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Shooting with Tubes
  
 
CGrindahl
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p.3 #1 · Shooting with Tubes


I had the opportunity today to shoot with an old Nikon manual focus lens, the 80-200 f/4.5 AI which at the time of its release was intended to demonstrate that one could get great photos with a zoom lens as well as with a prime lens. This is an old push pull design and because of its age, the zoom cylinder is about as loose as it could get. Fortunately, the optical elements of the lens are in great shape, as is the cosmetic condition. I would prefer a tighter zoom cylinder, but this is what I bought for $75... not too bad a deal at all considering how well it performs.

Here is a shot I took late this afternoon with two tubes attached, a total of 48mm. This was shot wide open in Manual Mode at 1/200th of a second. Not much light in the late afternoon, especially with tubes attached, so wide open left a fairly narrow depth of field. This was particularly challenging because the wind kept gusting, bouncing the flowers about. Oh well...



Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:19 AM · View previous versions



May 04, 2011 at 01:55 AM
Gehjl
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p.3 #2 · Shooting with Tubes


CGrindahl wrote:
This is a gorgeous shot! Extension tubes really are magical and using them really expands one's horizon when it comes to shooting. You'll find you have more working distance with longer lenses, but then you won't necessarily have something as evocative as this shot. Thanks for sharing Gehji. Keep shooting and sharing!


Thanks . Now with school done I can finally go out and shoot. Going tomorrow to look for some new places to shoot with extension tubes and a 55-250mm lens.



May 04, 2011 at 04:11 AM
gregfountain
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p.3 #3 · Shooting with Tubes


Here's a couple. D700 with an 80-200 2.8, and a 12mm tube:














May 04, 2011 at 04:26 AM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #4 · Shooting with Tubes


Great stuff Greg!


May 04, 2011 at 04:49 AM
rocco61
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p.3 #5 · Shooting with Tubes


Great job!


May 06, 2011 at 09:43 AM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #6 · Shooting with Tubes


Let's row the boat a bit and see if we can stir more interest in this topic. Here's a photo taken a couple of days ago with a recently acquired 80-200 f/4.5 AI lens mounted with 48mm worth of extension tubes on a D700. This is one sweet lens... It retailed for $679 in the seventies and I just bought one on E-Bay for $76... How sweet is that?!



Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:19 AM · View previous versions



May 06, 2011 at 03:25 PM
dbehrens
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p.3 #7 · Shooting with Tubes


Some spectacular shots here!
Here's my contribution of a shot taken with the Canon 135 f/2 and extension tubes.
Dave











May 08, 2011 at 01:37 PM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #8 · Shooting with Tubes


Thanks Dave. Gorgeous shot. So funny that I have this wonderful Canon lens in a box in a cabinets, unused for almost two years. During the time I shot Canon, I didn't know an extension tube from a toothpaste tube and macro shooting was something other people did. Although I loved the EF 135 f/2L to death, I never found a use for it that really took advantage of its brilliance. Yes, I used it for street photography but that was about it. I can imagine it is perfect for this kind of shooting with its outstanding color rendition and sharpness. I'm not likely to reverse my decision to sell my remaining Canon kit, including this lens, but I certainly enjoyed my time shooting with it.

Here's another cala lily, this one shot wide open with the 180 f/2.8 AI-s ED shot with a 36mm tube attached. Spring in California is in full bloom and flowers are amazing...



Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:20 AM · View previous versions



May 08, 2011 at 03:04 PM
birdied
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p.3 #9 · Shooting with Tubes


Gorgeous shots, gentlemen !


May 08, 2011 at 03:46 PM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #10 · Shooting with Tubes


Thanks Roberta! Have anything to share with us with tubes attached?

Here is another taken with the 80-200 f/4.5 AI mounted on the D700 with 48mm worth of tubes attached. Everything I shoot is hand held, most often wide open. I'm a sucker for soft edges and buttery bokeh... This lens sings with tubes attached!


And here is a close crop of the above photo.



Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:21 AM · View previous versions



May 08, 2011 at 03:59 PM
 

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birdied
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p.3 #11 · Shooting with Tubes


Here goes, not the quality of the gorgeous shots above , so any comments and critiques for improvement are most welcomed
Not taken with a manual focus lens, but all shot with tube(s). Still trying to learn all this myself

All taken with the D300 105 micro (VR version) 12 and /or 20mm kenko tube , all handheld. Flash was either the SB900 diffused or the R1 macro light also diffused.






















May 08, 2011 at 07:15 PM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #12 · Shooting with Tubes


Only one thing missing Roberta... the photo.

Fortunately, I'm a patient man willing to wait for what you have to share. And remember, we're all students here, learning by doing...

Oops! I spoke too soon. After I posted this message the images miraculously appeared... lovely images as well. Wonderful work Roberta. I like how you've composed these shots. One of these days I'll have to consider adding some lighting...



May 08, 2011 at 07:18 PM
birdied
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p.3 #13 · Shooting with Tubes


Thank you

One more - pincushion flower







May 09, 2011 at 12:54 AM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #14 · Shooting with Tubes


Sweet Roberta! Love the raindrops. It reminds me of flowers I shot at Marin Art and Garden Center not too far from where I live. It was only after I'd viewed the images on my monitor that I appreciated the dew on the flower petals. These were shot with the 105 f/2.5 AI-s with a 20mm tube attached.




Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:24 AM · View previous versions



May 09, 2011 at 03:19 AM
gregfountain
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p.3 #15 · Shooting with Tubes


^^^sweet shots^^^!


May 09, 2011 at 04:10 AM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #16 · Shooting with Tubes


Thanks Greg! It still amazes me that I can get these shots without a macro lens, simply by adding extension tubes to my lens. I know many photographers use tubes on their macro lenses, which is fine by me. I haven't gotten there yet and I'm not certain I will, simply because Nikon's manual focus glass is so much fun to use that I can't imagine shooting with anything else. I could buy an MF micro lens as Nikon calls them, but I don't believe any of them go beyond 1:2 without tubes and most of those are 55mm or 105mm. I love my 105 f/2.5 AI-s too much to buy another 105mm lens and 55 is simply too short for the way I shoot. So here I am, tubes and manual focus lenses from 20mm to 300mm with a world to shoot. I'm still having a blast!

Got anything to share with us Greg? I bet you do...



May 09, 2011 at 04:24 AM
birdied
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p.3 #17 · Shooting with Tubes


Curtis, those are some gorgeous rose with dew shots. The detail and definition you achieve is amazing . I wish I had done a bit more research before I purchased the 105 VR , as I only use the lens in manual mode and don't use the VR.
It is a great lens, but I certainly could have saved some money !

You say the 55 is too short for the way you shoot, do you mind sharing your technique?

Here is one, that well breaks most of the rules or so I am advised, but hey gotta try different things.
I have been told too much in focus, no focal point, etc. One thing about being new to photography, is not knowing enough to know what rules you are breaking !







May 09, 2011 at 12:45 PM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #18 · Shooting with Tubes


If you read this thread from the beginning Roberta, you know I got in trouble with a purist right away by posting a cropped image. I got this...

Frankly, I've no interest in following anyone's "rules" about anything except perhaps the speed limit and seat belt law. I've gotten tickets along the way for ignoring such things and I'd rather not spend my money that way when there are so many lenses calling my name. Anyone who wants to abide by rules of any game is free to do so, but with a creative enterprise like photography, I go with what my gut tells me works, regardless of rules anyone else might enjoy applying. I love the old adage that says "being right is the booby prize..."

Of course, I'm under no illusion that because I like something that everybody else will join me. But that really is beside the point. Yes, I enjoy when someone finds the work I do interesting or on some level accomplished. One of the greatest satisfactions for me was when a friend whose photos regularly appear in the Sierra Club Wilderness calendar asked if he could use a photo I'd taken of him, first on his website and then for an article about him recently published in Outdoor Photography. He likes my work!!! I was deeply honored... and now my work is 'published" in the form of a tiny sepia photo at the bottom of a page buried in the back of the magazine...

Looking at the photo above, my instinct would have me lengthen the photo by not cropping so tight on the bottom. Of course, I've no idea what you captured so there may be nothing there with which to work. But even without that I can appreciate your vision, and how the lens performed in giving you such detail. One of the reasons I like to shoot with a rather narrow depth of field is that it allows me to isolate elements more easily, thereby announcing the focal point of my image. In this image I might have focused on the curved pod with the lovely water droplets and permitted the flower details to be slight blurred. But that is only one way to approach the shot.

My profile has my motto, learn photography by doing. There is no other way, ultimately. I'm a rank beginner working with tubes, but I'm having a great deal of pleasure doing so. It sounds as though you too are a student. I say, keep shooting and keep looking at work done by others. Eventually you will find a way of shooting and displaying your work that feels comfortable to you. That is all that really matters.

I don't use a tripod, I use nothing but natural light, I crop images to gain the composition I seek and I use just about every lens in my kit to shoot with extension tubes. I'm having fun!

This was shot with the 85 f/1.4 AI-s with a 20mm extension tube at f/8.





Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:43 AM · View previous versions



May 09, 2011 at 02:40 PM
CGrindahl
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p.3 #19 · Shooting with Tubes


Since I've had such pleasure shooting with the 80-200 f/4.5 AI with tubes, I thought I'd give a more serious workout to the 200 f/4 AI-s. It has a very long minimum focus distance, something like seven feet. I'd mounted a tube one time on that lens but really never did any serious shooting with it. This afternoon I played a bit, beginning with 48mm, then increasing to 68mm and finally backing off to 36mm when I wanted to capture the entire flower rather than just a portion of it. This lens is great! At the time I bought it I could only shake my head since the Buy it Now price on E-bay was so absurdly low. I read reviews that were glowing and so grabbed it. It is an outstanding lens and works beautifully with macro shots.


Despite the bright light, since I was shooting at f/11, I had to shoot manual mode to get adequate shutter speed, relying on Auto ISO to give me a useable shot. ISO was 720, shutter speed 1/250th of a second.

Edited on Mar 19, 2013 at 12:44 AM · View previous versions



May 09, 2011 at 10:18 PM
Gehjl
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p.3 #20 · Shooting with Tubes


Got an idea of reversing my kit lens on a set of extension tubes. Here are my results:













This was my first bug that stood still for me, but it would not look at me and the wind was blowing like there was no end. Not the best composition, but was fun to do a bug for once. I think it was some type of moth.










May 09, 2011 at 11:42 PM
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