Simulating Macro by pulling lens of body

Discussion in '35mm Cameras' started by Chris Stolpe, Jan 31, 2005.

  1. Chris Stolpe

    Chris Stolpe Guest

    If I pull a 50mm lens off the camera body so I can focus closer how
    accurately does that simulate what a 50mm macro lens would do? I focused on
    a negative and I could fill a quarter of the view finder at roughly 4 inches
    or so from the front of the lens which I think simulates 1:2. And I could
    fill the whole viewfinder at 2 inches which I thinks simulates 1:1 using an
    extension tube. Does EF work at those close ranges? Is there a maximum focal

    Chris Stolpe, Jan 31, 2005
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  2. As you seem to be aware, you're doing exactly what extension tubes
    do, so there's nothing wrong with it in theory. EF should work fine,
    provided there's enough light.

    You will lose the ability to focus at infinity, or indeed any
    distance at all, given enough extension. You will also lose a bit of light,
    since the lens is designed for a certain image circle and, by extending it
    away from the body further, you're widening the circle and thus spreading
    the light out more.

    In these respects, this puts you behind a typical macro lens, which
    is optimized for close work, but maintains a f2.8 maximum aperture
    (usually) and the ability to focus all the way to infinity as well.
    Depending on your 50mm lens and how much extension, you may not lose much,
    since 50s are usually faster than macros, being f1.8 or 1.4. This wouldn't
    matter a whole lot - depth of field drops to eentsy amounts so you'll
    typically be shooting at f8 or much smaller anyway.

    Dedicated macro lenses are designed to be ultra-sharp, and usually
    beat out all others in any manufacturer's lineup. They're also optimized
    for a flat subject (such as copy-stand work) and provide close to the same
    sharpness from center to corner, something a standard 50 likely won't do.

    So in a pinch, extension tubes (or whatever) on a standard 50mm lens
    will work fine. But if you're serious about closeup work, a dedicated macro
    is recommended. And following that, I'd go for a 100mm or longer macro
    instead, which gives you better working distance, allowing you to shoot shy
    subjects easier and also be less likely to eclipse your light source.

    Good luck!

    - Al.
    Al Denelsbeck, Jan 31, 2005
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  3. Chris Stolpe

    Tony Guest

    Moving the lens farther from the body is exactly what a macro lens does -
    it simply has a variable extension tube built in. The AE may or may not work
    well depending on the camera, the lens and the extension tubes used. Flash
    exposure will be more complicated too, but once you have determined the
    proper amount of flash for a given distance it will be the same for every
    shot -- within reason - it is still going to be necessary to do some
    bracketing as the correct exposure is not necessarily going to be the best
    If you have a 100 mm lens you can get a better working distance for flash
    but will need twice as much extension.
    Tony, Jan 31, 2005
  4. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    A macro "as a variable extension tube built in"? WTF are you talking about?
    The front element moves further but it would be misleading to call that a
    "variable extension tube".
    me, Jan 31, 2005
  5. Chris Stolpe

    chrlz Guest

    A person *pretending* to be a photographer said:
    sigh.. Someone's lack of experience showing again...

    MANY `real` macro lenses (ie the ones that aren't consumer zooms or
    add-on lenses) reach macro magnification simply by moving the ENTIRE
    lens outwards. Look at a good-old-fashioned standard 50mm lens on an
    SLR, and the ENTIRE lens moves outward as you focus closer - if it goes
    far enough outwards, it gets to macro magnification and is designated a
    Macro lens. Just because *your* camera (what is it by the way, and
    will we EVER see examples?) may have a `moving front element`, doesn't
    mean every other camera and lens works like it. (In fact, I think you
    will find on modern macro lens designs, it is MUCH more likely to be
    internal elements that move, and then it is only to *avoid* that very
    same lens extension.)

    So .....

    `WTF are YOU talking about????`
    chrlz, Feb 3, 2005
  6. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    Wrong again boy. To focus a fixed focal length lens the front element* moves
    outward which is why the front of the lens physically extends further out
    (not the whole lens boy). The only exception to this is what are called
    "Internal Focussing Lenses" (I just taught you a new word you can use to
    impress all your little classmates). On a macro lens the front element moves
    an even greater distance further out. Now shut up, you're embarrassing
    yourself, again.

