AF-S Micro 40mm

edited March 2017 Posted in » Nikon D3300 Forum
I love close-up photography, but I'm new to using a micro lens. I recently took a few snowflake photos that came out good. Does anyone have any suggestions or tips for the use of the micro lens?


  • edited March 2017
    Good results suggest you're getting it right at least basically.

    For that short lens, make sure that your light is adequate, as the closeness might shade your subject. When you're very close, the lens can shadow the built in flash. For some subjects, a separate flashlight or the like can work better than you'd expect. At very close distances camera movement can make a big difference, so you benefit from as much light as you can get, not only for better color and detail, but to keep shutter speeds up.

    You may get better results with a tripod, and manual focus. Manual focus can be difficult with the small viewfinder, but in Live View you can zoom the viewfinder. Depth of field is so limited at macro range, that AF may not hit exactly where you want it to on subjects with more depth than a snow flake.

    If you're doing a lot of free hand work, consider getting an eyepiece magnifier. The DK-21M can help a fair amount.

    You'll have to experiment with depth of field versus diffraction. At somewhere between f/11 and f/16 you will likely begin to lose definition overall to diffraction, enough to begin noticing, even though you are gaining depth of field. Your subject and the size of your final prints will determine just where that compromise works best. The only way to gain depth of field without diffraction loss is by stacking images.

    Otherwise, my main suggestion is to use it lots, try lots, and figure out what does and does not work in macro. Pay attention to composition, as one of the nice things about extreme closeup is the unexpected juxtaposition of abstract shape and form with detail.
  • Thanks, so much, for all the great tips!!
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