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YES-YOU CAN Photography tricks and techniques that really work – macro photography using extension tubes

If you are starting with macro photography, you may start looking for the right equipment. Maybe you have a point-and-shoot camera or any other camera with an build in fixed lens, then you probably have an macro mode of the camera.

For cameras with interchangeable lenses, like Nikon, Canon or Sony you can buy very nice macro lenses for $$$ or just an set of extensions tubes for $ (starting at 5-10 $ / EUR in some China shops).

Of course, you will need other things too. An good tripod is important. Maybe some remote shutter release is also nice to have. This article leaves all this out and concentrates on the extension rings.

The floral pictures below were taken form a distance of approx one meter with extension rings and an 200mm telephoto-lens.


 


But – one after the other.

I have purchased a set of extension tubes for Nikon bayonet in China. Delivery took about 10 days. The price was around 8 US $, it passed through customs without problems.

I have ordered the simplest rings / tubes. They are mechanical, they do not transmit focus or aperture information to the camera. You have to set this manually. This is not a problem, you don’t really need auto-focus in macro mode.


 


the tubes have no glass elements.


they have different length – by combining them you get different macro / magnification levels.


 


for this demonstration, I have used the Nikon Nikkor 50mm f/1.8d


this is the set-up without extension tubes


and this the resulting picture


now using different tube combinations


don’t forget – aperture and focus can only be set manually now (check your lens)


 


you will get much closer to the object


getting more details


even closer


getting even more details.

Try different non-macro lenses and ring combinations. Below are some examples of what is possible


 


 


 

Instead of extension tubes, you may also use bellows which give a bit more flexibility but you may need to modify them to adopt to your camera


 


 

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Export Flying Photography photography Technology UAS

From above – von oben

Since a while I am doing aerial photography.

On the flying platform, I use mostly an modified Canon S90 to take picture up to altitudes of around 100 Meter. The Camera is stabilized and shutter release, tilt and pan can remotely controlled. The ‘camera view’ is downstreamed via an 5 GHz video link and displayed on a battery powered control monitor.

Video / HDMI control monitor.

However, sometimes it is not necessary to get as high as 100 Meter. A few meter are sometimes sufficient to overlook a crowd or a wedding audience.

But for those occasions, I prefer to use the DSLR. With an monopod to hold the camera up and to release the shutter with the remote-control wireless or per wire works quite well in many situations. Except, that it is ‘guess-work’ if you don’t want to mess around with the control monitor and the cables. And you can’t control more tan the shutter release.

There are also nice options for tethered shooting with the NIKON DSLRs. Sofortbild is a very nice – and free – application if you have an MAC. It controls the camera via the USB port. However, you need an laptop to use the software, there is no iPad or iPhone version available. Another thing to carry and to handle. Not suitable at all occasions.

Since a while, Nikon has wireless adapters for the DSLRs but they are very expensive.

Recently Nikon released the WU-1b which can provide a cheap (50€) solution for remote shooting. It connects to the USB port of the camera.


It is a small dongle.

 

 

It provides wireless-hotspot like functionality. After installing the App to you Apple or Android smart device,  connect to the wifi hotspot.

the last leave


You will be able to see the live view picture, set the focus point and release the shutter and – optionally download the pictures directly to your smart device (I don’t recommend this – time consuming).


You also may use a pan – tilt head to control the direction in which you camera points. Cool for concerts or sports events. You can place the camera before the event and control it remotely.

DON’T FORGET TO SECURE THE NETWORK 😉