advice on picking a cheap lens for a macro project (note: 50x+ magnification reached)

Brian S

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As per the "Nikon/Nikkormat Handbook of Photography" by Joseph D. Cooper, magnification of the Nikkor 28mm F3.5 and Nikkor 28mm F2 when used in reverse with the BR-2 reversing ring is 2.1x on a Nikon 35mm SLR. It would be double that for the u4/3 because of the crop factor.

Lenses by other manufacturers are likely to vary somewhat based on the flange distance for the particular lens mount. But "2x" is a fairly safe bet. For comparison, magnification for the 50mm F2 lens used with the same reversing ring is 0.77x and the 55mm F1.2 is 1.0x.
 

Porky4

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As per the "Nikon/Nikkormat Manual" by Joseph D. Cooper, magnification of the Nikkor 28mm F3.5 and Nikkor 28mm F2 when used in reverse with the BR-2 reversing ring is 2.1x on a Nikon 35mm SLR. It would be double that for the u4/3 because of the crop factor.
I think that you are implying that you will get 4.2:1 with a reversed 28mm lens on m4/3. I can categorically state that you will not get anywhere near that magnification. As I have said I have measured the magnification of a reversed 14mm lens at approximately 2.4:1. Another m4/3 owner has measured the 20mm reversed at 1.7:1. If the progression is linear, that would put the magnification of a 28mm lens at about 1:1 or life size. I can measure this if anyone feels it is important enough.

Lenses by other manufacturers are likely to vary somewhat based on the flange distance for the particular lens mount. But "2x" is a fairly safe bet. For comparison, magnification for the 50mm F2 lens used with the same reversing ring is 0.77x and the 55mm F1.2 is 1.0x.
I'm not sure that lenses from other manufacturers will vary that much when reversed as it is the front element of the lens that is closest to the film plane not the rear, which will have been designed with the flange distance in mind. Also, a 55mm lens having a better magnification than a 50mm lens when reversed doesn't make sense. With a reversed lens, the shorter the focal length, the better the magnification.

Just my 2p's worth.

Paul :cool:
 

Porky4

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Somebody has a link to a site with "Marco's for Dummies"-info?
- Step-by-step explanation, preferably including some of the math and examples
I've never found one. This site has a lot of relevant information, there may be something in the depths of their forums. Otherwise it's down to Google, I'm afraid. :smile:

Paul :cool:
 

Brian S

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The increased magnification of 2.1x for Nikkor 28mm F2 and Nikkor 28mm F3.5 on the 35mm full-frame is linear magnification and is due to the inverted-telephoto, or retro-focus, design of the lens. When inverted, the "inverse-Telephoto" design becomes a "Telephoto" design. This is why the magnification number for the lens used in reverse position is different for other lenses of the same focal length.Magnification of the Nikkor 50mm F1.4 used with the BR-2 is given as 1.1x, and the magnification of the 50mm F2 is given as 0.77x.

The authors of books like the "Nikon/Nikkormat Handbook of Photography" usually know what they are talking about and can be regarded as a credible source.
 

Porky4

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The increased magnification of 2.1x for Nikkor 28mm F2 and Nikkor 28mm F3.5 on the 35mm full-frame is linear magnification and is due to the inverted-telephoto, or retro-focus, design of the lens. When inverted, the "inverse-Telephoto" design becomes a "Telephoto" design. This is why the magnification number for the lens used in reverse position is different for other lenses of the same focal length.Magnification of the Nikkor 50mm F1.4 used with the BR-2 is given as 1.1x, and the magnification of the 50mm F2 is given as 0.77x.

The authors of books like the "Nikon/Nikkormat Handbook of Photography" usually know what they are talking about and can be regarded as a credible source.
Hi there,

All I can say is that if people can get a magnification of 4.2x, as you say, from reversing a Nikkor 28mm on a G1, I would have though that it would have been shouted from the rooftops. I'm interested in this area and I've never heard it mentioned (but that doesn't mean it hasn't been). I think that the proof of the pudding will be to reverse mount one of these lenses on a G1 (or other m4/3 camera) and photograph something of a known size. If it does indeed give that sort of magnification I will apologise profusely, sacrifice a Vivitar lens to the God of lenses and beat a path to eBay looking for one. I'll be able to use it on my D90 as well - bonus!

