Shutter Speed Guideline when shooting macro


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tanhot

New Member
Dec 7, 2007
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Upper Bukit Timah
#1
Hi Fellow Members,

This is my first post so would appreciate your guidence and encouragement.

I have been taking photos as an amateur for many years but am new to macro photography. I am using Nikon D70 with 60mm macro len. I realized that the rule of thumb for shutter speed setting using 1 / (focal length X crop factor) does not apply in macro photography as the magnification varies while the focal length is fixed (60 mm in my case).

Would appreciate if someone can advise what would be the new rule of thumb in setting the shutter speed for macro photography?


Rgds
 

zac08

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2005
11,755
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East
#2
Hi Fellow Members,

This is my first post so would appreciate your guidence and encouragement.

I have been taking photos as an amateur for many years but am new to macro photography. I am using Nikon D70 with 60mm macro len. I realized that the rule of thumb for shutter speed setting using 1 / (focal length X crop factor) does not apply in macro photography as the magnification varies while the focal length is fixed (60 mm in my case).

Would appreciate if someone can advise what would be the new rule of thumb in setting the shutter speed for macro photography?


Rgds
Personally, I shoot with an external flash on, so the minimum shutter speed for me is as low as the lowest shutter speed for the flash's setting. Incidentally, I keep it at about 1/60 to reduce my movement errors (if any) as well as freeze the insects as much as possible.

If you have a tripod and have co-operative subjects, then you can go to as low a shutter speed as you like. ;)
 

tanhot

New Member
Dec 7, 2007
34
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Upper Bukit Timah
#3
Hi Zac,

Thanks for sharing. I do have external flash (SB800) but do not have specialized flash for macro. Not too sure how to use normal external flash on macro. Got the impression that direct flash would flatten the subject and for outdoor how to bounce the flash?

If I do not use flash then is there a guideline on the shutter speed to use as I do not think I can use the rule of thumb of 1/focal length.

Rgds
 

spazzer

New Member
May 5, 2007
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BUKIT PANJANG
#4
for me wise i use a built in flash as a commander and than a sb600 and sb800 with people holding it for me while i shoot:D
so my shutter speed would be about 1/60
 

zac08

Senior Member
Feb 21, 2005
11,755
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0
East
#5
Hi Zac,

Thanks for sharing. I do have external flash (SB800) but do not have specialized flash for macro. Not too sure how to use normal external flash on macro. Got the impression that direct flash would flatten the subject and for outdoor how to bounce the flash?

If I do not use flash then is there a guideline on the shutter speed to use as I do not think I can use the rule of thumb of 1/focal length.

Rgds
You can look at my macro pictures in my flickr link. They are taken with a Nikon SB-800 set at -7 degree and with negative ev. Due to the close distance to the subject, such flash is actually quite ok, you can diffuse it more with DIY diffusers or omnibounce.

If you do not use flash, then consider your movement problems. If handheld, then you may need a much higher shutter speed than 1/focal length. If you have a tripod, then you have more room to play with. Have seen some users try as low as 1/15 with longer macro lenses like the 180. ;)
 

Leong23

Senior Member
Oct 18, 2007
3,186
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within myself
#6
Actually in macro photography, the faster the speed, the better it is. (reduced motion blur)

Flash is very important in macro, either it is full or fill flash, both give different result.

btw, 60mm is good for still life. For insect, 90mm and longer is recommanded.
 

tanhot

New Member
Dec 7, 2007
34
0
0
Upper Bukit Timah
#7
Hi folks,

Thanks for sharing your setup and comments especially to Michael Lim for sharing his huge portfolio. I got the point now. Flash is essential be it single or multiple. Hence trying to capture macro with a fast enough speed using handheld is not a usual practice.

Rgds
 

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