• 5W Cree LED
  • One of eight connections
  • Removable plug
  • The connectors
  • This tube connects to a reversed lens and is at the front in the final setup
  • This tubes connects to the camera
  • Cable to an external battery

Macro Extension Tubes Mod

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This setup is outdated. It was working, but mounting a Dandelion chip in the small extension tube is much more comfortable. It might still be interesting for Canon users, since they can control the aperture electronically.

See an example shot here!

Mounting a lens reversely to get high magnification is a well known technique for macro photography. I did not want to dispense with the electronic link so I modded two extension tubes to ensure proper electronic connection. The process was more critical than expected, since there is surprisingly much mechanic in the tubes. Very thin wires were required (see detail) to make it fit.

My D90 can meter the exposure.
Some flashs (like my Sigma) needs TTL metering to be driven beside maximum or minimal manual settings. With this setup I still have to correct the exposure and of course manual is still the mode I use, but ISO and flash power driven automatically is a great thing!

Of course the tubes can still be used regularly!

I've also added a 5W Cree LED as a macro light which helps significantly to find the focus spot. It is powered by an external battery.
See comments for the complete setup or have a look at my macro equipment set for the evolution of my setups.
Of course I also have a set for the resulting macro images!

Thanks for the clicks, hackaday!

stst31415, planet_us, meghimeg, and 21 other people added this photo to their favorites.

View 9 more comments

  1. nuno_cruz 42 months ago | reply

    I so want to do the same, but my skills and tools are not enough at the moment! I have and invert tube adapter for my lens, but with an 1.7 aperture lens the DOF is almost 0 so the results are simple awful. Great job!

  2. Terapixel² 42 months ago | reply

    You could try to close the aperture manually and keep it in place somehow, I did this with my ultrawide lens.

  3. nuno_cruz 42 months ago | reply

    I can't, the aperture is controlled only electronically, it's the LUMIX G 20/F1.7 lens.

  4. Terapixel² 42 months ago | reply

    I see...
    Did you ever think of lens stacking? I did a crazy setup with this as well :P

  5. nuno_cruz 42 months ago | reply

    Still need some electrical connection no? Or are this just lens + lens + lens going through the tube right?

  6. Terapixel² 42 months ago | reply

    for lens stacking you only need to reversely mount a lens with smaller focal length (FL) (wide oben is OK) in front of a tele-lens. The magnification you get is roughly FL1/FL2. The drawbacks are a lack of image quality because of the amount of glass in front of the sensor and for the setup shown above the subject distance was simply to close...

  7. Daniel Borg 42 months ago | reply

    Have you got anymore details on this mod? I love hacking stuff around and would mind trying this?

  8. Terapixel² 42 months ago | reply

    Thanks, you've got mail.

  9. 'pixler' 42 months ago | reply

    absolutely superb! great info. thanks

  10. nuno_cruz 41 months ago | reply

    Well I must say that you inspired me and I ordered some materials to do a kind of similar project of my own, I hope it works, will post the results if it does :D

  11. Terapixel² 41 months ago | reply

    Glad to hear that :) Looking forward to see some results!

  12. linden.g 41 months ago | reply

    Great idea

  13. Boris Mitendorfer Photography 40 months ago | reply

    Interesting DIY work. Congratulations, that you made it work so well.

  14. Stargazer95050 40 months ago | reply

    That's hard-core modding -- still you need a AF-D lens or older. Or does this also work with "G" lenses

  15. Terapixel² 40 months ago | reply

    Thanks. This works with all Nikon-F lenses but of course it does not control the aperture mechanically, this is why I've chosen an old lens with aperture ring. Does Nikon produce lenses with electronically controlled aperture like Canon does as well? I'm not sure...

  16. Stargazer95050 40 months ago | reply

    AFAIKlenses always need the mechanical lever to keep the aperture open. (they close to the set value if the lever is released.
    And this is a hard-core DIY solution -- hacking a Canon lens. Enjoy

  17. Kanipandiarajan 32 months ago | reply

    i was scared to do such setup.. but after seeing urs i got confidence.. will try with my extension tube soon !! thanks a lot.. all ur setups were great..

  18. Terapixel² 32 months ago | reply

    Thanks. You may consider a more simple setup like shown here:

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