    *Front element: The first glass element or group of elements facing outward
    towards the subject, mounted in a moveable barrel in the front of the lens

    PS: Were it not for your woeful lack of education I would not have replied
    to your pitiful plea for attention. I own a real 100mm macro lens, chrlz
    revealed that he doesn't, probably because he only has a trashy little zoom
    with macro.
    me, Feb 3, 2005
  7. Chris Stolpe

    chrlz Guest

    You've just proved your arrogance and stupidity again.

    Look AGAIN at a standard 50mm lens. Does the front element move
    independently of the rest of the elements? NO, not for the vast
    majority of such lenses. Look at a standard 135mm portrait lens, does
    the front element move relative to the rear? NO. I have SEVERAL of
    these lenses. SOME lenses, as I pointed out CORRECTLY, do have moving
    internal elements, BUT the whole friggin point of this thread was that
    the OP was comparing MOVING HIS LENS AWAY FROM THE CAMERA BODY to an

    GO ASK A REAL PHOTOGRAPHER what an extension tube does, you moron.
    Tony was 100% correct. I was 100% correct.

    You, as usual - 100% moron.
    chrlz, Feb 3, 2005
  8. Chris Stolpe

    chrlz Guest

    Go read up and learn, `me`, as you've clearly never even heard of an
    extension tube (or how about bellows?), let alone used one:
    "These extend the distance between the lens and the film plane on the
    camera, increasing the magnification of the subject on that film
    "Adding extension tubes reduces the minimum focusing distance."
    "..extension tubes are just light-tight spacers that fit between the
    camera body and the lens. They don't contain any glass elements; they
    merely increase the distance between the optical center of the lens and
    the film, thus producing magnification of the image."
    "There are three standard methods for doing macros..
    b. Extension tubes that go between a lens and the camera body. These
    move the entire lens focusing range closer..."

    If you don't know the topic - I suggest you keep your misleading
    comments to yourself.
    chrlz, Feb 3, 2005
  9. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    Fool, I tried to enlighten your small mind about macro lenses. I said
    nothing about extension tubes or bellows. Pay attention or STFU.
    Film best,
    me, Feb 3, 2005
  10. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    Read my first post again stupid boy. I said macro lenses do not extend away
    from the body therefore they are not a variable extension tube as Tony
    I said nothing about extension tubes slow boy and you are 100% wrong again
    now STFU.

    Are you blind? The front element or group *is* what moves outward you
    me, Feb 3, 2005
  11. Chris Stolpe

    chrlz Guest

    Got right up his nose with this one!!! OK, let's drive the knife in
    Certainly, and we will then see who is stupid, although it is perfectly
    clear already. Read on, and try to comprehend. Also, why not try
    QUOTING and REFUTING? (*I* know why - as soon as you have to quote
    point-by-point, you realise you are highlighting your errors). So
    let's go, point by excruciating point.
    WRONG. Many macro lenses DO extend away from the body IN THEIR
    ENTIRETY. Look it up moron, and you will see that macro lenses with
    internal floating elements are a relatively new concept. You even said
    this earlier:
    So you are claiming ALL fixed FL lenses have separately moving front
    elements!!!!! WRONG!!! You even explained your definition with that
    asterisk, to make it perfectly clear that you were WRONG again! I have
    SEVEN fixed focal length lenses (for my two Pentax and two Minolta
    SLRs), three of which have macro ability.

    READ MY LIPS - Only ONE of them has floating front elements, FOR ALL
    For just about ANY SLR lens/camera combination, whether that particular
    lens' front element moves independently or not , you can add an
    extension tube to gain close-focusing/macro ability. Those extension
    tubes have no lenses, and they simply EXTEND THE LENS AWAY FROM THE
    CAMERA BODY (and run a few mechanical/electrical connections). Which
    is just what the OP was asking about. You seem to have lts the plot as
    Really????? In YOUR VERY FIRST POST ON THIS THREAD, you said:
    that a
    "variable extension tube".

    That certainly looks like `extension tube` to me. Maybe that's coz I'm
    slow, and careful, and I can read.
    A bit rich coming from the boy who just said he didn't mention
    extension tubes..
    Shall I name about a thousand examples of lenses where the entire lens
    assembly moves outward?
    Pentax 50/1.4
    Minolta 50/1.7
    Pentax 135/2.8
    Minolta 100/2.8 Macro
    Ricoh 135/2.8 Macro
    Or shall I name all the different models of extension tubes that exist
    for macro use?

