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by SantaFeJoe on Fri Dec 17, 2021 10:28 am
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Nikon has a 50mm f2.8 macro lens for z. I have always wondered why they can’t make a fast macro lens. I sometimes use a 50 f1.4 lens for low light conditions and think that a faster macro would serve in a wider variety of conditions if it was just faster. It wouldn’t be limited to mostly macro.

https://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/mirrorless-lenses/nikkor-z-mc-50mm-f%252f2.8.html

Joe
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by photoman4343 on Sat Dec 18, 2021 11:42 am
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My most used Nikon macro lens is the 200mm f4. Then the 105mm f2.8 G. I do not need something faster. I wonder why they do not make a 105mm f4. It would be lighter and maybe smaller and cost less. I do not need faster AF as I focus these manually.

As long as the lens can produce good bokeh and produce good macro results, I do not want to pay for a faster lens.
Joe Smith
 

by Wildflower-nut on Sat Dec 18, 2021 12:15 pm
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photoman4343 wrote:
My most used Nikon macro lens is the 200mm f4. Then the 105mm f2.8 G. I do not need something faster. I wonder why they do not make a 105mm f4. It would be lighter and maybe smaller and cost less. I do not need faster AF as I focus these manually.

As long as the lens can produce good bokeh and produce good macro results, I do not want to pay for a faster lens.




Macro's typically are flat field lenses and the sharpest best corrected lenses in a major quality lens makers line.  Making a 50mm f1.4 with those qualities wide open I suppose could be done but at a cost that would limit your market severely. 

I've tried everything from 50mm to 100mm to 150mm to 200mm lenses as well as a bellows with a 150mm enlarging lens for macro over the last 50 years.  My most used lenses are in the 180mm range (canon 180 or t/s lens and multiplier to get to 180).  DOF is usually the main issue and therefore faster than f4 is not necessary.  Also an f4 will always be lighter than a f2.8 for example.  Optically they are easier to design and less expensive for top quality optics.  The camera company's sales department of course wants to promote the faster is better theme whether it is or not.  A 200mm lens also reduces the amount of background you take in behind your subject making it easier to select a complementary background.  For this reason I've known people who use a 300mm f4 in prairies although it is more difficult to go beyond 1/4 life size.  Longer lens give you space between the lens and the subject for auxiliary lighting such as reflectors or led lighting.  If you are photographing insects or frogs more space makes you less of a threat.  Positioning the camera is easier.  Move a 200mm camera position 2" and it won't make much difference compared to moving a 50mm the same distance at the same magnification.  This makes camera positioning much more difficult.  Hence the crossed gear driven focusing rails that help with a short lens but I've never needed one with a 200mm.    In the field the shorter lens also puts your camera closer to the ground if photographing flowers for the same angle of view.  The only thing I ever found a 50 good for was copying documents on a copy stand.  A 100mm has advantages primarily where you can't physically get back far enough to use a 200mm.  It was my standard for many years before being introduced to the 200mm.  In those cases, I have used a 24-105 zoom as most will go to at least 1/4 life size and I've found in those situation more magnification is not necessary.  It also allows me do do scenic as well without additional weight.


Last edited by Wildflower-nut on Sun Dec 19, 2021 6:50 pm, edited 3 times in total.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Sat Dec 18, 2021 12:32 pm
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They do have a Z-mount 105 f/2.8:
https://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/mirrorless-lenses/nikkor-z-mc-105mm-f%252f2.8-vr-s.html

Another option is to run a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 with the FTZ adapter.  That is very fast for a macro lens and should work fine as long as the FW is up to date on the Sigma.
 

by SantaFeJoe on Sat Dec 18, 2021 5:32 pm
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My point is that the 50mm length is pretty useless as a macro lens for most purposes. If it was made in a 1.4 or 1.7 aperture it would be more useful in low light conditions as a general purpose lens, as well as macro (for those who use a 50mm). At Bosque during flyout, I can use the 50 f1.4 at a lower ISO to stop motion at a higher SS. It works well for that. My favorite lens of all is a Nikon 200mm f4 macro (micro). The working distance is great and, as a macro, no faster aperture is necessary. My first macro lens was a 60mm f2.8. I photographed many a bee and butterfly at 1:1 with it. The butterflies were about the size of a penny. It worked well, but the working distance was too short to be practical. F2.8 is pretty slow for a general purpose lens. It just seems to me that it could be made faster for not much more money. Who really wants an F2.8 50mm nowadays? The only saving grace is that with an EVF, what you see is what you get. You can still see clearly to focus (manually) vs. an optical viewfinder. F1.4 is a full 2 stops faster than f2.8. For a shorter focal length, that’s really slow.

