Helicon FB Tube macro shots

Started 5 days ago | Discussions thread
John K Veteran Member • Posts: 7,567
Re: Helicon FB Tube macro shots

Chris 345 wrote:

stevendillonphoto wrote:

Thanks for sharing this! I'll be very interested in what else you can do with the tube and your general feelings about it as you continue to use it. I have bookmarked the page as well. Something like this might just convince me to try focus stacking again. I assume that you are using Helicon software for the stacking process. Have you found that you are getting better stacking results (i.e., less OOF artifacts) when using their hardware?

Hi Steven,

We use Zerene Stacker rather than Helicon software to stack our images. I would say that the various methods we use to take the images – manual focus steps, Stackshot or Helicon FB Tube – all end with the same results.

In my opinion, many macro shots could be improved by the extra depth of field given by stacking, and the process is almost essential with most shots having magnification beyond 1:1. We always use it for bellows and microscope photography. As to the difficulties of getting stacked images without unpleasant artefacts, it can take time and practice with stacking software. We end up discarding some images because it is not worth the effort required. We always start with RAW images which we edit and convert to 16 bit TIFFS in Capture One. Next we stack these in Zerene and save the results as JPGs. Whether the effort taken to learn and use stacking software is worthwhile depends on how much you value the final images.

I will post an update about the tube when I have taken more images.


Hey Chris,

I have that tube as well, but haven't gotten around to using it. I think that stacking is useful when shooting at angles that put the depth of field at a disadvantage, but to say that it's almost essential above 1x isn't true...

Feeding Sawfly at 4x and F11:

Plenty of depth, plenty of detail, one frame. In your own images you're shooting from angles that are difficult to pull off in a single frame just due to the angle between the sensor and the subject.

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