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Thread: Macro Lense options for A7R

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Macro Lense options for A7R

    Hi Folks,

    I strongly consider to get the A7R, and I found an interest in doing some marco work for printing big.

    Any opinions on what the best of breed bacro for the A7R would be?

    On another thought, I would be interested to hear from people with experience in that field what they think of doing macros with software only using a non macro lense. I can not really tell what the advantage would be to use a dedicated lens compared to focus stacking.

    Thanks

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Keep in mind that with the vibration problem due to the shutter, I would figure on only using the A7r for flash based macro work. It was Stefan Steib who brought that solution to my attention, his adaptor with tilt and shift might be a great solution for still life macro work to help with both DOF and resolution maximisation.
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I'm waiting on a native FE Macro lens myself and hoping it'll do 1:1. So have I've considered the A-mount macro lenses and Contax/ Yashica. I haven't pulled the trigger yet though.
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    Senior Member f/otographer's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    Any opinions on what the best of breed bacro for the A7R would be?

    On another thought, I would be interested to hear from people with experience in that field what they think of doing macros with software only using a non macro lense. I can not really tell what the advantage would be to use a dedicated lens compared to focus stacking.
    Hi Georg

    Any old manual focus macro lens from any of the major players will work just fine. Minolta, Contax/Yashica, Olympus, Nikon, Canon, etc. The thing about macro is that you really dont need Auto Focus at all so those old lenses work just fine. You may view my Small World macro folder on flickr here.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/8539414...7626866276690/

    All photos there were either with a NEX 7 or A7 using some type of old lens, some not even macro. Many times I use a favored 50mm (Yashica ML 50/1.7 or a Minolta 50mm) with either an extension tube or just a Minolta Close Up Lens No.2. Or sometimes a combination of all of them. Thats the great thing about macro, you can play around with many different techniques to see what results they yield.

    You can see that I dont shoot at crazy magnifications, usually around 1:1 or a little less. All my shots are handheld with no flash and I find that anything more then 1:1 really requires a tripod and some type of lighting. For me that is way to much to lug around. I prefer just my camera and a couple of lenses so I am free to follow the bugs.

    As to focus stacking I dont use it myself. But I have seen some wonderful results with it. My personal belief is to simply capture the image as you find it and do as little digital trickery as possible. Seems focus stacking is really moving away from pure photography and into the realm of digital computer imaging. But then I use color toning on my photos all the time and that is pretty much digital imaging as well huh? People in glass houses....

    @HiredArm- I can definitely recommend C/Y glass. The Yashica macros are excellent lenses. They made two different 50mm ML Macros, a 2.8 and a 4. I own the 4 and it is a sweet little Tessar lens. Only downside is a 5 bladed aperture, but that is no biggie. The newer, faster f/2.8 is an amazing lens also. You cant go wrong with either one. I have no experience with the 100mm Yashica Macro, or the Zeiss Makro Planars, but they are supposedly superb lenses as well.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    You would need the LA-4 adapter, but I find the Sigma 70mm macro in A mount to be outstanding. Reputedly the sharpest lens Sigma makes, at least before the Art lenses.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Lot's to consider. Thanks Gentlemen.

    @f/otographer,

    "the dark queen", you chose to spice up with Lord Byron, that's quite something!

    One can see the deeper irony, when considering that "The Glaour" was written 1812, and just a few days ago in Pakistan a pregnant woman was stoned to death by her own family, because she chose "the wrong" partner.

    In Switzerland the right to vote was introduced for women officially in 1971. Yes, that late!

    But wait, in reality it should take another 20 years until the last Kanton ratified it in 1990, worth noting here, against a majority decision of men that was of course.

    So to me, "The Dark Queen" is a mindset and attitude, a story of oppression, based on myths and fear and very much so kept alive by the latter, mixed with the unevitable body language of arrogance.

    See? Thoughtprovoking picture!

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I have strong desire towards the Zeiss Makro-Planar T* 100mm f/2 hooked up via novoflex adapter.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by f/otographer View Post
    Hi Georg

    Any old manual focus macro lens from any of the major players will work just fine. Minolta, Contax/Yashica, Olympus, Nikon, Canon, etc. The thing about macro is that you really dont need Auto Focus at all so those old lenses work just fine. You may view my Small World macro folder on flickr here.

    http://www.flickr.com/photos/8539414...7626866276690/

    All photos there were either with a NEX 7 or A7 using some type of old lens, some not even macro. Many times I use a favored 50mm (Yashica ML 50/1.7 or a Minolta 50mm) with either an extension tube or just a Minolta Close Up Lens No.2. Or sometimes a combination of all of them. Thats the great thing about macro, you can play around with many different techniques to see what results they yield.

    You can see that I dont shoot at crazy magnifications, usually around 1:1 or a little less. All my shots are handheld with no flash and I find that anything more then 1:1 really requires a tripod and some type of lighting. For me that is way to much to lug around. I prefer just my camera and a couple of lenses so I am free to follow the bugs.

    As to focus stacking I dont use it myself. But I have seen some wonderful results with it. My personal belief is to simply capture the image as you find it and do as little digital trickery as possible. Seems focus stacking is really moving away from pure photography and into the realm of digital computer imaging. But then I use color toning on my photos all the time and that is pretty much digital imaging as well huh? People in glass houses....

    @HiredArm- I can definitely recommend C/Y glass. The Yashica macros are excellent lenses. They made two different 50mm ML Macros, a 2.8 and a 4. I own the 4 and it is a sweet little Tessar lens. Only downside is a 5 bladed aperture, but that is no biggie. The newer, faster f/2.8 is an amazing lens also. You cant go wrong with either one. I have no experience with the 100mm Yashica Macro, or the Zeiss Makro Planars, but they are supposedly superb lenses as well.
    Contax Yashicas are great provided you like the Zeiss look. I happen to love it. I have the 85/1.4, 100/2, 135/2.8, and the 180/2.8. I use them mostly as portrait lenses but 60 or 100 macro has been something I've watched on eBay from time to time. I may just go the extension tube route though if a macro lens isn't announced by Photokina.
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    I have strong desire towards the Zeiss Makro-Planar T* 100mm f/2 hooked up via novoflex adapter.

    I have it. Great lens for macro or general work.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Fallon View Post
    I have it. Great lens for macro or general work.
    So they say. Wanna share a few pictures perhaps?

    How do you find CA at lower apertures on the A7R? I am a bit worried buying it as used. May be not so if I knew who it was, but this is a manual focus lens where precision is crucial. So a spanking new one might be the better road.

    Also advice on buying used lenses

    Buying second hand lenses with Karl Taylor - YouTube
    Last edited by Georg Baumann; 5th June 2014 at 22:13.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I use Micro-Nikkor 55mm f/3.5 Pre-AI and Micro-Nikkor 105mm f/2.8 AI-S with the A7. I always use a tripod or camera stand when doing macro, have had no problems with shutter vibration with EFCS or without. Minimal CA with either, both very sharp edge to edge.

    I've considered a Leica Macro-Elmarit-R 60mm f/2.8, everyone raves about how good a lens it is. And the 100mm version, either f/4 or f/2.8 models, as well. Both are reasonably priced. But I'm happy with the Nikkors at present.

    G
    Last edited by Godfrey; 6th June 2014 at 10:27.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Someone is selling the Leica R Macro-Elmar 100mm F4 in bellows on Los Angeles CL, looks very cool. I am using the LR 100mm f/2.8 ROM version, like it very much. If anyone know the model number of the 1:1 adapter for the ROM version, please let me know.

    ** http://losangeles.craigslist.org/sfv...483959573.html


    Leica R Macro-Elmar 100mm F4 in bellows

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    "the dark queen", you chose to spice up with Lord Byron, that's quite something!

    One can see the deeper irony, when considering that "The Glaour" was written 1812, and just a few days ago in Pakistan a pregnant woman was stoned to death by her own family, because she chose "the wrong" partner.

    In Switzerland the right to vote was introduced for women officially in 1971. Yes, that late!

    But wait, in reality it should take another 20 years until the last Kanton ratified it in 1990, worth noting here, against a majority decision of men that was of course.

    So to me, "The Dark Queen" is a mindset and attitude, a story of oppression, based on myths and fear and very much so kept alive by the latter, mixed with the unevitable body language of arrogance.

    See? Thoughtprovoking picture!
    Georg, I am immanently pleased that Dark Queen was able to evoke such response from you. A powerful aspect of photography (and one that a knowing photographer must embrace) is that once an image is created it transcends any original intent or meaning that he or she may have had in creating it. It becomes then a thing outside of its creative intent, rather mercilessly at the hands of the viewer. How a photographic work of art will be interpreted by the masses is a complete unknown. As shooters and artists we of course have a vision, an original idea, and I am sure we all strive to bring this to fruition. But at the end of the day once it is finished a good photo will become a million things we never dreamed of.

