242 of 246 people found the following review helpful
on September 22, 2010
I was a bit skeptical when similar extension tubes sell anywhere from $80-170. For only $10 I figured it was worth a chance and would not hold my expectations too high. I am an amateur photographer and wanted to experiment in some super macro setups. When I tested these tubes I used a Nikon D90 and an old rikoh 55mm f1.4. This lens is from my older 35mm collection and has manual aperture ring (reasons whey below).
I find extension tubes to be in a very specific niche in the world of photography. If you want to give macro photography a try, extension tubes, or bellows would be good start. From there a decent 1:1 dedicated macro lens would be the next step. It should be mentioned that the farther away the lens is mounted from the camera's sensor, the minimal focusing distance is also changed. This is a factor that sets an extension tube apart from a dedicated macro lens. Using my 55mm lens, and all three extension tubes, I guess the minimum focusing distance was around 1" with a 1:1.32 ratio. You can use a 100mm dedicated macro lens and have a working distance around 11" from your subject, get 1:1 ratios with AF and metering. If you want to try a bellows, you will needed to use an extension tube because the bellows rail will hit the grip on a D90. The smallest rings were enough to clear the grip.
If you are still considering these, then you know what they are used for and the price is probably the most attractive attribute. If you don't want to read the rest, they do what they are advertised to do.
All metal construction.
Three interchangeable sections can be mixed and matched to you preferences.
Solid. The all metal construction felt strong and no flexing between the joints or the bayonet mounts. Tested with my Nikon 18-200mm. Felt solid, but I would still support the lens.
Flexible. You can mix and match the three sections to get the focal range you are looking for. With all three sections, and the mounts attached you can get 1:1.32 ratio (larger than life size with super sharp results since there is only air in between).
Price. This is the items selling factor in my opinion. There are others and the closest alternative model is $80.
I have a few gripes, but should be expected from a set at this price.
The sections connect with very fine threads and are very easy to cross-thread if you are not careful. I have used similar products before, and over time I suspect they threads will wear down if they are repeatedly used.
When sections are mixed and matched the lens mounts do not stay in the same position. The higher-end tubes keep the lens mount in the same place so that the aperture ring will stay on the top of the lens (They separate the sections with individual bayonet mounts with lens contacts. Much nicer in my opinion compared to threads.). With these tubes it will depend on the tubes used. Forget about using bellows with these tubes. My D90 ended upside down, crooked and it was just not worth the operation.
Manual operation. This is not a real gripe, but a con for any extension tube. If you have one of the newer Nikon lenses then you will have trouble with these tubes. Focusing is not an issue since you can move either your subject closer, or the setup closer. Setting the aperture is another problem. I have a newer 35mm f1.8 and the aperture is controlled internally by the camera. It is set by default for f22. This is not an issue for most people since f22 will give you the greatest depth of field, especially when dealing with macro this is important. It will make focusing much more difficult it poor light situations. On the older lenses, I just set the aperture to 1.4, get the focus point exactly where I want it, then stop down to the desired aperture. You will also need to use "Manual" mode because the camera cannot detect the lens's aperture and adjust exposure accordingly.
Overall worth a try for $10, but be aware of the lack of automatic features and cross threading the sections.
211 of 218 people found the following review helpful
on September 29, 2011
Ok, there are two things you need to know in order to have this work:
1. You MUST have a lens that has adjustable aperture. Newer Nikon lenses that a gelded "G" lenses, will be stuck on F22 aperture making it difficult to see anything through the lens. If you don't have a lens that has an adjustable aperture, do not buy this product.
2. You MUST set your camera to manual "M" mode. Otherwise you will get an error message because without electrical contacts, your camera doesn't realize that there is a lens on it. If you don't know how to use manual mode and don't want to learn, do not buy this product.
It is also good to note, there is a silver button on the side and to remove the extension tube from your camera, you must pull it back towards the camera, then rotate and remove. Much easier than breaking it off.
The negative reviews are laughable since most are user error/misunderstanding. For under 10 bucks, this is metal construction (not plastic) and is a nice way to get into playing around with macro photography.
Just a side note, I use this with a D90 and my 50mm AF-D (can not use with the AF-S since it doesn't have an aperture ring) and my 80-200mm AF-D. The 80-200 is a huge lens an a little difficult since the lens is very front weighted, but gives a little more distance from the subject. The 50mm focus point is about 8" from the lens, the 80-200mm is about 24" from the lens at 200mm.
74 of 78 people found the following review helpful
on December 21, 2010
This macro extension kit is not the nicest, but it does exactly what it's supposed to do for far less cost than other brands. As previous reviewers recommend, I removed the tiny screw that protrudes in the base piece. The threads are fine but aren't that difficult to use if you're reasonably careful. Because the tubes screw onto each other, the depth-of-field markings on the lens will likely end up pointing in the wrong direction. This really isn't an issue since they're useless at this magnification anyway. The same goes for the loss of autofocus. The aperture must be set manually as well, which again is not really a problem for most macro shooting. I don't believe these rings will work with G lenses (lenses that do not have a manual aperture ring), so you will be forced to use a different product for those lenses.
