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seezee

Macro filters

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"Macro filters"!?

Oh, you mean close-up lenses.

 

The Hoya close-up lens set you were pointing to is cheap and low-quality but still usable ... definitely better than extension tubes in most use cases. If you are serious about using close-up lenses then better get a set of achromatic (i. e. double-element) ones. With these, you'll get an image quality virtually indistinguishable from what you'd get with a dedicated macro lens.

 

However, with a rangefinder camera, you cannot use close-up lenses. You can neither frame nor focus them accurately. They make sense only when used on an SLR camera ... or a Leica M with Visoflex. If you plan to explore the close-up range with a Leica M camera then better get the Macro-Elmar-M 90 mm lens along with the Macro-M adapter. Expensive but excellent quality and—unlike those close-up lenses—actually usable.

 

If you're shooting with an SLR camera then a cheap cose-up lens set is a good way to make your first steps into close-up photography ... but expect to replace them with a better solution sooner rather than later, i. e. achromatic close-up lenses or a real macro lens. So essentially, the money you spend for cheap close-up lenses ultimately will be wasted.

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Great. That's what I needed to know. I've already got the Macro-Elmar on my wishlist -- but it'll be a while before I have enough saved up to get one (if I can find it anywhere!)

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I just sold the set you described on the big auction site, having owned them for a number of years, but hardly ever using them. They're most useful on a SLR, but it is inaccurate to state that you can't use them on a RF camera...back in the 1950s, these type of supplementary lenses were the only thing most of us had. You just needed to know how to compensate for parallax, and have a good set of tables and measuring device to know how far from the focal plane of the film, the focal point would be when your main lens was focused at a particular distance. Needless to say, it was often an exercise in futility, although some photographers were quite good at achieving acceptable results. I certainly wouldn't bother today though.

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