Canon FD 100mm f/4 as inexpensive macro option

tlovegrove

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If the $400 for the Olympus Macro is too much, or you think it's too short for comfortable macro work (as I do), the Canon FD 100mm F/4 is a good poor-man's option. You can get it for $100-$125, and the extension tube can be added for less than $10. I'm really a macro newbie, but here are some from my first tries:

[url=https://flic.kr/p/nrnHPx]
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Yosemite 2014 by jqv99373, on Flickr[/URL]

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Yosemite 2014 by jqv99373, on Flickr

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Yosemite 2014 by jqv99373, on Flickr

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Yosemite 2014 by jqv99373, on Flickr

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Yosemite 2014 by jqv99373, on Flickr

(album here)

Tim
 

dadadude

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Nice shots! Get a Canon FD or FL macro though, they can be had for cheap. I got both of mine for less than $50 each. With tubes it is amazing what you can shoot. You will need a good tripod.
 

tlovegrove

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Nice shots! Get a Canon FD or FL macro though, they can be had for cheap. I got both of mine for less than $50 each. With tubes it is amazing what you can shoot. You will need a good tripod.
This is a Canon FD macro that I'm talking about. Guess I didn't specifically use the word "macro" in the lens description.
 

RDM

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Very nice shots @tlovegrove .. I just picked us an old Minolta Rokkor QF F=50mm 1:3.5 Macro lens, for $19. (No 1:1 adapter, but I do own a set of MD extension tubes)
It should be here next week. I cant wait to try some shots with it.

I actually have 3 macro lenses already . I should try shooting more macro work, or compare them maybe.
the macros are a:
-Konica Hexanon AR 50mm f/3.5 1:2 Macro with 1:1 adapter {K/AR Mount}
-Vivitar 55mm f/2.8 1:1 {Canon FD Mount}
-Sigma 90mm f/2.8 1:2 (missing 1:1 life size adapter and the Bayonet hood [can't find that thing anywhere] ) {Minolta MD mount}

And coming soon will be the Rokkor.

If you have guessed already, why I purchased another macro in the 50mm range, it's because I like to try and stick with one mount adapter in my bag when I go out. Plus it was only $24 after shipping.
 

tlovegrove

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That is the lens, but I'd recommend you try to get the version that doesn't have the silver ring at the base (that's the older "breech lock" style that is a bit of a pain to mount).

It might be good to pick one up from a good used dealer, but KEH also only has the breech-lock version right now:

http://www.keh.com/camera/Canon-Manual-Focus-Fixed-Focal-Length-Lenses/1/sku-CA06009007880N?r=FE

But you might get a great deal on this on ebay, if you keep an eye on it:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Canon-FD-100mm-Macro-f-4-/281327692774?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item41806febe6
 

Listener

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If the $400 for the Olympus Macro is too much, or you think it's too short for comfortable macro work (as I do), the Canon FD 100mm F/4 is a good poor-man's option.
...
I was concerned that the 60mm Olympus would be to short for my closeup uses (wildflowers and insects in outdoor, uncontrolled situations. I've found that the light weight is a blessing as is greater depth of field compared to my previous APS-C Nikon setups (D5000 and D7000 bodies). While a 12-18" working distance is very comfortable and depth of field is less of a concern, sometimes the bokeh I get is not always great.

I then tried the Nikon mount macro lens I own on a cheap Nikon to m43 adapter. (Tamron 90mm and Sigma 150mm. Both very good on a Nikon body.) I did not find either combination to be satisfactory for regular use.

Next I found a used Sigma 105mm macro lens with 4/3 mount.On a Panasonic 4/3 to m43 adapter, it functions quite normally. Back to the consistently pleasing bokeh of the Nikon setups but depth of field is a concern again.

For now, I'l use the adapted Sigma 105mm and my wife will use the Oly 60mm on a second G6 body I just ordered. Long term, I might get a second 60mm Oly.
 

mrjr

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A 90 or 100mm lens becomes pretty long as a macro lens on m43. For handheld use, I'd definitely recommend going with one of the 50 or 55mm options instead, unless you have previous macro experience.

