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Short macro lens 1272

No Life Club Posts: 1,176

Woz at

Short macro lens
« on: June 14, 2011, 05:44:58 PM »
Hi mates.

I'm thinking of getting my first real 1:1 macro lens. I use the Sony/Minolta DSLR System and a PEN by Olympus, so my lens must be available for one of those cameras.

I do not want to spend a fortune on a fun lens, so I narrowed the field to these lenses:

Sony 30mm Macro f2,8
Tamron 60mm f2,0
Tamron 90mm f2,8

There is a very cheap old Macro made by Cosina, a 100mm f3,5 that can easily be found on eBay

Maybe old, affordable Minolta lenses too.

Anyways, my favorite is the 30mm because it doubles as a 45mm standard prime (crop 1:1,5) and I guess wide macros are an interesting thing. But 1:1 on this lens requires just 2cm distance between lens and object, so maybe there are problems with shadows/reflections... still, the price is great, just 230Euro or, if I import it, 200 Dollars!
The Tamron is twice the price...

Can anyone give me info on short macro lenses, how do they perform?
No Life Club Posts: 2,549
Re: Short macro lens
« Reply #1 on: June 14, 2011, 07:30:44 PM »
If you're interested in getting a macro lens (and why not they're plenty of fun) don't be getting a macro with the intent of using it as a walk-around prime lens as well.  Macro lenses are generally tuned for focus accuracy at their highest magnification focus distance, and not infinity or general use. 

The Sony 30MM you listed is a perfect example - perfectly reasonable macro lens, but slow focus for infinity or general walk around usage.
My personal choice of the three you listed would be the Tamron 60MM.

You could also look at the Sigma 50MM F2.8 Macro, which gets pretty good reviews.
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 18,008 Armed with camera and not afraid to use it.
Re: Short macro lens
« Reply #2 on: June 15, 2011, 01:19:15 AM »
Yes, and macro lenses are never fast focusers. They offset this by being tack sharp though. everything in photography is a tradeoff and a compromise.

You have to assess what you are going to focus on with your macro lens. A short macro is good for stationary objects...but if you are looking at getting into insects and such, a longer focal length will equate to more distance between you and your subject. Greater distance gives you a better chance at not scaring them away, or getting stung, jumped on, etc. :D

The 90/100mm lens tend to be a nice all round performer in my opinion. I have a Tamron 90mm f/2.8 SP Di Macro that I love.

A little Leatherman information.

Leatherman series articles
Zombie Apprentice Posts: 16,381 Little to the right...
Re: Short macro lens
« Reply #3 on: August 28, 2011, 09:22:50 PM »
I would say get a 100mm f2.8 if you can find one.  The one in the link is the same as what I use and I absolutely love it.

This is the g on a Kingston SD card, to give you an idea of the detail you can expect to capture with this lens.

Mmmm, lunch!

No Life Club Posts: 1,176

Woz at

Re: Short macro lens
« Reply #4 on: September 18, 2011, 01:50:32 PM »
Thanks mates.

Due to Sonys new cameras, I decided to sell my Sony System and keep the Pen. Maybe I will go for a Fullframe Canon some day, but no Sony for me anymore. Why?

Well, they introduced amazing new cameras, really high end stuff. The A77 is close to the camera of my dreams, on the datasheeth. But, 24 Megapixels on Aps-C require really high end lenses, so I would have to go for Sony/Minolta G lenses or Zeiss. Continous 12 frames per seconds are great, but not if they allow only bursts of about 2 seconds for the buffer is too small to manage more pictures. A 24 Megapixel RAW is huge, most cards just write 20-45 mBit/sec, so writing is too slow for the amount of data. The OLED EVF sounds great, but if the EVF is cheaper than 100% pentaprism optical VF (and that is what Sony said why the dropped the OVF), and they do not have to buy sensors like Nikon (Nikon uses Sony sensors), then why is the cam more expensive than the competitors offerings???

Short: i had the choice to invest about 3000 Dollars in a Sony camera to upgrade my gear, or to sell my Sony and go for something different. Sonys marketshare is tiny, and the cashcows are the NEX System cameras, so I doubt the Alpha system will stay on the market on long term. Olympus showed that a manufacturer can slaughter holy cows if the are not making any money.

So I will get the Panasonic Leica Macro for m43, choice is easy here, for it is the only m43 macro so far.



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