    It is at this point that I myself tend to stop worrying about it. I have always held the belief that I shoot for myself and me alone. I strive to create a work of art that is pleasing to me and that, if I am completely honest with myself, seeks to mimic the world of the painted picture that I unfortunately do not have the skill to create with brush and canvas.

    But having said this there is also that deep down, dark little feeling that yes, indeed do I want my work to be received favorably. Not fawned over with the platitudes often seen on forums like "Oh, nice shot!" or "Thats very nicely done". But rather to invoke a deep, humanistic feeling in another individual that in some way speaks to them through a completely unintentional (on my part) connection with their past experiences. For example I never would have connected the Dark Queen with feminist oppression. But I am delighted that you did.

    I have often said that the final purpose of photography is to create a photographic that is capable of moving the human soul. Your thought provoking response upon seeing it, and that you took the time to explain it as you did, lets me know that I am at least upon the right road.

    Or in short....thanks, I'm very glad you like it.
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Macros - I prefer the look of the two great Leica R lenses, the 60/2.8 and the amazing Leica APO-Macro-Elmarit-R 100/2.8.

    Speaking of Queens, the female chess piece did very well out of Christianity, quite an interesting story in the game's long development.

    Yes, f/otographer, I often reflect that 'art chooses the artist' - an intimate relationship - if other people like your output, it's a bonus, something secondary. The artist also sees her/his work very differently to the audience; Wim Wenders made Wings of Desire to finance another and eventually lesser movie.
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I recently sold a Voigtlander 125/2.5 in A-mount. An outstanding macro lens with veritably no CA.

    Luckily, I still have the same lens in PK mount, which has the aperture ring....the A-mount did not.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by f/otographer View Post
    Your thought provoking response upon seeing it, and that you took the time to explain it as you did, lets me know that I am at least upon the right road.

    Or in short....thanks, I'm very glad you like it.
    Of course you are. From my own thoughts on photography...

    I often think, there are necessary pictures, and there are pictures not necessary. For example, I shot mostly landscapes for a few years. These I consider pictures unnecessary.

    Now, to extremley enhance the contrast here, pictures necessary are those by Tom Stoddart et al.

    We live in times of the biggest societal change perhaps since the roman empire, and it is slowly turning into a new reality. The outcome of this is very very uncertain. The effects however, are clearly to be seen for everyone with a brain worth a cup of tea. Years ago I had a chance to speak with Stuart Franklin about all that, and in a way, he was instrumental in a decision I took. Back then I was sitting on the egde, on the one side I was pulled towards going to war zones, on the other I was pulled to just stay put and continue unnecessary pictures. I did the latter, and never went to places like Syria etc.

    I would love to make a book of pictures from the shadow tryans of our century, people like Jamie Dimon, Lloyd Blankfein, Mario Draghi and many more. Of course I will never be able to shoot that, and I do not know if such a book perhaps already exists, showing those responsible for the "financial fracking" that will change the world forever, in the format of a coffee table book.

    Thanks.
    Georg
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by socal View Post
    Someone is selling the Leica R Macro-Elmar 100mm F4 in bellows on Los Angeles CL, looks very cool. I am using the LR 100mm f/2.8 ROM version, like it very much. If anyone know the model number of the 1:1 adapter for the ROM version, please let me know..........
    There are two components to the 1:1 adapter together with a front and rear cap. The "ELPRO 1:2-1:1 FOR R 2.8/100" is part number 16545. It's associated screw on hood/storage ring is part number 12528. Normally these are sold together but not always - so beware. The 12528 ring screws onto the front of the Elpro as a hood and onto the Elpro rear as protection for storage. The front lens cap for the Elpro is a standard E60 part number 14290. I don't know the number for the special rear cap that screws onto the 1258 ring - it's missing from my set up and I've not been able to locate one. All these components should be included in the Elpro kit.

    Here's a link to a picture of the 4 components:

    http://ebay.mkkcamera.com/product/photos/75075/07.jpg


    Bob
    Last edited by Bob Parsons; 7th June 2014 at 02:11. Reason: Added picture link

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    f/otographer:

    enjoyed looking through your macro work. deeper comments .. ah, that takes time, but there's enough depth to surface them in your photos. onwards!

