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Reverse Mounted Lens (The poor mans Micro lens option)

Reverse Mounted Lenses is of the easiest ways to go about taking macro photography and video.

Sure their are other options such as buying +1 +2 +3 +4 front filter lens adapters (Like these)but then you will have to get a set for more than one lens in your collection, depending on which lens you will be using at a certain time. They do work very well but the issues with these is that you have to screw from number +1 to number +4 (+ being the number of magnification is will enlarge your subject) and that will take time and a bit of trial and error.

Another option for macro picture taking are these cheaper add-on front filter lens adapters which work in the same style of the close up lens but are combination of macro, fish eye and wide angel lens all in one.

the problem with these are they distort the image to a funny quite cartoonish effect like capture and most are made from cheap glass which can introduce a color cast to your image and most suffer from Chromatic aberration.

The other option would be spending a boat load of cash on a good macro lens such as the Canon Macro 100mm Lens.

But the last option I have is one of the best ones yet.

the lens reversal technique, a very popular close-up technique in the good old days. The effectiveness of this technique can be proved easily: if a lens of focal length X (in mm) is reversely mounted on a lens (on camera) of focal length Y, the combo will have a magnification of Y/X. Thus, if a 50mm (resp., 25mm) lens is reversely mounted on a 200mm (on camera) lens, the combo will yield a magnification of 4X = 200/50 (resp., 8X = 200/25). This is the easiest way to increase magnification!!!

You will need:

An SLR camera. This technique will not work with point and shoot cameras. A lens to reverse mount, it need not be from the same manufacturer as your camera because the lens will be mounted by its filter threads and not the mount as is normally done. A good candidate here is the 50mm f/1.8 due to its low cost. The lens ideally needs to have a manual aperture ring, old manual focus lenses work well here regardless of make. Lenses without an aperture ring such as Nikon G-series and Canon EF lenses can still be used if you keep the lever on the lens’ mount that controls the aperture open by hand, though this is far from ideal.

A reversing ring which has a mount for your camera on the one side and filter thread on the other. The revsersing ring that I bought has 52mm filter thread which exactly matches the threads of the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 lens. If your lens and reversing ring threads don’t match you will need to use a step-up or step-down ring. Search for Nikon and Canon reversing rings on eBay.

Reverse mounting the lens:

First mount the reversing ring on the camera as you would a normal lens.

You lose the ability to focus when reverse mounting a lens. A plane a fixed distance away from the lens will be in focus and you will need to move either the subject or the camera to place the subject in this plane. The depth of field is extremely shallow even when the lens is stopped down so you may find it challenging at first to get the subject in focus.

Some uncropped examples done using this technique:



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