Beginner [changed title] macro photography without reversing the lens

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Robert
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#1
First an admission - Other than the stimulation of my interest in this topic by watching a couple of YouTube videos, I know nothing about it.

I've been give a Canon 350D camera body with no lens or memory card, and a couple of flat batteries. I bought a charger and a spare battery, and the camera appears to be working, and I'm waiting for a memory card and a couple of test lenses that I bought on Ebay to test the system. I want to use this system to experiment with reverse lens macro photography when I have confirmed that it is fully operational. I'd be grateful for some tips before I start buying the relevant extra equipment. I'm contemplating adapters than includes limited focusing controls, a remote flash, and some lens hoods. I will also need to look for a suitable lens, as my test lens may not be the most suitable. I'm not sure what I will choose as subject matter, but it could include insects and cooking ( not both together though :) ). So far my total investment is less than £50, and I posted details in my introduction thread on the welcome board. I'm hoping that this will be a budget project, and that I can make or adapt much of the equipment until I understand a bit more about the techniques.
 
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Robert
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#2
A reverse adaptor will have no controls at all.
You focus by moving closer/further from your subject.
Macro tubes may be better for you.
You can get them with autofocus.
 
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Wild Brambles
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Robert
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#3
Thanks for the prompt reply. I think it is products like this that have mislead me. On examination, it appears to be a collection of adapter rings with a short tube and some sort of sensor for the front of the lens. I may invest £50 later when I know a bit more, and hopefully I have found someone who has used the device.
https://www.amazon.co.uk/Movo-EXT-C5-Reverse-Auto-Focus-Adapter/dp/B00LBKW0EC
 
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wayne clarke
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#5
I doubt a lens hood will be much use with a reversed lens. You'll be pretty close to your subject expecially if you use a common 50mm or 28mm lens, the hood will block the light from your flash.
As Robert says extension tubes may be a better bet, you can get really close, the auto focus will still work and you wont have the hassle trying to manually stop down the aperure (easy on a manual old lens, more faff on a modern one reversed) which also makes the image darker.
 
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Pete
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#7
Theres 2 ways of reversing lenses. The first is to get a filter ring to your camera body bayonet adaptor and the other is to get a male/male and screw a lense to an existing lense on your camera.
The first way is a little harder, as to make the apature ring on the lense work you (or at least I did) make a ring that fits on the exposed bayonet of the reversed lense that engages the lever to enable the apature to be not wide open.
The lens to lens is easier as the apature is controled by the lense fitted to the camera. Also the variation you can get on this system is large, say a telephoto with a wide angle reversed onto it will give huge magnification.
 
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Mike
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#8
If you reverse the lens directly on the body, then any old legacy lens with a aperture ring can be used (the mount doesn't matter)
You can also get adapters to use quite a wide variety of legacy lenses in their normal arrangement on EF mount, This will be needed to focus on things further away and for this the mount DOES matter. M42, PK, OM & Nikon lenses can be used like this with the right adapter, and focus to infinity. Canon FD lenses can't...

I have picked up some very cheap EF lenses in the past (both film era kit zooms) IMO these weren't even worth the petrol going 20 miles out on my way to collect them - fortunately some of the other lenses in the same job lot where worth much more so the deal was still a good one :)
 
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Wild Brambles
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Robert
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#9
I wish I had understood a bit more about photography a few years ago. I gave away a Fuji 35mm system that I had spent well over £1,000 buying. I bought a Fuji bridge camera that I have been using up until now. It has been great for the things that I needed to do.These were pretty basic and included images for forum posts, and support images for email discussions. I've also used images to enhance web pages on my sites. I wanted to use the Canon to try to help a some people in countries with difficult political situations, and to see if they could use photography to earn some Bitcoin. I'm not getting much enthusiasm for this project, and I'm going to switch to a personal interest in reverse lens macro photography. I love the phrase, but don't understand all the implications, so I'm grateful for any help.

