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Thread: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

  1. #1

    Default Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    hi to those who own this lens.
    a quick question as i just rented this lens today, went to ubin to take some shots, i realized a few things:

    1) when going close to my subject, not sure its due to the min focusing distance, the focus is trying very hard to focus, when i moved back abit, the focus managed to capture the subject immediately, but sometime, its still trying to focus, in and out in and out

    2) in macro mode, we cannot control the aperture? I tried to adjust but it always changing the aperture, I'm in manual mode. Cannot manual overwrite?

    3) I find when going in closer to subject, the focus is not really that fast. Wonder if its due to something which i need to set or perhaps use manual focus instead

  2. #2

    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    1) yea it's normal, that's why many folks prefer using manual-focus when doing close-up work, up to a magnification of 1:2 or so, AF works ok for me.
    2) we can... however, a macro lens does not have the maximum marked aperture (f2.8 for your lens) at ALL focusing distances. At closer focusing distances, the max aperture is actually SMALLER. it's entirely normal, don't worry! tink of it like a zoom lens with variable aperture, but this time the aperture varys with focusing distance.
    3) no idea abt this one. But macro lenses generally focus more slowly due to the large focusing range. Close in, there may be less light too, hence the body may slow down the AF to lock (just a guess..)

  3. #3

    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    ok, thanks for e info. i read up from kenrockwell, found out about the focus breathing issue. hmmm.

  4. #4
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    for number 2... try not to use the macro mode if you got enough light... because all those preset mode normally would open up aperture to the biggest possible... and not possible to override it...

    i sometimes use it when the light is low because i still can't control the flash properly...

  5. #5
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by akagi07 View Post
    hi to those who own this lens.
    a quick question as i just rented this lens today, went to ubin to take some shots, i realized a few things:

    1) when going close to my subject, not sure its due to the min focusing distance, the focus is trying very hard to focus, when i moved back abit, the focus managed to capture the subject immediately, but sometime, its still trying to focus, in and out in and out

    2) in macro mode, we cannot control the aperture? I tried to adjust but it always changing the aperture, I'm in manual mode. Cannot manual overwrite?

    3) I find when going in closer to subject, the focus is not really that fast. Wonder if its due to something which i need to set or perhaps use manual focus instead
    Hi Akagi,

    I am a very happy owner of this lens, simply in love with it!!

    I never have any issue you face.. Perhaps of jus sharing with u the below pointers :

    1) In macro, most shooters will choose M Mode and swicth off VR and M/a mode.
    2) In macro mode, everything is preset set (programmed by the body to find what it deem best for a particular shot. U can only control Apertue in A priority or M mode.
    3) Giving its min focusing distance, u can't use Auto focus at all. U need to override (M/A) or use Manual focus. Positioning urself n/out and fine tuning focusing ring to get your subject in focus

    Hope the above helps

    Cheers
    I turned PRO in diaper chg!
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  6. #6
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by scenar View Post
    2) we can... however, a macro lens does not have the maximum marked aperture (f2.8 for your lens) at ALL focusing distances. At closer focusing distances, the max aperture is actually SMALLER. it's entirely normal, don't worry! tink of it like a zoom lens with variable aperture, but this time the aperture varys with focusing distance.
    I don't think this is correct. even though I am an EOS user I am sure the Nikkors work the same way. what you are describing sounds truly bizarre. from what others are saying on this thread, I believe the problem the threadstarter has is in using macro mode, one of those automatic modes. in which case the phenomena you are describing is made by the camera body, and not a feature of the lens itself.

  7. #7
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    akagi, one very seldom shoots at wide open (i.e. maximum aperture or ƒ/2.8 for your lens) at macro distance because of the paper thin DOF, unless you are trying to achieve some special effects or composition. it is much more common to shoot at ƒ/8 to ƒ/16.