Joe
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by E.J. Peiker on Sat Dec 18, 2021 6:14 pm
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The 50mm lenses are designed as copy stand lenses with an extremely compensated field. That way you can get close to the subject like a stamp at MFD and even though the subject distance in the corners is way more than the subject distance in the center and still everything is sharp at 1:1 (often these lenses are 0.5:1 due to the difficulty of achieving this). The larger the aperture, the more complex the lens design becomes and the size, weight, complexity and cost goes up exponentially with every stop of light. An f/1.4 lens that can do 1:1 and achieve both the corners and the center in focus at MFD would probably be the size of a 200 f/2.
 

by Wildflower-nut on Sun Dec 19, 2021 2:04 pm
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E.J. Peiker wrote:
They do have a Z-mount 105 f/2.8:
https://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/mirrorless-lenses/nikkor-z-mc-105mm-f%252f2.8-vr-s.html

Another option is to run a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 with the FTZ adapter.  That is very fast for a macro lens and should work fine as long as the FW is up to date on the Sigma.


I bought a sigma 150 to use with R5 for hand holding on hikes with Native Plant Society as they won't wait for me to set up a tripod etc.  Had some auto focus problems and the lens firmware, according to sigma, cannot be updated.  Sent it in to Sigma and while they could not do anything to the lens, they made some suggestions that I've yet to try out that should fix the issue.  My only comment would be that if you try and do this, I'd see if you can talk to someone who has done it or borrow the lens to try out.  I picked the Sigma 150 over the Sigma 180 primarily for weight.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Sun Dec 19, 2021 11:41 pm
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Wildflower-nut wrote:
E.J. Peiker wrote:
They do have a Z-mount 105 f/2.8:
https://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/mirrorless-lenses/nikkor-z-mc-105mm-f%252f2.8-vr-s.html

Another option is to run a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 with the FTZ adapter.  That is very fast for a macro lens and should work fine as long as the FW is up to date on the Sigma.


I bought a sigma 150 to use with R5 for hand holding on hikes with Native Plant Society as they won't wait for me to set up a tripod etc.  Had some auto focus problems and the lens firmware, according to sigma, cannot be updated.  Sent it in to Sigma and while they could not do anything to the lens, they made some suggestions that I've yet to try out that should fix the issue.  My only comment would be that if you try and do this, I'd see if you can talk to someone who has done it or borrow the lens to try out.  I picked the Sigma 150 over the Sigma 180 primarily for weight.


Actually it can be updated, just not via the Sigma dock.  I had mine updated by sending it in but that was several years ago.  It's probably that they just don't support the lens anymore for that sort of thing since it's been out of production for about3 years now.
 

by Wildflower-nut on Mon Dec 20, 2021 10:02 am
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E.J. Peiker wrote:
Wildflower-nut wrote:
E.J. Peiker wrote:
They do have a Z-mount 105 f/2.8:
https://www.nikonusa.com/en/nikon-products/product/mirrorless-lenses/nikkor-z-mc-105mm-f%252f2.8-vr-s.html

Another option is to run a Sigma 150mm f/2.8 with the FTZ adapter.  That is very fast for a macro lens and should work fine as long as the FW is up to date on the Sigma.


I bought a sigma 150 to use with R5 for hand holding on hikes with Native Plant Society as they won't wait for me to set up a tripod etc.  Had some auto focus problems and the lens firmware, according to sigma, cannot be updated.  Sent it in to Sigma and while they could not do anything to the lens, they made some suggestions that I've yet to try out that should fix the issue.  My only comment would be that if you try and do this, I'd see if you can talk to someone who has done it or borrow the lens to try out.  I picked the Sigma 150 over the Sigma 180 primarily for weight.


Actually it can be updated, just not via the Sigma dock.  I had mine updated by sending it in but that was several years ago.  It's probably that they just don't support the lens anymore for that sort of thing since it's been out of production for about3 years now.

