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Thread: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Any suggestions for an inexpensive macro lens for my Canon 50D? I was thinking about this one.
    Last edited by F250XLT; 01-25-2012 at 09:02 PM.

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    Flashaholic* csshih's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    the 50 1.8 II, also known as the "nifty fifty", and "plastic fantastic"(due to it's full plastic construction and subsequent low build quality) is not a macro lens, but a very fast and easy to use prime.

    are you looking for the compact macro? http://www.amazon.com/Canon-50mm-Com.../dp/B00006I53V

    C

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by csshih View Post

    are you looking for the compact macro? http://www.amazon.com/Canon-50mm-Com.../dp/B00006I53V

    C

    I don't really know enough to know what looking for, just would like a lens to take good close up pics.
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    Flashaholic* emu124's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D



    I use this one with my Nikon D7000:

    http://www.amazon.de/D%C3%B6rr-Makro.../dp/B000NZE4QI

    It's available in various diameters, so you should find one that fits your camera.

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    Flashaholic* csshih's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    I don't really know enough to know what looking for, just would like a lens to take good close up pics.
    well, budget? not all macro lenses are equal! some will be able to focus closer than another.

    emu124 linked some filters that you can attach onto existing lenses - they might work but the image quality won't be as high!

    C

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Since I don't even know how to use my camera, I'd hate to spend too much on glass right now. I would be willing to spend up to $500 perhaps, but would rather keep it around $300. I really need to find a good class to take, or someone who can give one on one instruction.
    "I am not a Collector" - Tim

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    Flashaholic* emu124's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by csshih View Post
    well, budget? not all macro lenses are equal! some will be able to focus closer than another.

    emu124 linked some filters that you can attach onto existing lenses - they might work but the image quality won't be as high!

    C
    Of course, with a macro lens for $400 it's possible to take better pictures, at least it should .. but still, there's the guy behind the camera...
    I paid $60 (and you can find them even cheaper) for the set (72mm) and since I'm not a professionel photographer I'm very happy with the results.

    Here some pics I took with the macro filter






    Last edited by emu124; 01-26-2012 at 12:05 PM.

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    Enlightened fonaryk's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    Since I don't even know how to use my camera, I'd hate to spend too much on glass right now. I would be willing to spend up to $500 perhaps, but would rather keep it around $300. I really need to find a good class to take, or someone who can give one on one instruction.
    I recommend this for a quick,inexpensive and very comprehensive tutorial DVD.

    http://www.canon50ddvd.com/

  9. #9

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Hello:

    Actually, you have several options,all good.

    First, what I have is the Tokina 100 mm macro lens. It cost about $475, and performs beautifully. Canon, Tamron and Sigma also make great macro lenses. Vivitar imported a macro lens at one time, and may still. Lower price, not the quality of the others, but probably entirely satisfactory.

    Next, is the 2-element close-up lenses manufactured by Canon or Nikon. They are well-corrected, are expen$ive, but don't cost nearly as much as a dedicated macro lens. I think Canon's designation is the 50D lens. It comes in some strange and wonderful diameters, so a step-up ring may be necessary. Nikon makes 52 and 62 mm 2 element lenses, and it doesn't hurt a bit to use them on a Canon lens!

    Next, the 3 or 4 filter diopter sets. As shown by Emu 124's excellent photos, they can do a marvelous job, and cost somewhat less. Stick with a known manufacturer, tho...they will probably be much bettEr built. IMO, $30-50 is not too much to pay for a good quality set. Avoid the "$18 Specials"...you will not be satisfied. Keep them clean!

    The next option is extension tubes. These fit between the lens and the camera body, and may or may not allow autofocusing or metering, which is a shame. Kenko iis the only manufacturer I can think of that makes extension tubes that are truly autofocus and metering. There may be others, but do your research carefully, especially on eBay. Extension tubes require exposure adjustment , which is why I think it is necessary to get the ones that will allow full metering.

    There is a learning curve to macro. Use a tripod any time you can. With any of the choices, your depth of field (the area in acceptable focus) will be small. Less than 1/2 inch, in many cases. Use a smaller f/stop...F/8, 11, or 16. Even then, the subject's body plane should be at right angles to the lens axis, and if you need more light think shoe-mounted electronic flash. What I do is mount my flash on the camera, then use a bounce diffuser or card. I tilt the flash about 45 degrees from horizontal. That way, the light is bounced closer to the lens' front element, and illuminates the subject very well, without the lens shadow that can be caused by the on-board flash.

