Are you able to focus using a cheap u4/3 macro tube set?

icase81

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I have had that problem with shadows. Especially with subjects that can decide to up and leave. Sometime patience will not get you the shot, where a faster setup will. There are valid pros and cons about both methods. But mf focus is not always need with modern AF and lens. They do spot on jobs for hand held things like this, as this little guy flew away right after I took the shot.
I have had the shadow problem before as well. And using the on body flash is useless because there's simply not enough room between the lens and the subject for the light to bounce in between.
 

shoturtle

 
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If you are after true macro the 4/3 50 f2 is not a true macro. It is only a 1:2. The 35mm 3.5 is the only olympus macro that is 1:1 with the adapter. It is a good macro lens, with the adapter, but you do not have much working distance. With with the adapter, the AF work, a bit slower. But it is accurate. The only other 1:1 macro option would be a sigma macro like the 50 2.8 or the 105 2.8 with the adapter.
 

shoturtle

 
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I have found the off camera flash with the epl-1 to have help resolve some shadow issue when using the flash.

I have had the shadow problem before as well. And using the on body flash is useless because there's simply not enough room between the lens and the subject for the light to bounce in between.
 

photoSmart42

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So again, before belittling me, try grasping the entirty of the question being asked instead of assuming I'm stupid and thought that the only way to focus a lens was with electric since the beginning of time.
Wow! OK... This is going off the rails fast. I never called you stupid, nor did I talk down to you, nor did I intend to do anything but help. Just the opposite - it seemed like you were talking down to me by telling me I'm missing your point when I'm trying to answer it.

You're not reading MY question properly. Unless there is power applied to the u4/3 lenses, you absolutely can not focus them manual or otherwise, short of moving yourself/the body of the camera.
That's EXACTLY what I've been trying to tell you to do. Not sure where the message is getting missed. You don't need electric motors or wiring to move the body back and forth to focus! THAT's how you use your camera to focus using no-electrical extension tubes, which is what your original question was. If that's not your original question, then I definitely missed your point, and I apologize for the answers I provided.

Short of buying to of the u4/3 autofocus chips and soldering all 9 or however many wires there are between them so it completes the circuits, is it still possible to focus manually?
 

RetroBoy

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Dragos, I think you are looking at this from a different angle to the original intent of the question.
When I read the first post I thought I hope someone has an ingenious answer to his question because I have some adapted extension tubes and also an adaptable Tcon which I'd love to be able to try with my 4/3 70-300.

But I haven't tried because it occurred to me that I wouldn't be able to focus and wouldn't be able to alter the aperture on the lens.

Unless someone knows some sort of workaround (other than the obvious of move closer to the object).

I'm thinking something like changing the menu setting so the lens doesn't reset itself on turn off, focus on something close and set the aperture and lock it by half press shutter button, then remove the lens. So you could have say f/8 and close focus preset.

Not sure if this is possible at all but this is the sort of answer needed for this question IMHO.
 

shoturtle

 
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well with the tcon, you will have a really hard time to focus it it works. I tried to mount a canon 2x TC on the 45-200 and there were a image circle issue. And focus was really bad mf and af because it the image circle. But I have read the panasonic 1.7 tc will work with AF, but it is really hard to use with weight and balance. But it is very slow.
 

icase81

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Dragos, I think you are looking at this from a different angle to the original intent of the question.
When I read the first post I thought I hope someone has an ingenious answer to his question because I have some adapted extension tubes and also an adaptable Tcon which I'd love to be able to try with my 4/3 70-300.

But I haven't tried because it occurred to me that I wouldn't be able to focus and wouldn't be able to alter the aperture on the lens.

Unless someone knows some sort of workaround (other than the obvious of move closer to the object).

I'm thinking something like changing the menu setting so the lens doesn't reset itself on turn off, focus on something close and set the aperture and lock it by half press shutter button, then remove the lens. So you could have say f/8 and close focus preset.

Not sure if this is possible at all but this is the sort of answer needed for this question IMHO.
I might try and make something. Taking 2 of these:

Subscribe to see EXIF info for this image (if available)


From here:
AF Confirm / IS Programmable chip for Micro 4/3 EP2 GF1 - eBay (item 230545838863 end time Mar-01-11 19:33:49 PST)

And epoxying them in the proper positions so that they would touch the contacts on the lens and on the body on the macro tubes, and then soldering a ribbon cable to connect the contacts. It would just be a little awkward because you'd have to have slack in there to add or remove potions of the tube. Also, it might be more worth while to just make something like that because its going to cost $60 in those contacts, then $10-20 for the macro tube, and $2 in wire, and at least an hour or two of time to make a single tube that may or may not work properly.
 

DeeJayK

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Olympus MCON-P01 v. Canon 500D

Wow, this discussion has become very bizarrely contentious.