Otherwise the tubes are well-made and work perfectly. My Nikon 105mm Macro almost becomes a microscope with all of the tubes installed. Depth of field is very thin but usable, and the image quality is unchanged as expected since the tubes only add air between the camera and lens. This is great way to extend your ability to shoot macro for very little expense.
46 of 50 people found the following review helpful
on January 23, 2011
See my pics (Philip R. Tarpley).
I am going to make this short(ish). I currently own a Nikon D5000, 18-55 kit lens, 70-300 tele, and the 50mm 1.4 prime. I have been eyeballing a macro but knew it would be a while before I could swing for one. After some research, I stumbled upon this macro extension tube and for the money I figured I couldn't be too disappointed.
I knew the limitations before I bought it: you will shoot in 100% manual, no TTL flash, no metering, no focus, and MOST IMPORTANT, you cannot adjust aperture through the camera.
All my Nikon lenses have a physical lever on the end of the lens which adjusts the aperture in the lens...so I was able to make aperture adjustments by slipping a piece of rubber band around the lever. Many people may cringe at the idea of this, but it doesn't bother me. Just know that w/o doing this you will be shooting w/the minimum aperture your lens supports. You will likely need 10 seconds or more to expose an image if you do nothing. If you have a lens w/an aperture ring, this is not an issue. With me able to shoot w/the lens wide open (or anywhere in between), I have had a lot of fun w/this extension tube.
The tube is made entirely of aluminum and fits well w/the camera/lenses. As some have mentioned the threads are fine and if you were to tighten it cross-threaded you will ruin it...not surprising. In the end, this is a great deal and allows you to get photos you couldn't dream of w/o a dedicated macro lens costing hundreds of dollars...I'm very happy.
Keep in mind that w/this tube you will no longer be able to focus to infinity...the depth of field is incredibly thin. You will need to move the camera to achieve focus; the focus ring on the lens will not be enough.
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on March 11, 2012
I bought this item after reading all the reviews. I don't ordinarily submit reviews, but so many of the reviews I read for this product struck me as bogus that I felt compelled to write a review in this case.
First of all: if you're looking to puchase extension tubes as an inexpensive way to take closeup (or even macro) photos - please, do all of us a favor and read up on them first. Think about what sort of lens you're going to use them with.
If you're seeking to couple extension tubes with a Nikkor G-type lens (look at the lens: does it have a "G" at the end of its designation?), and you really want to retain the ability to autofocus, these are NOT the extension tubes for you. (But ask yourself why you think you need to retain the ability to autofocus? It's virtually useless with macro or closeup photography). Not only will you be unable to autofocus (because these extension tubes don't enable communication between the lens and the camera - what do you expect for $8???), BUT as others have noted, you will find the scene very dark (as the aperture will be stopped down). If you insist on using extension tubes with a Nikkor G-type lens, please get a set of extension tubes that allows communication between the lens and the body. And be prepared to pay a lot more money.
If you're trying to couple it to a relatively short lens, be prepared to need to get within an inch or two of the subject before you can focus on it.
Be advised with all extension tubes that you may lose the ability to focus on infinity. Also recognize that extension tubes will rob you of some light. This is true of all extension tubes. You just can't break the laws of physics.
If, on the other hand, you have an old manual focus lens, or even an autofocus lens with an aperture ring (you know, the thing that allows you to set the aperture manually?), then this is a handy addition to your kit for very little money. To be sure, the threads are thin, and the set is lightweight, so I'd think twice before coupling this to a heavy lens. (All of my heavy lenses are G-type lenses, so I won't even try mounting this set to them). Still: you gain a lot of versatility for very little cash outlay if your lenses are relatively light in weight.
I bought this to go with some old manual focus lenses I've recently purchased (a Russian Helios 58mm f/2 lens and an East German Meyer-Optik Gorlitz Trioplan 100mm f/2.8 - check out the latter group on Flickr). I didn't have any trouble attaching or detaching the extension tubes to the lenses; having read the reviews on Amazon, I knew not to bother trying to turn the knurled knob on the ring that connects to the lens, but simply to pull it back toward the camera body to release the lens. Piece of cake.
I played with the extension tubes with the Trioplan lens last night. I'd discovered that the minimum focusing distance on this lens without any extension tubes was about 40 inches. A bit of a bummer as I'd bought it because of its wonderful bokeh, and I was hoping to use it for closeup shots of flowers (among other things). But by adding just the 7 mm extension tube, I could get the minimum focusing distance down to 18 inches - enough to allow me to fill the frame this morning with a Lenten rose, with wonderful background bokeh. (And next time I'll use the tripod that hadn't yet arrived in the mail).
Why pay more? Sure, it's lightweight, but photography is an expensive hobby, and I don't mind saving on things like this where the build quality has absolutely no impact on the image quality. It'll allow me to buy that next lens (or monopod head, or neutral density filter) all the sooner.
