Macro Photography Lens advice

Discussion in 'Photography' started by swackett, 16 Jul 2010.

  1. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Hi,

    I'd like to get a macro lens for my Canon 450d, I'm thinking of either the EF-S 60mm USM or the EF 100mm USM lens, or possibly the EF 100mm L IS USM if people think this is the way to go.

    I'm a bit concerned that if I opt for the non IS 100mm macro that I will need to use a tripod a lot which is holding me back from this lens right now

    Having seen Saintly's fantastic shots I'd be interested in the lens and kit that was used to take those pictures http://ukaps.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=14&t=11771&p=125076&hilit=macro#p125076

    Any help much appreciated.

    Steve
     
  2. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Expert

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    hi mate.

    for that fly shot, I used the canon 65 MP-E f2.8 and a single 200w bowens flash unit. light is vital with this particular lens I'm afraid. I believe tonsers finding this the case too.

    the lens' you mentioned are all pretty good and possibly more versatile. The 65MP-E is a one trick pony, and pricey. :thumbup:
     
  3. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Hi,

    Oh, that's the 1:5 macro lens - Very nice!

    Could you let me know what you think advantages and disadvantages are of the 60mm and 100mm non IS lens? Do you think the 100mm would be better? Would the 100mm need a tripod and or flash as it's a non IS lens?

    I'm conscious that with the 60mm you will need to be closer to the subject, I think 9cm WD where as the 100mm is 15cm. Does the difference of 6cm make that much difference?

    Any advice welcome

    Thanks
     
  4. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Expert

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  5. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Thanks for the link,

    He states the 100mm is the best lens, even better than the 100mm IS L lens. However he does state that you need a flash with 100mm (non IS) lens.

    This will be my first lens (apart from the kit lens). I enjoy taking macro photos (well as much as you can with the kit lens) so I'm trying to get an idea if the lens is all I need to think about, it also looks like I need a flash, but not sure of which kind.

    In your experience do you always need a flash for macro work?

    I guess the flash would not be required with the 60mm len?

    Thanks
     
  6. Mark Evans

    Mark Evans Expert

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    the more important points are the 'comparability' ones. depending on full frame or not. make sure the lens is compatible with your camera first.

    but, the non is version is good by all accounts. image quality equalling that of the 'L' series glass.

    Their bot F2.8 and would gain you some pretty quick shutter speeds, so flash wouldn't be needed as much.

    consider this....If you paid the extra for the l series 100mm, it'll gain a few stops I think,(without flash)

    but then if you bought the non is 'L' version and then you could spend the extra on flash, which will gain you stops, ISO and a nice new flash unit...for a similar price...possibly :D
     
  7. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    I have the Canon 100mm f2.8 EF (non-IS).

    I love it. I've used the 60mm and prefer my 100mm.

    I do plenty of handheld stuff but the IS would allow me to keep a lower ISO. However with modern DLSRs the ISO handling with most cameras is fine at 800 or even 1600. Even higher for top-end users.

    Here's a couple of examples of handheld stuff with very active fish... No flash either...

    4275251794_30cf76ddda_o.jpg

    3988066076_659f02129d_o.jpg
     
  8. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Thank for info guys much appreciated.

    It looks like the 100mm non is is the one to get and then maybe get a flash later.
    The 450 d is a 1.6x DSLR that is compatible with the EF-S Canon Lens, however you are right, if i get the EF-S 60mm then this will not work on some of the more expensive Canon camera's.

    What sort of flash unit would you say complimented the 100mm macro lens? Would the speedlite 270EX or 430EX II flashes be okay? If so which one is better (the 430 cost more but is it worth the extra?)

    I'd like to use the lens for taking photos of my fish / tank and also take it on walks to snap any intestering flowers, bugs etc. I've also heard its good for landscape and portrait shots as well which is a bonus.

    George - Great examples of what can be done with 100mm without a flash. Was the picture of the fly in the water taken without a flash (thread linked above)?
     
  9. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    I use the 430EXII and it's a really good quality and easy to use unit. I use it occasionally for aquarium photography, with an off-camera shoe cord.

    If you mean this image, then yes, no flash, but outdoors there's generally enough daylight to never need it.

    fly.jpg
     
  10. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Yes thats the picture of the fly I meant. mmm, so it seems the 100mm will be okay without a flash, and Saintly was right if I get the 100mm (non IS) then I will be able to get the flash at a later date and still end up spending less that just buying the 100mm IS lens.

    Just have to find a place to buy it from now.....
     
  11. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Do you guys think I'll need a lens hood for the lens? Does it help much with macro work?
     
  12. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    I've never used one.
     
  13. swackett

    swackett Member

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    Hi George,

    Just out of interest, what Canon body do you use?

    Cheers

    Steve
     
  14. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    Hi Steve

    50D. Really happy with it!
     
  15. swackett

    swackett Member

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    very nice, Just wondering if the images you took are effected by the body at all and how they will look on a 450d with the 100mm lens?

    I guess there will not be a great difference...
     
  16. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    The difference will be hard to notice in most circumstances.

    I have 3 extra megapixels so have a slightly better capacity for larger prints and cropping, but it's really not much of a difference.

    There's other minor differences as we have different processors (DIGIC IV vs. III) but that's more to do with speed; maybe I have a little better high ISO handling.

    At the end of the day the glass makes more difference than the body. More importantly still is the person holding the body! There's better photographers out there than me with Canon 300Ds and budget kit lenses!
     
  17. john starkey

    john starkey Member

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    Hi Steve,this shot was taken with a canon 100mm 2.8 non is macro lens and a canon 450D,

    IMG_4460.jpg

    hope this gives you an idea of whats capable with this setup.
     
  18. George Farmer

    George Farmer Founder Staff Member

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    That's incredible, John! :D

    What was your technique for that mate?
     
  19. swackett

    swackett Member

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    OMG - That is amazing :D How did you do that ?
     
  20. john starkey

    john starkey Member

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    The shot was actually taken in a friends kitchen,the set was,
    In camera set up was mirror lock up,mid point focus,shutter release cable,manual focus,tripod (essential),set up was a plastic milk bottle filled with water placed up on a shelf,I then took a small pin and pierced a small hole in the bottle to create a dripping effect as slow as possible,I then just counted the drips in time with the cable release and I got this shot after lots of tries.
     

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