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Topic # 89959 12-Sep-2011 17:14
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A friend is looking at setting up to photograph their jewelery themselves, just for web at this stage but may be fore a printed catalog as well sometime in the future.

Need to get a DSLR that can do a full frame of a small finding or clasp etc, not sure if that would fit in the realm of macro or be supermacro.

Anyway, like to stick with canon since thats what everyone uses, but its the lens etc that I have no clue on.

Needs to be bought in NZ so parallel imported is probably the best bet.





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  Reply # 520086 12-Sep-2011 17:22
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richms:  like to stick with canon since thats what everyone uses...
I think you'll find that not everyone uses Canon ;) I know Timmay and I are Nikon only... He's a pro, and i'm trying to be...

Anywho, Canon do a nice macro lens with serious magnification. The Canon MP-E 65mm 1-5x Macro Lens. Look it up. If you want to shoot macro, that's the one to get for ease of setup. 

Also a lightbox/light tent will be needed, plus some black/coloured card, a couple of flashes that can run off of the camera. Maybe a snoot or a diffuser or two depending on the size of the objects. The options are as endless as the creativity of the photographer.

 

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  Reply # 520089 12-Sep-2011 17:24
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I'd get a DSLR, especially if he wants to go to print later. Plus some sort of macro lens (maybe 100mm-ish if he's doing small things?), plus tripod, plus light tent, plus lights.

"Anyway, like to stick with canon since thats what everyone uses" - funny!! Doesn't he get out much?

BTW  - jewellery.

 
 
 
 


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  Reply # 520094 12-Sep-2011 17:40
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Chainsaw: I'd get a DSLR, especially if he wants to go to print later. Plus some sort of macro lens (maybe 100mm-ish if he's doing small things?), plus tripod, plus light tent, plus lights.

"Anyway, like to stick with canon since thats what everyone uses" - funny!! Doesn't he get out much?

BTW  - jewellery.


Yeah, we definatly need to go DSLR - trying with a compact has been hopeless unless its way back and then crop the hell out of it and then its about 200px wide so no good for anymore than a thumbnail.

No spellcheck on firefox here yet ;) Lost my profile when I tried to sort out a cookie problem and have to reinstall the NZ english addon.

Have a light tent and 2 grunty CFLs off trademe (or might have been ebay) that seem to do the trick for larger things, but I really will have to sort out how to get things looking better sometime. I took photography as an elective at tech but it ended up being quite a waste of time for product photography and was more about the storytelling aspect so I just did barely enough to scrape thru ;)

It's either get the stuff to do it (and me get some work doing it too hopefully) or pay someone else to do them, so the less that it comes in at the better. Not sure I am keen on getting a lens that is soley a macro lens, if it means not being able to use it for other stuff. Have to get the cost down so that it will get bought vs just sending trays of things off to get photographed by the guy that prints the current catalogs.

No real need to only be canon, its just thats what shes seen the pro use so was thinking of getting the same.




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  Reply # 520101 12-Sep-2011 18:05
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I would reccomend something like a 100mm macro from canon. Maybe a couple of flashes could help and some sort of backgrounds (cardboard). 

I certainly prefer canon but not sure about it being used by everybody.  

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  Reply # 520142 12-Sep-2011 20:04
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A really good P&S that can trigger studio strobes isn't actually a crazy idea. P&S camera have really wide depth of field (everything in focus), which you usually want for this type of photography. The key is syncing with studio strobes and using a light tent or similar. Still, P&S image quality even at ISO100 isn't great.

Nikon vs Canon, let's not go there, but I sold all my Canon gear and switched to Nikon about a year ago, at considerable expense, and i'm dead happy with it. For this type of photography either will be fine.

Either way, you'll need a decent camera, a macro lens, a tripod, a light tend, and a couple of small studio strobes. Constant lights are ok, but you'll end up having to use a tripod and longer exposures - but that's no problem for still photography. Light quality is better with strobes though too. A micro 4/3 camera system is probably ideal, the sensor's big enough for good quality but small enough to get lots of depth of field. You want a shorter macro lens rather than longer, 50mm (give or take 20mm) should be fine.

