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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 5:34 am 
First off let me state that I really like bugs and I am a nikon photographer.
I have a couple questions to ask those of you with experience.

first: I have purchased a 60mm macro which changed from 2.8 to 4 depending on how close I got to the target. At the time I was shooting in manual. Does this happen with other macro lenses?

second: because I am a big fan of bugs I would like to get as close as possible. What is the best combos for someone that is looking to spend less than 1k. I was thinking of an 85mm 3.5 with a 1.4X tele. I have a sb600 and will be shooting outside so light isn't a problem. Or should I be looking into getting a third party 105mm sigma or buck up and spend the money for the 105mm vr from nikon.

Please help me out. Also if you could link to samples shots taken with gear you use/recommend I would really appreciate it.


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PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 6:55 am 
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Joined: Sun May 25, 2008 12:48 pm
Posts: 8087
Location: UK
The effective aperture does drop with increased magnification:

effective aperture = physical aperture * (1 + magnification)

So at 1x magnification for a f/2.8 lens, it's effectively f/5.6! Not so bad there, but it goes downhill fast if you start using smaller apertures for more DoF and higher magnifications... the effective aperture seems to affect both light levels (exposure) and diffraction. e.g. f/16 physical aperture at 1x isn't too bad on diffraction softening at f/32 effective, but at 5x magnification it's effectively f/96 and everything goes soft. And you still have an extremely shallow DoF...

The combo I use for more range and bugs is Sigma 150mm macro, with either 1.4x or 2x teleconverters. For the same magnification you can be the corresponding distance further away, or if they let you get close you get more magnification. That particular lens retains AF with the Sigma 1.4x but not the 2.0x, so with the 1.4x I use it for general use too. With hindsight I wouldn't bother again with the 2.0x as I rarely use it.

Canon DSLRs: 7D2, 7D1, 5D2, 1D, 600D, 450D full spectrum, 300D IR mod
Lenses: EF 35/2, 85/1.8, 135/2+SF, 70-300L, 100-400L, 100L, MP-E 65, EF-S 10-18, 15-85
3rd party: Zeiss 2/50 makro, Samyang 8mm fisheye, Sigma 50/1.4A, 150 macro, 120-300 f/2.8 OS
Compacts: Sony HX9V, Fuji X100.

 Post subject:
PostPosted: Thu Oct 21, 2010 2:48 pm 
Awesome thank you for the info. I'll check that lens out in just a little bit but it sounds like a good combo. I'm already a huge fan of sigma glass.

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