Why do macro lenses extend when getting closer?

Discussion in 'Macro' started by mark_stephan|2, Dec 12, 2017.

  1. The nice thing about SLRs, is that you don't have to worry about that. What you see is (close to) what you get.
  2. Funny, but I never though of using a Leica for macro photography. A DR Summicron could only focus as close as 19", roughly 1:4.

    Shortening the focal length decreases the working distance - front element to the subject - dramatically. The working distance of my Nikon 105/2.8 AF-D os only 6" at 1:1, compared to 4" for my 55/2.8 AIS (instead of 12"). In the worst case, that makes it hard to keep from shading the subject. It also is more likely to spook critters.
  3. I remember having some close-up lenses before I had an SLR, but never using them.

    For one, you don't know what you are looking at, but even worse, figuring out the focus.

    You can theoretically figure out the focus distance from the scale on the lens and the diopters
    of the close-up lens, but then you have to figure out where to measure from.

    There are now LED rings, much cheaper than xenon tube ring flashes from years ago.

    My first SLR lens, the AI 35/2.0, focuses down to 1ft/0.3m (from the film plane), which is
    enough closer than the 50mm lens to get more magnification. I do remember some
    interesting close-ups with that one.

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