Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 33

Thread: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    213

    For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    I am planning to establish a table top set-up in my basement with backdrops, staging and appropriate lighting to begin photographing still life compositions, and I am considering purchase of a macro lens(es) for this purpose. There will be a learning curve, but that's part of the plan and the fun. In my research to date I see there are "macro" lenses from the big three or four makers available mostly in 120mm and 180mm focal lengths, but I am wondering which would be the most useful focal length for me to consider as a first purchase? Any other advice you might offer for lens choices would also be appreciated. My camera will be a Linhof Technikarden 45S. Thanks in advance for your help...
    ... JMOwens (Mt. Pleasant, Wisc. USA)

    "If people only knew how hard I work to gain my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all." ...Michelangelo

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    13,050

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    What magnification do you want? What shaped objects will you shoot?

  3. #3

    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Beijing
    Posts
    209

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    I quite enjoy my kodak enlarging ektar 125mm. Here is a shot on 4x5, Not sure what the magnification is, but I filled the frame with the watch (39mm)
    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	trip2017010192.jpg 
Views:	43 
Size:	53.6 KB 
ID:	200384

  4. #4

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Newbury, Vermont
    Posts
    939

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    55mm Micro Nikkor lens...reversed, on a Crown Graphic. Watch movement (following the "watch" theme) floating on water surface-tension after water sprinkled with aluminum powder:

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	Watch Movement.jpg 
Views:	59 
Size:	241.1 KB 
ID:	200395

  5. #5

    Join Date
    Mar 2005
    Location
    Newbury, Vermont
    Posts
    939

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    ...but for your goals and purposes - and considering your model of camera (bellows length-related) I'd recommend something in the range of 120 as a minimum, 180 as a maximum. Delving a bit more into your post...it sounds like if you had to choose between these two, then a 180 might be better.

    Maybe give us a subject scenario. How close? Anticipated magnification ranges could be THE factor...one can run out of bellows awfully quick when a subject approaches life-size as measured on a focussing screen.

    Hmmm...perhaps get your feet wet with a 150mm G-Claron?

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    213

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Salomon View Post
    What magnification do you want? What shaped objects will you shoot?
    Bob, Thanks for your clarifying questions, and the responses of John Layton and others. If I understand correctly from past reading/research, I'll need twice the focal length of whatever lens I am using as bellows draw in order to focus at 1:1 - is that correct? Therefore, my TK45 with about 420mm of bellows draw will accommodate 120mm and 180mm out to 1:1 (and closer). As for subjects, I am thinking maybe bowls of fruit, table ware, family heirlooms like antique Christmas decor pottery or individual ornaments, and even as small as the watch face in post #3 above. So subjects from the size of that watch up to about a lunch box, or say my Master Technika camera opened up and with a 150mm lens on it (focused out to infinity) and sitting on a table top. Now hopes this helps.
    Last edited by JMO; 14-May-2020 at 09:48.
    ... JMOwens (Mt. Pleasant, Wisc. USA)

    "If people only knew how hard I work to gain my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all." ...Michelangelo

  7. #7

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    13,050

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    Quote Originally Posted by JMO View Post
    Bob, Thanks for your clarifying questions, and the responses of John Layton and others. If I understand correctly from past reading/research, I'll need twice the focal length of whatever lens I am using as bellows draw in order to focus at 1:1 - is that correct? Therefore, my TK45 with about 420mm of bellows draw will accommodate 120mm and 180mm out to 1:1 (and closer). As for subjects, I am thinking maybe bowls of fruit, table ware, family heirlooms like antique Christmas decor pottery or individual ornaments, and even as small as the watch face in post #3 above. So subjects from the size of that watch up to about a lunch box, or say my Master Technika camera opened up and with a 150mm lens on it (focused out to infinity) and sitting on a table top. How hopes this helps.
    180mm Apo Macro Sironar

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Sep 2012
    Location
    Mt. Pleasant, Wisconsin USA
    Posts
    213

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    Quote Originally Posted by John Layton View Post
    ...but for your goals and purposes - and considering your model of camera (bellows length-related) I'd recommend something in the range of 120 as a minimum, 180 as a maximum. Delving a bit more into your post...it sounds like if you had to choose between these two, then a 180 might be better.

    Maybe give us a subject scenario. How close? Anticipated magnification ranges could be THE factor...one can run out of bellows awfully quick when a subject approaches life-size as measured on a focussing screen.

    Hmmm...perhaps get your feet wet with a 150mm G-Claron?
    John (or Bob?), Some time back, and after some research here on the Forum and thinking for these purposes, I purchased a nice 150mm APO Ronar. It has an IC of only 135mm at infinity, so doesn't cover 4x5in, but when used at 1:1 the IC is 270mm. What do you think of this APO Ronar versus the G-Claron?
    ... JMOwens (Mt. Pleasant, Wisc. USA)

    "If people only knew how hard I work to gain my mastery, it wouldn't seem so wonderful at all." ...Michelangelo

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    7,691

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    Quote Originally Posted by JMO View Post
    John (or Bob?), Some time back, and after some research here on the Forum and thinking for these purposes, I purchased a nice 150mm APO Ronar. It has an IC of only 135mm at infinity, so doesn't cover 4x5in, but when used at 1:1 the IC is 270mm. What do you think of this APO Ronar versus the G-Claron?
    JM, I have two ancient Klimsch 150/9 Apo Ronars, have had a plasmat type 150/9 G-Claron. In my tests the Apo Ronars were nearly equal, both shot better than the G-Claron. I sold the G-Claron. I now have a dagor type G-Claron, haven't repeated the experiment.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Buford, GA
    Posts
    13,050

    Re: For macro lenses on 4x5in cameras, what focal length is most useful?

    Quote Originally Posted by JMO View Post
    John (or Bob?), Some time back, and after some research here on the Forum and thinking for these purposes, I purchased a nice 150mm APO Ronar. It has an IC of only 135mm at infinity, so doesn't cover 4x5in, but when used at 1:1 the IC is 270mm. What do you think of this APO Ronar versus the G-Claron?
    If you are shooting 3 dimensional objects the Apo Macro Sironar would be much better, especially at the edges and corners.

Similar Threads

  1. Focal Length of Phone cameras to 4x5
    By schafphoto in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 7-Jun-2018, 17:57
  2. Kardan re and short focal length lenses - rail length
    By Michael R in forum Cameras & Camera Accessories
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 5-Oct-2014, 11:32
  3. Replies: 16
    Last Post: 4-Sep-2013, 11:31
  4. Zoom lens focal length and back focal length relation
    By raghavsol in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 16-Mar-2011, 03:00
  5. Replies: 7
    Last Post: 6-Mar-2000, 18:28

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •