Ugly Hedgehog® - Photography Forum
Macro Equipment Set-Ups
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Mar 31, 2012 13:28:50   #
Nikonian72 Loc: Long Beach CA
 
This thread is to demonstrate different macro set-ups, especially illumination sources. You will notice that several macro-photographers (like me) have evolved from our initial illumination set-ups, and our most recent configurations are on the latter pages of this thread. CURRENT SET-UPS ARE FOUND ON PAGE 4 TO LAST PAGE: http://www.uglyhedgehog.com/t-32754-4.html

If you want to share your macro set-up, please add a photo or two, and a little text about individual components.
Please DO NOT post "example" photos taken with camera set-ups. Start a separate thread.

If you have questions about any set-up here, please start an ENTIRELY NEW THREAD. To preserve simplicity of this visual REFERENCE thread, please do not post questions, comments, or discussions in this thread.

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Mar 31, 2012 13:34:41   #
Nikonian72 Loc: Long Beach CA
 
From 2010 through mid 2013, I used a Nikon D5000 camera with a Nikkor 105G macro lens, and a Nikon SB-600 speedlight with a $30 O-Flash 3/4-circle Fresnel prism diffuser attachment. This is a hand-held set-up for shooting insects in the field. The grip bracket is 40-years old, but still available:
http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/product/70990-REG/Kalt_NPLBRACK_L_Flash_Bracket.html
or
http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00092GL1G/ref=pe_163380_29695450_email_1p_0_ti

Folding model no longer available.

I use black elastic "ponytail" bands to keep the O-Flash head snug to my speedlight, and the circle perpendicular to the lens (last photos).




$25 Kalt L Grip Flash Bracket
$25 Kalt L Grip Flash Bracket...
Black elastic bands keep O-Flash snug to speedlight
Black elastic bands keep O-Flash snug to speedligh...
Black elastic bands keep O-Flash perpendicular to lens
Black elastic bands keep O-Flash perpendicular to ...
Silvered mylar added to inside of cardboard seperator adds full stop light output
Silvered mylar added to inside of cardboard sepera...

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Mar 31, 2012 17:35:23   #
ngc1514 Loc: Atlanta, Ga., Lancaster, Oh. and Stuart, Fl.
 
I'll move the equipment images over here as well.

Nikon D300 with 2 different macro flash units. I use a Sigma 105mm macro lens atop a Kirk ball head with Kirk L-plate and Feisol carbon-fiber tripod.

http://ericpix.net/Online/Hog/ring_1.jpg

http://ericpix.net/Online/Hog/ring_2.jpg

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Apr 4, 2012 12:17:30   #
Greg-Colo Loc: Fort Collins,Co
 
Canon SX30IS super zoom with a Raynox 250 attachment.
Raynox DCR-250 Super Macro lens http://raynox.co.jp/english/dcr/dcr250/indexdcr250eg.htm





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Apr 4, 2012 15:48:36   #
ngc1514 Loc: Atlanta, Ga., Lancaster, Oh. and Stuart, Fl.
 
Posted this in another thread, but thought I'd add it here. My rig for photo-microscopy. It's a tethered Nikon D300 mounted on an Amscope compound trinocular microscope with magnifications (visual) from 400-1600x. Once of these days I want to try focus stacking with this rig!

http://ericpix.net/Online/Hog/microscope.jpg

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May 3, 2012 17:44:31   #
Nikkoruser Loc: Fair Oaks Ranch, TX
 
I use a Nikon D700 Camera with a Nikkor 105D lens, sometimes a Nikon SB-900 flash or the pop-up flash with the Nikon SB-R200 close-up flashes, ProMaster auto extension tube set. I mostly shoot handheld in the field. I like my flash system because it is flexible, has target illumination lights for night shooting, colored filters, and varios diffusers. Recently purchased the auto extension tube set because I need all the light I can get to focus manually. Bill
basic setup
basic setup...
popup flash with ir panel
popup flash with ir panel...
flash with extreme closeup adapter
flash with extreme closeup adapter...

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May 4, 2012 10:42:12   #
jdeanb Loc: Texas / central
 
I use a Canon 7D w/ Canon Macro E F 100-mm f/2.8 USM. I hand-hold part of time, but also use tripod with the focus rail. The rail really works good as you can really focus in close. Sure better than moving tripod which is very hard. The rail was about $ 35. It is well made and very steady.
Canon 7D w/ Canon Macro E F 100-mm f/2.8 USM on focusing rail, with O-Flash attached to Canon 580 speedlight
Canon 7D w/ Canon Macro E F 100-mm f/2.8 USM on fo...


Focus rail top view
Focus rail  top view...
Rail side view
Rail side view...

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May 4, 2012 10:57:52   #
rambler Loc: Masssachusetts
 
The tripod adapter on right is attached to bottom of the rail, shown here with bottom side up. Note two large adjustment knobs, the larger of which moves the rail. The smaller knob locks the rail in place, once you choose position where you want rail to be held tight.

