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Thread: Can my Canon EF 200mm f2.8L II USM be used for macro?

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    Can my Canon EF 200mm f2.8L II USM be used for macro?

    Hello all,

    I am fairly new to photography and recently bought this lens for general use and would like to try out some macro photography. I have heard about the macro extenders available for lenses, What are your thoughts on them for this lens? Or should i invest in a macro lens?

    Your help will be greatly appreciated
    LAURITA
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    Member KeeFy's Avatar
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    You can always pick up a cheap macro tube set for less than $15 to try them out, no big loss and it works with all your lenses. The ones that does have circuitry passthrough costs more tho.
    Last edited by KeeFy; 14-12-2011 at 6:26pm.

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    Extension tubes ought to work
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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Mongo has recently used his Nikkor 180mm f2.8 with a 27mm extension tube as a macro with very good results. So, theoretically, yes with extension tube(s) or bellows

    PS - Mongo does not own a full frame camera, but if he did, he would have shot full frame with this set up to keep the focal length down
    Last edited by mongo; 14-12-2011 at 5:48pm.
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    Excellent thank you for the great advice - extenders are cheaper than what i expected!

    Too bad shipping will take a while this time of year...

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    Yep, and they do work on the 70-200.

    Edit, oops, hang on, I just realised you have the F2.8, I was referring to the F4. Should still be OK though.
    Last edited by LJG; 14-12-2011 at 6:12pm.
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    the cheap non electric macro extenders that you find on ebay for under 15 bucks lock your aperture to the lowest possible.
    At F2.8 doing macro shots will be rather limiting but will definitely give you a taste of macro and if you do like it will have the option of getting good extension tubes (Kenko set, around 150 dollars) or a dedicated macro lens
    Canon 60D - 24-105 F4 L - Sigma 10-20 - Kit lenses - 50mm F:1.8 - Tamron 90mm F:2.8 Macro - 430 exII _ Extension Tube Set


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    A. P's Culinary Indiscriminant mongo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyza View Post
    the cheap non electric macro extenders that you find on ebay for under 15 bucks lock your aperture to the lowest possible.
    At F2.8 doing macro shots will be rather limiting but will definitely give you a taste of macro and if you do like it will have the option of getting good extension tubes (Kenko set, around 150 dollars) or a dedicated macro lens
    True ! be sure your lens is the type that you can manually stop down the aperture - if not, you will need extension tubes with the electronic contact points or it will simply not work. Mongo's 200-400AFS is such a lens and he strongly suspects the 70-200AFS also has the same limitation. The Canons (being of a similar period and technology) may have this same limitation.
    Last edited by mongo; 14-12-2011 at 10:06pm.

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    The Kenko tube set will work well with your lens, and will still allow the camera to operate the lens opening, even the auto focus, although with macro, you'll generally want to focus manually anyway.

    They will also work with any of your Canon lenses.

    Is your lens the zoom or the fixed 200mm?
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    Quote Originally Posted by laurita31 View Post
    . . . [I] would like to try out some macro photography. I have heard about the macro extenders available for lenses, What are your thoughts on them for this lens? Or should i invest in a macro lens?
    It depends what you term "macro", to mean.



    If you want 1:1,or larger magnification (which some term as "MACRO") then, to achieve that, you will require a good length of bellows or extension tubes to make a 200mm lens into macro-photography. With your 200mm lens, to get to macro at 1:1 magnification, you will require about 160mm of extension tube: and that is more than two sets of Kenko Tubes.

    1:1 magnification is the image being the same size on the sensor (or negative), as it is the size of the Subject itself.

    So for example, if you had a 5D camera and made a 1:1 macro photograph of a 50c coin, the image would be about the whole image size or negative size across, because a 50c coin is as about as wide as the 5D sensor:



    However, you can get closer to the subject by using extension tubes attached to telephoto lenses: and some term this as “close–up” photography.

    And here, by comparison is the same coin photographed using a 135mm lens and 76mm of extension tubes, as you will note it is “close-up”, but not as magnified, as the Macro 1:1 magnification:


    ***

    "Close-up” can have the perception of “fairy-tale”, like this image illustration conceptual for a Children’s book, which was shot at about FL=160mm and using 12mm of extension tube:


    Fighting Potatoes © WMW, A.J. Group P/L (Aust)


    ***

    So it depends what you mean – if you want macro (1:1) then you would be better buying a macro lens.
    OR better using extension tubes on a shorter focal length lens, like a 50mm lens for example.

    But if you just want “close-up” then a set of extension tubes will provide that combined with your EF 200/2.8L MkII.

    ***

    If you do choose to buy extension tubes, then consider that having those extension tubes with electrical contacts, ensuring the lens communicates with the camera, are most useful and I would suggest the KENKO set of three, VERSION 2 of the DG Series; or either or both of the CANON MkII .

    If you buy cheaper tubes with no electrical contacts, then you will have to manually stop down the aperture of your lens: and whilst this can be achieved it is a laborious process and not really suitable for any close-up or macro photography other than copying documents and similar.



    ***

    What other lenses do you have?
    What camera(s) do you have?
    What type of Subjects are you interested to photograph, in macro?


    WW
    Last edited by William W; 15-12-2011 at 12:28pm.

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