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Re: Macro mode

 
 
tony cooper
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      07-09-2008
On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>Alfred Molon wrote:
>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>
>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?

>
>Macro is not a "mode".


I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
the "macro mode" setting.

If you set the camera to "Automatic", "Aperture Priority", "Shutter
Priority", etc, is this not setting the camera "mode"?

If "mode" is not the correct term, please supply it and a red felt-tip
pen so I can make the necessary corrections in my owner's manual.


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tony cooper
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      07-09-2008
On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 17:02:10 -0400, Alan Browne
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>tony cooper wrote:
>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>>> Alfred Molon wrote:
>>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>>
>>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?
>>> Macro is not a "mode".

>>
>> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
>> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
>> the "macro mode" setting.
>>
>> If you set the camera to "Automatic", "Aperture Priority", "Shutter
>> Priority", etc, is this not setting the camera "mode"?
>>
>> If "mode" is not the correct term, please supply it and a red felt-tip
>> pen so I can make the necessary corrections in my owner's manual.

>
>It is not semantics nor nit picking. Macro photography is a singular
>subject and requires the right equipment to do it. It is not a 'mode'
>for the equipment (though it could be for the photographer...).


Of course it's semantics. The question was "What exactly happens when
a camera is set to macro mode"? The word "mode" means "a designated
condition or status", and the question was about a camera setting.

What you have brought up is a completely different thing - macro
photography - and something that is done without setting the camera to
the macro mode. Macro photography is accomplished with lenses or
extensions and not by the setting of the mode dial on the camera.

Macro is an available setting mode on the camera, but shooting in that
mode does not result in macro photography. It results, in some
cameras, in better close-ups at certain distances. (I find, however,
with my D40 that the "macro mode" is not an improvement for close-ups
of small objects. It is with my Coolpix.)

You can lecture on about marketing spin and uninformed buyers, but the
fact remains that there is a "macro mode" on many cameras and -
believe it or not - many camera users understand that shooting in the
macro mode does not result in macro photography and use it to get
better close-ups.

It's admirable that you are so willing to provide education to the
masses, but in some cases you are delivering more coal to Newcastle.


>The various camera co's use the term a loosely in their marketing and so
>it comes down to:
>
>-the uninformed (and generally not very interested) thinking they have a
>capability that they do not; and as long as they're happy it doesn't
>matter too much.
>
>-the informed who want to make macro photos and who conclude that the
>only way to get there is with proper technique and tools.
>
>I've tried the shortcuts such as "macro" zoom lenses (though never
>bought one, a blessing) and diopter lenses. The results were indeed
>"bigger", but poor in contrast, color and detail. Not what macro really is.
>
>Indeed, real macro lenses are often exceedingly sharp in the macro focus
>range while not so sharp at 1:10 towards infinity. They are optimized
>for macro shooting.
>
>One could also take an ordinary lens like a 50mm and add an extension
>tube to get magnification. This too is macro if one gets close to 1:2
>or better.
>
>Cheers,
>Alan.


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Blinky the Shark
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      07-09-2008
tony cooper wrote:

> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>Alfred Molon wrote:
>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>
>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?

>>
>>Macro is not a "mode".

>
> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
> the "macro mode" setting.


What are you seeing with the D40, Tony? I think in this respect my D60 is
the same as your D40, and "macro" doesn't even appear in the index of my
FM. I see "close-up", and am used to that language with the "Close Up"
mode -- the flower icon on the mode dial. Can you give me an example?
Thanks.


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tony cooper
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      07-10-2008
On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:32:25 -0700, Blinky the Shark
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>tony cooper wrote:
>
>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>>>Alfred Molon wrote:
>>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>>
>>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?
>>>
>>>Macro is not a "mode".

>>
>> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
>> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
>> the "macro mode" setting.

>
>What are you seeing with the D40, Tony? I think in this respect my D60 is
>the same as your D40, and "macro" doesn't even appear in the index of my
>FM. I see "close-up", and am used to that language with the "Close Up"
>mode -- the flower icon on the mode dial. Can you give me an example?


See:
http://img107.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_168lo.jpg

The top half is a scan of the manual for my D40, and the bottom half
is the manual for my Coolpix.

The D40 refers to "shooting modes" at the top, "point and shoot modes"
in the middle, and "close-up" at the bottom.

The Coolpix refers to "Focus Modes" and used "Macro Close-Up".

The "mode dial" determines the setting mode.

"Macro" does not appear in the index of the D40 manual, but "Macro
mode" is listed in the Coolpix index.

That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result in
macro photography. The "sports" mode does not necessarily result in
sports photography, either. A mode is a setting in this context, and
not a description of the captured image.


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Blinky the Shark
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      07-10-2008
tony cooper wrote:

> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:32:25 -0700, Blinky the Shark
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>tony cooper wrote:
>>
>>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
>>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>
>>>>Alfred Molon wrote:
>>>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>>>
>>>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?
>>>>
>>>>Macro is not a "mode".
>>>
>>> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
>>> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
>>> the "macro mode" setting.

