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Thread: Macro Lens

  1. #1
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    Macro Lens

    Hi, I have just purchased a new Macro Lens, not knowing much about SLR photography can anybody tell me should I use the "Macro" icon with this lense or should I just use "M", "A", "S", "P", etc???

    DaiBoz

  2. #2
    Meisam's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lens

    This is something you need to learn about how to control your camera's exposure...

    on Macro sign, all exposure controlled by camera processor, but when you choose to use A, S, P and M, you say camera you are the man!

    On A, you control Aperture size and ISO speed
    On S you control Shutter speed and ISO so camera will calculate the Aperture size
    On P you can only control ISO so camera will control Shutter speed and Aperture size
    On M, you control everything and Exposure itself, you can use Exposure indicator to control exposure

    If you are not familiar with what I mentioned just see your camera manual guide...

    I suggest you to use Av (A), do you have Nikon!?

  3. #3
    herbert's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lens

    Hi DaiBoz,

    Welcome to CiC.

    You can use any mode with your lens. It will focus from infinity all the way to very close in front of the camera. So you can use it for landscapes, portraits, and other types of photos as well as macro.

    When doing macro the special macro mode may tell the camera that you want a big depth of field (high F-number) and also some flash to add light. However this will depend on your camera for the exact implementation. But you should experiment and learn the other modes too. They will still work.

    The macro lens is a very useful all around lens. However due to the special focussing coil design needed to focus very close the lenses usually have slow focussing. This means that their classic weakness is for fast moving subjects, for example during sports photography. They are usually single focal length lenses too. So you cannot change your field of view for far away objects (for close ones you just move towards or away from the subject).

    Have fun with your new lens.

    Alex

  4. #4

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    Re: Macro Lens

    Continuing on from what the other replies have said. I would advise forgetting about any of the 'auto' pre formatted buttons, like Macro etc and start experimenting with the full manual or semi auto options.

    However, before we get too far, are you shooting with a tripod and what sort of subjects?

    As a general rule, I like to set my camera using the full manual settings for macro work then allow the flash unit to automatically self adjust, plus or minus a few output compensation tweaks.

    But this assumes you have a fairly good idea of what the optimum settings should be.

    Otherwise start with the Aperture priority control and adjust this to give a suitable depth of field. Which will probably need a bit of experimentation. So, as a guess, let's start somewhere between F11 and F16. I find F14 usually makes a good compromise.

    Check other settings for Shutter speed and Iso. The shutter speed will depend on whether you are using a tripod and if there is likely to be any movement with the subject; ie wind rock if shooting outdoors.

    Select the lowest possible Iso setting but don't allow this to constrict the other adjustments. Up to Iso 800 should be acceptable under most conditions.

    If shooting inanimate objects with a tripod and you end up with rather slow shutter speeds (say slower than 1/60) try using a cable shutter release and, if possible, the mirror lock up function.

  5. #5
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    Re: Macro Lens

    Hi Meisam,
    Thanks for the info, yes I have a Nikon D90, and must admit I am an amature, so a lot of the techical jargon goes straight over the top of my head. All I wanted to know really was when taking photographs of inanimate objects such as flowers and wild flora, do I leave the settings of the camera on "MACRO" or one of the pre-set settings eg; Aperature, which would give the better results or would there be little or no difference?
    Regards
    Dai

  6. #6
    gregj1763's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lens

    HI DaiBoz,
    I normally leave my camera on Aperture for Macro work, and as Geoff said around f/11 to f/16 is good for a reasonable depth of field.
    A tripod is preferable depending on the situation.
    Have a look at post your insects on this forum. There is some amazing images on there and check the exif data on their photos to get an idea of what works.
    Cheers Greg

  7. #7

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    Re: Macro Lens

    Quote Originally Posted by DaiBoz View Post
    All I wanted to know really was when taking photographs of inanimate objects such as flowers and wild flora...
    One thing that you'll quickly discover is things that always seemed inanimate when shooting normally become whirling dervishes in macro photography...

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