Question and comments please re. macro lenses

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by John Bean, Nov 3, 2004.

  1. John Bean

    John Bean Guest

    On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden wrote:
    > First: Any comments, good or bad about either of these lenses? From my
    > intense net-scouring over the past few days, I've got the impression that
    > some Sigma lenses should be avoided like the plague, and others are not at
    > all bad... is the 50mm macro a "goody" or a "baddy"?


    The Sigma 50mm macro is a very good lens indeed, by any standards.

    > 1. Am I right in thinking these lenses can also be used not in macro mode,
    > i.e. as a fixed-length normal or slightly telephoto lens (although both
    > would be telephoto because of the 1.5 factor).


    The Sigma, yes. I have no experience of th Nikkor.

    > 2. Does the "1:1" focusing (at 22cm or 19cm for the two) mean that you can
    > take a full-frame photo of a 16mm x 24mm rectangle (the D70s sensor size)?
    > Would the fact that the Nikkor was designed for 35mm film affect anything
    > (i.e. does the 1.5 sensor-size difference factor come into effect?).


    Yes, 1:1 means just that. The size in the image plane is the same size as
    the subject. Format of the imaging device is not relevant.

    --
    John Bean

    I do not fear computers. I fear the lack of them (Isaac Asimov)
    John Bean, Nov 3, 2004
    #1
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  2. I'm new to both the digital and SLR worlds, having just bought a D70 with
    the kit lens (I was initially drawn towards the 8700, but saw enough
    opinions along the lines of "if you're going to spend that amount of money,
    you may as well go the dSLR route for longer-term flexibility).

    It's probably a bit too soon to be looking at additional lenses, since I've
    not had a chance to do much more than take a few test shots so far, BUT...
    one of the features that initially drew me towards the 8700 was its macro
    ability (IIRC, it could focus down to just over an inch).

    At some point, I will be wanting to photograph coins, so I'll need to be
    looking at a macro lens. I've seen several references to the Nikkor 60mm
    f2.8 AF Micro D being suitable for coins/stamps; and a similar-looking, but
    a cheaper alternative would seem to be the Sigma 50mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro.

    First: Any comments, good or bad about either of these lenses? From my
    intense net-scouring over the past few days, I've got the impression that
    some Sigma lenses should be avoided like the plague, and others are not at
    all bad... is the 50mm macro a "goody" or a "baddy"?

    Also, I'd like to ask a couple of technical questions (I think I "know" a
    lot of the basics, but don't yet have much practical experience, and I'm
    picking up more and more as I scour the net).

    1. Am I right in thinking these lenses can also be used not in macro mode,
    i.e. as a fixed-length normal or slightly telephoto lens (although both
    would be telephoto because of the 1.5 factor).

    2. Does the "1:1" focusing (at 22cm or 19cm for the two) mean that you can
    take a full-frame photo of a 16mm x 24mm rectangle (the D70s sensor size)?
    Would the fact that the Nikkor was designed for 35mm film affect anything
    (i.e. does the 1.5 sensor-size difference factor come into effect?).

    Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in the
    past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was light: the
    flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this be helped by the
    variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be looking for external
    lighting?

    Thanks in advance for any input people can give.

    Regards,
    Graham Holden (g-holden AT dircon DOT co DOT uk)
    --
    There are 10 types of people in the world;
    those that understand binary and those that don't.
    Graham Holden, Nov 3, 2004
    #2
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  3. John Bean

    GT40 Guest

    On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden
    <> wrote:


    >Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in the
    >past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was light: the
    >flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this be helped by the
    >variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be looking for external
    >lighting?


    Light coins from the side, and use a tripod. You may have to move
    your lighting around not to get glare. Better to use natural light
    than a flash if you only have on camera flash
    GT40, Nov 3, 2004
    #3
  4. > On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden
    > <> wrote:
    >
    >
    >> Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in
    >> the past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was
    >> light: the flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this
    >> be helped by the variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be
    >> looking for external lighting?


    I haven't tried it, but how well to coins respond to be "photographed"
    with a scanner?

    Cheers,
    David
    David J Taylor, Nov 3, 2004
    #4
  5. On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 14:41:16 -0000, "David J Taylor"
    <> wrote:

    >> On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>> Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in
    >>> the past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was
    >>> light: the flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this
    >>> be helped by the variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be
    >>> looking for external lighting?

    >
    >I haven't tried it, but how well to coins respond to be "photographed"
    >with a scanner?
    >
    >Cheers,
    >David
    >


    I believe quite well... I'd forgotten that approach. The only minor
    drawbacks are (a) it may not be as convenient (for me) for various, weird,
    and probably avoidable logistic reasons, and (b) it would remove an excuse
    to get a new toy to play with... :)

    Thanks to all who have replied.

    Regards,
    Graham Holden (g-holden AT dircon DOT co DOT uk)
    --
    There are 10 types of people in the world;
    those that understand binary and those that don't.
    Graham Holden, Nov 3, 2004
    #5
  6. John Bean

    Big Bill Guest

    On Wed, 3 Nov 2004 14:41:16 -0000, "David J Taylor"
    <> wrote:

    >> On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden
    >> <> wrote:
    >>
    >>
    >>> Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in
    >>> the past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was
    >>> light: the flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this
    >>> be helped by the variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be
    >>> looking for external lighting?

