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Thread: Difference between Macro filter and Lens

  1. #1
    jermng
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    Default Difference between Macro filter and Lens

    Hey guys, another newbie question .. what's the diff between a MAcro filter and a Macro lens? They both appear to do the same thing. Is one better than the other? =) Thanks!

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    Default Re: Difference between Macro filter and Lens

    Originally posted by jermng
    Hey guys, another newbie question .. what's the diff between a MAcro filter and a Macro lens? They both appear to do the same thing. Is one better than the other? =) Thanks!
    Macro filters are like magnifying glass that will magnify the said subjects whereas Macro lens are lens that allows you to take close up or magnified view of your subject up to a reproduction rate of 1:1. Sometimes even more, depending on the setup.... Usually, macro or micro photographer uses a combination of both to increase their maginafication to more then 1:1....

    Also, Macro filters are more cheaper and it's attached to your existing lens like a normal filter....

    There are other ways to increase magnifacation other then the 2 mentions above.... It all boils down to what you're trying to shoot or rather what type of pictures you're trying to take....

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    If you attach a 'macro' filter to a lens, you will not be able to focus beyond a certain distance. For example if u use a +4 filter, you will not be able to focus on things beyond 25cm...

    A macro lens is highly corrected for close up work whereas the filter isn't quite as good, and have to depend on quality of the lens it is attached to.

    Cost wise, a macro lens cost much more than a close up filter.

    Hope that helps...

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    So is the Canon 250D "close up lens" a macro filter? I'm using the G5, if in Macro program mode at 15cm focus range (with full zoom) does it mean that with this +4 lens I can move the cam to within 3.5cm? Or is the object 4 times larger at the same 15cm distance?

    Hope I'm making sense!! Thanx.

  5. #5

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    Originally posted by hwchoy
    So is the Canon 250D "close up lens" a macro filter? I'm using the G5, if in Macro program mode at 15cm focus range (with full zoom) does it mean that with this +4 lens I can move the cam to within 3.5cm? Or is the object 4 times larger at the same 15cm distance?

    Hope I'm making sense!! Thanx.
    250D is essentially a +4 close up filter but better in the sense that its has double elements and not so much distortions. When using +4 close ups, the macro mode is normally disabled and your focusing distance will be about 23-24cm. Depending on your maximum focal length, the magnification of the subject varies.

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    Originally posted by hwchoy
    So is the Canon 250D "close up lens" a macro filter? I'm using the G5, if in Macro program mode at 15cm focus range (with full zoom) does it mean that with this +4 lens I can move the cam to within 3.5cm? Or is the object 4 times larger at the same 15cm distance?

    Hope I'm making sense!! Thanx.
    It does reduce the focussing distance if "Macro" program mode is used. However, the degree will depend on the camera itself.

    Most people use macro/close-up filters with normal foccusing mode (and full zoom) cos it result in larger magnification.
    Check out my wildlife pics at www.instagram.com/conrad_nature

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    Yes in fact I am using manual focus as my subject is tropical fish and they are almost always too fast for the AF. As I am very new to this, would you recommend the 250D (for the purpose of bringing the subject closer without going nearer) or any other alternative? Image quality is top priority.

    Perhaps later I should upgrade to a macro lens?

  8. #8

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    Originally posted by hwchoy
    Yes in fact I am using manual focus as my subject is tropical fish and they are almost always too fast for the AF. As I am very new to this, would you recommend the 250D (for the purpose of bringing the subject closer without going nearer) or any other alternative? Image quality is top priority.

    Perhaps later I should upgrade to a macro lens?
    Sorry a bit OT

    I don't think 250D could help much on faster AF and bigger magnification. I guess to take nice tropical fish (in the fish tank) shots , you need to
    - have good lighting like external flash or multiple flashes (also compensate the shutter speed fast enough to freeze the fish movement)
    - have the camera mounted on a tripod
    - place ur camera as close to the fish tank
    - ur fish tank clean and water is clear
    - use remote control to trigger if possible
    - use small aperture to have wider DOF
    - use MF if possible
    See my Photo Gallery at the Clubsnap

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    If you are using a PowerShot G5, I don't think you can change the lens as the lens is fix. Macro lens is for SLR.

    Guess your option is to use a len adpater + close up filter. I use a Hoya +4 close up filter with my G3. Hoya filter is very much cheaper than the 250D. Works ok if you are not fussy on distortion.
    Last edited by Madcat II; 16th July 2003 at 03:04 PM.

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    Hi Megaweb, man your hoverfly is really astounding

    I have been using a friend's CP4500 and the macro mode on that cam is really something, can get as close as 2cm, basically right up against the fish

    Recently got a G5, and intending to get a 420EX with wireless. I used to shoot (on the CP4500) without flash and slight underexposure in order to maximise shutter speed which is typically around 1/8 - 1/15.

    Now with the G5 (everything else being equal) I cannot get the subject to fill up the screen, so that's the reason for the 250D. I am assuming once I get the 420EX I will be able to properly expose at faster shutter speeds.

    I have a collection of fish pics taken with the CP4500, would you guys be so kind as to have a look and offer me some comments and criticisms that I can look out for going forward? Do note that the pics were taken under low light constraints, and a vanilla CP4500. It is at www.imagestation.com/members/hwchoy. please check out the CARP and PERCH-LIKE albums, these are the most populated ones for now. You need to click on the picture to get the full 16001200 pic, each about 350KB.

    BTW I am trying to stay further from the glass because of reflection. Will also be trying the blackout method.
    Last edited by hwchoy; 16th July 2003 at 03:20 PM.

  11. #11
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    Originally posted by Madcat II
    If you are using a PowerShot G5, I don't think you can change the lens as the lens is fix. Macro lens is for SLR.

    Guess your option is to use a len adpater + close up filter. I use a Hoya +4 close up filter with my G3. Hoya filter is very much cheaper than the 250D. Works ok if you are not fussy on distortion.
    So one less reason to break the piggy bank huh

    Well image quality is top priority so I guess the 250D is it.

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