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Macro, best focal length?

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by Danny_Two, Jan 18, 2011.

  1. Danny_Two

    Danny_Two Mu-43 Regular

    Oct 30, 2010
    Im looking for a good quality legacy lens for macro only, but what sort of focal length should I be looking for?
    I almost bought a Canon 50mm, but wasn't sure in the end.
    Can be any fit really, but I already have an M42 adaptor. I would prefer not to have to use any extension rings.

    • Like Like x 1
  2. grebeman

    grebeman Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 13, 2010
    South Brent, south Devon (UK)
    There are some thoughts on macro options in this thread https://www.mu-43.com/f40/macro-options-8487/ which might give you some ideas.
    Are you talking macro or close up?
    For close up work with the likes of flowers I personally feel that a 50-55mm macro lens is satisfactory, however for more flighty insects I prefer a 105mm macro lens which is more likely to enable you to stay outside the insects "circle of disturbance", move inside that and it will almost certainly fly away.
    Again with static subjects a fully manual lens, i.e. manual focus and manual stop down is satisfactory, with moving subjects I use a 4/3 macro lens (105mm Sigma DG EX f/2.8 macro) which retains auto stop down when mounted on a 4/3 - m4/3 adapter, although it requires manual focusing, actually a fully accepted and probably preferable method for close up/macro work.

    • Like Like x 2
  3. naturecloseups

    naturecloseups Mu-43 Regular

    Jun 10, 2010
    I have a few legacy true macro lenses in the 90mm to 200mm range. Often I find myself reaching out for the 90 - 105mm lenses for my primary subjects because they are lightweight.

    200mm macros are great if you can swing it -- but locating the subject needs a bit of extra effort.

    And for something very versatile I recommend lightweight consumer zooms of proven sharpness (e.g. 75-240/4-5.6 AFD Zoom Nikkor and Pentax SMCP-A 80-200/4.7-5.6)

    With 90mm macro lenses (Tamron 90/2.8, Tokina and Vivitar 90/2.5, Sigma 90.2.8 MF)



    With 105mm macro lens (AIS Micro Nikkor 105/4, Kiron 105/2.8)


    With 180mm macro lens (Sigma 180/5.6 -- a rare beast)



    With 200mm macro lens (Canon FD 200/4, Nikon 200/4 AF ED Micro)




    With achromat diopters on consumer zoom (Nikon 75-240/4-5.6) - don't knock the quality!




    100% crop from above, a revealation for an underrated zoom eh?

    • Like Like x 6
  4. Check out the Adapted Lens Sample Image Archive forum if you're not sure about how good the Canon 50mm f3.5 macro is.
    • Like Like x 1
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