Customer Reviews: Fotodiox Canon EOS Macro Extension Tube Set for Extreme Close-Ups
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on September 20, 2010
At this price, why not give macro a try? Do a little research first since it's not exactly and plug and play accessory for the camera, but they really aren't tough to use and can get exactly the same result as the name brand tubes costing 10 to 20 times more. The main thing to keep in mind is that you lose autofocus as and you lose aperture control, otherwise it's just adding air space so there's not really much difference when you step up in cost. If you need to set you aperture, use the DOF trick. Just set your aperture and then press the DOF preview button. Then keep holding it down while you release the lens and it stays set. As far as focus, manual isn't as bad as you'd think for non-moving subjects.

As far as the product itself, it's pretty nice for the price. Doesn't have the finely machined feel of an expensive lens or filter, but it's not cheap junk either. The threads all turn smoothly with no resistance, and the lens and camera mounts fit tightly.

And as a final note, don't even think about trying to use this without off camera lighting. Even in daylight, the pics will likely turn out underexposed when focused in this closely unless you have some extra lighting to hold up to the subject. The on camera flash is useless when you're focused on something half an inch away from your lens as well.
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on September 26, 2012
This video shows how to use the Fotodiox Canon EOS Macro Extension Tube for Extreme Close-up.
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on December 3, 2010
I started to use my Canon Rebel T2i (550D) with the 18-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS macro lens to take some close up shots, they were OK.
But after using this product am completely sold unto macro photography. with the three rings attached I was able to get much closer than the lens could on its own
and I was pretty amazed at the details... WOW.
Attaching the tube to the camera and lens was easy and surprisingly quick. However, ever removing it from the camera body was a challenge until I figured out that you have to push up the little pin while unscrewing the thing. I wish there was some sort of written instructions with it in the box. But once you figure that out its a breeze and an absolute pleasure using. One thing though you must use some external flash source for illumination, an external flash provided all the light I needed and the results were fantastic.

If you are new to this type of photography this is definitely worth the price, plus its made from aluminum so its gonna last a while.
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on September 25, 2010
This all metal aluminum extension set works fine, see photo above of quarter . I was worried it might touch the body or lens electrical contacts, it doesn't. It has both red dots to align with, not white, EF-S lenses. The locking pin works on my EF-S kit 18-55 lens, but I had to align where I thought the white dot is. I took them all apart and put together. The smallest one was stuck to the ring. I warmed it up on an incandescent light bulb for 45 seconds and it came unstuck. All go together smoothly. I had planned to use manual focus anyway whether I bought to $80 or $170 version or not.I used P setting to take the quarter pic on my Canon Rebel T2i or 550D. I used a simple desklamp 60watt Compact Flourescent for illumination. Also I used live view and view finder as well. If I had to guess I would say the black finish is anodized not paint. The lens side ring is attached by 3 small phillips screws and the lens latch is spring loaded and works ok and is good quality. There is also a small screw that looks like a stop for the camera side attachment.
I may post some more interesting pics as I use it. The best feature of this product is a price I did not have to budget for. Thanks
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VINE VOICEon April 21, 2011
Well constructed, professional appearance. Excellent price. If you want to do macro photography, this is a no-brainer steal.

IMPORTANT NOTE #1: When I first used it, I couldn't figure out how to "unmount" it from my lens and it comes with no instructions. For 5 minutes I was in a near panic until I realized that the little metal screw on the side is not a screw to hold the mount in place, as it appears to be, but rather it's a little slider switch - simply slide it back and it releases the tube mount. (It sure LOOKS like a screw, curse it all!) I'd have given it 5 stars if it hadn't scared me and had included an instruction sheet.

IMPORTANT NOTE #2: I realized when I ordered these that they would defeat the AUTO-FOCUS feature of the lens, but for macro photography, I was okay with that. What I didn't think about is that the aperture is in the lens, not the camera, so without an electrical connection between the lens and the camera, you also lose APERTURE control, which means you always shoot WIDE OPEN, which gives you a MINISCULE (millimeter or two) depth of field in some cases, unsharp edges, and a tendency to overexpose.

That is not a problem with this product, just an attribute of using extension tubes that you should know about if you haven't used them before.

I give it 5 stars for quality/value, 2.5 stars for usefulness. For the price, a couple of good macro shots makes it worth it, it just won't be easy.
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on April 28, 2012
Update #2- I finally committed. I can not in good faith re-attach this to my camera. It now lives in the recycle bin.

Update # 1-See original review below. As for the eight month update- it no longer holds my lenses. I got very lucky and caught my lens as it came unattached. I re-attached it several times and jiggled it around over the couch and sure enough- it fell off every time. The very button that most reviewers complain about sticking is doing just the opposite for me. It is operated by such a small loose spring that it obviously is the most dysfunctional part on the tube. You can see the profile of this button on the left side of the top ring in the picture. So- lesson learned for me. Saving a buck is not worth risking a thousand. I believe my next venture with be Kenko Auto Extension Tube Set DG 12mm, 20mm, and 36mm Tubes for Nikon AF Digital and Film Cameras - AEXRUBEDGC.