  8. #8

    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy View Post
    I don't think this is correct. even though I am an EOS user I am sure the Nikkors work the same way. what you are describing sounds truly bizarre. from what others are saying on this thread, I believe the problem the threadstarter has is in using macro mode, one of those automatic modes. in which case the phenomena you are describing is made by the camera body, and not a feature of the lens itself.
    its is correct if the nikkor works like the tamron i had,
    the barrel extends n at 1:1 its f5.6 instead of 2.8.

    my canon 100 stays constant,
    both the aperture n the barrel.

  9. #9
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by bengchiat View Post
    its is correct if the nikkor works like the tamron i had,
    the barrel extends n at 1:1 its f5.6 instead of 2.8.
    if this is the case how can they write 105mm ƒ/2.8 ? it would be misrepresentation, no!?

    anyway there is a simple empirical way to verify. take your lens and look from the front (without the body) and focus it from minimum to infinity. does the aperture blades close as you go towards minimum? if the blades remain constant then it is constant aperture (since the focal length is constant).
    Last edited by hwchoy; 30th June 2009 at 02:34 PM.

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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy View Post
    if this is the case how can they write 105mm /2.8 ? it would be misrepresentation, no!?

    anyway there is a simple empirical way to verify. take your lens and look from the front (without the body) and focus it from minimum to infinity. does the aperture blades close as you go towards minimum? if the blades remain constant then it is constant aperture (since the focal length is constant).
    I don't think it works that way...

    The blades will remain wide open, what changes is the optics moving inside the lens


    I think a way to test it would be a shoots a blank wall (in manual mode) when the lens is focused to infinity and compare it with a shot (same settings) with the lens focused at it's MFD. The shot at MDF should be darker

  11. #11
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus Trent View Post
    I don't think it works that way...

    The blades will remain wide open, what changes is the optics moving inside the lens

    of course the optics move inside, that's the floating group that enables close focusing. in any case all lenses have to move their optics in order to effect focusing or zooming.

    now the question is, does the SIZE of the aperture CHANGE as your focus? if it does not, then it is constant aperture. the /2.8 (or whatever number) is derived by dividing the focal length by the diameter of the aperture so your aperture should be roughly 37.5mm diameter.



    I think a way to test it would be a shoots a blank wall (in manual mode) when the lens is focused to infinity and compare it with a shot (same settings) with the lens focused at it's MFD. The shot at MDF should be darker
    doesn't prove that the aperture was reduced.

    heck an even simpler way would be to look at your camera display, as you focus does the display show the aperture reducing? I am very certain it does not. so far I have never heard of a prime lens with variable max aperture.

  12. #12
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus Trent View Post
    The blades will remain wide open, what changes is the optics moving inside the lens

    try this with a zoom lens that has variable max aperture (i.e. any cheapo zooms will do) as you zoom the aperture will change its size.

    actually the aperture will change size even on a constant aperture zoom (eg your 70-200/2.8) this is because it will always maintain a 2.8 factor against the focal length, the aperture would expand from 25mm (when zoom to 70mm) to 71mm (when zoomed to 200mm).

  13. #13
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy View Post
    I don't think this is correct. even though I am an EOS user I am sure the Nikkors work the same way. what you are describing sounds truly bizarre. from what others are saying on this thread, I believe the problem the threadstarter has is in using macro mode, one of those automatic modes. in which case the phenomena you are describing is made by the camera body, and not a feature of the lens itself.
    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy View Post
    if this is the case how can they write 105mm ƒ/2.8 ? it would be misrepresentation, no!?

    anyway there is a simple empirical way to verify. take your lens and look from the front (without the body) and focus it from minimum to infinity. does the aperture blades close as you go towards minimum? if the blades remain constant then it is constant aperture (since the focal length is constant).
    While the aperture value remains constant (i.e physical aperture diameter remains the same), the reason why Nikon bodies show you a compensated smaller aperture is due to light loss at higher magnifications. This is not apparent on the EOS body as a change in aperture value, but rather a shift in your exposure value. You will notice at nearer magnifications that you need to push exposure up. I forgot to add, this change in aperture value on Nikon bodies is also apparent even on Manual mode.

