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Author Topic: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips  (Read 18995 times)

revup67

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Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« on: December 24, 2010, 10:44:24 PM »
Has anyone used a Macro Rail (if so which one) or Angled View Finder (if so which one - Canon or off brand?) along with the Mp-E 65?  I've got a EOS 7D that I will be using with this lens

I also read one guy used a 58mm to 28mm step down ring instead of the lens hood (which protrudes a few inches that may get in the way of the subject) . I thought the step down ring was a novel idea except I was a bit concerned about vignetting though unsure if that is the case
http://www.amazon.com/Fotodiox-Metal-Anodized-Black-28mm-58mm/dp/B0048IC4TK/ref=wl_itt_dp_o?ie=UTF8&coliid=I1LZCJ70MI6MAV&colid=2NXX4FZ3IMHJ6

If anyone has any tips on this lens regarding best methods (your expert experience) that would be appreciated.
Thanks
Rev
Thanks
Rev
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Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« on: December 24, 2010, 10:44:24 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #1 on: December 25, 2010, 03:04:28 PM »
Has anyone used a Macro Rail (if so which one) or Angled View Finder (if so which one - Canon or off brand?) along with the Mp-E 65?  I've got a EOS 7D that I will be using with this lens

I also read one guy used a 58mm to 28mm step down ring instead of the lens hood (which protrudes a few inches that may get in the way of the subject) . I thought the step down ring was a novel idea except I was a bit concerned about vignetting though unsure if that is the case
http://www.amazon.com/Fotodiox-Metal-Anodized-Black-28mm-58mm/dp/B0048IC4TK/ref=wl_itt_dp_o?ie=UTF8&coliid=I1LZCJ70MI6MAV&colid=2NXX4FZ3IMHJ6

If anyone has any tips on this lens regarding best methods (your expert experience) that would be appreciated.
Thanks
Rev

The Velbon Super Mag Slider is good, if you can find one.  Stray light is not much of an issue for this lens, unless you're shooting with the MT-24EX - and in that case, I've found that the flash heads get in the way more than the dedicated hood.  It's definitely a fun lens - enjoy!
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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #2 on: December 25, 2010, 03:26:38 PM »
I have a cheap unbranded focus rail off ebay which works ok. Mount stability is particularly important at higher magnifications.

I don't use a hood at all. There's not much working distance anyway so you don't want to waste it. A filter might be appropriate as I've ran into things with the lens before!

At higher magnifications, the light loss is pretty bad so you might consider a continuous lighting system.

I do have the Canon angle finder but not used it with the MP-E65. In most cases live view is easier unless you're working at odd angles.
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #3 on: December 25, 2010, 03:32:52 PM »
I do have the Canon angle finder but not used it with the MP-E65. In most cases live view is easier unless you're working at odd angles.

Ditto.  I have used my Angle Finder C with the 100L Macro, but not yet with my MP-E 65mm.

A filter might be appropriate as I've ran into things with the lens before!

Good point - I have pushed the lens into branches, flower parts, etc., and definitely recommend a UV filter.  I have a B+W MRC UV on there (as on all my lenses).  However, the filter prevents you from mounting the MT-24EX to the groove on the front of the lens.  My solution is to screw a Macrolite Adapter 58C onto the front threads of the filter.
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revup67

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #4 on: December 25, 2010, 04:53:10 PM »
oh..bummer.  I had not thought about the UV preventing the MT 24EX to thread on the front of the lens.  So you are suggesting the Macrolite Adapter 58C to get the UV and Flash on at the same time?

If you thread the MT 24EX directly on the lens does that offer any protection to the lens with respect to bumping objects and protecting the glass?
Thanks
Rev
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Flake

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #5 on: December 25, 2010, 06:40:03 PM »
You need a flash with this lens and the only one which really works is the MT 24EX.  AS has been mentioned at extreme magnification it doesn't have enough clearance, after buying the 100mm IS L and resenting buying yet another overpriced adaptor I bought one of http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Macroshot-Dual-Mount-Flash-Bracket-Canon-MT-24EX-/220640935659?pt=Camera_Flash_Accessories&hash=item335f397eebthese  It has not only solved the problem, but because it's further away the light is a bit more diffuse.

I've always thought the MT 24EX an inflexible product, but this holder allows use with loads of other lenses making it a much more viable flash.

At extreme magnification you will begin to run into odd problems you might not have considered.  Most macro rails are just too coarse and the effort to move them with camera lens flash etc etc attached means that you'll move the rig off the subject enough to mess up a focus stack.  Mirror lock up is normally an issue, but even the shutter moving can be enough to disturb so people have been using sandbags over the camera body to damp the vibration.

There are a few web sites dedicated to the use of this lens, and it is fun, but if you get past 2X macro you'll need to learn some new techniques.

revup67

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2010, 06:58:29 PM »
Flake - I checked out the link for the flash bracket thanks - I may be wrong but it appears you are using the flash wireless on this rig ?  I guess I am trying to imagine more precisely your set up.  In either case it sounds you aren't pleased with the macro rail nor the way the flash lights up your macro subjects simply on its own.