Paul :cool:
 

Brian S

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"In the Day", the Nikkor 24mm F2.8 was used quite a bit in reversed mode for copy work.

The lens featured floating optics. The increased linear magnification of the lens allowed working distance to be increased. The lens was often used on a bellows or with tubes. With the advent of "macro-zooms", techniques such as reversing lenses and using bellows became less popular.
 

julienrl

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wow thanks a lot everyone! If I were to test a reversed lens, how do I measure the magnification (so that I can report my findings, knowing the number won't make me happier or less happy if I like the results :p)?

I met someone who offered to let me try his 28mm and I am looking into trying one of those cctv lenses when I manage to scrounge up the 20-25$ needed... so many DIY projects going on at once, their low costs add up! lol
 

Porky4

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wow thanks a lot everyone! If I were to test a reversed lens, how do I measure the magnification (so that I can report my findings, knowing the number won't make me happier or less happy if I like the results :p)?
Hi,

Much like I did in the image above. Photograph something of a known size and see how big it is in the image. The m4/3 sensor has a image width of 17.3mm. In the image above, you can see that just over 7mm of the ruler is shown in the image. 17.3/7.2=2.402777, so we have a magnification of approx. 2.4:1. Easy :biggrin:

Paul :cool:
 

Brian S

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Berries, 50mm lens, normal mode at 3ft, 35mm full-frame camera.

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Berry, Nikkor 24/2.8 mounted on the EP2 using a BR-2 reversing Ring. Wide-open at F2.8, you normally would stop down to F5.6 or F8 at least. No cropping, just resized.

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You should also use a copy stand. This was a quick grab-shot.
 

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Porky4

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...Berry, Nikkor 24/2.8 mounted on the EP2 using a BR-2 reversing Ring...
I'm confused. The BR-2 doesn't mount on an EP-2 as far as I'm aware. Are you using some other piece of vital equipment here that you haven't mentioned? Maybe a m4/3 to Nikon F adapter? If so, that runs rather contrary to the original poster's request for a cheap solution as he already has a m4/3 to 52mm filter thread reverse mount adapter. Please excuse me if I'm missing something.

Paul :cool:
 

Brian S

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I am using a $20 Nikon F-Mount adapter. The original user mentions legacy manual focus lenses in the original post. This is about as cheap as it gets if you want these kinds of reproduction ratios. The other way to do this is to buy a cheap extension tube, or to make one. I made it clear that the reproduction ratios were given for a Nikon BR-2 when quoting out of the datasheets.

If you want something for $15, buy a junk 28mm lens, make an extension tube out of an aluminum tube and superglue it. I've made an extension tube out of a telescope camera adapter bought in a junk bin for $1.
 

Porky4

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But the original poster already has a 52mm reverse mount adapter. He can mount a wide angle legacy lens directly onto that. I don't see why he would want to buy a Nikon F adapter and a BR-2 to achieve the same thing. If the purpose of the adapter and BR-2 is to move the lens further away from the film plane, a set of m4/3 extension tubes can now be bought cheaper on eBay and would be more flexible.
 

Brian S

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All that matters is extension equivalent of the F-Mount convertor. I used what I have on hand to produce the close-up as shown this morning, to show the close-up capability of a retro-focus wide-angle lens. Some members have never heard of this technique, and do not know the advantages offered by the retro-focus formula lenses. Otherwise, the OP would not have bought a 50mm lens.

If the OP wants to do the same, the OP can buy a 25mm extension tube to duplicate the extension that the F-Mount adapter provides. Now- cost of my setup, $20 for the F-Mount adapter and $1 for the BR-2 from a junk bin at a camera show. A 28mm legacy lens is fairly cheap, a Nikkor is more expensive. The retro-focus wide-angle lens gives an advantage for increasing working distance over a non-retrofocus lens.

I've put up am example close-up with my setup, how about some other members put up examples of their extreme close-ups?
 

julienrl

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I'm confused. The BR-2 doesn't mount on an EP-2 as far as I'm aware. Are you using some other piece of vital equipment here that you haven't mentioned? Maybe a m4/3 to Nikon F adapter? If so, that runs rather contrary to the original poster's request for a cheap solution as he already has a m4/3 to 52mm filter thread reverse mount adapter. Please excuse me if I'm missing something.

