Extreme macro

Gepubliceerd op 9 december 2023 om 19:12

When you want to photograph close-ups of insects, you need a very large magnification factor. When this factor is larger than 2, people talk about extreme macro, although different people use different definitions.


A close-up of the head of a bug, using a magnification factor of 6.

Today I tried some extreme macro with one of the insects I bought. I wanted to do a close-up of the head of a bug. To get the largest magnification possible, I used a 400 mm telephoto lens together with the Raynox DCR-250 close-up lens. I also added my 31 mm of extension tubes. The magnification factor was 3.75 on a full-frame camera. Because I am using an APS-C camera I get an extra factor of 1.6, so the effective magnification was 6. Clearly extreme macro.  I used a bit of digital crop, but the resulting image still has a resolution of 16 MP. The width of the area shown in the image is 4 mm. I did not want to use focus stacking for this shot. So I had to use a very narrow aperture of F/32. Using an APS-C camera also helped to still get a reasonable depth of field.

It took a lot of work to get to this shot. It is so difficult to get the insect in the frame, to get the correct lighting, and to (manually) focus at the correct spot, especially because I did not have the best equipment to fix the camera and insect. You clearly need a (motorized) focus rail and a special stand for shots like this.

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