El Nikkor 50mm F2.8 + OM telescopic extension tube

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by Ecooper, Jun 16, 2013.

  1. Ecooper

    Ecooper Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 15, 2013
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Hi all,

    I am new to this forum; in fact I just discovered it yesterday! For that matter, I am new to the micro 4/3 system. I have been shooting with Olympus cameras for more than 35 years. I moved to digital about 7 years ago and then bought my first micro 4/3 (Olympus OM-D E-M5) 3 months ago. I’m still getting used to the new camera.

    I mainly shoot macro. The thing about macro photography is that one always wants to get closer—to shoot at higher magnification and get a better look at some tiny creature. For the past couple of years I have been using a Zuiko 35mm macro lens which got me to 1:1 magnification, but I often wanted to get closer.

    This past winter I bought a El Nikkor 50mm F2.8 enlarger lens off eBay for a whole $20.00. This lens has a reputation as a good sharp macro lens when reversed on a bellows. So using a couple of $2.00 adaptors (also off eBay) I tried mounting the lens (reversed) on a vintage OM telescopic auto extension tube 65-116 on my OM-D EM-5 body. The result was magnification of almost 2:1 with the auto extension tube collapsed, and almost 3:1 with it fully extended. Surprisingly, the working distance is very respectable at 6.5cm (collapsed) and 5.5cm (extended).

    The photo below is the best result of my first test of the lens: a weevil drinking from a drop of maple syrup. All-in-all I’m reasonably satisfied. I expected some loss of resolution due to the extension, but it didn’t turn out too bad. The image has higher contrast and more muted colours than what I get when I shoot with my Zuiko 35mm macro. So this set-up definitively doesn’t produce images as nice as the Zuiko, but the price was certainly right; and I was able to photograph a tiny insect taking a drink from a drop of syrup...and that’s pretty cool!

    The last photo is of the same weevil taken with the Zuiko 35mm macro lens, for comparison.

    macrocritters | What's a nice bug like you doing in a place like this…?

    P6170326 edit 2 weevil drop copyright ernie cooper 2013 b_filtered by ernie.cooper, on Flickr

    nikkor on collapsable labelled copy by ernie.cooper, on Flickr

    P6170307 weevil re edit2 copyright ernie cooper 2013_filtered by ernie.cooper, on Flickr
    • Like Like x 1
  2. rklepper

    rklepper Mu-43 Top Veteran

    Dec 19, 2012
    Iowa, USA
    Well you sure can't argue with the results. Very nice. Thanks for sharing.
  3. Lawrence A.

    Lawrence A. Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 14, 2012
    New Mexico
    Thanks. interesting setup.
  4. Cruzan80

    Cruzan80 Mu-43 All-Pro

    Aug 23, 2012
    Denver, Co
    Sean Rastsmith
    Hey, I think you may have mislabed some of the parts in here. For example, you have the lens then 52->om mount connecting to a 40.5->52 connecting ring (which attaches to the OM extension), and the 4/3->m4/3 then OM->4/3, then m4/3 camera. I am guessing the correct order is enlarging lensconnected to the 40.5, then steps up to 52mm, converts to OM, connects to tube, then OM->4/3->m4/3. So I am guessing you could do the same with an enlarging lens, a 40.5->OM, auto extension tube, then OM-m4/3, and the others were just what you had around to make it work without buying new stuff?

    Awesome pics overall though.
  5. Ecooper

    Ecooper Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 15, 2013
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    LOL! You are absolutely right! I mis-labeled the adapters at both ends! I couldn't find an 40.5 to OM adapter on eBay but I could find a 40.5 to 52mm and a 52mm to OM...so I had to buy both and combine them. Your right about the other bits...I already had them kicking around.

    macrocritters | What's a nice bug like you doing in a place like this…?
  6. dougjgreen

    dougjgreen Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 5, 2013
    San Diego
    Doug Green
    Rube Goldberg lives !!!!!
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