>>
>>What are you seeing with the D40, Tony? I think in this respect my D60 is
>>the same as your D40, and "macro" doesn't even appear in the index of my
>>FM. I see "close-up", and am used to that language with the "Close Up"
>>mode -- the flower icon on the mode dial. Can you give me an example?

>
> See:
> http://img107.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_168lo.jpg
>
> The top half is a scan of the manual for my D40, and the bottom half
> is the manual for my Coolpix.
>
> The D40 refers to "shooting modes" at the top, "point and shoot modes"
> in the middle, and "close-up" at the bottom.
>
> The Coolpix refers to "Focus Modes" and used "Macro Close-Up".
>
> The "mode dial" determines the setting mode.
>
> "Macro" does not appear in the index of the D40 manual, but "Macro
> mode" is listed in the Coolpix index.


Okay, that's what I was wondering about, versus your claim. (I didn't go
through every page of my D60 manual looking for it, but I've read TM a few
times.

> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result
> in macro photography.


I know. And it doesn't even mention "macro".

Meanwhile, I'm sitting - very antsily, even though that's probably not a
word - on a back order for a Tamron 90 macro lens. Nobody I want to order
from has it, my thinking being that that's because there's a $90
manufacturer's rebate on it. I've compared images and reviews and
flickrs and pbases and photonets and stuff for weeks. That's the lens I
want, dammit. Dammit. (BuyDig showed it in stock last week, so I tried
ordering it there. A few days went buy and my order status changed to
"PIK", which a rollover popup said meant "it's in the hands of the
wareouse and we'll ship reall soon", to "Shipping", which had the same
rollover popup, and then back to "Processing", where it was the first day
of my order. I finally called them, and they admitted that the left hand
didn't know what the right hand was doing; I cancelled that order. I have
it on BO at Adorama and a local camera shop (via their online presense);
first one to get stock gets my money. Problem is, when I put it on BO at
the second vendor, a couplethree weeks ago, they said it had already been
on backorder for a month. And the rebate's only good until July 31.
Dammit. Dammit.



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tony cooper
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      07-10-2008
On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 19:21:14 -0700, Blinky the Shark
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>tony cooper wrote:
>
>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:32:25 -0700, Blinky the Shark
>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>
>>>tony cooper wrote:
>>>
>>>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
>>>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>>Alfred Molon wrote:
>>>>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>>>>
>>>>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>>>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?
>>>>>
>>>>>Macro is not a "mode".
>>>>
>>>> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
>>>> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
>>>> the "macro mode" setting.
>>>
>>>What are you seeing with the D40, Tony? I think in this respect my D60 is
>>>the same as your D40, and "macro" doesn't even appear in the index of my
>>>FM. I see "close-up", and am used to that language with the "Close Up"
>>>mode -- the flower icon on the mode dial. Can you give me an example?

>>
>> See:
>> http://img107.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_168lo.jpg
>>
>> The top half is a scan of the manual for my D40, and the bottom half
>> is the manual for my Coolpix.
>>
>> The D40 refers to "shooting modes" at the top, "point and shoot modes"
>> in the middle, and "close-up" at the bottom.
>>
>> The Coolpix refers to "Focus Modes" and used "Macro Close-Up".
>>
>> The "mode dial" determines the setting mode.
>>
>> "Macro" does not appear in the index of the D40 manual, but "Macro
>> mode" is listed in the Coolpix index.

>
>Okay, that's what I was wondering about, versus your claim. (I didn't go
>through every page of my D60 manual looking for it, but I've read TM a few
>times.
>
>> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result
>> in macro photography.

>
>I know. And it doesn't even mention "macro".
>

It's going to be a tough sell to convince people that the "flower
icon" is not the "macro mode" on any camera. The term "close-up mode"
may be the more accurate term, but "macro" is firmly embedded in the
camera market's mind. That doesn't mean that the same people feel
they are doing "macro photography". They know they aren't going to be
photographing a spider's nads using this setting.

http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/NikonD40/page4e.shtml talks about
"macro" comparisons.

Ken Rockwell (I know, I know) talks about "macro" output with an
18/55mm lens at http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/18-55-ii.htm#perf

Steve's Digicam refers to "macro" as one of the shooting modes on the
Pentax istDs. http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_reviews/istds.html

We are used to cameras that have mode choices, and the flower icon
mode is called the "macro mode" in many - if not most - camera reviews
and in camera forums.

I think we just have to get used to the idea that "macro mode" is a
setting on a camera, and "macro photography" is accomplished by using
a macro lens or extension tubes. Use of the term "macro mode" is not
an indication that the speaker doesn't understand the difference.

Jumping in and saying that using the macro mode isn't macro
photography is an unnecessary nit-pick.




