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Macro Photography with Extension Tubes



Disclaimer:
The following review is not suppose to be some kind of a professional review. If you are looking for such reviews you will not find it in my homepage. I just plan to write a simple review with my thoughts to assist my friends with the camera they want to buy since most of the time the guy at the electronics department doesn't know much about the camera apart from the price of it by scanning the barcode. If you found my website from the internet then good for you! The reviews are just my thoughts and I am happy to share with anyone. It is possible I will make the occasional mistakes and if I do please let me know about it!

 



Introduction

When moving to SLR photography from compact digital cameras it is hard to understand why there is no macro mode to choose from with a little flower icon found on cameras such as the Canon PowerShot G11. SLR lenses have a lot shorter focal range compared to most digital compacts since quality is priority there is a lens for each purpose. Macro lenses work best at macro distances (close distance) and works till infinity. Regular lenses performs at its best at regular distances and does not do macro. Most zoom lenses come with a range that they call macro but the minimum focus distance is between 0.5-0.7 meters that does not do any good at all. With these extension tubes you will loose focus ability beyond 0.5m but you will be able to focus as close as 1-2cm!

I am sure there are many other photographers out there who like to have the ability to shoot macro but does not want to invest in macro lens. Some may want to shoot macro but do not want to carry so many lenses along with them.

One simple option to solve this problem would be extension tubes. I bought the Kenko extension tubes since it comes in 12mm, 20mm, and 36mm. Kenko extension tubes are relatively cheaper to the original extension tubes of your camera manufacturer and supports AF at the same time. Since these are not telephoto extenders or close up lens there is nothing optical you have to worry about. With 3 sizes you will definitely have the focal distance you need with your camera too!

The following photos are taken with the Canon EOS 7D + EF-s 15-85mm f/3.5-5.6 IS + 12mm Kenko Extension Tube without macro ring flash.



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original

ISO 250
1/160s
f/8.0
85mm


I shot this in MF with Live View.  

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original

ISO 500
1/160s
f/8.0
85mm

 

 

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original

ISO 100
1/250s
f/8.0
85mm

 

 

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original

ISO 100
1/200s
f/8.0
85mm

 

 

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original

ISO 320
1/125s
f/8.0
85mm

This photo was taken 4cm away from the subject.

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original

ISO 200 (H)
1/25s
f/11
85mm

The photo looks normal but I actually shot this photo upside down.

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original

ISO 640 (H)
1/80s
f/11
85mm

 

 

True macro shooters will not deal with extension tubes. You need to switch rings constantly for different photos and different lenses and can be quite a hassle. The use of extension tubes also causes loss of light resulting in darker images. If all you need are a couple photos this combination should be just fine. My sample photos didn't look too bad didn't they?

If you decide to buy the Extension Tubes I recommended or the Canon EOS 7D or any of its accessories you can get it them at B&H or Amazon by clicking on the links. It shows your support for my website so that I can keep adding to this site!

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