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help me with choosing a macro lens, please
spongya
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MODELGEEK
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Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - 08:55 PM UTC
Apologies for the request for help; I'm a bit lost.
I've been using SLRs in the 90s -my grandfather's camera, and a macro lens I got for it... so the basics of macro photography are ok. The equipment, however... that's a problem.
Finally I have bought a D3300 and I'm taking photos of scale models (for my blog and for the reviews I write). For this -as an interim measure- I've been using screw-on lenses on my kit lens. Not an ideal solution.
I'd like to buy a dedicated macro lens; for now mostly for the models, but for later I'd be using it on living creatures as well (being a biologist and all I've been interested in macro).
I understand the ideal would be a 100mm+ lens; these are 400+ quids, which I cannot afford. (My budget is 200 max.)
I've been looking into lenses, and found the most obvious, the Nikon AF-S DX Micro-Nikkor 40mm f/2.8G. It'd be fine for the models, however, later on, I might find it wanting when a grasshopper decides he does not like a lens stuck into his face.
I've been wondering, however -is there another lens, that is closer to 100mm and similarly priced? Older model, used, made by another company that fits the Nikon? I don't really care about autofocus; in macro work it's usually manual, anyhow. The problem is light measurement; I'd need a lens that can work with the D3300.
Working out compatibility is a problem for me, even with Nikkor lenses; hence the cry for help.
RLlockie
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Posted: Wednesday, January 27, 2016 - 10:52 PM UTC
Have you tried the secondhand market? The lens is obviously pretty critical, particularly with macro work, so I'd be inclined to look for used examples of a good one (back in the 80s, Nikon and Minolta were the only two of the big five who made their own glass, which was a factor for me) rather than new examples of lesser kit. Nikon makes a 105mm macro that would no doubt be decent but it is pricey when new. The advantage of the longer lens is that you can be further from the subject, particularly handy if they are prone to flying away.

My first stop for reviews is always dpreview.com but as I'm now a Canon user I can't offer any specifics on Nikon kit unfortunately.
spongya
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MODELGEEK
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Posted: Thursday, January 28, 2016 - 02:43 PM UTC
I'm ONLY looking for the used market

So far this is the best candidate: Tamron SP AF 90mm f/2.8 Di 1:1 Macro Lens

The 105 from Nikon (there's an amazing Sigma as well) are way over my budget even used; 300-400 pounds.

However, you can get telephoto zoom lenses with "macro" slapped onto them for half the price... and I wonder how they would work. Probably not very well, but I can't really tell.
mmeier
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Posted: Tuesday, March 01, 2016 - 10:46 PM UTC
The "macro" tele lenses (like my Tamron 70-200 SP) are in the 1:3 range when it comes to magnification. That MAY be enough for kit photography but it likely WILL break down when you do "real" macro work (Insects on blossoms etc).

Another problem can be the minimum focal distance (0.95m on my 70-200, 0.29m on the 90mm). Since the distance is measured from the sensor the minimum distance for the macro is basically on the front assembly of the lense.

Can't speak for them on the "yellow peril" since I am part of the "red storm" faction but I like my Tamron lenses and generally the 90mm Macro comes recommended in german forums/tests both as a macro and a light portrait lense. The main "problems" are

+ Plastic body (Although my Tamrons hold up well)
+ Slow AF motor (Common to all older Tamron lenses)
+ Extending tube (May shy away some subjects)
+ Not stabilised (Tripod needed)
+ DI lens (for full frame / 36x24) so it is bulky

A new model with USD drive (FAAAST) and stabiliser (Tamrons 4-exposure "nail gun" VC) is coming out currently so used older type lenses should hit the market soon. (German price for the old is around 350€ new, the new is tagged at 1000€)

varanusk
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ARMORAMA
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Posted: Wednesday, March 02, 2016 - 02:53 AM UTC
Are you sure you need a macro lens? The field depth is minimal and while it would be fine for figures, details or 1/72 vehicles, I doubt you can get a medium sized tank or aircraft completely in focus.

And there is no need, from my point of view, of high apertures as you will be using a tripod. And it reduces the field depth even more.

Just my cent
spongya
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MODELGEEK
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Posted: Wednesday, March 02, 2016 - 02:41 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Are you sure you need a macro lens? The field depth is minimal and while it would be fine for figures, details or 1/72 vehicles, I doubt you can get a medium sized tank or aircraft completely in focus.