    I know this is a lot, but in addition, go to your local library, and check out a good book on close-up photography. It will help immensely. Good Luck! Photography is a magical pastime. Learn the mechanics, then avoid endless, useless discussions,and enjoy the magic!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-27-2012 at 06:35 PM.
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    Flashaholic* csshih's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Since you're just beginning to learn I'd actually recommend you start out with more affordable parts - the canon 500D lens filter actually does pretty well, according to reviews.
    If you want to go even cheaper for now, emu's suggest sounds pretty good.
    what lenses do you have at the moment? the filter will attach onto existing lenses.

    C

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Thank you all for the info and suggestions, SO much appreciated. To answer your question C, I currently only have the lens that came with my 50D (28-135mm). It does say it has macro setting, but not sure if it fits what I am looking for.

  12. #12

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    I would be willing to spend up to $500 perhaps, but would rather keep it around $300.
    The EF-S 60mm Macro is a phenomenal, versatile lens. Flat, sharp, and even new its well within your range.

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by ElectronGuru View Post
    The EF-S 60mm Macro is a phenomenal, versatile lens. Flat, sharp, and even new its well within your range.
    That was recommended by some folks over at fredmiranda.com, definitely considering that one.

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    Flashaholic* will's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    I would suggest that you get used to the camera and your existing lens before you make any additional purchases. Try using the lens you have with the macro setting and see if that meets your requirements. I have a few zoom lenses that have a macro setting and a true macro lens. The macro lens will allow better macro pictures than the zoom lenses, but a lot of times either will do fine. With the digital cameras and the PC software available, you can crop pictures, kinda like a poor man's macro.

    Mentioned earlier is a tripod and separate flash - both excellent suggestions. With the tripod, get either a remote release or the wired release ( the old cable release )
    Last edited by will; 01-27-2012 at 05:16 AM. Reason: added info
    Now I can see the darkness .

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by will View Post
    I would suggest that you get used to the camera and your existing lens before you make any additional purchases.
    Now what fun would that be

    Quote Originally Posted by will View Post
    With the tripod, get either a remote release or the wired release ( the old cable release )
    I do have a tripod, and a Canon Speedlite 430EX II Flash...But I need to work on getting some lighting.

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    Flashaholic* will's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post



    I do have a tripod, and a Canon Speedlite 430EX II Flash...But I need to work on getting some lighting.
    I picked up a kit similar to this - good for small objects

    http://www.ebay.com/itm/Portable-Min...item256bc15d78

    If you really want to get into this - look at remote fired flash units, then you can get into multiple light set ups. I like to use my external flash aimed up at the ceiling for indoor shots. This eliminates the 'harshness' of direct flash.

    Best bet - take lots of pictures - then you can determine what works best for you..
    Now I can see the darkness .

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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    I did get one of those light boxes from ebay, the lights are definitely not adequate. I was looking at some lights on stands a while back, but have now forgotten where I saw them...perhaps BH.
    Last edited by F250XLT; 01-27-2012 at 08:04 PM.
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  18. #18

    Wink Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    Thank you all for the info and suggestions, SO much appreciated. To answer your question C, I currently only have the lens that came with my 50D (28-135mm). It does say it has macro setting, but not sure if it fits what I am looking for.
    Just one more observation, if I may; You have a beautiful lens! Learn its capabiities; you will be amazed at its capability, and may not feel the need for another lens. Take lots of pictures with it, waste some pixels...it's fun, and will increase your knowledge of your camera and optic. The more we shoot, the better we get.
    That old Black Maglight has me in its spell;
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    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by sniper View Post
    Just one more observation, if I may; You have a beautiful lens! Learn its capabiities; you will be amazed at its capability, and may not feel the need for another lens. Take lots of pictures with it, waste some pixels...it's fun, and will increase your knowledge of your camera and optic. The more we shoot, the better we get.
    Understood, I really do need to take some classes or something to learn how to shoot in manual mode.

  20. #20

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    [Yet another...sorry!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-31-2012 at 07:25 PM.
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  21. #21

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Woops multiples!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-31-2012 at 07:17 PM.
    That old Black Maglight has me in its spell;
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  22. #22

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Another...apologies. When I farble somethng, I farble it good!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-31-2012 at 07:19 PM.
    That old Black Maglight has me in its spell;
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  23. #23

    Wink Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    Understood, I really do need to take some classes or something to learn how to shoot in manual mode.
    OK., and here, More heresy!

    USE your camera! Classes are good!
    Don't get hung up on Manual Mode! It is not necessary at all! Become familiar with all of your modes; they are all good!

