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Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro Image Samples

 

 

Canon EF Lenses

Canon EF 17-40mm f/4.0L

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Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0L

Canon EF 70-200mm f/4.0L IS

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8

Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro

Canon EF 300mm f/4.0L IS

Canon EF 400mm f/5.6L

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Lighting

Canon ST-E2 Speedlite Transmitter

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Canon 430EX II Speedlite Flash

Canon 550EX Speedlite Flash

Electra Studio Lighting

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Giottos MM 9550 Monopod

Markins Q3 Ball head

Gitzo GT2541EX Tripod

Cameras

Canon PowerShot S90

Canon EOS M

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Electra Colour Balance Panel

Sekonic L-308S Flashmate

Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS macro lens

 

Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS macro lens

 

Canon 100mm f/2.8L IS macro lens

A selection of photos taken in Thailand with the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8L IS lens

Clicking on the thumbnail images will open a larger image in a pop-up window.

Thai lizard - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter speed: 1/100
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Thailand
File Size: 182 KB
Thai lizard - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/6.3
Shutter speed: 1/125
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Thailand
File Size: 194 KB
Thai spider - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/8.0
Shutter speed: 1/160
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Canon 550EX + ST-E2
Extender: 25mm extension tube
Location: Thailand
File Size: 155 KB
Thai spider - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/8.0
Shutter speed: 1/100
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Canon 550EX + ST-E2
Extender: 25mm extension tube
Location: Thailand
File Size: 172 KB
Floating market, Songkhla province, Thailand - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/200
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Songkhla, Thailand
File Size: 178 KB
Floating market, Songkhla province, Thailand - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/200
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Songkhla, Thailand
File Size: 146 KB
Floating market, Songkhla province, Thailand - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/200
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Songkhla, Thailand
File Size: 166 KB
Floating market, Songkhla province, Thailand - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/2.8
Shutter speed: 1/200
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX
Extender: No
Location: Songkhla, Thailand
File Size: 139 KB
Thai insect - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 1/60
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Electra studio lighting
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 136 KB
Thai insect - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 1/60
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Electra studio lighting
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 155 KB
Thai insect - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 1/60
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Electra studio lighting
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 170 KB
Thai insect - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 1/60
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: Electra studio lighting
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 182 KB
Gold necklace - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 0.3s
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: No
Extender: 25mm extension tube
Location: Thailand
File Size: 162 KB
Gold necklace - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 200
Aperture: f/11.0
Shutter speed: 0.6s
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: No
Extender: 25mm extension tube
Location: Thailand
File Size: 158 KB
Mantis - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/14.0
Shutter speed: 1/80
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: 550EX, 430EX II, STE-2
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 121 KB
Mantis - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/14.0
Shutter speed: 1/80
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: Gitzo GT2541EX + Markins Q3
Flash: 550EX, 430EX II, STE-2
Extender: 25mm + 12mm extension tubes stacked
Location: Thailand
File Size: 134 KB
Buddhist karma - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/5.6
Shutter speed: 1/100
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX + ST-E2
Extender: 25mm extension tube
File Size: 154 KB
Buddhist karma - Click for larger image Camera: 40D
ISO: 100
Aperture: f/5.6
Shutter speed: 1/100
Focal length: 100mm
EC +/-: 0
Monopod/Tripod: No
Flash: Canon 550EX + ST-E2
Extender: 25mm extension tube
File Size: 151 KB
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Lens Impressions

Insect - Click for larger image I've written about the inconsistent focusing problems I had with the Canon EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens that I have now sold.

It was a sad day when I sold it but I just couldn't afford to use a lens that I didn't trust.

I think that good macro shots are interesting, and if you can use the same lens as a mid-telephoto to get sharp portraits in low light, then even better.

On paper it was exactly the right lens for my needs, but in reality it just didn't work out.

I had something of a dilemma deciding what to do next. Was there a problem with my lens, and would buying another copy fix the problem? I didn't really want to take that chance, and also I think the obsession with 'bad copies' of lenses is overstated.

The EF-S 60mm f/2.8 Macro looked like an interesting lens and when I looked at sample images they looked impressive - a lot better than most sample images taken with the EF 100mm f/2.8 macro.

