what defines a macro lens?


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yanyewkay

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Sep 22, 2004
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#1
after shooting macro for sometime, I'm starting to be a little more confused than before I started.

I've seen some lens with mag ratio 1:1 labelled macro lens.. "ok.. well quite acceptable"

then came 1:2 macro (what I'm using) min focus dist 95cm to attain 1:2 :think: "ok.." i thought..

then I came across 1:2.9 macro.. then I'm starting to wonder. what is the cut-off limit for labelling a lens with 'macro' function? A manufacturer can't label a lens 'macro' with 1:4 :think: can they?

I'm thinking too much becos I can't shoot lately.. rain rain rain.. where got butterflies to shoot?:dunno:
 

yanyewkay

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Sep 22, 2004
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#3
mm. .thanks. i was pondering whether the minimum focus distance was the factor or the reproduction ratio. i guess both plays a part
 

sumball

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Jul 8, 2003
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#4
yanyewkay said:
mm. .thanks. i was pondering whether the minimum focus distance was the factor or the reproduction ratio. i guess both plays a part
Get yourself a copy of Macro book like the one by John Shaw, which currently I lend it to Adrian. I can loan you once he returns me. Read it, and you can be more confused than now.;)
 

regit

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Dec 3, 2003
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#5
I can only relate in terms of Nikkor designations... If you think if terms of film or sensor size and the subject; then micro or macro may become clear; i.e. does the lens give me a macro picture (larger than life-size) or micro picture (smaller than life-size)?

Using a Micro-Nikkor lens (e.g. 60mm, 105mm, 85-PC), the largest image I can get is 1:1 (intended usage). But when using a Macro-Nikkor lens (e.g. 28mm, 35mm, 65mm and 100mm), I can get larger than 1:1.

So in essence, most lenses are micro lens since they give less than life-size reproduction; and therefore, it is really up to manufacturer to decide what they think is a micro lens and hence, you see many of them labelled their lens "Micro" (or Macro in their misleading ways).

But only a few are true macro lens, e.g. Macro-Nikkor, Zeiss Luminars, Leitz Photars, etc.

yanyewkay said:
after shooting macro for sometime, I'm starting to be a little more confused than before I started.

I've seen some lens with mag ratio 1:1 labelled macro lens.. "ok.. well quite acceptable"

then came 1:2 macro (what I'm using) min focus dist 95cm to attain 1:2 :think: "ok.." i thought..

then I came across 1:2.9 macro.. then I'm starting to wonder. what is the cut-off limit for labelling a lens with 'macro' function? A manufacturer can't label a lens 'macro' with 1:4 :think: can they?

I'm thinking too much becos I can't shoot lately.. rain rain rain.. where got butterflies to shoot?:dunno:
 

yanyewkay

Senior Member
Sep 22, 2004
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Cons digger.
#6
thanks for the explantion.. it does make more room for thinking now.. :D

sumball: will borrow the book from you when we meet up.. 'soon' .;p
 

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