Saturday, January 12, 2013

Behind the scenes: Sony NEX-7, Sony SEL30M35 macro, Neewer macro ring lights and the $1 photo frame trick

The Neewer macro ring lights come with a set of ring adapters (49mm pictured) that allow you to quickly mount and rotate the lights. The flash shoe mount for the battery pack is useless on NEX cameras that have a non-standard flash shoe.
Ivette found me two of these picture frames for a buck apiece at the Dollar Store.  It is a piece of crap, but it did the trick. and the glass was clear and clean which is all I needed.  
The 49mm adapter ring for the Neewer macro ring lights is now attached to the hood of the Sony SEL30M35 macro lens. I could have screwed it without the hood, but I wanted to use the hood as a spacer. 
Everything in place. Note how the fascia over the lights curves into the ring, which allows you to use the lights flush against objects. 
Not as bright as a flash, of course, but very handy. 
And here it is in action. This is without using the precision digital zoom, note how everything in the frame is in focus (the red lines are the focus peaking feature available on all Sony NEX bodies). 
Because of the size of the lights assembly plus the hood, the lens is perfectly placed so the bill is parallel to the focal plane, which helps mitigate shallow depth of field focusing issues. You can do this with any camera as long as you are not adding undue stress to the camera mount or the front of the lens. Plus of course, as long as the minimum focusing distance makes sense, if not you'll need some kind of spacer. 

More stupid macro tricks

Are you having trouble with thin specimens like paper money, leaves, that kind of thing? Go to the Dollar Store and pick up a photo frame, you should be able to easily find them in 8 x 10. You can now pin your specimen perfectly flat, so no more annoying shallow depth of field issues when shooting macro. I shot these with the Sony SEL30M35 with the Neewer macro ring lights, which lets me use the lights as a stand for the camera and lens and stay perfectly parallel to the sensor plane.

None of these are crops, they are either full-size as-is, or using precision digital zoom. I am actually surprised at the shots of the USPS money order security strip, you can clearly see the strip embedded into the paper.

Full-size, no crop

Precision digital zoom

Precision digital zoom

Precision digital zoom

Security strip on USPS money order, front. Precision digital zoom

Security strip on USPS money order, rear. Precision digital zoom

Friday, January 11, 2013

Thursday, January 3, 2013

More fun with macro

I shot both of these with the Sony SEL30M35. The first shot is a 100% crop of a normal shot. The second shot is using the precision digital zoom.



Tuesday, January 1, 2013

For #treetuesday


Telephoto test


Quick and dirty: handheld zoom test, 100% crop. Sony NEX-7, Sony SEL55210. This was shot through a double pane glass door, the bird houses are about 205 feet away. Not good enough for pixel peeping, but pretty damn usable. 

Singing


One of these things is not like the others,
One of these things just doesn't belong,
Can you tell which thing is not like the others
By the time I finish my song?