Jewels (and a tribute to the PL45).

Discussion in 'Other Genres' started by Conrad, Jun 23, 2015.

  1. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran

    For some reason the PL45 is mentioned less and less in forums as an answer to people with questions on macro photography. In my view totally undeserved, since this is for me a close to ideal macro lens. Chart tests do not do this lens justice, since for "normal" usage, this lens is not better than one of the good standard zooms. It is more characteristic with its vignetting and typical rendering wide open, but not better in resolution.
    This lens starts to sing, and really sing, when used in close up or larger magnification. At 1:1, the highest resolution aperture is... wide open, and it approaches at that aperture the theoretical diffraction limit. The vignetting is gone. It has very little longitudinal chromatic aberration. These properties make it ideal for focus stacking. The internal focusing makes it a very easy lens to work with, with still acceptable working distance even at maximum magnification and you don't need a Gitzo series 5 to keep things stable because of the weight.

    Words are nice, photos are better. So what follows is a selection of photos in one genre: jewel photography. Some are focus stacked, some are just taken at small aperture. Different cameras have been used, different lighting is applied (usually flash), but all are taken with the PL45. Enjoy (and constructive C&C is always welcome).

    • Like Like x 3
    • Winner Winner x 1
  2. tkbslc

    tkbslc Mu-43 Legend

    Great pics!

    I don't think anyone doubts that the 45mm macro is a great lens. The primary issue is the cost compared to the also excellent Olympus 60mm macro. If they were closer in price, I think the 45mm would have a lot more fans.
    • Agree Agree x 2
  3. wjiang

    wjiang Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Great images. I especially like the background and lighting. What did you use as a background in the first few shots, some kind of glass surface?
    Also, how did you clean the pieces so thoroughly? I can never quite get them that good!
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. dornblaser

    dornblaser Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Aug 13, 2012
    David Dornblaser
    Very nice pictures, I would also appreciate learning more about how you took them.
  5. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran

    It is indeed glass, but a special kind: an (old) iPad. I alter the light level of the reflection in the surface by placing either a white or a black object behind the iPad and by using a (linear) polarizer.
    About cleaning, there are two types: the ultrasound bath with magic soap mixture right before photographing and subsequent handling with dust free gloves, and Photoshop. Grease is actually worse than dust, because dust is easily removed in Photoshop, where smears of grease are much harder to retouch.
    • Useful Useful x 1
  6. Conrad

    Conrad Mu-43 Veteran


    The price is obviously a factor, and the Oly seems now a better deal. I have no problem with that at all, it´s just that a lot of internet comments are in the line of 'if you want to shoot macro, all you need is a lens that goes up close' and then follow that statement with 'and site tested the Oly vs. the PL and shows it optically to be at least equal' where the test data have nothing to do with close up. Let´s say I had a moment of internet frustration:wink:.
    • Like Like x 1
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