Didn't think of that.  I sent it into Sigma Repair in August this year and they said no.  It could be they have quit providing that service for this lens.  It could also be that the R5 was introduced after production was discontinued (or any of the Canon R cameras for that matter) and so any firmware adjustment for those cameras were never created.  It could also be that the lens already had the latest firmware installed.  Probably should try and call to discuss an individual situation.
 

by E.J. Peiker on Mon Dec 20, 2021 11:56 am
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Mine was a Nikon mount lens so that could also play a role.
 

by hullyjr on Wed Dec 22, 2021 9:54 pm
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SantaFeJoe wrote:
My point is that the 50mm length is pretty useless as a macro lens for most purposes. If it was made in a 1.4 or 1.7 aperture it would be more useful in low light conditions as a general purpose lens, as well as macro (for those who use a 50mm). At Bosque during flyout, I can use the 50 f1.4 at a lower ISO to stop motion at a higher SS. It works well for that. My favorite lens of all is a Nikon 200mm f4 macro (micro). The working distance is great and, as a macro, no faster aperture is necessary. My first macro lens was a 60mm f2.8. I photographed many a bee and butterfly at 1:1 with it. The butterflies were about the size of a penny. It worked well, but the working distance was too short to be practical. F2.8 is pretty slow for a general purpose lens. It just seems to me that it could be made faster for not much more money. Who really wants an F2.8 50mm nowadays? The only saving grace is that with an EVF, what you see is what you get. You can still see clearly to focus (manually) vs. an optical viewfinder. F1.4 is a full 2 stops faster than f2.8. For a shorter focal length, that’s really slow.

Joe

I must be an outlie :(  I love the view of a 50-60mm macro lenses. I hope Canon to come out with 50mm for RF that focus to twice life size. I use a 60mm equivalent lens (30mm Panasonic on Olympus m43 camera) for copying all my slides. On a light box the combo is small and the quality is more than sufficient. My biggest reason for this angle of view is photographing moths (& other visiting insects/arachnids, etc) on my white sheets or in a moth trap. With the Canon twin flash I get very even illumination which is ideal for documentation. Couple that with the EF-S 35mm macro & M6II makes for a relatively lightweight outfit that suits my needs - hand held. Moths too small? Switch to the MP-E 65mm. I don't notice the relatively slow aperture but then I alway have supplemental red light either coming from the flash or a small flashlight. In general these subjects are not distrubed by my gear even when I am really close. Depth of field is my biggest handicap.

Cheers,
Jim Hully
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Images now at https://www.flickr.com/photos/138068378@N06/
 

by E.J. Peiker on Thu Dec 23, 2021 10:37 am
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hullyjr wrote:
SantaFeJoe wrote:
My point is that the 50mm length is pretty useless as a macro lens for most purposes. If it was made in a 1.4 or 1.7 aperture it would be more useful in low light conditions as a general purpose lens, as well as macro (for those who use a 50mm). At Bosque during flyout, I can use the 50 f1.4 at a lower ISO to stop motion at a higher SS. It works well for that. My favorite lens of all is a Nikon 200mm f4 macro (micro). The working distance is great and, as a macro, no faster aperture is necessary. My first macro lens was a 60mm f2.8. I photographed many a bee and butterfly at 1:1 with it. The butterflies were about the size of a penny. It worked well, but the working distance was too short to be practical. F2.8 is pretty slow for a general purpose lens. It just seems to me that it could be made faster for not much more money. Who really wants an F2.8 50mm nowadays? The only saving grace is that with an EVF, what you see is what you get. You can still see clearly to focus (manually) vs. an optical viewfinder. F1.4 is a full 2 stops faster than f2.8. For a shorter focal length, that’s really slow.

Joe

I must be an outlie :(  I love the view of a 50-60mm macro lenses. I hope Canon to come out with 50mm for RF that focus to twice life size. I use a 60mm equivalent lens (30mm Panasonic on Olympus m43 camera) for copying all my slides. On a light box the combo is small and the quality is more than sufficient. My biggest reason for this angle of view is photographing moths (& other visiting insects/arachnids, etc) on my white sheets or in a moth trap. With the Canon twin flash I get very even illumination which is ideal for documentation. Couple that with the EF-S 35mm macro & M6II makes for a relatively lightweight outfit that suits my needs - hand held. Moths too small? Switch to the MP-E 65mm. I don't notice the relatively slow aperture but then I alway have supplemental red light either coming from the flash or a small flashlight. In general these subjects are not distrubed by my gear even when I am really close. Depth of field is my biggest handicap.

Cheers,


Realize that an M6 is an APS-C sensor camera (1.6X in the Canon world) so a similar field of view on a full frame camera would need to be 80mm...
 

by Steve Cirone on Wed Dec 29, 2021 7:28 pm
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Many photographers consider a lens with a 2.8 aperture to be fast.  Plus, most macro photography is done at smaller apertures such as F 8- 22, so the market for anything faster than 2.8 is likely minimal.
 
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