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  #1  
Old 01/07/2008, 10:44 PM
btkrausen btkrausen is offline
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Looking for help with Macro Shots

I am using a D40 with a Sigma Lens APO 150mm f/2.8 Macro EX DG HSM.

The biggest problem I am having is that most of my macro shots seem to focus on one tiny area, while the rest of the pic is blurry. How do I take good macro shots where I can have more of the picture focused. I didn't use a tripod for this pic.



See how its just focused on the front row but the rest looks blurry? Any advice?

Thanks in advance.
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  #2  
Old 01/07/2008, 11:22 PM
hybridgenius hybridgenius is offline
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Set your aperture F/# higher. That looks like its shot at f/2.8 with ISO around 200-400(I can see a little noise). If you want more DOF(depth of field) then just raise the aperture setting to about f/8-16, but once you go pass 9 it might get a bit shakey and blurry... well for me anyhow lol. Have fun and keep practicing.
  #3  
Old 01/07/2008, 11:24 PM
mikez104 mikez104 is offline
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I looked at the exif on that picture and the lens aperture was wide open at f/2.8. That will give you the most shallow depth of field possible. You have to close up the aperture some (higher f stop) to have more of the picture in focus. Since you are doing macro shots this problem is magnified.

Use aperture priority mode and try something like f8 or a little more. This will let less light through you lens so you will need a slower shutter speed.

Look here and you can get the idea of what happens as you close the aperture. The smaller the aperture (higher f stop number) the more of your picture will be in focus bu the less light through the lens so you have to compensate with slower shutter or higher iso.
http://www.cs.mtu.edu/~shene/DigiCam...-of-field.html
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  #4  
Old 01/08/2008, 12:54 AM
maroun.c maroun.c is offline
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looking also at your Exif yo uare shooting at 2.8 1/125
If you follow the advice given above in using smaller aperture (bigger number) that will achieve greater DOf but it will come at the expense of speed. so going to F8 will bring your speed down to around 1/30. this will result in motion blurr as you are using a 150 mm handheld. To be able to handhold you have shoot at a speed equal to the invers of your focal length so 1/150. you will still get some good shots if yo uhave steady hands at 1/125 or 1/100 however to go to 1/30 even with a surgeons hands you will get blurr. try increasing your ISO to see how fast your shutter is and if that still gives as you are still shotting at ISO 200. to much ISO increase (above 800-1000 usually) will result in noise depending on how good each camera handles noise at high iso.
bottom line you will need a sturdy tripod to get good pictures at this focal length and speed.
you could try holding the lens against the glass to stabilize it however with a 150 mm lens I guess the closest focusing point will through you back away from the glass.
Also try shooting perpendicular to the glass that will minimize the distortions and give you a better image yet.
  #5  
Old 01/08/2008, 02:33 AM
surfnvb7 surfnvb7 is offline
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as others have said.......you need to shoot in an aperture priority or manual mode, and adjust your f/stop to around f/9. you WILL need a tripod to do this, especially with a Nikon.......b/c if you try to increase your ISO above 200, your pictures will start to look very grainy/noisy w/ a D40. so shooting hand held in your situation is not very ideal unless you have a TON of light to keep the shutter speed fast enough to minimize blurriness from camera shake.

with that specific lens......be sure to have the lens perpendicular to the glass of the tank. any slight angles will cause distortions and lack of focus in the image.

also, be sure to switch the focus to manual, i've found that that lens does not auto focus well in darker lighting, or scenes with lots of detail at varied depth of fields like corals.
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  #6  
Old 01/08/2008, 09:26 AM
btkrausen btkrausen is offline
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Great, thanks for the advice guys. I will be playing around with this more, hopefully this week, and see what happens.

I have a tripod that I'll be using to do this as well, so it'll be much more stable.
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