    This works on the same theory as using extension tubes. While these tubes don't have any optical elements, you still experience some form of light loss when doing close up work with these tubes due to light loss at greater magnifications.
    Last edited by calebk; 1st July 2009 at 11:11 AM.

  14. #14
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    does the nikon body actually shows a smaller aperture value, as recorded in the EXIF?

    I absolutely agree with you that there is light loss, but that does not mean aperture is smaller (which is as defined the ratio of aperture to focal length). to me that is an in correct representation of the fact.

    can you show a pix with a EXIF aperture value larger than 2.8 on such a macro lens?

  15. #15
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by hwchoy View Post
    does the nikon body actually shows a smaller aperture value, as recorded in the EXIF?

    I absolutely agree with you that there is light loss, but that does not mean aperture is smaller (which is as defined the ratio of aperture to focal length). to me that is an in correct representation of the fact.

    can you show a pix with a EXIF aperture value larger than 2.8 on such a macro lens?
    I do not own a Nikon body so I can't. I am primarily a Canon user, but have had experience with the Nikon body, that's why I've encountered this before. Perhaps someone with a Micro-Nikkor and a Nikon body can do this.

  16. #16
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    yah hor I actually know people who have micro nikkors both the old and new ones.

  17. #17

    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Numnumball View Post
    Hi Akagi,

    I am a very happy owner of this lens, simply in love with it!!

    I never have any issue you face.. Perhaps of jus sharing with u the below pointers :

    1) In macro, most shooters will choose M Mode and swicth off VR and M/a mode.
    2) In macro mode, everything is preset set (programmed by the body to find what it deem best for a particular shot. U can only control Apertue in A priority or M mode.
    3) Giving its min focusing distance, u can't use Auto focus at all. U need to override (M/A) or use Manual focus. Positioning urself n/out and fine tuning focusing ring to get your subject in focus

    Hope the above helps

    Cheers
    actually for point 2) I'm in manual mode, but I can't change the aperture, that's the reason I'm trying to find out why, as i tested myself, the aperture seems to determined by the body itself

    3) actually, i can use AF but within the acceptable focus distance as mentioned by nikon, but i guess reading up from kenrockwell sit on 'breathing' issue of this lens, MF is the ideal method.

    anyway I rented the lens, but in the end, didn't used much as I got myself to ubin, didn't really explore alot into insects. perhaps shall try again at SBG.

    thanks

  18. #18

    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by Daedalus Trent View Post
    I don't think it works that way...

    The blades will remain wide open, what changes is the optics moving inside the lens


    I think a way to test it would be a shoots a blank wall (in manual mode) when the lens is focused to infinity and compare it with a shot (same settings) with the lens focused at it's MFD. The shot at MDF should be darker
    if you've toyed with an afs 60mm, you can see actually some blade changes as the lens focuses down to 1:1


    as of most lenses, to reach 1:1 the optical group just moves forward, thus increasing the distance between rear element to sensor i.e. like an internal extension tube for higher magnification, but inevitably there is light loss as the extension distance increases with increasing magnification.

    so if you want fast aperture, stick to non macro lenses, else for proper magnification, one has to deal with the aperture variability with magnification being achieved.
    pedantic.

  19. #19
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by akagi07 View Post
    actually for point 2) I'm in manual mode, but I can't change the aperture, that's the reason I'm trying to find out why, as i tested myself, the aperture seems to determined by the body itself

    thanks
    I think you should take the set up to one of those Nikon user meet ups and have some one show you how it works.

  20. #20
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    Default Re: Nikon 105mm VR macro issue

    Quote Originally Posted by proteonXPR View Post
    if you've toyed with an afs 60mm, you can see actually some blade changes as the lens focuses down to 1:1
    I looked at my EF 100/2.8 macro, there is some "wavering" of the blades as I focus but no where near the scale that can be regarded as "smaller aperture".

    so if you want fast aperture, stick to non macro lenses, else for proper magnification, one has to deal with the aperture variability with magnification being achieved.
    actually this is not even the thread starter's problem he is complaining that he can't control the aperture in Manual mode!

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