Having said that, I have a different recommendation in the long macro category. For similar money, you can get a Tamron 90mm F2.5 Adaptall lens. It's a 1:2 macro. I bought it as a portrait lens alternative to the Minolta 85/2 for use with my 35mm XG-M. But when I mounted it on my EM-5, I was impressed by its performance.
 

pellicle

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If the $400 for the Olympus Macro is too much, or you think it's too short for comfortable macro work (as I do), the Canon FD 100mm F/4 is a good poor-man's option. You can get it for $100-$125, and the extension tube can be added for less than $10. I'm really a macro newbie, but here are some from my first tries:
some very nice work there Tim

I've been a fan of the FD 200f4 (there are two versions, so to be clear the newFD inner focus model) for a few years on micro 4/3 , its an excellent all round lens for telephoto and works well with extension tubes too. Gives a great working distance (to not upset the bugs).

I've taken a few of blue banded bees with my FD200 in Australia (man these guys just don't sit still for a second)

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so having dabbled a little I can say your shots are outstandingly good.

PS: I paid $56 for mine (FD200) from KEH.

:)
 

tlovegrove

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I've been a fan of the FD 200f4 (there are two versions, so to be clear the newFD inner focus model) for a few years on micro 4/3 , its an excellent all round lens for telephoto and works well with extension tubes too. Gives a great working distance (to not upset the bugs).
Thanks for that tip - I'm always looking to add budget FD lenses to my set (with 50 1.4, 85 1.8, 100 4 macro), so that might be next.
 

pellicle

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Easier to handhold with less blur from shaking hands.
I can vouch for that ...
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FD50 f1.8 somewhere around f16 [small bumble bee - Finland]

DoF is still shallow, and I feel that due to increased working distance (for same sized object in the viewfinder) that the 200 gives a bit better DoF ... but not hand holdable IMO.

For any sort of decent results on Macro get a geared base.

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Something like this allows you to actually move the camera easily which really works better in fine focus control with macro. Including the extension tubes (but not the camera, tripod or ball head) this was about $100 all up
 

aznpapaya

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Can someone explain what is an extension tube are and why would you want to add them to your FD lens?
 

tlovegrove

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It's just a hollow 'tube' essentially that moves the lens further away from the camera, which allows you to get an even closer (more magnified) view of what you are photographing. They are somewhat challenging to use (because the magnification is so high, getting the image stable is hard, less light coming through, super shallow depth of field, etc.), but allow pretty dramatic macro photos.
 

pellicle

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Can someone explain what is an extension tube are and why would you want to add them to your FD lens?
to expand on tlovegrove's (quite correct) explaination. If you grew up in the world of inner focus zooms you may not realise that focus is done by repositioning the lens - when you turn the focus ring on a mechanical lens its basically like turning a nut on a bolt with a very fine thread. The lens extends as you focus on subjects closer to the camera. So the lens is at its shortest at infinity. If you pick up any 35mm prime lens from before AF you'll see this.

Essentially the lens has limits as to how far it 'unscrews' along that thread before it stops. Lenses like the Macro version of FD series are "macro" mainly because they have a much longer throw of unscrewing.

An extension tube gives you that unscrewing in steps (you can see that there is a small stack of extension tubes in my picture above). This means also that with a extension tube on you loose infinity focus and thus are confined to a macro view :)
 

kahunamoose

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What is a reasonable Canon EF to 4/3 adapter? I see them from $10 to the sky is the limit. $15 is a no brainer “YES” for a afternoon of adventure. $50 and I’m thinking the funds might be better invested in charred bovine flesh on the grill. This would be for my Olympus EM-5. Thanks.
 

Phocal

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What is a reasonable Canon EF to 4/3 adapter? I see them from $10 to the sky is the limit. $15 is a no brainer “YES” for a afternoon of adventure. $50 and I’m thinking the funds might be better invested in charred bovine flesh on the grill. This would be for my Olympus EM-5. Thanks.
First, you do realize that using an EF lens there will be no aperture control? That aside, I only use cheap adapters (for my FD and old Nikon lenses, don't use adapted EF lenses) and see no reason to get the expensive ones. One difference you may keep an eye out for is an aperture. Some of the EF lenses have an aperture built into them to sort of give you a way to vary the aperture. I personally have no experience with these and you may want to ask if someone who does can give you the low down on them.
 
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