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alcina

canon 100 macro

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OK, I've gotten a few dives with my new Canon 20D and 100 macro lens. Some results I am quite happy with yet others I seem to be sucking more than I anticipated :(

 

I am just wondering if there are any tips for using this lens to get the most out of it. F stops to use/avoid? Best distances? Anything else?

 

I know I've seen some great images from this lens...I'd love to see some more just for reassurance that I'm not losing my mind even if my "talent" seems to be on a mini-vacation LOL

 

I appreciate any tips/tricks and ideas you can offer...it's not that I'm impatient but this is supposed to be immediate gratification :)

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Although i use the 105mm, its the same thing.

 

I think you really need to take a different approach to this sort of lens than something like a 50 or 60 or your P&S.

The thing with a longer lens is that inherant (sp) in the system (Monty Python quote there) is that you will not get a good DOF. Longer the lens, shorter the DOF. Even if you are shooting at f22 your depth is going to suck...So the "ears" of a nudi will be in focus but the gills won't. If you are a foot or two away it seems to be ok, especially if you are not pushing the lens to the limit. But if you are like me and get as tight as you can to the subject and push the "zoom" all the way out to get as tight of a composition as possible, you have no DOF at all. Quite often i get one "ear" in focus and the other is out!!! That is shallow. IF you want larger depth you need to limit the "zoom" of the lens instead of letting it get all the way to 1:1.

 

 

I usually use this lens as something different, not so much a fish portrait lens, although it is great with that as well. But only for things like small butterflys or fish face shots. To get full fish shots of things like groupers, big angels etc you need to be too far away for crisp and saturated images.

 

Therefore i tend to concentrate on nudi faces, not whole nudis. like that chromodoris coi i have shown a few times on here.

 

From what i have seen of your shots with this lens you seem to be doing a pretty good job! :)

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Hi Alcina,

I love this lense, she is the best of my lenses. In most of cases I use f-stops between f/16 thru f/32 for undewater photography. Some thing closest to f/16 when I want to make the image focused only to front and f/32 when I need to focus most part of image. f/22 is my favorite apperture.

 

The distance between your camera and the theme also make changes to DOF, try to make tests using f/16, f/18, f/22, f/25 and f/32 and choose the best for you.

 

Look at that examples and see the appertures:

 

1/200s f/32.0

52564722.sub25.jpg

 

1/250s f/25.0

52506718.sub17.jpg

 

1/125 sec f/22.0

52468004.sub04.jpg

 

1/125s f/18.0

52506717.sub16.jpg

 

Hope to help you.

Fabio Amorim

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Hi Alcina, it can be a number of things. As Fabio said, f-stops of f/16 or higher will give you better DOF, but that depends on how far you are from the subject. We will be able to help you a lot more if you post some of the "bad" pictures.

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Hello Alcina

 

Although not a canon user, but newish to digital, I've used my Nikon 60mm with 2x TC which brings me near enough to your canon 100mm as your playing with bigger crop factor.

 

I agree along with mike, I only tend to use my setup with around F16 F22, to try and gain the best DOF i can using FLASH to expose the entire image.

 

When i'm shooting fish i try and fill the frame and focus on the critical area of the EYES.

 

Example.

 

post-4127-1132761736_thumb.jpg

 

shot using the above combo , you will see that even though this is smaller reef fish that his pec fins are way out of the DOF, focus is on the eyes.

 

I try also to not shoot too many fish using this combo, and go for shapes a flat textures where i know i'll get max focus from front to back

 

see example, I like the sponge image in these shots as it looks like some kinda ALIEN FACE,

 

the whip coral reminded me of a SeaHorse

 

And the clam shot was just a perfect bathroom wall shot.

 

post-4127-1132761958_thumb.jpg post-4127-1132761982_thumb.jpg

 

Sorry reached limit see under for clam shot

 

best of luck

 

craig

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Yeh while i'm at it can someone tell me how i get my images to just appear full size in the post instead of thumb nails

 

thanks craig

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Hi Craig, they have to be online and you just post the link between img tags. Example:

 

[img=http://www.mysite.com/myimage.jpg]

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Sarah took all of these photos using the 100mm lens either with or without the woody's press-on diopter. She too uses the 20D:

 

http://www.reefpix.org/gallery/album149

 

050815_bali_MG_2175.jpg

 

050816_bali_MG_2288.jpg

 

050816_bali_MG_2277.jpg

 

The press on diopter lets you get closer which is often useful. Fstops between 16 and 22 for macro and f8 and f11 for fish photography, which tends to be further away from the lens.

 

Cheers

James

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I've been using Canon's 100mm f/2.8 usm macro lens on a 1DS for over a year now. It is a stunner and you will be hard pushed to find a better lens. It can be tricky to use for all the reasons outlined above, and, diffraction will limit the sharpness so stopping down beyond f/11~16 may yield greater depth of field but not quite as sharp an image (if you are critical).

 

I have found that it is all too easy for this lens to overshoot and hunt in anything less that ideal conditions and it really does take some getting used to. As can be seen from the images posted here, it is capable of superb results. Persevere!

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Thanks Karl, I'll pass it on.

 

There you go Alcina, Sarah's first outing with the 20D and the 100mm and she pulls off these shots that make me feel like a high-school yearbook photographer...:-) You can do it too!

 

Cheers

James

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But if you are like me and get as tight as you can to the subject and push the "zoom" all the way out to get as tight of a composition as possible, you have no DOF at all.  IF you want larger depth you need to limit the "zoom" of the lens instead of letting it get all the way to 1:1.

 

OK, I am missing something here...I don't understand the "zoom" you are talking about. I do try to get up close and personal - there are two settings on the barrel of this lens and I preset to .31 instead of .48. is this correct? Of course, I didn't read the manual or anything and just took a winger. This may be something totally different to the "zoom" thing you are talking about.

 

Thanks for the tips and ideas everyone.

 

It's not that I am not getting any good images, it's that I am getting some good images and then images I think should be good aren't when I get back. I'm pretty pleased with this fly-by of a batfish and some of the cleaner action has been OK. It's all user error and I'll just keep practicing. :)

post-1960-1132791261_thumb.jpg

post-1960-1132791364_thumb.jpg

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Hello Alcina

I have just started using this lense down here in Perth and it does take some getting used to but worth it. This was shot at f22 100/s

post-4718-1132791512_thumb.jpg

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What i mean by zoom is something that can be done with the Nikon 105mm, not sure about the Canon as i have not used it. Basically, the lens has the capability of making things 1:1 in size ratio. If you put the lens on manual focus and set something up in front of you to shoot (on land) use the manual zoom to focus on it. You can get focuse on the whole thing without the barrel coming out of the camera. Then move closer and try to focus on a smaller part of the object. You will find that as you turn the lens the barrel comes out and now you can focus on a small part and have it really tight...

 

DOes that make sense? Doubtful...easier to show than try to explain that is for sure!

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The Canon lens is internal focusing Mike - meaning the lens doesn't extend. Not sure that's what you're talking about, but maybe it is.

 

Cheers

James

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It is, and i thought that might be the thing with Canon...

 

But, theory still remains same about focusing right out to 1:1, meaning you get much less DOF when pushing the lens to the limit.

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