Interesting idea about sand bags.  I am aware of the mirror lock up feature and sounds like that needs to be on full time if shooting 3x-5x.

I guess I have a lot of learning ahead and owning the lens and 24ex flash is simply not enough.  I went ahead and ordered the adapter ring and UV as another suggested.  Still deciding on whether the angle view is necessary or a macro rail - sounds like there's mixed opinions
Thanks
Rev
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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #6 on: December 25, 2010, 06:58:29 PM »

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #7 on: December 25, 2010, 07:59:19 PM »
Flake - I checked out the link for the flash bracket thanks - I may be wrong but it appears you are using the flash wireless on this rig ?

The MT-24EX has two small flash heads, each with their own shoe-mounts, and connected by separate cables.  So, you could easily detach them from the 2/3-ring that mounts to the front of the lens (as you do to store the flash in the pouch), and attach the heads to the bracket Flake linked, no need for wireless (although the MT-24EX can be a wireless master - I use it to control a 430EX II to light the background while lighting the subject with the MT-24EX).
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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #8 on: December 26, 2010, 12:29:56 AM »
Could always screw the UV filter on front of the MT-24 mount and cap in front of that (how I always stored the lens).

If you get into it, probably the Really Right Stuff dual rails are one of the best ($600+).

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #9 on: December 26, 2010, 04:46:45 PM »
Could always screw the UV filter on front of the MT-24 mount and cap in front of that (how I always stored the lens).

That would work.  I do it the other way because I also use the MT-24EX with my 100mm f/2.8L Macro IS lens.
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revup67

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #10 on: December 26, 2010, 09:29:40 PM »
Thanks for all the replies everyone - it sounds like the 58C adapter ring is needed either way.

Flake do you by any chance have the web sites you are referring to bookmarked re:  the MP-E 65?  I am interested in doing the reading for sure.

Thanks
Rev
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neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #11 on: December 26, 2010, 09:33:19 PM »
Thanks for all the replies everyone - it sounds like the 58C adapter ring is needed either way.

Only if you want to put UV filter between the lens and the MT-24EX.  The mount ring of the MT-24EX fits directly on the end of the MP-E 65mm, and the mount ring itself has 58mm filter threads, so it can take a filter (or a lens cap, or a filter then the lens cap).
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revup67

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2010, 10:59:07 PM »
Neuroanatomist - thanks for that assistance as it was unclear originally on how the parts all assemble - I did order the 58C as I thought it would make good sense to protect the glass with a UV (also ordered)

On a side note:  I found an interesting article defining how to get best results at greater magnification with the MP-E 65 and that is to use Live View with First Shutter Curtain vs. Mirror Lock up or any other settings.  Charlie Krebs' accurate tests pave the way for further evidence that Live View is the way to go with this lens.

http://krebsmicro.com/Canon_EFSC/index.html

Also found quite possibly the best F-Stops with each magnification to choose on the MP-E 65 (of course depending on subject) - these were prescribed by a reknown MP-E 65 pro "Lord V" who feels these are the best F-stops at the following magnifications:  "I typically used :- 1:1 F11, 2:1 F9, 3:1 F7.1, 4:1 F6.3, 5:1 F5.0"  His incredible work can be seen on flickr and also his own web site http://lordv.smugmug.com/

Rev
Thanks
Rev
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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #12 on: December 26, 2010, 10:59:07 PM »

Flake

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #13 on: December 27, 2010, 08:10:45 AM »
You might like to take a look at David Kennards site: http://www.davidkennardphotography.com/blog/238-mt-24ex-macro-flash-diffusers-comparison.xhtml and his experiments with diffusers.  It's worth noting that the MT 24EX major problem is with its adaptor ring, which holds the flash heads too close to the subject and will not allow a sufficient angle to illuminate at x4 & x5 magnification.  The rig I gave the link to solves this problem and allows better diffusion of the light.  The heads no longer get in the way either.

You might also find the following site useful:  http://nocroppingzone.blogspot.com/

neuroanatomist

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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2010, 07:54:52 PM »
"I typically used...5:1 F5.0..."

Depth of field at 5x f/5 is going to be incredibly thin - not a problem for some subjects but for many subjects you'd need to do focus stacking.

It's worth noting that the MT 24EX major problem is with its adaptor ring, which holds the flash heads too close to the subject and will not allow a sufficient angle to illuminate at x4 & x5 magnification.

I haven't had this issue, or at least, I haven't noticed it.  I do have Sto-Fen diffusers on the heads, though, which should redirect at least some of the light more toward the subject at those high magnifications. 
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Re: Canon MP-E 65 Add on's & Tips
« Reply #14 on: December 27, 2010, 07:54:52 PM »