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Kenko Extension Tubes for Macro Photography

If you are a devoted Macro Photographer and want to get a little closer than Extension Tubes are an ideal and inexpensive solution. These tubes increase the maximum magnification level of your Macro lens by distancing it from the sensor. As there is no glass elements in the tubes, the quality of the picture remains the same.

This overview describes a set of Kenko Extension Tubes which come in 12mm, 20mm and 32mm focal lengths. There is a variety of Extension Tubes for DSLR cameras available on the market, including both generic and brand names such as Nikon and Canon. Remember that the cheaper extension tubes do not transfer any information from the lens to your camera so you will have adjust all the settings manually, including the lens aperture, which can be really annoying.

Kenko Extension Tubes offer quality and durability for a reasonable price. Despite the plastic cover, they are well-built, durable and exceptionally light. These tubes are compatible with the majority of CPU, Manual and Autofocus lenses. You may use them with your Macro lens or with an ordinary lens in order to increase its magnification level. However, if you decide to use Extension Tubes with an ordinary lens, the working distance (the minimum distance from the object to the lens) becomes extremely tight, making it difficult to light your subject properly. Secondly, bear in mind that the grater magnification the faster shutter speed is required when shooting handheld, as even the slightest movement can affect the focus. Finally, when shooting at increased magnification levels, the autofocus becomes unusable and focusing is usually done manually.

The pictures below demonstrate the level of magnification the tubes allow you to achieve. Each picture has been taken with a Sigma 105mm Macro lens set to 1:1 magnification on a DX format DSLR camera with Nikon SB-900 speedlight.

1:1 magnification – no tubes attached

1:1 magnification + 12mm extension Tube

1:1 Magnification + 12mm and 20mm Extension Tubes Combined


1:1 Magnification + 12mm, 20mm and 36mm Extension Tubes Combined

If you are interested in Macro photography, read my other posts: Macro Photography for Beginners, Advancing your Macro Photography and Macro Set-up for Focus Stacking.

Thanks for reading and good luck with your photography.

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5 responses

  1. Pingback: Macro Photography for Beginners « Experimental Digital Photography

  2. Pingback: Advancing your Macro Photography «

  3. Pingback: Macro Photography for Beginners «

  4. Very well written story. It will be valuable to anybody who usess it, as well as me. Keep doing what you are doing – I will definitely read more posts.

    January 8, 2012 at 8:56 am

  5. Pingback: Macro Set-up for Focus Stacking | Shutter Experiments

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