• Vintage Vivitar Zoom Thyristor 3500 Flash
  • Home-made flash diffuser.
  • Pentax *ist DL DSLR
  • Cheap off camera flash cord.
  • Macro bellows
  • 2x teleconverter
  • Pentax Takumar bayonet mount 28mm f/2.8 prime lens
  • PETRI flash bracket

Macrophotography Setup

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***1/5/11 - Note: The setup as seen here was only really used once or twice. Although it offers quite a bit of mangification, it isn't realistically usable in the field due to it's weight - therefore this image is not representative of my usual setup.***

I've been getting a few e-mails recently about what equipment I am using to take my macrophotographs. So here's a picture of my setup.

The camera body is a Pentax *ist DL DSLR body.

The flash is an old Vivitar "Zoom Thyristor 3500" connected to the body by a cheap off-brand off camera flash cord. The flash is mounted on a bizarre old "PETRI" flash bracket with a ball head mount. The flash is diffused by a diffuser I made out of a Goldfish box, duct tape, paper towel, and clear plastic.

The body in this photo is mounted to a camera bellows, and a vintage Pentax Takumar bayonet mount 28mm f/2.8 prime lens is reversed on an old off-brand 2x teleconverter is mounted to the bellows. (The setup as shown is what I would use if I was planning on taking a picture of just the eyes of a jumping spider.)

The majority of the time I just use the 28mm mounted to the teleconverter with no bellows.

Occasionally, I will use an old SMC Pentax f/1.7 50mm prime reversed on the bellows or a 3x teleconverter in there somewhere.

/:/:/:, ` ®© ROBERTO CARBONI, and 774 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 20 more comments

  1. littlebiddle 36 months ago | reply

    Gee only 56,000 views! Thought more people would want to see how you take these fantastic macros!

  2. akshay70 35 months ago | reply

    can u tell m reverse technique harm the camera body n lens...is tht true?

  3. Thomas Kent 34 months ago | reply

    You are a constant source of inspiration -- I really enjoy your work! I do have a couple of questions though: What software do you use to deal with the noise from the Pentax cameras, and would you recommend any focus stacking software, or do you think it's best to do the stack manually with layer masks?

  4. DARREL NEAVES 32 months ago | reply

    i have a canon 550d + lens reversing lens + 50mm/18-55mm/50-250mm lenses + nissin di622 flash gun ... with this equipment .. could i take images like this? .. what settings are best?

  5. jayant52 31 months ago | reply

    Thomas, I am a newbie in macro, I am using 50mm f1.8 and 18-55mm f3.5lens reversed. I am facing lots of trouble with DOF when I use lens at 18mm. but the magnification @ 18mm is incredible, how can increase the DOF so that more of subject is in focus?

  6. saahmadbulbul 29 months ago | reply

    Not talking about your work because I have no words to describe it. Those are too good for me to comment. But i can't stop myself saying

    Love you work

    I just have one stupid question. Do you or the system that you built allow you to see live view while shooting?


  7. Magi Edos [deleted] 25 months ago | reply

    how much weight is it?

  8. toshfox 25 months ago | reply

    Oh I thought u used an extension tube, and not converter
    that's more expensive then

  9. Wagman Maia 23 months ago | reply

    Wow! Congratulations!
    You have a fan in Brazil!

  10. Gary J Clicx 23 months ago | reply

    you can search YouTube for his channel & video 'an introduction to high magnification macro photography'. he shows his latest setup, which is 3 set extension tubes + reversed prime & his flash + diy softbox. Also it shows you an insight of how he goes about doing his thing. I only have one word for this great bloke - RESPECT.

  11. Andreas Isaksen 23 months ago | reply

    How come you use a 2x teleconverter? How does that affect the picture? And what advantages does it have over bellows/macro rings?

  12. Palenquero 22 months ago | reply

    You are an inspiration, your art work is also great. Your hair do is nice also..

  13. canon7dude 19 months ago | reply

    Thanks for sharing, it is appreciated!

  14. Helder Faria 17 months ago | reply

    Nice gear! I'll try too...

  15. Cristian Balan 9 months ago | reply

    interesting gear!

  16. Steven v/d Roest 9 months ago | reply

    Just tried 1 test shot reversing my 18-55 mm kit lens on my canon 500d without a reversing ring. Got the same magnification as my Sigma 150 1:1 Macro lens

  17. cannacultor 9 months ago | reply

    Hi Thomas... many thanks for share your excellent work with the people...

  18. SinPlomo92 3 months ago | reply

    Badass Setup!

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