Page 1 of 4 123 ... LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 38

Thread: Macro Lenses...

  1. #1

    Macro Lenses...

    It has been recommended that I use a G-Claron 210 as a macro lens for macro work. (4 x 5)

    Is that more of a stop-gap measure for people until they decide to buy a better macro lens, or is it truly extraordinary?

    I was thinking about getting the Apo-Macro ROdenstock, or perhaps the Schneider Macro lens. Of course these are far more expensive.

    WHat do you all think?

    Thanks,
    Michael
    --

    Michael Gaillard

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Dec 1997
    Location
    Baraboo, Wisconsin
    Posts
    7,695

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    The 210 G Claron was designed for flat-field work (i.e. copying) and close-ups and is optimized for magnifications around 1:1. But they're also very usable as a general purpose lens for 4x5 and even 8x10. If the Rodenstock you're talking about is the Macro Sironar, it's way way more expensive than a G Claron, at least when it was new. I'd get the G Claron and see how you like it. I used the 210 for general purpose photography, not macro, and it was an excellent lens. You can always sell it for about what you paid for it later if you want to.
    Brian Ellis
    Before you criticize someone, walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you do criticize them you'll be
    a mile away and you'll have their shoes.

  3. #3
    Mark Sawyer's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Stuck inside of Tucson with the Eastern Seaboard Blues again...
    Posts
    5,822

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    What Brian said, but I'll add that 210mm is way long for a macro on a 4x5. At 1:1, you're at just over 16" of bellows extension. I use a 150mm and 210mm for macro and close up on my 8x10.
    "I love my Verito lens, but I always have to sharpen everything in Photoshop..."

  4. #4
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Rio Rancho, NM
    Posts
    4,898

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    I think a lot depends on how one defines "macro" within their body of work. At magnifications at or approaching 1:1, the G-Clarons do fairly well, as do various conventional lenses. The true macro lenses tend to show their stuff at 1:1 and higher magnifications. Thus, the choice can boil down to a balance between the nature of the work and one's budget.

  5. #5
    LJ Segil
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Highland Park, IL
    Posts
    620

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    Minor thread hijacking (or at least diversion) here, but my question does concern macro lenses. I'm shooting 5x7 with about 630mm bellows extension (Canham). What would be the relative advantages/disadvantages of either a 120mm macro lens like the Nikkor AM vs the 210mm Nikkor AM? The latter is listed in the lens tables as the appropriate focal length macro lens for 5x7, and the 120mm does not cover the format at infinity but I imagine would at 1:1. The 210mm would, if I understand correctly (which would be a first), be limited by the bellows to about 2:1 maximum magnification with an awful lot of sail area from the fully extended bellows, while the 120mm could get beyond 4:1, and could do any magnification with a lot less bellows extension than required by the 210mm and therefore diminish problems with movement/vibration/wind/my clumsiness, and also be easier to manipulate for front movements, but would afford less working distance from the subject for any given magnification. Is this correct thinking? Would perhaps the shorter focal length lens be more prone to distortion on the 5x7 format, or might its wide angle status on 5x7 make subject isolation problematic without going to greater magnifications? Would its image be degraded relative to the 210mm by working more towards the edge of its image circle on the 5x7 format compared to the 210mm? Does the ability to use a longer focal length macro lens on the larger format confer other advantages relative to the shorter focal length lens? Might reversing a convertible lens be a substitute that could provide quality similar to a comparable focal length macro lens?
    Obviously, as usual, I'm hoping for much needed help, knowledge, and advice, but that's nothing new and is the beauty of the forum for us novices (I expect to be one for about another 10-15 years, by then I'll just be an ineducable cripple). Thanks ahead of time for any and all information and guidance; consider me an empty receptacle (and that's probably overestimating my real knowledge).
    LJS

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Location
    Kingwood, Texas USA
    Posts
    276

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    LJ, I have just finished a project requiring 15x enlargement (Sinar P/P2/Norma, 10 feet of rail, 810 output, 210 Nikon Macro). All of this gear will be on the 'Bay shortly. If you need any help, please PM.

    I am short on theory but well versed in real time application.

  7. #7
    Moderator Ralph Barker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 1998
    Location
    Rio Rancho, NM
    Posts
    4,898

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    One of the trade-offs with macro lens choice is working distance (important if you are lighting the subject) versus the bellows draw needed for a given magnification. I don't know that there are any hard-and-fast guidelines here, as the balance of relative importance can vary by individual.

    The 120mm APO Macro Nikkor has a comparatively small image circle - about 250mm @ f/22 when focused at 1:1. That's not too bad on 4x5, but may be limiting on 5x7 if front tilts are going to be used to control the focus plane.

  8. #8
    Drew Wiley
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Location
    SF Bay area, CA
    Posts
    14,282

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    Both the G-Claron and similar Fujinon A lenses are superb for closeup work. You
    don't need anything fancier unless you're photographing insects or diamonds. Plus
    you have the advantage that the same lenses can be used for just about everything,
    even at infinity focus.

  9. #9

    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Posts
    2,952

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    Quote Originally Posted by Robert Fisher View Post
    LJ, I have just finished a project requiring 15x enlargement (Sinar P/P2/Norma, 10 feet of rail, 810 output, 210 Nikon Macro). All of this gear will be on the 'Bay shortly. If you need any help, please PM.

    I am short on theory but well versed in real time application.
    That must have been a huge bellows compensation factor!

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Location
    NJ
    Posts
    7,770

    Re: Macro Lenses...

    Larry, you've just explained why real macro lenses, e.g., Luminars, were offered in focal lengths from 16 mm to 100 mm. The higher the magnification desired, the shorter the lens used.

    Mr. Fisher has shot at 15:1 with a 210, so we can see that a short lens is not absolutely necessary to get to 15:1. I'm sure he had good reasons to use a 210, but most of us find working at that magnification easier with less extension than he had to use.

    FWIW, the longest Luminar (100 mm) covers 4x5 at 1:1, 5x7 at a little under 1.5:1.

    Michael, if you have the 210 G-Claron, try it out to see what it can and can't do for you.

    Drew, f/9 yields poor image quality at magnifications much above 2:1 and is pretty dim at those magnifications. Real macro lenses are diffraction limited wide open and, f/6.3 long ones excepted, open a couple of stops wider than f/9. They get pretty dim, but not as fast as an f/9 lens.

    I hope Mr. Fisher will tell us more about what took him to 15:1, why he chose the setup he used, and how he operated it.

    Cheers,

    Dan

Similar Threads

  1. Is less more when it comes to lenses?
    By Stephen Willard in forum Cameras & Camera Accessories
    Replies: 93
    Last Post: 13-Sep-2008, 21:49
  2. Hand-finished Pinkham & Smith lenses?
    By Mark Sawyer in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 17
    Last Post: 27-Mar-2008, 11:56
  3. Macro vs non macro sinaron / sironar 180mm lenses
    By Former Member 8144 in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 7-May-2007, 13:10
  4. Lenses for > 1:1 macro
    By DrPablo in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 10
    Last Post: 10-Nov-2006, 09:55
  5. Large Format Macro Lenses
    By John Cook in forum Lenses & Lens Accessories
    Replies: 7
    Last Post: 28-Dec-2003, 15:50

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
  •