Original review April 2012

I looked at this for a month before committing. I was hesitant due to some bad reviews but then stumbled on the tips someone wrote in the comments section of another customers bad review. That tip was to change and set the aperture manually to a higher fstop in MANUAL mode. If you don't, you will get such a shallow depth of field that it may appear to be junk. So... that tip made me buy it. Like others have mentioned, it takes a minute to get used to how to focus but when you do achieve focus- It's amazing. It works very well with my Canon 18-55 and especially well with my canon 55-250. In a nutshell- you can but this for $12 bucks and spend a few extra minutes with adjustments or spend hundreds on a real macro lens. Until I can justify the expense, I will stick with making my own adjustments. For $12- this absolutely gets 5 stars!
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on February 7, 2011
I purchased this item because I wanted to take some close up photos without spending the money for a dedicated macro lens. The product arrived as described before the expected delivery date. But, it takes a TON of practice to get this right. After the tube is put on the lens, not only is the autofocus function no longer available, but you have to make sure you are at a very specific distance from the subject to get the manual focus to work properly. It takes a lot of trial and error to determine what that distance is. I found that if I use the macro tube with my 75-300mm lens set at about 100mm, I don't have to be directly ontop of the subject to get it to focus properly. But, it also requires my tripod and remote to keep things steady enough to get the shot. All in all, I probably won't use it too much, but I didn't lose a lot of money on it either.
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These aren't bad for what they are and they just tubes that put some distance between your lens and your camera. That's great but what is lacking is aperture and focus control. To use these you need to either have an older style lens with an aperture ring or shoot "wide open". You will also need to focus manually.

I recently bought Zeikos ZE-CVAFN Auto Focus Macro Extension Tubes for Nikon and what a difference! I realize I shoot Nikon and these tubes fit Canon but mount type aside, they're the same product. Being able to auto focus and, if I choose, let me set the aperture on lenses that don't have a manual ring is a wonderful convenience. After the first day of shooting I was happy I upgraded. Also, while I didn't regret the small cost for the "manual" rings it would have been nice to have avoided it.

My experiences prompted me to provide the following information as "extra credit". It describes the most common options in terms so simple that even I can understand them.

There are three common choices for allowing a dSLR to focus "up close" and get a life size or larger image on your sensor.

1) You can put some space between the back of the lens and the sensor. The greater the space the larger the magnification. That is usually done with fixed sized spacers, called extension tubes, or a variable length spacer called an extension bellows. Extension tubes usually come in sets of different lengths so you can mix and match to get the magnification you want. Bellows allow continuous adjustment of the lens-to-sensor spacing. Of the two, extension tubes are by far the most common. Most extension tubes include data contacts that pass focus and aperture data between the lens and your camera. With those contacts you can "auto focus" and all your camera to set the aperture. Without them you have to do everything manually.

2) You can use a special Macro lens (Micro if it's from Nikon) that includes optics which provide the desired magnification. As an interesting aside, just about all Macro Zoom lenses are really just zoom lenses with built-in extension tubes. To get them to focus up close you zoom them all the way out, throw a switch on the lens, then keep twisting and watch as the extension tube part kicks in and the lens moves further away from the camera.

3) You can use a "Close-up Filter". That's a magnifying glass that screws on the front of your lens like a filter and lets you capture an enlarged image. You need to select the proper size to fit the lens you intend to use. A alternate and perhaps much better approach is to by a large size, 77mm is usually the largest available and get a reasonably priced set of step down rings, such as the Fotodiox 7 Metal Step Up Ring Set, Anodized Black Metal 49-52mm, 52-55mm, 55-58mm, 58-62mm, 62-67mm, 67-72mm, 72-77mm. This will allow the filter to be used on any of your lenses. Also, you don't want to go cheap with these since, being a lens, it will affect the quality of your image.

Which option is best for you, you ask? Strange as it may seem, sitting here in the lofty tower of my basement office, I can answer that question. Given you are reading this, my answer is... Extension tubes. They are relatively low cost, most less than $100 while being extremely light and generally durable. Also, extension tubes will work with all your lenses. Even if you choose to invest later on in a good quality Macro lens these will still come in handy since you can keep them in your bag for times when you left the "real" macro lens at home.

Please feel free to let Amazon and me know whether this was helpful to you or not, since it helps me improve my reviews.
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on June 2, 2011
This extension tube works great if you don't wanna spend a ton of money on a macro lens. However, there are no electronic contacts so you're camera can't communicate with the lens; therefore, you lose auto focusing and aperture control. I don't use auto focus much so that wasn't a big deal, but the loss of aperture control is kind of a bummer. Reason being, since you can't control the aperture, if you are shooting in the middle of the day more times than not you're picture is going to be get blown out by sunlight. Although, I have had avoided this by using faster shutter speeds and eventually buying a neutral density filter. So keep in mind, you get what you pay for.
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on April 3, 2013
I find these extension tubes very nicely made for the price, with one odd and unfortunate exception: on the lens mount surface, the surface that mates with your lens (not your camera body), you'll find several holes for recessed screws. Each of these holes has a raised metal burr around it, ready to scar your lens' mounting surface, especially if you have a plastic lens mount as some cheaper Canon lenses do. See my close-up photos (taken with a hand lens held over an iPhone camera) of the lens mount holes on the extension tubes. Will the scars made by these burrs be merely cosmetic? Probably, but I also worry about little chips of metal wearing off of my extension tubes and possibly getting into the camera. Interestingly, the hole for the lens locking pin DOES have a nice 45-degree chamfer on it (see pic)--so why not the others?

I am thinking over the best way to remove the burrs & put my own chamfer on these holes before I put one of my lenses on. An unnecessary bummer for a otherwise great value product.
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