    G
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Parsons View Post
    There are two components to the 1:1 adapter together with a front and rear cap. The "ELPRO 1:2-1:1 FOR R 2.8/100" is part number 16545. It's associated screw on hood/storage ring is part number 12528. Normally these are sold together but not always - so beware. The 12528 ring screws onto the front of the Elpro as a hood and onto the Elpro rear as protection for storage. The front lens cap for the Elpro is a standard E60 part number 14290. I don't know the number for the special rear cap that screws onto the 1258 ring - it's missing from my set up and I've not been able to locate one. All these components should be included in the Elpro kit.

    Here's a link to a picture of the 4 components:

    http://ebay.mkkcamera.com/product/photos/75075/07.jpg


    Bob
    Thanks Bob, I will start to look for these soon.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    One more vote for the Leica R Elmarit 60. Not only does it produce stellar pictures close up (1:2 without the Leica tube, 1:1 with the tube), but it also is a very good lens indeed all the way to infinity, which makes it a very useful addition to one's bag.
    Rendering does not prioritize visible sharpness, the way a Zeiss Makro would, but detail and colours, both areas in which it is outstanding. This doesn't mean that it isn't sharp, whih it is, but that the slightly warm rendering leans towards "elegant" more than towards the colder "scientific"
    Negatives: it is on the heavy side, being an all-metal design.
    Lastly, it is an easy lens to find, and even good copies are relatively inexpensive (<500€)

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I use a Canon FD 50mm f/3.5 with 1: adapter. Cost $75, very sharp

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Another vote for the Leica APO-Macro-Elmarit-R 100/2.8.
    I don't own it, but I've seen amazing shots done with it.
    I found an image from forum member Werner Utsch which is for me one of the sharpest images I've ever seen: https://www.flickr.com/photos/w-utsc...n/photostream/. Not a macro photo, but it shows what this lens can deliver.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Yeah, I guess the R100 and the Macroplanar are both the best of breed here, while the Zeiss is still produced, the Leica is not, and some of the Leica Adapters are hard to come by. I never bought a used lense before and I would be reluctant to do so in deed, except perhaps I know from where it comes.

    Thanks all for opinions.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    This thread has pushed me over the edge as far as trying the R-60 Macro Elmarit. Got the lens, just waiting for a Metabones adapter. Hope I can get on with the combination.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I had it years ago and it is extremely good even at infinity. Im thinking about it myself. LOL
    Photography is all about experimentation and without it you will never learn art.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    Yeah, I guess the R100 and the Macroplanar are both the best of breed here, while the Zeiss is still produced, the Leica is not, and some of the Leica Adapters are hard to come by. I never bought a used lense before and I would be reluctant to do so in deed, except perhaps I know from where it comes.

    Thanks all for opinions.
    I like buying lenses new, but in all honesty I have only rarely purchased new Leica lenses due to the prices they get for them. One joy of the A7 for me is that I can buy used Leica R lenses at fantabulously low prices ... The ten Leica R lens kit I've assembled, if purchased in new lenses in the late 1990s, would have cost me well over $30,000, with more valuable $ than today. As it is, what I've acquired cost me (well) under $5000, all in premium condition. That's about on par with a single new Summilux-M 50mm.

    But it's all really an aside. If you want to buy new, the Zeiss is the only game in town for a lens of this calibre. And it's a darn fine lens.

    G
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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Thanks Godfrey, good points.

    I also figured that there are some professional dealers that sell used glass, which might be a little safer option than buying from private.

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    Subscriber Member Georg Baumann's Avatar
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Someone tell Werner to stop posting pics from the APO R100.... pretty please!

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    ..olympus om 90/f2 macro..the best i ever owned..

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    ..olympus om 90/f2 macro..the best i ever owned..:-)..

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    ..sorry for the double post..tried to delete one of them but if deleting one of them, BOTH get deleted..:-)..

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Georg Baumann View Post
    Thanks Godfrey, good points.

    I also figured that there are some professional dealers that sell used glass, which might be a little safer option than buying from private.
    I've never had problems buying new or used from Tamarkin.com. Dan and his crew are good folks to work with. Tamarkin.com has both new and used gear on hand.

    G

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Received the 60/2.8 Macro-Elmarit R and a Metabones adapter. Not entirely impressed by the adapter - nicely made no doubt about it - but mounting the lens it feel very tight. Not like my Novoflex adapter for M lenses.

