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Offline bugsmasher  
#1 Posted : 08 September 2016 16:46:07(UTC)
bugsmasher

United States   
Joined: 07/09/2016(UTC)
Posts: 48
Location: Michigan, Canton
In two weeks I plan to take numerous still images (perhaps a few videos) of my club layout using Nikon D7100 with either 85mm macro or 18-200 telephoto lens (or both).

What is the preference between macro and telephoto?

It would seem that trains would need to be stopped for use of macro. In the past, I have used telephoto successfully for trains in motion but only with 1/250 sec or faster.

Have never tried videos either lens.

My guess is macro for stills, telephoto for videos.
Offline DB Fan  
#2 Posted : 08 September 2016 19:12:03(UTC)
DB Fan

United States   
Joined: 01/03/2016(UTC)
Posts: 233
Location: Colorado
It is the in words. Macro is to capture minute details of an object that you are taking a picture of from a very close distance(1 to 10 inches).Tele is to take pictures from a distance. This is how it was explained to me when I took a beginner class in digital photography. The best thing is to "play" with your settings. Hope this helps.

Robert
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Offline dennisb  
#3 Posted : 08 September 2016 19:47:16(UTC)
dennisb

Sweden   
Joined: 21/09/2015(UTC)
Posts: 217
Location: Kronoberg
The 85mm on a D7100 is a mid tele focal lengths so I think that is a safe bet. Of course you can't zoom but I think the sharpness of a macro will be great! There's no problem at all to take photos from a distance using a macro lens. It's no problems to shoot images with a macro lens of a moving subject either. The importance is that the lens i quite fast and I would guess that the macro is 3.5? The zoom is guess is 3.5-5.6, that's pretty slow on the tele side. Both lenses I think has VR so you have image stabilization.

My bet would be on that macro.
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Offline jvuye  
#4 Posted : 08 September 2016 20:04:46(UTC)
jvuye

Belgium   
Joined: 01/03/2008(UTC)
Posts: 2,881
Location: South Western France
Originally Posted by: dennisb Go to Quoted Post
The 85mm on a D7100 is a mid tele focal lengths so I think that is a safe bet. Of course you can't zoom but I think the sharpness of a macro will be great! There's no problem at all to take photos from a distance using a macro lens. It's no problems to shoot images with a macro lens of a moving subject either. The importance is that the lens i quite fast and I would guess that the macro is 3.5? The zoom is guess is 3.5-5.6, that's pretty slow on the tele side. Both lenses I think has VR so you have image stabilization.

My bet would be on that macro.


I agree totally. Of course it all depends on the placement of the camera! (Inside a building usually puts some constraints on your choices!)
Then you have to decide on the effect you'd like to achieve: a wide angle lens will tend to produce a longer perspective, while a tele-lens will tend to compress the distance.
If the trains are moving towards you (or away...) while you record, make sure the auto focus system is set on tracking, so you keep a sharp picture.
More important even: use a tripod or a anything else to secure the camera while filming!(or if you have lots of money, a stabilization contraption!Wink Wink Smile )

I usually take a few "stills" first, that I analyze carefully before making my choices for video sequences: what your naked eye sees id usually **not** exactly what the end result will look like.

Good news with digital photography is that you don't waste film and you can see the results instantly...Wink Wink

Hope this helps and have fun!
Jacques Vuye aka Dr.Eisenbahn
Once a vandal, learned to be better and had great success!
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Offline mike c  
#5 Posted : 09 September 2016 03:10:47(UTC)
mike c

Canada   
Joined: 28/11/2007(UTC)
Posts: 7,442
Location: Montreal, QC
Some of my best photos have been taken with my smartphone. When I use either my Canon Snapshot or SLR, I often have a problem with the focal range, meaning that a very tiny part of the locomotive or coach is in focus and the rest is blurry. What is the shortest that you can set for infinity for these types of camera. I did not find much information on this in the instruction manuals of any of the cameras. The SLR allows you to set a target for autofocus, but I could not find instructions to set the focal point (infinity range) manually.

Regards

Mike C
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Offline Danlake  
#6 Posted : 09 September 2016 05:11:03(UTC)
Danlake

New Zealand   
Joined: 03/08/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,564
Hi Mike,

Use manual setting on your SLR. Set a high aperture number e.g. F11. Problem is then you will have less light entering the sensor so you have to compansate by either having a long shutter opening (less than 1/60s you may need tripod) or use a very high ISO. Or finally you can also increase the light by either flash or extra ambient light source.

You could also try one of the default settings, like sports and action. They are normally pre-configured to fast speeds and a larger focus area.