    Lemmeguess, photographer wannabe, you have one macro lens and one zoom,
    they both have floating front elements and gee whizz, you've never seen
    any other lenses.....

    Oh, and just for a last example to shove where the sun doesn't shine,
    regarding that lame `The front element..*is* what moves outward you
    jackass`... there are several macro lenses where the front element
    doesn't move AT ALL - one famous one being the newer Tamron SP AF
    90/2.8 macro.

    So, yeah, `jackass` that front element ALWAYS moves, don't it (in your
    tiny little world, anyway).....

    Keep smiling, and keep digging deeper!
    chrlz, Feb 4, 2005
  12. Chris Stolpe

    chrlz Guest

    `me` said:
    6 posts upward, on his first post to this thread, `me` said:
    Hint to `me`. I suggest the only wayout here is to now claim you were
    just trolling, and you really knew all that, all along.....

    Keep smiling!
    chrlz, Feb 4, 2005
  13. Chris Stolpe

    Chris Brown Guest

    ....or pretty much any rangefinder lens, most medium format lenses
    (especially twin lens reflexes), large format lenses (focus with the
    bellows), etc. etc. etc.
    Chris Brown, Feb 4, 2005
  14. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    [chomp again]

    You bite the hand that feeds you doggie chrlz. Without me you'd starve AND
    have no life.
    me, Feb 4, 2005
  15. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    Dear Booger,
    What could you possible hope to prove other than you have no life except the
    one I provide you with? Again you prove that you're an embarrassment even to

    PS: You're mine and mine alone. Want another bone doggie chrlz?
    me, Feb 4, 2005
  16. Chris Stolpe

    BC Guest

    Front group focusing is the classic method for focusing a particular
    type of zoom lens, but it is not as nearly as common as it used to be.
    A few macro lenses have a moving front group and a stationary rear
    group, and this type was pioneered by the Vivitar 90mm f/2.5 macro
    about 30 years ago. However, such a construction is very rare in
    conventional non-macro fixed focal length lenses. Shorter macro lenses
    in the 50-60mm range tend *not* to have this type of construction, but
    rather have two independent groups which *both* move. The Nikon 55mm
    f/2.8 macro is an example of this latter type of macro lens.

    Moving the entire lens is by far the most common method for focusing
    fixed focal length 35mm format photographic lenses, especially for
    lenses in the 35-200mm focal length range. Wide angle lenses and
    certain high speed short telephoto lenses often use two or more
    separate groups of elements, but these groups typically move at
    different rates rather than one of them being stationary. True
    internal focusing is very unusual in fixed focal length lenses until
    you get to the high-speed super telephotos.

    I have seen a few Tessar type lenses for old Polaroid cameras in which
    the front element alone moves for focusing, but these are comparatively
    low quality lenses.

    Front group focusing has made something of a comeback with the advent
    of compact digicams. The negative-positive zooms typically used in
    these cameras are most often focused by moving the front negative
    group. The Nikon Coolpix range offers many good examples of digicams
    using lenses of this type.

    BC, Feb 4, 2005
  17. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    Is this not I will grant (holding my breath while
    I put down the food bowl for chrlz) that the inner workings of many lenses
    move. Whether the whole lens moves is another matter. At least on any 35mm
    slr with a conventional lens it is the inner bits that move and not the
    entire lens (with the exception of bellows), however the outer lens housing
    remains stationary. Which is why I said the entire lens (which includes the
    outer housing) does not move (with the afore mentioned exceptions).

    PS: Your food is ready chrlz! Eat hearty!
    me, Feb 4, 2005
  18. Chris Stolpe

    Skip M Guest

    You need to get out more. There are a bunch of lenses for 35mm that have
    front elements that extend during focus.
    Skip M, Feb 4, 2005
  19. Chris Stolpe

    Chris Brown Guest

    It is, and are not those cameras that use Leica screw and bayonet mount
    lenses 35mm cameras? I think you'll find that most (all?) of those focus by
    moving the entire set of elements as a unit. Front cell focusing is nowhere
    near as ubiqutous as you seem to believe.
    Chris Brown, Feb 4, 2005
  20. Chris Stolpe

    me Guest

    I said the front element moves during focussing and chrlz said it doesn't.
    Who are you talking too?
    me, Feb 4, 2005
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