Paul :cool:
Yup 52mm reverse and I also have 52-49mm step... just a tip for anyone looking to get one of these revers mounts, the thread to thread adapters run 3-5$ each so for anyone looking to get a reverse mount on ebay, don't go for the 52mm one (even if it is the cheapest); pay double, but get the biggest possible and then get step adapters to fit any other smaller size. long term planning fail :p
 

Brian S

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In that case- you are going to want to get some extension tubes for close-up work. This stuff used to run "some serious bucks" in the day, like buying a bellows, extension tube set, macro lens, microscope adapter, etc. These days, lots of legacy stuff is cheap on Ebay and at camera shows. I feel the best investment is to pick up adapters for legacy systems, and I have M-Mount, F-Mount, Olympus Mount, and Canon mount. Except for the Olympus mount bought here in the classifieds, the others ran $20 each. I have about 200 lenses I can use with the EP2 with these adapters. Some of them were expensive, others were thrift store finds.
 

julienrl

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Yup 52mm reverse and I also have 52-49mm step... just a tip for anyone looking to get one of these revers mounts, the thread to thread adapters run 3-5$ each so for anyone looking to get a reverse mount on ebay, don't go for the 52mm one (even if it is the cheapest); pay double, but get the biggest possible and then get step adapters to fit any other smaller size. long term planning fail :p
oh and for those who would still get the cheaper 52mm revers adaptor, there is also this nice find on e-bay

http://cgi.ebay.ca/49-52-55-58-62-67-72-77-82-mm-Step-Up-Rings-SET-8pcs-/250566151536?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0
http://cgi.ebay.ca/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=360188455910&ssPageName=STRK:MEWAX:IT
all but the 49 would work (you would need a step down to 49 rather than a 49-52 step up)

while the step down set
http://cgi.ebay.ca/77-72-67-62-58-55-52-49-mm-Step-Down-Rings-SET-7pcs-/250468723461?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0
would have 3 not working. So come to think of it, the cheaper reverse adaptor might be better... This is all if you don't mind the extra distance of course. If you don't want that, you will have to get each adaptor individually so that it gos from your reverser to whatever you want.
 

julienrl

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Well I made myself a set of extension tubes (DIY coming soon in my blog as well as pictures of the tests as soon as I get my laptop back from repair) and had the chance to test my Pentax 50mm f2.0 as well as jbart's Canon 28mm f2.8 (correct me if I am wrong jbart) lens.

With the 50mm reversed and my 10cm tube I can get about a 3.5x magnification, but the longer the tubes, the more I get a milky-film-like glare in my pictures.

With the reversed 28mm Canon however, the colors had a tint of blue that was not present in real life (easily corrected with a white balance shift/ raw pics) but the pictures were much MUCH sharper and the lens did not suffer the same type of issues. We got a 3.5x magnification with the 5cm tube and with the 7.5cm tube we got 4.9x magnification and the picture was still incredibly sharp!

final note: the magnification is based on the 17mm.3 width as given by Porky4 and as mentioned earlier, pictures are coming. Also, I will be testing 5$ cctv lenses from ebay in the coming weeks (once I can buy one and receive it). Thanks for the help to both jbart and proky4 as well as everyone else who contributed so far.
 

julienrl

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here are the photos as promised

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/5015583581/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">
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"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
control picture with the Panasonic 20mm f1.7

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/5015597739/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">
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"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
reversed 50mm Pentax f2.0 with 10cm tube

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/5016208738/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">
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"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
reversed 28mm Canon f2.8 with no tube

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/5015603371/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">
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"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
reversed 28mm Canon f2.8 with 5cm tube

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/julienlemay/5016212740/" title="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA by julienrl, on Flickr">
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"500" height="375" alt="OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA" /></a>
reversed 28mm Canon f2.8 with 7.5cm tube
 

Brian S

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It looks like the reversed Canon 28/2.8 is a winner for your close-up project. Be interesting to see how the CCTV lens does. It is probably a "normal lens", ie not a retro-focus design.
 

julienrl

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I just got the CCTV lens yesterday and the caps today so I should have the adaptation done and the pictures taken within a few days.
 
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