Close-Up comparisons Part 2: 4500 with lens converter

Started Apr 23, 2003 | Discussions thread
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Ching-Kuang Shene
Ching-Kuang Shene Veteran Member • Posts: 6,225
Close-Up comparisons Part 2: 4500 with lens converter

Hi folks,

In Part 1 we looked at various ways of doing close-up with a 4500 and close-up lenses and SLR lenses. This Part 2 examines the possible uses of teleconverter lens for close-up (e.g., TC-E2 and TC-E3ED). Here is a summary of what we have in Part 1:

Since TC-E2 has a filter thread size of 62mm, we cannot use Nikon's #3T (+1.5) and #4T (+2.9). Instead, we use Nikon's #5T (1.5) and #6T (+2.9). I still use Samigon's FRL-1 Halo right light for lighting. Of course, step rings are needed for mounting the 50mm and 24mm SLR lens reversely. I will also use 11.3mm for the width of the sensor for image recording. This is slightly larger than the actual size; however, it will not affect our calculation too much.

Since the TC-E2 has a minimum focus distance about 30cm, which is too far away for close-up, I did not use TC-E2 with Nikon #5T or #6T close-up lens alone. Instead, I use #5T AND #6T together in order to shorten the camera-subject distance. The following is the result (i.e., 4500 plus #5T and #6T). The recorded width is approximately 24.5mm and the magnification of this setup is 11.3/24.5 = 0.46X, which is slightly less than that of the 4500 macro (0.57X); however, the camera-subject distance is perhaps 20cm. This is the main reason that a tele-photo lens plus good close-up lenses can make lighting easier. Better yet, the image quality is not very away from the 4500 macro mode! Note that the 4500 is zoomed all the way in (i.e., maximum focal length and no macro).

Then, I reversely mount a Nikon AF 50mm F1.8D on TC-E2. To this end, I need a 62-52 step-down ring and a 52-52mm macro coupler. The following is the result. The recorded width is approximately 6.5mm, and the magnification is 11.3/6.5 = 1.74X, which is about the same as the Raynox MSN-500. IMO, the 50mm plus TC-E2 is a little sharper. Unfortunately, it vignettes!

The last one is a 50mm on TC-E3ED. Since the filter thread size of TC-E3ED is 72mm, a step-down ring 72-62mm and another step-down ring 62-52mm are required. This pushes the reversed 50mm lens quite far away from the front element of TC-E3ED. As a result, serious vignetting cannot be avoid. The result is shown below. The recorded width is 4.5mm, and the magnification of this setup is 11.3/4.5 = 2.5X. It is very sharp at the center; however, vignetting renders this setup almost useless unless one only needs the center portion.

You may wonder why there are no tests for 24mm reversely mounted on TC-E2 and TC-E3ED. The common problem of these two setups is very bad vignetting.

In summary, TC-E2 with good close-up lenses and/or a good 50mm SLR lens is a very capable platform for close-up and macro photography. If you need larger subject-camera distance, use TC-E2 with #5T and #6T (or other high quality doublet close-up lenses). To go even higher, try the reversed 50mm technique, which will save you about $100 doe the Raynox MSN-500 (if you have a good 50mm SLR lens in hand).

950/990/995/2500/4500 user guide

 Ching-Kuang Shene's gear list:Ching-Kuang Shene's gear list
Olympus D-600L Nikon D7100 Nikon Z7 Nikon AF-P 70-300mm F4.5-6.3G +2 more
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