10 of 10 people found the following review helpful
on April 16, 2011
Good product. I start shooting weddings and I didn't have money for a macro lens. Nikon 50mm 1.8 + Fotodiox tube#1 + Nikon D7000 = amazing wedding rings shots. You need to shoot on manual, but after 1 hour of shooting and experimenting I found the right setup to get the right shots. Thank you Fotodiox.
27 of 33 people found the following review helpful
on November 22, 2010
If the lens/camera you want to extend has a manual focus mode and a functional aperture ring, I would recommend these tubes. If you want to use a lens with a digitally controlled aperture setting, or with any type of automatic camera settings for metering or focus, look elsewhere.
I use this set of tubes with a 1960s era 55mm prime micro nikkor fully manual lens and it works just fine. With my newer nikon 18-55mm g kit lens for dx format cameras I cannot set the aperture at all so it is totally useless.
This was fully expected. So I am not really complaining.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
on November 3, 2011
I am at entry level of DSLR world learning all kind of skills in this new world. Buying this tube is just simple want to keep my option open. When I like to take a macro shot, it's possible. No need to be magazine level (which I hope!) but enough to entertain myself and my friends and family.
I will just give my two cents after a few hours of playing with this tube.
It's a tube, combined by several rings to extend the distance from your lens to your chip. Imagine Captain Jack Sparrow's telescope. It's pure mechanical configuration. You only need to remember ISO, shutter speed, and focus. All my recently purchased lenses won't work because they are all driven by chip. I use my old Nikon auto focus zoon lens with aperture adjustable ring (keep it wide open), then the image is collected from camera's sensor. Nothing fancy. With all rings screwed on, I played with this set using ISO 200 ~ 400, and shutter speed from 1/30 to 1/60, handheld. I also did setting the focus, then use zoom ring sliding back and forth to focus, and setting the zoom, then use focal ring to play with the focus. Both method worked just fine. However, you will need to get the lens real close to the object, until you can see the fuzzy shadow of your object, then adjust the focus. Below is what I think may help you to make the decision:
* Low price.
* Easy to keep.
* Multiple adjustment (just add or remove the rings)
* Worked fine with your old lenses.
* Handheld is clear enough.
* If you break it, buy a new set will just cost you the price of another burger.
* No instruction, manual, what so ever. It came in a white OEM box and the metal rings were assembled and wrapped in a small cheap plastic bag. You need to figure out how the whole set work. And, take a few shot with different combination.
* No auto-WhatSoEver, there's sensor connector at all, so, no auto-shutter, aperture, focus... just use the old lens in your drawer is the best.
* Extend the lens quite long. It's not bothering me. As I said, consider it's a telescope.
* The quality of the lens mount and body mount portion is not very impressive like other adapter made by same manufacture.
For anybody looking for high quality with all automatic functions, don't buy this option. For poor man like myself, can only save $$$ from my lunch and wondering some fun shot, go for it!
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
on November 8, 2012
I was very please with the product once I got it on and started using it. It gave me the pictures I was looking for and I was very excited to finally get some macro photos of my carnivorous plants. The pictures were a little dark, but noting that couldn't be fixed easily on the computer or compensated by adjusting the f stop or shutter speed (which as a side note, this product is not capable of anything in "auto" mode, only manual).
I was of course happy until I needed to use that lens for regular photography which is when I realized I can't take the extension tube off! I could not figure out how to get it off. I looked back on here for reviews and some suggested to use knives and pliers and safety pins while distroying the tube or the lens in the process. However, after giving it to my friend and an hour of messing with it, we figured it out. Here's how to remove the extension tube from your lens.
On the end of the extension tube (the side that attaches to the lens), there is a silver screw/knob. This knob is capable of moving and is what releases the pin/lock that holds it to the lens. To release this lock, slide the screw/knob away from the lens or if still attached to the camera it would be sliding towards the camera. Hold the knob in this poition and rotate the lens clockwise.
Viola! Extension tube comes off of lens. It does take some wiggling and it doesn't come off super easy, but it does come off without causing damage.
Hope that helps!!
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
on December 24, 2013
It's a simple piece of kit and the majority of people unhappy either don't understand how to use it or don't understand what is required to use it. Some have mentioned the need for a manual lens but that gets ignored so I might as well add it again. YOU'LL NEED A MANUAL LENS. You'll need to be able to set aperture manually, the best option would be to use your manual nifty fifty. When attaching the lens to the tube don't click the lens all the way in so that the aperture isn't forced wide open and you're good to go. So that the depth of field isn't tiny shoot at at least F8, I shot water drops and flowers at F22 and everything is in focus with the 7mm ring.
Pro's = $12, does the job
Con's = Be careful with the fine threads on the rings, make sure you attach square on so as not to cross thread, that's just common sense though.
Edit: Added a photo to the gallery that I took today with it.