Ok so I thought I would go out into the back garden and play around with the extension tubes for a bit. So I happily snapped away for a bit and then retreated within the house to have a look at the results.
Well once imported into lightroom it was apparent that they were quite blurry or rather soft. Why? Well in some cases the speed just was not fast enough, and in others the aperture was to wide. With the extension tubes on (only the 16mm in this case), the depth of field is very narrow so a small aperture is needed, and given that shallow depth of field every tiny hand movement can throw the focus off, therefore a fairly high speed is needed.
Therefore I headed back outside to take the same shots but with the camera set to manual with an f stop between 16-20, and speeds between 1/125 and 1/250, letting an automatic ISO of between 400-3200 compensate for the small aperture high speed combination.
The results – success – below is a shot of the empty seed head of some grass.
Well last week I thought I would buy myself some cheap macro extension tubes from amazon, to get myself that little bit closer.
I have some macro filters, but have used them rarely and with little success. The new extension tubes have pass through contacts, so they record all info to exif, I get to set fstop, and I get autofocus if required. They are plastic, but I don’t aim to treat them that badly, and to buy tubes with metal mounts would have nearly doubled the price.
So how do they perform. The shots below were taken at 26mm, that being the lowest zoom where I could use both tubes, and the shots were performed handheld. The macro shots are not that steady and I will need to use a tripod or be in bright light. I lost between 2-3 stops of light, however this increases with the need to stop the aperture down to gain more depth of field, as this is very narrow with the lens so close to the subject and the aperture open.
So here are two shots without and with the tubes.
So now I have just got to find some time to get out and take some pictures.
well I thought I would take another of the old M42 lenses out for a play today. This time it is a Mayer-Optick 2.8/50 that has been lying around on the front of an old Practica nova 1B that a friend gave me a number of years ago. It was a nice clean lens so I did not have to take it apart to clean the elements, I am not sure I would manage with this one either. The only thing I had to do was disable the auto aperture thus turning it into a manual aperture lens. This was achieved with the usual off-cut from a cotton bud and a lot of fiddling with a pair of tweezers.
Well I nipped out into the garden and took a couple pictures, I have posted two below for your delectation, its not the sharpest of lenses, but I really like the colour that this lens captures. It is a 50mm lens therefore on the a6000 it is the equivalent of a 75mm, so I am looking forward to a portrait or two with this to see how much it warms skin tones up. The photos below where taken with in one case the aperture fully open at f2.8, and in the other fully stopped down at f22. Perhaps a walk around the town with this is called for.
Well I thought I would get one of my old M42 lenses out and give it a bit of a try. It is a Helios 44M-4 2/58 which has sat on the front of my trusty old Zenit 11 since about 1985.
It was a bit dusty so I disassembled it, and
gave the lenses a good clean, and disabled the auto aperture so I could set it manually. This was not as scary as it sounds, though in the heat we have had recently I did sweat a little.
So once the 44M had had a good overhaul, I strapped the adapter on to the a6000 and headed outside to take a few snaps.
So here they are in lieu of this weeks picture of the week, I have to say I love the speed of this lens on this camera. Below is a close crop of one of the caterpillars in “Two” just to give you an idea of how nice this cheap Russian lens is.
So what else have I bought since getting the camera?
Well I had a couple of old M42 lenses knocking about so an M42 to nex body adapter was a must. Of course I might end up buying a few more M42 lenses as well as they tend to be dirt cheap on ebay. And I am not afraid of manual focusing.
I have a few filters with 58mm threads that I used on the HS20 so I got a couple of step up rings so I could use them on the A6000 lenses.
I realised that I would probably lose the lens caps from the SELP1650 and the SEL55210, I actually had dropped one one the floor and had to go back and look for it within the first few days. So I purchased this nifty device. You attach it to your camera strap and the Caps just clip in like they would on the front of the lens.
The SELP1650 does not come with a lens hood so I got a 40.5mm threaded hood. There is a bit of Vignetting between 16mm – 18mm but that may be due to the added depth of the UV filters I also purchased for the lenses.
Finally an e mount end cap and body cap, as the a6000 and SELP1650 package deal do not include them, the SEL55210 did as it was not part of the package. Also a couple of end caps and lens caps for the M42 lenses I own.
So I better quit writing and go and take some photos.