Macro smackro

For some  time I’ve been experimenting a bit with macro photography as you might have seen on my flickr page ( A technique I’ve read about earlier is about actually reversing the lens of the camera – that is, put the lens’ front end towards the camera with its butt pointing at the subject. Today I tried it out a bit, and I’m amazed how huge magnifications I get.

Here’s a couple of samples. The blurring is due to me not being able to hold the front lens steady, and the redicilous narrow depth of field – it’s hard when working on this scale. The items may also be slightly out of focus because, again, it’s hard to hold things steady at this scale.

This is actually one of the millimeter marks of a ruler. The whole picture spans about 2 millimeters. Given that the sensor size is about 21mm in width gives a magnification of over 10:1.

And let me present to you a grain of salt. The picture is not cropped (just scaled down). You can also see the reflection from the surface.

I realize the sharpness isn’t all good. This is due to the fact that I manually had to hold the lens in front of the camera while taking the picture… and, because I had to do that, I couldn’t use a smaller aparture (and thus I get a ridicilous narrow depth of field). However, I’ve now ordered reverse lens adapters from ebay (for 35 NOK each, around 5-6 USD). I’ll be sure to get back with some more goodies when I get those parts. 😉

PS: Just in case you’re interested, the equipment used is:

  • Canon EOS 450D DSLR
  • Canon 55-250mm lens attached to the camera (Fully extended to 250mm of course)
  • Canon 18-55mm kit lens at 18mm reversed and handheld in front of the 55-250mm.

This should give a theoretical magnification of 250/18 = approx. 13.9X. That is, something 1 millimeter in size in real life should be imaged as about 13.9mm on the image sensor (which is a little over half the sensor width of my camera).

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