BetterPhoto Q&A
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Photography Question 
Vickie Burt
BetterPhoto Member Since: 4/29/2004

Which length macro lens to buy?

I am currently looking at buying a macro lens, either the 105mm or the 150mm, both f2.8. I like photographing the small things in nature, including flowers, and am wondering what the pro's and cons's of each lens would be. Is the longer lens better, or would the 105mm suffice? Are there any disadvantages to the longer lens?

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

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10/21/2006 8:53:33 PM

Michael H. Cothran   Personally, for flowers, bugs, etc, I'd opt for the longest true macro lens you can afford. There's not a huge difference between the 105 and 150, but I would go with the 150. Better for your subjects would be a 180 or 200mm macro lens, but these get a little pricey.
The longer the lens, the farther from the subject you will be. In nature, this is a good thing. Also, the longer the lens, the less depth of field you will have at any given aperture. This is also a good thing, since it will allow your subject to "pop" out more. The only disadvantages of the longer lens are the cost factor, and the ability to hand-hold it. The longer the focal length, the more difficult it is to hand hold. If you plan to use a tripod, this is a moot point. Bottom line - for outdoor "portrait" type pictures of flowers & small critters, go with the longest macro lens you can afford.
Michael H. Cothran

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10/25/2006 10:36:26 AM

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