What I'm taking away from this thread is that extension tubes are probably a poor choice unless one wants to use legacy glass, since you'll be unable to focus any of the :43: focus-by-wire lenses (other than by moving the camera as some have pointed out).

It seems that a close-up lens would be the better choice for use with system lenses. The OP suggests the Olympus MCON-P01. I've read/heard many photogs recommend the Canon 500D as the "gold standard" close-up lens. It looks like the MCON-P01 is around $25 cheaper. Also the Oly will fit the kit 14-42mm, the 40-150mm tele-zoom and the 14-150mm zoom, while Canon would have to be adapted for the 14-42mm (since it has a different filter size than the long zooms).

Can anyone share your experience with either of these close-up lenses?
 

shoturtle

 
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I used the 500D extensively with the panasonic 45-200, with a 58mm to 52mm step up ring. And it produced excellent results. They do have them in different sizes, 77mm, 72mm, 58mm and 52mm.

So with the 14-150 or the 40-150 the 58mm 500D will fit without a step up ring. AF works with test lenses with the 500D, I have tired them. I am currently considering the 14-150 as a travel zoom for when I want to pack super light.
 

shoturtle

 
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One more thing the oly lens is a 4 diopter vs the 500D 2 diopter. The 4 is need for short range lenses. As the longer zoom will give a 2 diopter lens the added mag. Putting a 4 diopter on a long zoom presents some operational problems. You will have thinner dof to work with and it is impossible almost to hand hold close up with that much mag.

The canon 250D is a 4 diopter lens, and it is very good with lenses shorter then 70mm but very hard to use with longer lenses without a tripod and a lens that can be stop down allot.
 

photoSmart42

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OK, I'll try to clarify my earlier comments since we're talking about a number of different topics. To be sure, I apologize again if anyone was offended by my tone - none was intended, but I realize the nature of the internet is to distort intentions.

Anyway, here's my clarifications:

1. On Manual Focus:
a. If we're specifically talking about using the MF ring on a fully electronic lens, then no, it's not possible using inert extension tubes. I think that was obvious to everyone in this thread, including the OP. The only way to enable the MF functionality of the lens is to have an electrical connection to the camera.
b. If we're talking in general about being able to mount a fully electronic lens on inert extension tubes and still be able to take macro photos, then the only solution is to 'focus with your feet', which means physically moving the camera in and out of focus. Like I said, that's actually a very fast method for focusing for general macro photography anyway, so there's no downside to that method.

2. On using the lens aperture: it's true that you won't be able to adjust the aperture on an electronic lens once it's off the camera body, or no longer in contact with the body. However, on most modern cameras (including the G1/GH1) you can set the aperture in 'A' mode, then disconnect the lens from the camera. The lens will retain that aperture until it's re-attached to the body and reset. That allows you to use the lens at that given aperture for your photography. I've used that technique to take photos with my 20/1.7 both reversed and on extension tubes with great success. I've found that using an aperture of f/11 on these cameras is the best compromise between DOF and diffraction limitations.

3. On lighting issues: certainly it's true that you can run into shadowing issues if you use your on-camera flash as-is for macro photography. However, there are a number of options available to address the lighting issue for macro:
a. Use an off-camera flash (wired or wireless)
b. Use a macro lighting ring around the lens
c. Use a custom snoot to carry the light from the on-camera flash to the front of the lens
d. Use a custom diffuser mounted on the front of the lens to diffuse the light from the on-camera flash

I've used all these techniques successfully to resolve the shadowing issues, and I don't have any of those issues when I shoot macro. There are more resources on lighting found as the Strobist website.

Anyway, the point is that there are lots of options to try without having to resort to having to build electronic contacts into inert extension tubes. Of course that's an option, but one that people have tried without much success on these systems. In the end it's a personal choice the OP has to make.

Hope this clarifies my earlier answers.
-Dragos
 

shoturtle

 
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For hand held macro with natural light that some do at times, body and camera position is kinda important. As they can and from personal experience have cause shadowing and lost of vividness of the color. Not everyone always use a flash or carry a flash with them all the time. And depending on which pen the OP has, that could mean carrying a flash and a flash cord. There are many different shooter with difference shooter preferences. And to think your way it the only way is kinda short sited.

The op ask a very specific question with AF lenses. And you went on the soup box about MF.
 

Streetshooter

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Knock Knock..... Excuse me for barging in your conversation.
There is a lot of good info on this thread. Unfortunately, it is in a tone that is going to a place that borders arguing and respect issues.

Please lighten up and treat everyone the way you would like to be treated.
Thank you my friends.....
Don
 

eawhitcomb

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A couple posts up was talking about the 500d 2 diopter vs the oly lens 4 diopter. If I have the e-pl2 with the kit lens will I have the problems Shoturtle talks about (not working well if hand held)? I want to shoot macro but can't afford a macro lens right now and I don't expect to see a MCON-P01 anytime soon. I hoped the 500d would be a good alternative but now I'm not so sure.

Thanks!
 
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