    Us "old school" photographers know how to shoot manual, because we had to! That was all we had! There is no particular virtue in shooting manual! EXCEPT! For learning the interrelationship between ISO, Aperture, and shutter speed.

    That's why you saw so many of us "ole timey" photogs dance and sing when they first got a camera with matrix metering and programs. The wizardry built into cameras today is better than any of us used to be and are. WOWZA!

    First, either go to your library and check out Bryan Peterson's "UNDERSTANDING EXPOSURE", Third Edition, or better yet, buy one; you will want to read it many times.

    Within its pages, you will find everything you will ever need to understand about exposure. He uses manual mode, which I don't, except rarely, (btw, none of my buddies that I hang out with at the local auto race track use manual, either. Things just happen too fast to sweat the small stuff!) but the techniques can be adapted to any mode, using your camera's exposure compensation, and will improve your understanding of the process.

    People have succeeded in making photography harder than it really is. Shoot, evaluate, adjust, repeat... Soon, you will have it the way you like...Then, keep shooting.
    Good luck!
    Last edited by sniper; 01-31-2012 at 07:22 PM.
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  24. #24
    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    That appears to be very sound advice, thank you. I guess when I said "Manual Mode", what I really meant was anything but full auto Program.

  25. #25

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    My Favorite mode...P for "Pro" orrr....more like "PANIC". it has pulled more Fotogs' Fannies out of the Fire, but will they admit it?? NOOOOO...The Best short answer? Aperture Priority, or AV, F/8 and BE THERE! Hee, hee!
    That old Black Maglight has me in its spell;
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  26. #26
    Flashaholic* F250XLT's Avatar
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    I need to learn some general settings and write them down, I always forget what is what. So aperture priority is the way to go?
    "I am not a Collector" - Tim

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    Flashaholic Max_Power's Avatar
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    I usually use auto exposure on my Nikon D7000. It allows me to spend my time figuring out the important stuff (what I want to photograph, composition, lighting.) I use the exposure compensation feature as needed for a good exposure in high contrast lighting, or to keep "vivid" mode from blowing out certain colors. (For more vivid color, reduce exposure a bit.)

    But if I am taking sunset photos on a tripod, I switch to manual mode to gain full control of the exposure and depth of focus, and disable any auto-ISO so I can guarantee ISO 100 for low noise. Also get the lens focused at infinity and turn off the auto focus.

    Understanding exposure is vital for flash photography as well. You control flash exposure with aperture, since the flash is faster than the shutter. So yes, use aperture priority with flash. For example, if you have a polarizer that eats 1.5 f-stops of light, you'll need to open the aperture up 1.5 f-stops to compensate. This is useful to know when taking a flash photo of someone with a beautiful sunset behind them. Another example - if I am photographing hummingbirds, I like aperture priority because I can go for the maximum possible shutter speed by just opening the lens as far as it will go (F/2.8 in my 70-200mmm zoom.)

    Getting back to the macro lens, it is sometimes easier to focus a macro lens by moving the camera instead of trying to use the focus ring. I got the Kenko spacer rings and tried them on several telephoto lenses. I don't fully understand how the rings work, but just experimented with them and had fun. You will need a LOT of light and use F8-F22 to avoid razor-thin depth of focus.

    I still lust after the 200mm F/4 macro for its sharpness and ability to focus both up close and to infinity. With the 70-200mm F/2.8 zoom, it can't focus inside of 6 feet unless you use the rings. If you use the spacer rings, it won't focus beyond 6 feet :-).
    Last edited by Max_Power; 02-03-2012 at 02:12 AM.
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    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    Quote Originally Posted by F250XLT View Post
    I need to learn some general settings and write them down, I always forget what is what. So aperture priority is the way to go?
    Probably, for close up photography.

    In general, while you're still asking that question, a program mode is best. Most recent cameras have several. I know Canon best, (though not as well as I really should), and they have Green mode as the most basic. P is similar but allows overrides and more manual control. They also offer the little pictographs for Sports (which would favor higher shutter speeds to stop action), Landscape (which would favor more depth of field), etc even though they are also program modes.

    When you're ready to experiment the aperture controls the depth of field (how sharp or blurred the foreground & background look) and the shutter speed controls the length of the exposure (how blurry motion, or camera shake, looks). Of course it is a tradeoff, because combined they control exposure and whether you get a picture at all.

  29. #29

    Default Re: Looking for an inexpensive macro lens for my 50D

    I have the Tamron 90mm SP Di f2.8 macro and it performs flawlessly (around $350). I also have the Russian Industar 61 L/Z 50mm macro (~$50 plus shiping). It is M42 mount but you can pick up an adapter. It performs really well.

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