I knew it wouldn't work on a full-frame body but I had no plans to move to full-frame. The shorter focal length also meant less working distance. However, it might have been a more suitable focal length for portraits. I was tempted.

And then Canon solved my dilemma by announcing the EF 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro. It was perfect.

I have tried to avoid buying Canon EF-S Lenses, non-L lenses, zoom lenses with variable maximum apertures, and lenses without IS. My Canon EF-S 10-22mm was an exception to all these rules but it is quite a unique lens and there isn't an alternative for crop bodies.

The new EF 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro meant being able to get the macro lens of my choice without breaking any of these rules. It was a little expensive but I consider purchases like this to last many, many years, and so the cost was of little importance.

For its primary purpose (macro) it performs very well with or without extension tubes. The only thing that confuses me is that this new lens has a special "hybrid IS" system designed for macro, yet when I do macro I use a tripod and switch the IS off.

As a telephoto lens, results are pleasing regarding sharpness, colour, contrast and bokeh. I have to admit though, that my EF 85mm f/1.8 (at a fraction of the price) performs just as well, if not slightly better.

If you want a good all-round lens for macro and telephoto, this is a good choice. However, if you think you will be using it mainly for telephoto without doing much macro work there are cheaper lenses that will perform equally as well.

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Macro Lighting

Outdoor macro lighting setup - Click for larger image In most cases, macro work needs some additional lighting for several reasons. Firstly, as your subject gets closer to the lens, you lose light. Secondly, working close means a very narrow depth of field.

To increase the depth of field means reducing the aperture size ... which means less light. Thirdly, if you are shooting live subjects that move, or subjects outdoors that are being moved by the wind, you need a relatively fast shutter speed.

If you shoot stationary objects indoors you can use a tripod and long shutter speeds so lighting isn't so important, but outdoors it is.

It's possible to use a hotshoe mounted flash but this method won't give great light. Canon make two flashes designed for macro work - the MR-14EX Ring Lite and the MT-24EX Twin Lite. I haven't used either. The latter appears to give better light but it is quite expensive.

I may go down this path later but for the time being I am using equipment that I already own - my 550EX Speedlite triggered off-camera by my ST-E2. Sometimes I use a lightstand and sometimes I hand-hold the flash. It may not be the perfect set up but it seems to work reasonably well.

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Macro Technique

One of the big selling points with this lens was a new IS system specially designed for macro. For close macro work I can't imagine hand-holding my camera so IS is a waste most of the time.

Of course, the IS system is useful when you use the lens for telephoto shots, and in some cases it may be useful for macro.

My technique is always to use a tripod. I focus manually using Live View 10x. After manually focusing, I switch off Live View and activate the camera on the two-second timer mode to avoid moving the camera when the shutter activates.

For additional resistance to vibration I also use the mirror lock-up function. With the macro lens and Live View enabled, even the tiniest of movements generates a lot of movement on the LCD.

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Focus Stacking

Indoor macro lighting setup - Click for larger image Focus stacking is to focus what HDR is to exposure. Multiple frames are taken at slightly different focus settings, and the results are combined with a software program.

Using digital wizardry, this is one way of getting around the problem of having a very narrow depth of field with macro photography..

Focus stacking was used on the insect images above that were shot indoors. I used the free shareware program CombineZM.

Other programs are available but some cost money. CombineZM may not be the most polished but it seems to do a reasonable job, it's fully automated, and best of all it's free.

I'm still a novice with macro photography and focus stacking software. All I do is import the images and press 'Do Stack'. I think there are manual procedures with which you can probably get better results but I'm not at that level yet.

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Lens Details

Weight: 19oz; 600g
Filter Diameter: 67mm
Closest Focusing Distance: 0.99ft; 0.3m
Minimum Aperture: f/32
Serial Number: 1911073
Lens Code: UY0201
Date Manufactured: February 2010
Date Purchased: March 2010
Supplier: Chia Color Lab, Hat Yai, Thailand
Price: 34,900 Thai Baht
Lens Hood: ET-73 (included)
Soft Case: LP1219 (included)

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