    I've hankered after a 60/2.8 Macro during the years and it is great to have a camera system that can justify owning one. Not sure of the results, though. Both tripod mounted on Sony A7.

    f3.5


    f16


    For comparison's sake here are two taken with my Sigma DP3M - which I class as being the best macro lens I have ever had - however (as you may know) ergonomics and usability leave a lot to be desired over the Sony A7.

    f3.5


    f16
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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Difference in DoF between the A7 and APS-C clearly visible there! :-)

    I use the Novoflex NEX/LER adapter. I tried a couple of Metabones and returned them - poor quality control. Most of my lenses would not work on them while all of my lenses work perfectly on the Novoflex.

    G

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by biglouis View Post
    Received the 60/2.8 Macro-Elmarit R and a Metabones adapter. Not entirely impressed by the adapter - nicely made no doubt about it - but mounting the lens it feel very tight. Not like my Novoflex adapter for M lenses.......................
    Louis, I found my Metabones Leica R-E mount adapter very tight and had to disassemble it and adjust (slightly flatten the spring angle) the leaf springs. That was unlike my other Metabones EF-E adapter which was impossibly tight. It was a little better after spring adjustment but still tight and tended to bind. I discovered with the leaf springs removed it was still tight. The problem was due to the back edge of the adapter bayonet ring fouling the rear lips on the lens mount. I solved the problem by removing a few microns from the rear of the adapter lens bayonet ring (removed plating down to the brass). Considering the cost of these adapters I'm rather disappointed with their mechanical tolerances.

    If you do disassemble your adapter for any reason, make sure when you undo the screws with the supplied hex key that the key is seated into the screw heads with firm pressure. The key material is rather soft and easily damaged.

    Bob.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Quote Originally Posted by Godfrey View Post
    Difference in DoF between the A7 and APS-C clearly visible there! :-)

    I use the Novoflex NEX/LER adapter. I tried a couple of Metabones and returned them - poor quality control. Most of my lenses would not work on them while all of my lenses work perfectly on the Novoflex.

    G
    Ahhhh! Had not thought of that, thanks.

    I thought Metabones had a good reputation hence I purchased it. Next time I will definitely check out Novoflex first.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bob Parsons View Post
    Louis, I found my Metabones Leica R-E mount adapter very tight and had to disassemble it and adjust (slightly flatten the spring angle) the leaf springs. That was unlike my other Metabones EF-E adapter which was impossibly tight. It was a little better after spring adjustment but still tight and tended to bind. I discovered with the leaf springs removed it was still tight. The problem was due to the back edge of the adapter bayonet ring fouling the rear lips on the lens mount. I solved the problem by removing a few microns from the rear of the adapter lens bayonet ring (removed plating down to the brass). Considering the cost of these adapters I'm rather disappointed with their mechanical tolerances.

    If you do disassemble your adapter for any reason, make sure when you undo the screws with the supplied hex key that the key is seated into the screw heads with firm pressure. The key material is rather soft and easily damaged.

    Bob.
    Useful tip. I will have a go when I have a spare hour or so! Thanks for the information.

    LouisB

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    What about the Zuiko OM 50mm f3.5, or Canon FD 50 f3.5?

    I've tested the former and it is superb. The latter, if it is remotely like the 50mm f1.4 in terms of general competency, will be breathtaking.

    I did a write up on the 50mm OM on my blog and I can't say I will be looking for another macro lens as this one is a useful all rounder (stopped down) and great up close. I might try the Canon out of curiosity though, as the 50mm f1.4 really did astonish me.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    I'm late to this thread but I wouldn't consider anything other than the Zeiss 100. Its not only superb at close focus but also at infinity. I use it a lot for landscape/cityscape. I share your reluctance for buying used and would only do so if there was a no questions asked return policy.

    Victor

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    Victor, the Zeiss 100 is superb, but it is also very large, especially on the little Sony. If you're aiming for a very small kit and light weight, the OM is a cracker, although I am sure it does not quite reach the performance of the Zeiss.

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    And how do you compare to other Macro lenses such as Canon/Nikon/Sigma?

    Is it only about optical quality? What about other performance things such as weight, image stabilization, extensions,...etc?
    Tareq

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    Re: Macro Lense options for A7R

    From my experience, the Sigma 70mm f2.8 Macro beats the Zuiko OM 50mm f3.5 at the wider apertures, but is no different really once stopped down. Its also three times larger yet not as big as some macro lenses.

    The 70mm Sigma is a truly brilliant optic.

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