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  1. View Conversation
    Hi Matt, I got extension Bellows, rather than extension tubes, which are quite prehistoric to be honest,
    So, due to the long extension, I cannot see anything in the live view screen (unless it is backlit such as television or lamp). So it's kind of trial and error when trying to compose the image. Probably only useful when setting up an indoor shooting platform, rather than getting out into the wilderness.
    Second issue , my camera doesn't have an aperture preview button, it's a Nikon D3100... So for both reasons, i really think i need to invest in some extension tubes, and store the bellows away in the 'gullible purchase' box. doh! They only cost me $75 from an old Asian guy who runs a neat little photography store in Sydney, (he stopped taking photo's when camera's went digital, funny little man).... Maybe he'll let me exchange the bellows.....
  2. As for the aperture adjustment, if you have no control when using the tubes there is a trick you can use. Take the tubes off and put your lens on the camera as normal. With the camera turned on set your aperture to what you want it, then press your aperture preview button and while you are pressing it take the lens off the camera (Don't take you finger off this button until the lens is off!). Now your aperture will be fixed to that aperture

    Have a play and I will expect some more questions. Please don't hesitate to send more questions as everything you are asking is pretty much exactly the questions I had when starting out. (I am predicting some more questions on focusing and light management will be coming )

  3. Hi Jen,

    Great to hear you have some tubes. What type are they? On mine I can adjust the aperture but I know there are some out there that you can't do this.

    The first thing that is important to know is that the DOF will be VERY shallow when working in macro and this is probably the most difficult thing to get used to. To focus I would recommend that you use the live view function and move the camera back and forth until the plain of focus (POF) is where you want it. Yep the snoot should also help with this because the speed of the flash will help freeze the subject if that makes sense.

    (damn word limit LOL, see next post for more)
  4. View Conversation
    Hi Xoom, I bought a set of extension bellows that to be honest i didn't know much about when the guy in the shop talked me into it.. I have managed to take a couple of macro's, but have some trouble with getting the focus right. So, I'll be making my snoot today, which should help with the sharpness of the photo's, but i'm wondering about the aperture setting of the lens. I've got my 18-55 lens on there at the moment. How do i set the aperture without the electronics in the lens?
  5. Hi Jen,

    Sounds like a good plan. The reversing ring will be really cheap on e-bay, you can get them for about $3. You just need to get the right size to screw onto the front of your lens and make sure you get Nikon fitting on the other side. I would get one for the 18-55 as most of my macro with the reversing ring is done between 35 and 28mm. The wider the angle the closer the macro. The reversing ring is just a simple piece of metal so you will have no control over the aperture settings etc when using it (but there is a way around this). Let me know when you start playing with it and I can give you some tips on how to get the best results from it (or anything else for that matter).

  6. View Conversation
    Hi Xoom, thanks, I had a read through your posts. Thanks for taking the time. To start with my kit, Nikon D3100 + Nikkor 50mm f1.8 lens, 18-55mm, and a 55-200mm. I think my next best purchase would be an extension tube set and reversing ring, which I assume I should get to fit my prime 50mm lens? In the mean time, i'll start making my DIY snoot.
  7. In short you need to get the light from a flash in the right spot. You can do this with either an off camera flash that you can hand hold or use a large bracket attached to the camera (this is not what I do) or you can make yourself a snoot (this is what I did). This revolutionised my macro. All it is is a tube that goes on you’re built in flash that carries the light up to the end of you lens. I filled mine with a silver type substance and used some cloth as a diffuser on the end. There are some photos of mine and others diffusers in the set-up thread:

    Also have a look at this thread I wrote as it may help.

    Please come back to me with more questions and I will help as much as I can.

    Good luck with it.


  8. Hi Jen,

    Glad you like my photos

    The macro set-up I use is quite simple. The first thing I would say is that I believe dedicated macro lenses are overpriced and over rated, None of my macro work is done with a dedicated macro lens. I essentially use three main set-ups these being 1) 50mm lens + Kenko extension tubes, 2) 50mm lens + Kenko extension tubes + Raynox close up filter 3) Kenko tubes + 28-90mm lens reversed.

    These are all relatively cheap with the 50mm lens being about $120, tubes $200, Raynox $120 and 28-90mm is old and I have seen the same model e-bay for $50. Cheap macro hey.

    IMO once you have anything that does reasonable macro (1:1 or closer) the most important thing is getting your lighting correct. IMO this is the thing that will have the biggest impact on you results.

    (will continue in next post as message too large)
  9. View Conversation
    Hey Xoom, I am particularly interested in macro photography, but haven't started out with any lens or accessories purchases yet. Can you explain the setup you have for some of the creatures in your yard? Thanks in advance...
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About Xoom
Northern Beaches, Sydney, CC - Yes Please & Thankyou!
Photography, Bonsai
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