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New to macro

Discussion in 'Adapted Lenses' started by gmex, Nov 11, 2012.

  1. gmex

    gmex New to Mu-43

    Nov 10, 2012
    as said in my other post, I am changing from 4/3 to m4/3, probably EPL-2.

    I am pretty much new to macro. I used to take some pictures with 70-300 and EX-25 from Olympus, but I recognize that I do not know much. I like to photograph bugs and I would love to get some of those pictures of their heads (dragonflys, for example). I used some time ago a Zuiko OM 50mm with some rings and had to get really close to get the bugs magnified. I don't have it with me right now so I can't make any tests.

    I am not sure about min focus distance I would need for them. I think that from 50 to 10 cm it would be great, knowing that some of the animals will fly away. Sometimes I can get as close as 2 cm from the animals, but not always.

    What I am looking for is an advice on a good old macro lens, and rings if needed. Maybe I'm not giving enough information but I just want, first, some suggestion to go further on my search.

    One thing: as I will use my camera with viewfinder, I won't be using an external flash, because as far as I know, they use the same shoe.

    Thank you very much.
  2. GRID

    GRID Mu-43 All-Pro

    Jun 22, 2011
    I use the Oly 45mm F1,8 + Kenko extensiontubes (26mm) on my E-M5 for this one.
    It fokuses about 10cm from the front lens with this setup.

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  3. phigmov

    phigmov Mu-43 Hall of Famer Subscribing Member

    Apr 4, 2010
  4. gmex

    gmex New to Mu-43

    Nov 10, 2012
    Great, a picture like Grid's is what I'd like to take.
    Thank you for the Mark's links, really interesting and useful!

    Thank you to both!
  5. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    The 70-300mm at 300mm and manual focus can actually get as close magnification as the OM Zuiko or Zuiko Digital 50mm macro lenses, which is a 1:2 magnification. The EX-25 you used on your 70-300mm was actually not made for that lens and is not very effective on it. If you mounted that same 25mm extension tube on the Zuiko 50mm (Digital or OM), it would have gotten you to 1:1 macro. But it sounds like you had extension tubes for your OM Zuiko, so you know what I mean already.

    If you have any of those lenses you were using, they will all work fine for macro on your E-PL2 as well. I hope you didn't get rid of them. :) 

    With the 70-300mm, you had lots of space to stay away from your subject and lighting was probably a lot easier to work with. Consequently, at that long telephoto length shake was intensely magnified and required a very steady hand to get a good shot if not using a tripod (not saying it's too difficult to use - I have many, many great hand-held macro shots from that lens). The 50mm on the other hand, requires you to get in close (possibly spooking your subject sometimes) making lighting more difficult, but also makes holding the picture steady a lot easier.

    So my question is... which lens were you more comfortable with, and how much so? If we know that, then we can have an idea of what type of macro shooting is comfortable for you and make suggestions based off of that. Perhaps a legacy 100mm or 150mm Macro might be in your future? Or maybe the new m.Zuiko 60mm f/2.8? Or perhaps the Leica 45mm f/2.8 Macro-Elmarit? Or maybe the Zuiko Digital 35mm f/3.5 macro? All of those lenses are 1:1. Or perhaps another OM Zuiko or maybe a Nikkor-Micro? There are so many options that it would be really tough to pin one down without knowing more about your preferences.
  6. fin azvandi

    fin azvandi Mu-43 All-Pro

    Mar 12, 2011
    South Bend, IN
    It's actually possible to use the electronic viewfinder and a flash at the same time - the camera's pop-up flash can be used to trigger a larger flash. That's how I've shot with my E-PL1 and E-P3.

    In terms of lenses, I used to use a legacy 55mm macro that could do 1:1, but moved to a 105mm instead for a bit more working distance.
  7. Ned

    Ned Mu-43 Legend

    Jul 18, 2010
    Alberta, Canada
    Yup, the 100mm/105mm macro lenses are my ideal range as well. Long enough to allow normal lighting (ie, you can use your regular studio strobes or speedlight stands rather than a dedicated macro ring flash) and plenty of space from your subject, but short enough to not make hand-holding too difficult (compared to the 300mm end of the 70-300mm, a 100mm prime is very stable to shoot with). There are also some nice 90mm macro lenses out.

    I also carry a shorter macro (Zuiko Digital 35mm) for its compact size as well as its ease in handling for "macro snapshots". Both lenses are very sharp. My 35mm has the front glass set deeply into the lens, just so it doesn't cut anything because it's so sharp. ;) 
  8. GaryAyala

    GaryAyala Mu-43 Legend

    Jan 2, 2011
    I've used the Micro-Nikkor 55mm f3.5 to good effect.
  9. gmex

    gmex New to Mu-43

    Nov 10, 2012
    Sorry for my delay in replying. I appreciate a lot your advices, the information is really useful.
    Ned, that Zuiko OM 50mm 1.8 was just borrowed...
    My plan with the EPL-2 is to keep my 70-300 until I find a good tele sustitue (I was thinking also in manual lens) and a good macro. I'll go to the cheapest options. On digital mzuiko I want to have the 12-50, until then, the 14-42 for underwater purposes, but I will try to avoid more ZD to save money.

    I need to keep in mind that I'll be moving a lot and good prime lens are really heavy, but maybe I can keep the good macro (like the 100 or 150 you have suggested) for those days that I can carry heavier things. I really want to be able to make such nice pictures as seen in the links. For those times when I can't carry much things, I'll have to use a teleconverter with a shorter lens. Maybe a good option would be to choose the telezoom (or fix) and the macro with the same mount, so I can use the multiplier when needed (I hope I used the proper words and not confused all of you)

    Thanks also for the advice about the flash. I could also think about using the underwater strobes with optic cables hehe.

    Thank you very much to all!
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