100mm gives you virtually no dof even at F22 on a crop sensor, I had the Canon 100 on a 7D until a year ago. 50mm on a 4/3 sensor would be good.




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  Reply # 520192 12-Sep-2011 21:35
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The big issue I have found with the P&S's larger DOF is that the reflections off things are too clear, and I cant open it wide up to try to reduce it as its just an auto everything type camera with a boat load of "scenes" that really say nothing about what they do. Oh and some smile detection too. Yay.

Im picking up a friends stonage EOS tomorrow to try with whatever its got on it, there is a camera stand too and a little acrylic lightbox that I can use too and see how it goes.




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  Reply # 520198 12-Sep-2011 21:46
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Opening up the aperture wide enough to blur out reflections means you probably won't have enough DOF to get everything you want in focus.

The light tent (not a soft box) gets around that problem mostly, except for the reflection of the camera/lens/photographer. The trick is to put for more light onto the object than the camera/lens/photographer.

I suspect the limiting factor will be equally your knowledge/experience and your equipment. Someone with a lot of knowledge can work around lack of equipment, and someone with good equipment can probably get a decent enough shot without knowing much. Do some reading on product and jewellery photography, it should help.




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  Reply # 520210 12-Sep-2011 21:56
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Yeah, but the first lot are not that critical but I will have to be up to speed on doing decent ones later on if getting employed there works out.




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  Reply # 520216 12-Sep-2011 22:07
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A light tent is the critical part of the setup. Get that, position the lights for even lighting, get a macro lens and put the camera on a tripod, it'd be hard to do much too wrong. Post a pic if you want suggestions, and if you do post a pull back shot showing your setup too.




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  Reply # 520231 12-Sep-2011 22:38
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Have a look at the Strobist DIY article on making a macro photo studio: http://strobist.blogspot.com/2006/07/how-to-diy-10-macro-photo-studio.html

The rest of Strobust is a goldmine of information in setting up lighting situations.

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  Reply # 520353 13-Sep-2011 11:06
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Best macro lens? Possibly the Tamron SP90 f2.8 Macro. It's available with either a Canon, Nikon, or Sony mount. Parallel imports can be bought on Trade Me for $600... which is extremely good value. I've owned my one since 1997. 

As for a camera, don't overlook the Sony a580. The "Manual Focus Live View" enables pin-point focus for 1:1 macro shots.

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  Reply # 520355 13-Sep-2011 11:22
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After numerous problems with off brand lenses (Tamron, Sigma) I now use only OEM lenses - ie Nikon lenses with Nikon cameras and Canon lenses with Canon cameras. The photography I do is very fast paced often with very narrow DOF, so it's quite demanding.

Having said that, all macro lenses are pretty sharp, so for static subjects using a tripod and manual focus (which you need to do with macro photos) the tamron would be fine.




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  Reply # 520362 13-Sep-2011 11:44
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Dynamike: Best macro lens? Possibly the Tamron SP90 f2.8 Macro. It's available with either a Canon, Nikon, or Sony mount. Parallel imports can be bought on Trade Me for $600... which is extremely good value. I've owned my one since 1997. 

As for a camera, don't overlook the Sony a580. The "Manual Focus Live View" enables pin-point focus for 1:1 macro shots.


You can get the Tamron lens from Smifu (a Chch based importer) for $532.77 http://www.smifu.com/camera-lenses/macros/tamron-sp-90-di-canon.html

They don't list the Canon MP-E lens but they will be able to get this too.

Another option for the OP is a 50mm lens with duct tape.  You tape the lens on backwards and it works as a macro lens!

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  Reply # 520452 13-Sep-2011 13:39
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And don't worry that it's a "macro" lens, it can take photos of other stuff too! It's just like a normal lens, just that it focuses close and is sharp.

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Reply # 520729 13-Sep-2011 23:47
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I am currently using Nikon D200 which is awsome. But its LCD is not that great. I can't see the photo properly through LCD right after shooting and it is not a full-frame DSLR. My next will be Canon 5D Mark III. It will be released by the end of year hopefully. It s a sort of all in one camera. It has a full frame sensor and a full HD video recording function. If you have checked Vimeo, you would find that many great stuffs made by Canon 5D Mark II...cant wait to see 5D mark III...Smile 

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