A quick comparison of the lenses I can use for macro with around 2X magnification. Thought I could share it... I don't own a dedicated macro lens, but I'm still happy with the results.
The subject was a dead butterfly I found a while ago, it looks a bit strange with the broken antennas. It is also always a challenge to get the light right for macros, even in the "studio". Here I used a yoghurt-cup mounted in a Pringles-tube as diffusor and placed a piece of aluminum foil beneath the insect to get the lower part brighter.
The comparison pieces are 100% crops from the untouched raw-images,
shown in (how I think) chronological order. A relarively new 35/1.8, a
Nikkor 35-70 from analog times, a Canon 50/1.8 and a Fujinon 50/1.4.
(Click the links in the image notes to see the details) I tried to
keep the viewing angle, magnification and focal plane identical, but I
did not completely succeed.
An external flash with a diffusor was used set to minimum power, so all the shots were taken at the same amount of light.
My winner is the Fujinon lens, followed by the Nikkor 35-70. Contrast
and grain is pretty good. This is more or less the result I expected,
I'm happy my 35-70 performes still good, since I bought and modified
it especially for macro. The Canon lens was very bright, and the
results here could be caused by diffraction, since I had to close the
aperture quite a lot. I'm a bit disappointed by the Nikkor 35/1.8, but
anyway the lens is not my favorite since it sometimes produces some
ugly CA even in "normal" use.
The large image is a bigger crop of the Fujinon test shot.
Comments and favs are highly appreciated! I'll be sure to look at your
Featured at DIYPhotography, many thanks!