Brgds Lasse
Digital 11m2 layout / C (M&K) tracks / Era IV / CS3 60226 / Train Controller Gold 9 with 4D sound. Mainly Danish and German Locomotives.
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Offline bugsmasher  
#7 Posted : 09 September 2016 05:58:07(UTC)
bugsmasher

United States   
Joined: 07/09/2016(UTC)
Posts: 48
Location: Michigan, Canton
Originally Posted by: Danlake Go to Quoted Post
Hi Mike,

Use manual setting on your SLR. Set a high aperture number e.g. F11. Problem is then you will have less light entering the sensor so you have to compansate by either having a long shutter opening (less than 1/60s you may need tripod) or use a very high ISO. Or finally you can also increase the light by either flash or extra ambient light source.

You could also try one of the default settings, like sports and action. They are normally pre-configured to fast speeds and a larger focus area.

Brgds Lasse


Fortunately, I have a new and very stable tripod. I am attracted to the idea of the 85 mm macro instead of the telephoto but I expect focusing will be a challenge to say the least.

Offline Danlake  
#8 Posted : 09 September 2016 07:55:55(UTC)
Danlake

New Zealand   
Joined: 03/08/2011(UTC)
Posts: 1,564
If using tripod and still images I would use manual focus.

First activate "live view" then use zoom function in "live view" to zoom all the way in on your focus area. Then do the manual focus and exit "live view".

Then you will ensure you have the best possible focus.

When shooting try and use the shutter delay function, so there is less risk of you moving the camera while pressing the shutter mechanisme.

For lenses I would always opt for the best prime quality lens I have. Unless you have a very high end Tele lens your macro lens will probably be of better quality glass and give you better photos.

I use a fixed 50mm prime quality lens on my full frame Nikon DSLR and with a full frame camera you will get so much details that you can easily crop the photo without loosing significant quality (same for your DX camera).

If you photo software shoot in RAW and do adjustment on computer afterwards.

Brgds Lasse
Digital 11m2 layout / C (M&K) tracks / Era IV / CS3 60226 / Train Controller Gold 9 with 4D sound. Mainly Danish and German Locomotives.
Offline GlennM  
#9 Posted : 10 September 2016 12:36:30(UTC)
GlennM

United Kingdom   
Joined: 09/05/2011(UTC)
Posts: 2,779
Location: Somewhere, But Nowhere Near Manchester, England
For me light is the biggest problem, if you want to shoot nice clear images whilst (they are) moving you need a lot of light.

I prefer to stop the locos and shoot thus getting some nice clear images. With digital the lights stay on and the smoke still billows and nobody knows they are not running BigGrin

Lens choice depends on what you are trying to shoot and what kind of images you like to see, wide images of the layout showing trains traversing or close up images of the locos themselves. Depending on what you are shooting the compressed perspective when using a telephoto may work well. I prefer to use macro lens for my images as I like to see the detail of the subject (using either Macro Nikkor 60mm or Macro Nikkor 105mm). I use a telephone sparingly, and a 24-70mm zoom for other layout pictures.

This was shot using a macro lens

UserPostedImage


And this was shot using a telephoto, due to the distance from the light source there is terrible drop off causing the background to go very dark ;

UserPostedImage


Shot with a 24-70mm zoom, set at 32mm, for me personally this photo is too wide, its a good general view but lacks detail;

UserPostedImage


And night shots will need a tripod;

UserPostedImage



I would suggest if using a macro lens you take along a small brush and air blower (usually used for camera cleaning) and clean the locos before shooting as dust and hair is often noticeable and ruins a great photo. If you decide to use autofocus, check which focus point the the D7100 is using to focus, and it may need to be changed if using a macro lens to get more of the image in focus. IIRC correct the D7100 has the 51 point system so there is plenty to choose from BigGrin

I look forward to seeing some of your images in due course ThumpUp ThumpUp

BR
Don't look back, your not heading that way.
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Offline PJMärklin  
#10 Posted : 10 September 2016 13:03:27(UTC)
PJMärklin

Australia   
Joined: 04/12/2013(UTC)
Posts: 2,093
Location: Hobart, Australia
Originally Posted by: GlennM Go to Quoted Post
For me light is the biggest problem, if you want to shoot nice clear images whilst (they are) moving you need a lot of light.

I prefer to stop the locos and shoot thus getting some nice clear images.

Lens choice depends on what you are trying to shoot and what kind of images you like to see, wide images of the layout showing trains traversing or close up images of the locos themselves. Depending on what you are shooting the compressed perspective when using a telephoto may work well. I prefer to use macro lens for my images as I like to see the detail of the subject (using either Macro Nikkor 60mm or Macro Nikkor 105mm). I use a telephone sparingly, and a 24-70mm zoom for other layout pictures.



Hello Glenn,

Lovely images - thanks for your post.

