Macro lens question

Discussion in 'Macro' started by steve_mareno|1, Jul 7, 2018.

  1. I bought a Makinon MC Macro 135 2.8 for portraits, and this is my first macro lens (I think, hard to remember). I won't be using it for anything other than that, but one thing I noticed is that if I rack the lens to its closest focusing distance, I can then twist the front of the lens, where the macro feature is, and get a closer minimum focus. Pretty neat. Is this how these things are supposed to work? Bug shots aren't my thing, but now and then a closer minimum focus distance comes in handy. With a 135mm lens, closest focusing distance is a relative thing, and usually not that close.
  2. I've got a Sigma Scalematic Telemax 135 F/2.8 which does this. There are green markings on the barrel indicating magnification which are revealed as you screw the front part out. Perhaps there was a fad for this facility with different manufacturers.

    To preserve image quality you are only supposed to use the macro facility at apertures of F/8 or smaller, which are coloured green on the aperture scale. Of course depth of field is practically zero even at F/16. It's very hard to get anything sharp.
  3. Depends? - I know such things from ""Macro"" zooms. - "Macro(!)" lenses I encountered usually had a focusing ring that reached from infinity to 1:2 or even 1:1. - Don't ask what is better. A lot of "makro(!)" lenses seem to have too much focus throw for convenient ordinary photography. - Tamron 90mm f2.5 feels borderline to me Pentax A 100/2.8 unbearable and Leica R 100/2.8 awesome.

    Having ""macro"" built into an ordinary prime is surely nice to have; especially compared to bringing extension tubes along. Close up filters should be worse than a macro feature. Full 1:1 macro is overkill for my taste. - I basically can't handhold anything into focus with mine that close. While the Pentax F 100/2.8 seems to be my best k-mount lens it is also heavier than the 135/2.8 and sees limited everyday use for that reason.
  4. It seems that for many years, it was popular to add the name "macro" onto any lens, especially a zoom lens.

    That meant that it allowed one to focus especially close.

    It didn't (doesn't) necessarily mean that the lens has been optimized for such close focus.
    You could, of course, add extension tubes onto any lens, and focus closer than the lens
    designers expected.

    Some lenses, such as the micro-Nikkor lenses, were specifically designed for such close
    focus. Though the extension tube is usually sold separately, there are tubes designed
    for each lens. Many such lenses focus down to 2:1 ratio without an extension, and
    from 1:2 down to 1:1 with the specified tube.

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