What Is A Macro Lens?
I know what you're thinking...
You don't shoot macro photos, so why on earth would you need a macro lens?
Well, in the video above, Peter McKinnon offers an overview of what is a macro lens as well as his take on why everyone needs one.
I have to say that he makes some compelling arguments!
Have a look at what Peter has to say in the video, and for an outline of why macro lenses are so great, check out the article below.
Editor's Tip: Brand new lenses can be expensive. Before you buy, learn about the virtues of buying budget lenses.
Macro Lenses Aren't Just for Macro
When asking yourself, "Do I need a macro lens?" you're immediately biased against buying one.
Why? It's all in the name!
Macro lenses aren't just for macro photography. There's so much more that you can do with a macro lens than take close-up photos of flowers and insects.
In fact, macro lenses are great for portrait photography. They also make an ideal lens for videography.
But They're Really Great at Close-Up Stuff
Of course, macro lenses are fantastic for close-up photos.
That's a great benefit because macro photography is so different from normal photography.
Not only does shooting macro require a little bit of a different approach (and some special gear), but macro photography also helps you develop your creativity and your photographer's eye.
By forcing yourself to look at scenes on a micro level instead of the traditional macro level, you can train your eyes to see shapes, colors, textures, patterns, and other features that make for an interesting close-up.
And guess what?
All those features are great to have in traditional photos as well.
So, macro lenses are a great learning tool that will help you master close-up photography and give you a little creative edge for normal photography as well.
Editor's Tip: Get new lenses by selling your old ones. Find out how to make money off your old gear.
Macro Lenses are Versatile
Building off of an earlier point, it's important to reiterate that macro lenses are incredibly versatile. So much so, in fact, that Peter calls his macro lens the "swiss army knife" of his camera bag.
You can get beautifully detailed up-close shots of your subject, and then pull back for a wider shot.
You can get gorgeously shallow depth of field with a macro lens, too, which is great for portraiture.
You can shoot landscapes and architecture, food and street scenes, and everything in between.
And when you need to leave your tripod behind, many macro lenses have image stabilization to help you get sharp stills and smooth video when shooting handheld.
Now that's how to use a macro lens to get the shots you want!
You Can Find Great Macro Lenses on the Cheap
Let's not kid ourselves here...
When it comes down to it, price is often the biggest factor in determining what most of us buy.
And fortunately, there are plenty of macro lenses that you can get without breaking the bank.
High-end macro lenses can usually be found for about $800 brand new, with many lesser models running about half that price brand new.
Of course, buying pre-owned lenses helps you stretch your budget even further.
Think about it - why blow $800 on a great macro lens that's fresh out of the box when you could get a similar lens or even the same lens that's been gently used and well cared for at a big discount?
I've bought my fair share of new and used lenses over the years, and what I've found is that if you buy a pre-owned lens from a reputable place like Lensfinder, you can save tons of money without sacrificing quality.
The big "ifs" when buying used gear is if it's actually what the seller says it is in the condition that they say it's in.
With Lensfinder, you don't have to worry about scams and price gouging because there's fraud protections built right in.
You can ask questions and communicate with sellers right in the Lensfinder platform as well, so it's a smooth and simple process to get new-to-you-glass.
With that said, give Lensfinder a look and see if you can find the macro lens for you!