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Blinky the Shark
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      07-10-2008
tony cooper wrote:

> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 19:21:14 -0700, Blinky the Shark
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>tony cooper wrote:
>>
>>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:32:25 -0700, Blinky the Shark
>>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>
>>>>tony cooper wrote:
>>>>
>>>>> On Wed, 09 Jul 2008 16:27:03 -0400, Alan Browne
>>>>> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>>Alfred Molon wrote:
>>>>>>> What exactly happens when a camera is set to macro mode?
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> And why are some lenses "macro lenses" while others are not? Can a lens
>>>>>>> which is not a macro lens take close-ups?
>>>>>>
>>>>>>Macro is not a "mode".
>>>>>
>>>>> I sense some semantic nit-picking here. My Nikon D40 and my Nikon
>>>>> Coolpix both have a "mode dial" on the body, and both manuals refer to
>>>>> the "macro mode" setting.
>>>>
>>>>What are you seeing with the D40, Tony? I think in this respect my D60 is
>>>>the same as your D40, and "macro" doesn't even appear in the index of my
>>>>FM. I see "close-up", and am used to that language with the "Close Up"
>>>>mode -- the flower icon on the mode dial. Can you give me an example?
>>>
>>> See:
>>> http://img107.imagevenue.com/img.php..._122_168lo.jpg
>>>
>>> The top half is a scan of the manual for my D40, and the bottom half
>>> is the manual for my Coolpix.
>>>
>>> The D40 refers to "shooting modes" at the top, "point and shoot modes"
>>> in the middle, and "close-up" at the bottom.
>>>
>>> The Coolpix refers to "Focus Modes" and used "Macro Close-Up".
>>>
>>> The "mode dial" determines the setting mode.
>>>
>>> "Macro" does not appear in the index of the D40 manual, but "Macro
>>> mode" is listed in the Coolpix index.

>>
>>Okay, that's what I was wondering about, versus your claim. (I didn't go
>>through every page of my D60 manual looking for it, but I've read TM a few
>>times.
>>
>>> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result
>>> in macro photography.

>>
>>I know. And it doesn't even mention "macro".
>>

> It's going to be a tough sell to convince people that the "flower
> icon" is not the "macro mode" on any camera. The term "close-up mode"
> may be the more accurate term, but "macro" is firmly embedded in the
> camera market's mind. That doesn't mean that the same people feel
> they are doing "macro photography". They know they aren't going to be
> photographing a spider's nads using this setting.
>
> http://www.cameralabs.com/reviews/NikonD40/page4e.shtml talks about
> "macro" comparisons.
>
> Ken Rockwell (I know, I know) talks about "macro" output with an
> 18/55mm lens at http://www.kenrockwell.com/nikon/18-55-ii.htm#perf
>
> Steve's Digicam refers to "macro" as one of the shooting modes on the
> Pentax istDs. http://www.steves-digicams.com/2004_reviews/istds.html
>
> We are used to cameras that have mode choices, and the flower icon
> mode is called the "macro mode" in many - if not most - camera reviews
> and in camera forums.
>
> I think we just have to get used to the idea that "macro mode" is a
> setting on a camera, and "macro photography" is accomplished by using
> a macro lens or extension tubes. Use of the term "macro mode" is not
> an indication that the speaker doesn't understand the difference.
>
> Jumping in and saying that using the macro mode isn't macro
> photography is an unnecessary nit-pick.


I don't have a dog in that fight, Tony, and I said nothing about it. All
I did was point out that unlike your original claim (since amended to
well, your other camera's manual does), the D40/D60 manual does not use
the word "macro". That's all. Simple and handled.


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David J Taylor
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      07-10-2008
tony cooper wrote:
[]
> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result in
> macro photography. The "sports" mode does not necessarily result in
> sports photography, either. A mode is a setting in this context, and
> not a description of the captured image.


Can you stop the flash from popping up on the D40 in "flower-icon" mode?

David


 
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Blinky the Shark
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      07-10-2008
David J Taylor wrote:

> tony cooper wrote:
> []
>> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result in
>> macro photography. The "sports" mode does not necessarily result in
>> sports photography, either. A mode is a setting in this context, and
>> not a description of the captured image.

>
> Can you stop the flash from popping up on the D40 in "flower-icon" mode?


Speaking for the D60: yes; close-up mode allows you to select auto flash,
auto with red-eye prevention, and no flash. I wasn't sure. I just tested.



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Blinky the Shark
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      07-10-2008
Blinky the Shark wrote:

> David J Taylor wrote:
>
>> tony cooper wrote:
>> []
>>> That "flower icon" setting is a focus mode, but it does not result in
>>> macro photography. The "sports" mode does not necessarily result in
>>> sports photography, either. A mode is a setting in this context, and
>>> not a description of the captured image.

>>
>> Can you stop the flash from popping up on the D40 in "flower-icon" mode?

>
> Speaking for the D60: yes; close-up mode allows you to select auto flash,
> auto with red-eye prevention, and no flash. I wasn't sure. I just tested.


And it's a bit more than a focus mode; it also warms up the image a bit,
for instance. And I *think* that it favors large aperatures for
seperation of subject and background.


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