When attached to tripod, the rail can move about 6-inches closer or away from subject, so you are focusing with the rail without having to touch the lens, or you can just move the camera closer and then focus as usual. The camera is attached to the rail by one of the two screws you see. The front screw is also in a slot, and second screw is in a fixed position. Just two alternative ways to attach your camera.

As less expensive option:
http://www.dinodirect.com/Aluminium-Alloy-Macro-Focus-Rail-Plate-LP-01.html
Bottom-side of rail
Bottom-side of rail...
rail attached to tripod and in forward most position
rail attached to tripod and in forward most positi...

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May 4, 2012 23:14:51   #
nikonesian Loc: Midwest USA
 
I bought two and put them together, no tools needed. Look Ma, 2 axes!

The rail also works well in putting your pivot point on the focal plane for panos too.
Dual Fotomate Rails Mated
Dual Fotomate Rails Mated...

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May 8, 2012 10:18:24   #
Country's Mama Loc: Michigan
 
Here is the rail set-up I used to shoot my focus-stacked images of the wild cucumber skeleton. I used natural light for that series. The last photo is the same set-up, had I used flash. I did find that Helicon likes consistent lighting, and with the "diffuser", I got just enough variation that the stacking did not turn out well.







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May 9, 2012 09:19:33   #
jdeanb Loc: Texas / central
 
Nikonian72 wrote:
I use a Nikon D5000 camera with a Nikkor 105G macro lens, and a Nikon SB-600 speedlight with a $30 O-Flash 3/4-circle Fresnel prism attachment. This is a hand-held set-up for shooting insects in the field. The grip bracket is 40-years old, but still available: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00092GL1G/ref=sc_pgp__m_A3SPLR0MSOYZ8O_1?ie=UTF8&m=A3SPLR0MSOYZ8O&n=&s=&v=glance
Got one of the Kalt L bracket Now I need another one for the other camera. Don't know how I got by without it as makes holding camera so much easier. Odd thing I saw a review that said it was a flimsy piece of junk. don't know why anyone would say that as is a nice piece of equipment for our boy toys. :thumbup: :lol:

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May 9, 2012 09:30:36   #
tinusbum Loc: east texas
 
jdeanb wrote:
Got one of the Kalt L bracket Now I need another one for the other camera. Don't know how I got by without it as makes holding camera so much easier. Odd thing I saw a review that said it was a flimsy piece of junk. :
i saw that too,that is why i didnt buy it.tom

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May 9, 2012 11:19:38   #
jdeanb Loc: Texas / central
 
tinusbum wrote:
jdeanb wrote:
Got one of the Kalt L bracket Now I need another one for the other camera. Don't know how I got by without it as makes holding camera so much easier. Odd thing I saw a review that said it was a flimsy piece of junk. :
i saw that too,that is why i didnt buy it.tom
They are not flimsy but good quality.

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May 22, 2012 21:25:06   #
Rudolf Loc: Marietta, Georgia
 
I made a homemade diffuser out of recyclable ordinary stuff, a 32 oz. coffee creamer and a large Omega-3 pill containers. Marking on strings to get the different circumferences ( flash & creamer bottle), I transferred each measurement onto each container. It fits snugly onto my Minolta 5600HS flash without straps or adhesive tape. This diffuser operates on about a half of the flash's power using a 50 mm macro lens at F32.



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Jun 4, 2012 16:10:46   #
gym Loc: Athens, Georgia
 
Nikonian72 has asked me to post some photos of my macro setup. It is very simple and very inexpensive (Think pennies!). Sometime ago, I purchased a ring light for this purpose, but the results were mixed. So I followed the lead of others on this forum and chose to explore the use of the internal flash with a milk jug diffuser. I modified mine a bit, but the principle is the same.

Step one: Cut out a strip from a regular plastic milk jug, about 7 inches long and 4 inches high and another strip about 5 inches long and 2 inches high (Photo 1).

Step two: Notch both sides of the larger strip (photo 2) so that the center portion of one side is about a half inch longer. Fold it inward and crease it until it remains bent.

Step three: tape the two pieces together as shown in photo 3.

The reason for the notch is so that the diffuser will stay on the camera when it’s tilted downward. Both Nikon and Canon cameras have a small ‘ledge’ in front of the flash shoe onto which their logos are printed. The ‘notch’ of the diffuser fits beneath this ledge.

Step 4: Open the internal flash and slip the diffuser over it - notch side down on the front side of the camera. Hook the creased edge beneath the ledge and secure the back of the diffuser behind the flash shoe.

I use a Canon 100mm macro lens, often with a monopod, but many feel that the monopod gets in the way.

Now you’re ready to go.
Step 1: Cut two plastic strips as shown
Step 1: Cut two plastic strips as shown...
Step 2: Cut notch in larger strip
Step 2: Cut notch in larger strip...
Step 3; Tape pieces together
Step 3; Tape pieces together...
place diffuser over flash and hook the creased edge beneath the shelf.
place diffuser over flash and hook the creased edg...



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