Extension Tube or Macro Lens?

Started Apr 23, 2013 | Discussions thread
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D Cox
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Re: Extension Tube or Macro Lens?
In reply to GaryR60, Apr 23, 2013

GaryR60 wrote:

I'm contemplating doing some macro photography with my NEX-5N and since I have a Fotodiox MD-NEX adapter that lets me use all my legacy Minolta MD-mount lenses, I'm thinking I might get a cheap extension tube for MD mount and use it with the adapter and the Minolta 50mm lens I have, as opposed to buying a dedicated macro lens. What say you? Any reasons I should go with the macro lens, instead?

Not really. The macro lens will have a flat field at macro distances, which matters if you intend to use the lens for copying flat artwork. If you plan to shoot flowers, insects, etc at f/8 or f/11, the difference will be very small if any.

Another cheap approach is to use a good close-up lens. This gives a much brighter image than extension tubes or bellows.

Yet another approach is a BPM bellows. These legacy bellows take lens or camera adapters at either end. With an M39 adapter at the camera end, and an M39 to NEX adapter, and a Minolta adapter at the lens end, you get a very flexible setup. But this does mean some hunting on eBay.

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