My choice of accessories has been influenced by a need to obtain free, or almost free, items for the original project, but as it is becoming more of a personal hobby now, I an happy to spend a bit more. The post by Petrochemist was a bit of a light bulb moment for me, and it frees me from having to restrict myself to Canon lenses - hence my comment about my old Fuji system. The memory card has arrived, but I've got to wait another couple of days for the delivery of the lens I bought on Ebay. Once I have checked the system, then I can think about getting some kit for the macro project. I'm thinking of photographing a plain white wall or board to see if there are any imperfections in the camera or lens. Is this a good basic test for second hand equipment?
 
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Mike
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#10
If you decide to use adapted lenses you will loose autofocus & camera control of aperture. For some this is a price they're willing to pay, for others it's a deal breaker. DSLRs are more difficult to focus manually than SLRs from the 70s, but with a chipped adapter you should get a focus confirm light in the viewfinder. On models that have liveview that can help as it has a magnified view available. When adapting lenses I usually stick to aperture priority.

Your test by photographing a plain white wall will show the lenses vignetting (dark corners) but won't show many other problems. I've sometimes used wallpaper where the pattern helps indicate how even the focus is. Looking at the blur from a out of focus highlight can show obstructions in the lens that are hard to spot otherwise, generally they'll reduce contrast but have no other effect. Brick walls are popular targets to access barrel/pin cushion type distortions but these rarely bother me in real life shooting so I don't bother.
 
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Wild Brambles
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Robert
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#11
I was hoping to use the white wall to check for dust and scratches. The brick wall seems like a great idea as well, thanks.
 
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Mike
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#12
I was hoping to use the white wall to check for dust and scratches. The brick wall seems like a great idea as well, thanks.
Sensor muck should show clearly using that if the aperture is closed down, wide open it's hard to see & muck in the lens won't show unless you look at the bokeh (which needs an out of focus highlight).
It's surprising how bad a front element can be while still giving reasonable pictures. I've seen examples on line taken with a smashed front element, which just had low contrast.
 
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Wild Brambles
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Robert
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#13
I'm getting impatient to try this system. I've now got everything apart from a lens, and the bits I have got seem to be working. I bought 2 lens on Ebay, and one was supposed to arrive yesterday, but the guy hasn't even sent it yet. The other one ( with the stuck aperture ), has been sent by second class post and the expected delivery day is Thursday or Friday ( as listed in the auction ). This guy has already given me feedback, and the lens has been posted, so I'm looking forward to testing it. I'm hoping that if I use aperture priority, and I set the camera to the stuck position, then all should work correctly. If all looks good, then I might have a go at freeing off the lens. I'm hoping that it is just a bit of sticky oil that is causing the problem.
 
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Wild Brambles
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Robert
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#14
Good morning, and it is a bit damp here on this non-Brexit day.

I've taken note of the advice and comments here ( thanks guys ), and watched a few videos, and I think it is time for the first update. The Sun 24-40mm wide angle lens has arrived, and of course I need an adapter, so that was my first misunderstanding. The aperture is stuck in the wide open position, and I may try to fix that a bit later, I'm considering purchasing this adapter to further my education - https://www.amazon.co.uk/KECAY-Moun...a&pf_rd_r=JYF9GMSW9C20EVF4FRKX&qid=1572599097
It doesn't have any glass, so I understand that it will work as a macro tube as well as an adapter. Do you think this is a sensible purchase to get me started on the macro aspects of this system. So far I have spent very little money, and an additional £15 seems worth the investment if it is going to move me forward.

I'm not happy about the other lens though, the guy hasn't shipped it yet, and it is over a week now, so I think I'll just try to cancel the purchase. I'm out of touch with Ebay these days, so I'm not sure how they will react to that. The discharged look-alike battery that came with the camewra doesn't seem to be holding its charge, so that may have to go in the bin. The Canon original and the new battery seem to be OK, but I need to do a bit more testing to confirm this.
 
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