Regards,

PJ

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Offline GlennM  
#11 Posted : 10 September 2016 13:06:39(UTC)
GlennM

United Kingdom   
Joined: 09/05/2011(UTC)
Posts: 2,779
Location: Somewhere, But Nowhere Near Manchester, England
Originally Posted by: PJMärklin Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: GlennM Go to Quoted Post
For me light is the biggest problem, if you want to shoot nice clear images whilst (they are) moving you need a lot of light.

I prefer to stop the locos and shoot thus getting some nice clear images.

Lens choice depends on what you are trying to shoot and what kind of images you like to see, wide images of the layout showing trains traversing or close up images of the locos themselves. Depending on what you are shooting the compressed perspective when using a telephoto may work well. I prefer to use macro lens for my images as I like to see the detail of the subject (using either Macro Nikkor 60mm or Macro Nikkor 105mm). I use a telephone sparingly, and a 24-70mm zoom for other layout pictures.



Hello Glenn,

Lovely images - thanks for your post.

Regards,

PJ



Thanks PJ
Don't look back, your not heading that way.
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Offline bugsmasher  
#12 Posted : 10 September 2016 17:20:33(UTC)
bugsmasher

United States   
Joined: 07/09/2016(UTC)
Posts: 48
Location: Michigan, Canton
Originally Posted by: GlennM Go to Quoted Post
For me light is the biggest problem...



I would suggest if using a macro lens you take along a small brush and air blower (usually used for camera cleaning) and clean the locos before shooting as dust and hair is often noticeable and ruins a great photo. If you decide to use autofocus, check which focus point the the D7100 is using to focus, and it may need to be changed if using a macro lens to get more of the image in focus. ThumpUp ThumpUp

BR


Thanks for the suggestions, especially re dust brush and focus point.

I tried both lenses yesterday. Had all kinds of trouble with field of view, light, and depth of field. My objective is to create an image of a small (Lok+3 double-deck cars) push-pull commuter train to be included in a written article. Could not get deep field of view using either lens. When using live view, could not see to focus at f19/ISO 200 or smaller. Obviously, I need more practice, external light or need to increase ISO (which would be OK for the small image I'm attempting to create).

But the superiority of the macro for photographing the Lok or 1 car was CONFIRMED.

This entire exercise, especially when I move on to videos next week, is a work in progress. Great fun!
Offline GlennM  
#13 Posted : 10 September 2016 20:59:08(UTC)
GlennM

United Kingdom   
Joined: 09/05/2011(UTC)
Posts: 2,779
Location: Somewhere, But Nowhere Near Manchester, England
Originally Posted by: bugsmasher Go to Quoted Post
Originally Posted by: GlennM Go to Quoted Post
For me light is the biggest problem...



I would suggest if using a macro lens you take along a small brush and air blower (usually used for camera cleaning) and clean the locos before shooting as dust and hair is often noticeable and ruins a great photo. If you decide to use autofocus, check which focus point the the D7100 is using to focus, and it may need to be changed if using a macro lens to get more of the image in focus. ThumpUp ThumpUp

BR


Thanks for the suggestions, especially re dust brush and focus point.

I tried both lenses yesterday. Had all kinds of trouble with field of view, light, and depth of field. My objective is to create an image of a small (Lok+3 double-deck cars) push-pull commuter train to be included in a written article. Could not get deep field of view using either lens. When using live view, could not see to focus at f19/ISO 200 or smaller. Obviously, I need more practice, external light or need to increase ISO (which would be OK for the small image I'm attempting to create).

But the superiority of the macro for photographing the Lok or 1 car was CONFIRMED.

This entire exercise, especially when I move on to videos next week, is a work in progress. Great fun!


I assume you trying to shoot the loco plus three coaches side on view or a skewed side on view, either way I would suggest, a mid size zoom of the 24-70mm variety or similar, and set up about 1 metre from the subject crop the zoom in as best you can to frame the consist, select f22 (minimum, I like f36 or f40 if available) and pick a focus point somewhere between one third and one half the way down the length (do some test and view the image afterwards and magnify to check focus) the consist and you should get a nice depth of field with the remainder (if any) fading nice in the bokeh. The image may need cropping later in some photo software to eliminate extraneous items that clutter the image, but should work for what you require.

My person advice is to ditch the manual focus with live view, it has never worked for me, I set the image up in the view finder, choose my autofocus point manually, and let the electronics work its magic. I always check the image after , but have found that as long as you are not working in very low light or with a plain colour image the Nikon autofocus delivers on most occasions. All my train images published on the Forum have been shot with autofocus. Video on the other hand is another bag of worms, I usually manual focus my videos to stop the AF from wandering with the train movement, but it can depend very much on the camera.

Good luck and enjoy ThumpUp ThumpUp ThumpUp
Don't look back, your not heading that way.
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