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Thread: Macro lens for Christmas?

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    Member leanne0333's Avatar
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    Macro lens for Christmas?

    My partner is starting to nag me for ideas for Xmas and I was thinking about a macro lens. Pref not more than $350 as macro is not likely to become a main passion for me but I dabbled with my dads 60mm macro for butterfly and insect photography and found it fun for a change!

    My question is, what focal length is best? And zoom or prime? I've seen the macro versions of some telephoto lenses are super cheap compared to the same lens in a non macro version. Why is this? Is it not a benefit to have the macro facility and so shouldn't it be more expensive or am I missing something?
    Any advice or lens suggestions highly appreciated!

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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Leanne. The "zoom" macro that you mentioned, is it a normal zoom with macro?
    If so, their "macro" functionality is rather limited, typically NOT achieving 1:1 reproduction of image to subject, and requiring the use of
    full zoom. Also, you have to get back a bit from the subject.

    I would tend to go with a prime, and one that can achieve at least 1:1 reproduction. Make up your mind what focal length would suit you
    for other uses of the lens, like say a 50mm or 70mm, to cite a couple. From memory, I don't think macro lenses can get down to the likes of
    f/1.8, and I think they stop at about f/2.8.
    Am.
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    For a limited budget, a good used Tamron 90mm would do the trick very well for you.

    Generally, for a crop sensor camera, don't go over 100mm focal length and 60mm works just fine.
    Having said that, I've had good success with a Sigma 150mm macro, but it is a bit too big and heavy on my Canon 60D, but it's great on my 5D3.

    Zoom macros are not really macro lenses and you can't get anywhere near as close as you can with a proper macro lens, which are always prime lenses.
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    Ausphotography Regular crafty1tutu's Avatar
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    Another option is to buy some Kenko macro extension tubes and use them with one of your current lenses. I used mine with an old 75-300 lens until I saved for a proper macro lens (I bought the Canon 180 mm 3.5 L series macro and I love it). The tubes have no glass and go between the camera and the lens. They come in three sizes and can be used singly or all together - they are so much fun to use. Here is one example:

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/83646071@N00/3408353542/

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    I'm getting one for Christmas

    Canon 100mm f/2.8 L

    happy me!

    that doesn't help u though.... sorry!!

    - - - Updated - - -

    This might help though..

    http://www.cameramarket.com.au/tamron-90mm-f2-8-macro/

    Tamron 90mm f/2.8 macro. $300
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    Gee...a timely post for me.
    Very helpful. I'm going with the extension tubes first. If it grabs me then I'll consider the prime lens.

    Merry Xmas...

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    I would go with the Tamron 90mm.

    Cheapest 'best' macro lens available.

    The Sigma 105 is apparently as good, if not better, but is much more expensive.

    I've seen the Tammy 90mm for sale, new!! .... from the grey retailers for about $330!

    You can't really beat that for price/performance ... and it makes a very nice portrait lens too.
    Nikon D800E, D300, D70s
    {Nikon} -> 50/1.2 : 500/8(CPU'd) : 105/2.8VR Micro : 180/2.8ais : 105mm f/1.8ais : 24mm/2ais
    {Sigma}; ->10-20/4-5.6 : 50/1.4 : 12-24/4.5-5.6II : 150-600mm|S
    {Tamron}; -> 17-50/2.8 : 28-75/2.8 : 70-200/2.8 : 300/2.8 SP MF : 24-70/2.8VC


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    Arch-Σigmoid Ausphotography Regular ameerat42's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Kenny A View Post
    ...I'm going with the extension tubes first. If it grabs me then I'll consider the prime lens...
    Kenny, I don't know anything about your experience. Your statement worries me in that I do not see a direct linear relationship
    between the two techniques. The comparison of extension tubes and dedicated macro lenses has lots of variables that would have to
    be taken into consideration. That is unless you mean just to try the art of macro photography.

    Am.

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