And there is no need, from my point of view, of high apertures as you will be using a tripod. And it reduces the field depth even more.

Just my cent




You are absolutely right; however I do like macro photography for other subjects as well, so I definitely wanted to have one. Now that I have some experience with it (I got a Tamron 90mm), I'm in the process of writing up an article about photographing models
11Bravo_C2
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Posted: Sunday, March 06, 2016 - 02:54 AM UTC
Nikon 200mm f/4 AF-D

Considered a very good macro lens for Nikon. Im not a Nikon user so not sure if it will fit a D3300.

http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/200mm-micro.htm
spongya
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MODELGEEK
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Posted: Sunday, March 06, 2016 - 03:07 PM UTC
Yeah; that's about how much I paid for my car
spiralcity
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Posted: Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 09:29 AM UTC
Have you thought about using tube extensions? It's a cheap alternative to buying a dedicated macro and will accomplish the same thing. I own 2 manual focus legacy lenses which are macro, one is a Nikon the other a Fujinon 55mm EBC lens. Even the old glass can be pricey. That Fujinon sells for over 200.00 on the used market. I have 3 set of tubes that cost me very little and I use them more than my dedicated macro glass.

Shot with the Fujinon macro


Shot with a Nikon 100mm E lens on a tube.
spongya
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MODELGEEK
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Posted: Wednesday, March 16, 2016 - 01:25 PM UTC
I indeed have. A proper set of tubes that enable electric connections between the body and the lens are around 100quids -and I got the Tamron for 150... I think it was not that much cheaper to justify buying them over the dedicated macro. (The cheap tubes have several issues; one of them is the full manual operation, which is a problem. I don't want to use an external light meter.) However, they are still on the wish-list, because you can combine them with the macro lens to get a better than 1:1 magnification
Taylortony
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Posted: Thursday, April 07, 2016 - 05:29 PM UTC
Another alternate to a set of tubes is use a Canon close focus lens on your nikon lens, it screws into the filter thread and is a cracking piece of kit

https://www.google.co.uk/search?q=canon+close+focus+filter&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&gws_rd=cr&ei=C6MHV_WzBIrLsAGe2IvwDQ#q=canon+close+focus+filter&tbm=shop

There is a PDF guide here explaining it all.

https://www.google.co.uk/url?sa=t&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=web&cd=2&ved=0ahUKEwijsue8hP_LAhUEhywKHdcxAL8QFghJMAE&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.eos-magazine.com%2FEOS%2520Collection%2Fshop%2FResources%2FA383%2520%2520Close%2520focus%2520(CU).pdf&usg=AFQjCNGY_ZLosCuLm5BBAqNxHta34OSzLg&bvm=bv.118817766,d.bGg&cad=rja

Nikon also produce one

http://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/lens-filters/d-slr-close-up-lens-%2852mm%29.html


http://www.bhphotovideo.com/bnh/controller/home?O=&sku=87479&gclid=CLuor5OI_8sCFdYV0wodH7oHKA&is=REG&A=details&Q=
brian638
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Posted: Saturday, April 16, 2016 - 12:12 AM UTC
I have the Tamron 90mm f2.8. I bought it second-hand. It is a great lens great for Macro and less than 10m. Overall a great lens when stopped down, well worth seeking out.
Armored76
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Posted: Thursday, April 21, 2016 - 03:43 PM UTC

Quoted Text

Now that I have some experience with it (I got a Tamron 90mm), I'm in the process of writing up an article about photographing models



Where and when can we expect it? I'd be interested to read more about this topic.
brian638
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Posted: Monday, April 25, 2016 - 02:49 AM UTC
I can shoot a few images using my dedicated macro lens. I will need a few days to sort these out.
Removed by original poster on 09/23/16 - 03:14:37 (GMT).
Namerifrats
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Posted: Thursday, September 22, 2016 - 08:17 AM UTC
Wouldn't think you would want a true macro lens for models. I do a lot of photography. This includes macro work and I have 2 lenses, Sigma 105 Macro, and a Canon MPE-65. Below is a shot of the tread of a HO 1.87 scale model railroad wheel at 5X. So unless you wanna show a couple rivets on a tank.....you won't need anything like a true macro.

[url=https://flic.kr/p/wfa9g7]