    >
    >I haven't tried it, but how well to coins respond to be "photographed"
    >with a scanner?
    >
    >Cheers,
    >David
    >


    From an Epson Perfection 1650 @ 600dpi:
    www.pippina.us/misc/coin1.png

    Bill Funk
    Change "g" to "a"
    Big Bill, Nov 3, 2004
    #6
  7. John Bean

    Aerticus Guest

    perhaps it would be easier settling for an FZ20?

    No more headaches about options, options, options ...

    Aerticus

    "Graham Holden" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > I'm new to both the digital and SLR worlds, having just bought a D70 with
    > the kit lens (I was initially drawn towards the 8700, but saw enough
    > opinions along the lines of "if you're going to spend that amount of
    > money,
    > you may as well go the dSLR route for longer-term flexibility).
    >
    > It's probably a bit too soon to be looking at additional lenses, since
    > I've
    > not had a chance to do much more than take a few test shots so far, BUT...
    > one of the features that initially drew me towards the 8700 was its macro
    > ability (IIRC, it could focus down to just over an inch).
    >
    > At some point, I will be wanting to photograph coins, so I'll need to be
    > looking at a macro lens. I've seen several references to the Nikkor 60mm
    > f2.8 AF Micro D being suitable for coins/stamps; and a similar-looking,
    > but
    > a cheaper alternative would seem to be the Sigma 50mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro.
    >
    > First: Any comments, good or bad about either of these lenses? From my
    > intense net-scouring over the past few days, I've got the impression that
    > some Sigma lenses should be avoided like the plague, and others are not at
    > all bad... is the 50mm macro a "goody" or a "baddy"?
    >
    > Also, I'd like to ask a couple of technical questions (I think I "know" a
    > lot of the basics, but don't yet have much practical experience, and I'm
    > picking up more and more as I scour the net).
    >
    > 1. Am I right in thinking these lenses can also be used not in macro
    > mode,
    > i.e. as a fixed-length normal or slightly telephoto lens (although both
    > would be telephoto because of the 1.5 factor).
    >
    > 2. Does the "1:1" focusing (at 22cm or 19cm for the two) mean that you
    > can
    > take a full-frame photo of a 16mm x 24mm rectangle (the D70s sensor size)?
    > Would the fact that the Nikkor was designed for 35mm film affect anything
    > (i.e. does the 1.5 sensor-size difference factor come into effect?).
    >
    > Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in the
    > past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was light: the
    > flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this be helped by the
    > variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be looking for external
    > lighting?
    >
    > Thanks in advance for any input people can give.
    >
    > Regards,
    > Graham Holden (g-holden AT dircon DOT co DOT uk)
    > --
    > There are 10 types of people in the world;
    > those that understand binary and those that don't.
    Aerticus, Nov 3, 2004
    #7
  8. I've tried it and they photograph very well with a scanner, probably
    superior to what most camera photos provide.

    David J Taylor wrote:
    >
    > > On Wed, 03 Nov 2004 14:20:38 +0000, Graham Holden
    > > <> wrote:
    > >
    > >
    > >> Finally, any tips on photographing coins? From brief experiments in
    > >> the past with a (now) cheap-and-nasty digital, the main problem was
    > >> light: the flash produced too much glare and reflection. Would this
    > >> be helped by the variable power of the D70's flash, or should I be
    > >> looking for external lighting?

    >
    > I haven't tried it, but how well to coins respond to be "photographed"
    > with a scanner?
    >
    > Cheers,
    > David
    George E. Cawthon, Nov 4, 2004
    #8
  9. John Bean

    Wilt W Guest

    <<At some point, I will be wanting to photograph coins...Nikkor 60mm
    f2.8 AF Micro D ...Sigma 50mm f/2.8 EX DG Macro.

    First: Any comments, good or bad about either of these lenses? ... is the 50mm
    macro a "goody" or a "baddy"?

    General comment about macro: a longer macro lets you more easily light objects
    with a pair of light sources placed at 45 degrees on either side of the camera
    without the camera itself casting a shadow on the object being photographed.
    So 100mm macro would be better than 50mm macro according to that criteria.

    --Wilton
    Wilt W, Nov 4, 2004
    #9
  10. George E. Cawthon wrote:
    > I've tried it and they photograph very well with a scanner, probably
    > superior to what most camera photos provide.


    Oh, that's good - the focus and geometric distortion issues are reduced
    anyway. Thanks, as well, to the person who posted the sample scan. I
    guess you have to be careful to avoid scratches on the glass, though!

    Cheers,
    David
    David J Taylor, Nov 4, 2004
    #10
  11. David J Taylor wrote:
    >
    > George E. Cawthon wrote:
    > > I've tried it and they photograph very well with a scanner, probably
    > > superior to what most camera photos provide.

    >
    > Oh, that's good - the focus and geometric distortion issues are reduced
    > anyway. Thanks, as well, to the person who posted the sample scan. I
    > guess you have to be careful to avoid scratches on the glass, though!
    >
    > Cheers,
    > David



    Actually you don't have to worry about about coins scratching the
    glass. Most coins will have a hardness of about 3 (moh's scale)
    compared to window glass which is about 5-1/2. You do need to
    carefully wash and brush the coins to make sure they don't carry sand
    or other fine materials which may have crystals harder than window
    glass. You might want to try scratching a piece of window glass with
    a coin, knife, etc.
    George E. Cawthon, Nov 4, 2004
    #11
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