After the two previous article we discussed about using alternate lenses macro close up filters and extension tubes, this time we will discuss how to get a macro lens of your kit lens using a reverse ring.
It seems strange, but when we put a 50mm prime lens or a standard zoom lens kit (18-55mm or 17-50mm) in reverse camera (the lens attached to the front end of the camera body) to use additional tools called reverse ring, we’ll get a macro lens High quality at affordable prices. We could use other lenses, but the 50mm prime lens and a standard zoom lens kit seems to be a popular choice because it is relatively cheap.
Lens with a focal length longer than 50mm magnification effect (magnification) is too little, while the wide lens magnification effect is too much.
Since most of the DSLR camera owners already have a kit zoom lens or a 50mm prime lens, the macro lens method with a reverse ring has become a very attractive option. Simply by buying a small ring at very cheap price, we already have a special macro lenses and can shoot pretty qualified small objects from very close range.
There are two ways to use the reverse ring:
Reversing Single Lens
The first way is by flipping a single lens. For this we need a reverse ring and zoom kit lens or 50mm lens. Reverse ring is a tiny ring with one side of the entrance to the front end while the other side of the lens into the camera mount.
A 50mm prime lens attached to a crop camera (Canon 600D or Nikon D3200) with a reverse ring has a 1:1 reproduction
The main disadvantage of using a reverse ring is we lost the electronic connection between the camera to the lens, so that the autofocus will not work and we have to set the focus manually. But metering will still work as usual, just use P mode (Program) or Aperture Priority. To change the aperture value will not be done from the camera, so if you have a lens with aperture ring (usually the older generation lens) you can have the advantage of varying the aperture value. Meanwhile, if the lens is not having an aperture ring (the average modern lenses do not have aperture control on the lens), we are forced to use the largest aperture (smallest F value) so we only have a narrow depth of field. If these factors (narrow DOF, autofocus death) makes you lazy to try to reverse the ring, you can read both ways below or you can use the extension tube has an electronic connection to the camera,
Double Lens Reverse Ring
With some limitations when using a reversed lens (autofocus dead, narrow DOF) we can outsmart by placing a lens in front of another lens reverse mounted normal. In this way we are able to control the depth of field and can get autofocus.
Normal lens attached to the camera called primary lens while the lens is installed upside down in front of the primary lens called secondary lens.
To use this method, we need a 50mm lens and a long lens (ideally above 85mm) to avoid vignetting and a named macro coupler ring. The longer your primary lens, the greater the magnification effect of the photo. If you are using a wide lens instead of the 50mm lens magnification effect will be higher.
Macro coupler or also commonly called male to male adapter ring (m2m) is a metal ring with a specific size that should fit the size of your lens filter thread. If you can not find an adapter that has the appropriate size, you can use the step-up or step-down ring.
Okay, good luck and please be patient, the two methods above require extra patience.