debbie, is what do you want to photograph?

    That lens might be fine for dragonflies or large butterflies but not for anything smaller, as Bill mentioned.

    An extension tube would get you closer, but not that much.

    I would suggest that, assuming you can get to around 12 ins from a subject before it flies away, 100 mm is fine for flowers but 150 mm is better for insects. And that is with lenses which focus at 12 ins.

    I did use a 70-300 lens (Canon) with a 25 mm extension tube and get acceptable results at 300 mm; but now I use a 180 mm macro lens mostly with a 1.4x converter to increase the magnification even further.

  8. #8
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    The Macro or Micro designation on a zoom lens is a sales ploy to make it more appealing to the consumer. The rationale is that if you blow up the image to 6" x 4" or so, you will result with an image with close to a 1:1 ratio. However if you blow up a native 1:1 image produced by a "real" macro lens, your ratio will be far greater than 1:1.

    On the other hand, the Nikon AF 80-200mm f/2.8 D ED Macro Telephoto Zoom Lens is a extremely nice general purpose tele zoom lens which will provide quite decent close-up capability. This lens can focus close enough to fill the frame with an subject area of about 167.56mm (6.6-inches) x 111.47mm (4.39 inches) on a 1.5x camera. In actuality, this will cover many close-up shooting needs such as flowers, etc.. A true macro lens focused at a 1:1 image ratio can cover an area of only 23.6 x 15.4mm on that 1.5x camera...

  9. #9
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    Thank you everyone for your input, I think I will stick to my original plan to purchase the AF-S VR Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8. I was also looking at the Micro-NIKKOR 105mm f/2.8 which I know is a manual focus lens, but there is not much of a price difference between the two lens, is there much of a difference in the ability or the quality to take photographs, I am looking to start taking close up photos of insects, flowers, (and then well ....everything)

    Thanks

  10. #10

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    Re: New Macro Lens

    My Tokina 100mm macro is pretty dang good in every respect, and compared to the 105 Nikkor, it is substantially cheaper. Ken Rockwell gave the Tokina very high marks and it works in AF/M or M and either as a fully functional 100mm or as a Macro with the flip of a switch.

  11. #11
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    Re: New Macro Lens

    One item I noticed right away when I looked at the Tokina 100mm macro is that it is not internally focusing... Having the front element moving forward/backward would be a deal killer for me.

    - Bill

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