Newbie after advice

7 months 1 day ago #653006 by cobrachedz-

I am a keen inspect spotter and enjoy capturing them in macro photos.  Currently, i'm using my iPhone and a £5 little clip on lens , it does ok, but I have to get really close to get a photo and the focus point is very short (DOF?)

I was wondering if anyone could suggest a good beginners setup for macro shots.  I don't want to spend £1000's, but appreciate you get what you pay for.  What I really want is to have more control, be able to take a shot for further away than 2 inches and have a wider range of focus.

Below is a rose chafer I captured :)

thanks for any advice.


Make: Apple
Model: iPhone SE
Lens: iPhone SE back camera 4.15mm f/2.2
ISO: 32
Aperture: f/2.2
Shutter speed: 1/60 sec
Captured: Mon, 14 May 2018 12:00pm


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7 months 1 day ago - 7 months 1 day ago #653009 by Screamin Scott
Dof is a challenge no matter what route you go. You don't say whether or not you have a camera other than the phone camera.  What may work really depends on what you have available. Assuming you need a complete setup, Most any DSLR will work with tubes or diopters, albeit there will be limitations. Consider manufacturer refurbished units to save on cost. True macro lenses offer the most convenience and typically you need a longer focal length to get any kind of distance between yourself and your subject. The longer distance helps with illuminating your subject as well. I use Nikon DSLR's that can meter with older manual focus lenses for my macro shooting. One really needs to focus manually when shooting life-sized anyway as AF & VR tend to become less effective the closer you get to life-sized magnifications. If you look at my Flickr stream (albums) you will see lots of macro & close up shots, all taken with a MF 105mm 1980's macro lens

Scott Ditzel Photography

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7 months 1 day ago #653010 by Nikon Shooter
I think a solution would be a used Nikon entry model
that I don't use and a used 105 macro that I use a lot.

That would solve both the focus point issue and im-
prove on the DoF.

Light is free… capturing it is not!
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7 months 1 day ago #653016 by cobrachedz-
Thanks for the info, I have no proper camera at the moment, so am looking for a sensible "enthusiastic beginner" set up.

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7 months 1 day ago #653035 by Ozzie_Traveller
G'day mate

While I agree with the sentiments above, I am going to be different with the camera suggestions

I suggest that you buy a fixed-lens superzoom camera for 300+/- GBP and find the abilities of that system. Or, second-hand ones for 1/2 the above GBP. I prefer Panasonic cameras as they have better features and lens than some others. New- I'd suggest the FZ-300, 2nd-hand I'd suggest the FZ-200 or the FZ-100

These cameras will easiy focus into the 1cm to 30cm distance range while the zoom is only partially in use, but once you have worked with them for a few weeks, you will discover their other possibilities. You mention that you are using a clip-on lens - all okay there, and if you were to use a 'good' camera with a 40GBP clip-on close-up lens, you can use all of the camera's powerful zoom lens from a camera-to-subject distance of about 10-12 inches / 25-30cm range

Have a sqwiz at Graeme Houghton's extensive video range for these cameras and that will also give you some info ~ or delve into my Flickr site to see some of my macro/close-up pics

Hope this helps

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6 months 4 weeks ago #653196 by cobrachedz-
thanks phil, I will look into that option.

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