Yoshizen's Blog

Ultra Proxer — Recycled from Old zoom lens

Proxer+EF100mm(1A)A09A9956Proxer is an old name to call Close-up lens which attach on front of the lens.  

The lens I’m talking here is a front lens element  I’ve scavenged from an old zoom lens 85~210 mm F 3.8,  sold under many different names —– the photo was in the previous post (first photo, Front lens was near the left end).

Most of the close-up lens consist simple convex, single meniscus lens mounted on a filter frame.   Same idea to put a magnifier before camera lens and take close-up  photo.  It was convenient to have a small adapter lens to take closer picture, as in the old days there was no such things like a macro setting on the Primary lens (Standard lens).  

—– To make a high-performance Proxer,  I did some cut and bonding works with epoxy glue, which was worthwhile to create a treasure out of junk.  🙂 

home-made Proxer(1)371-001Photo left :  Don’t hesitate to hack-saw a lens barrel.  Once disassembled and the glass was removed, even a precision optical device, is a piece of metal.   = What it used to be is only in your mind.  On this moment you are dealing the work to create something new.  What required here is a careful but very simple and boring push and pull work.  😀  

Center photo :  To the front lens, hack-sawed front barrel (which got 58mm  filter screw )  was screwed back and a filter ring was bonded to its rear side with epoxy glue.  

Photo right :  The finished close-up lend was attached on the front of the Canon EF 100 mm  Macro lens, which also has  58 mm filter size.

Home-made Proxer(2)372-001You might be wondering,  while having macro lens already, and having a skill to use the lens in reverse etc.  = all sorts of close-up trick, why do I need to have yet  another close-up lens. —– well, all of my Macro lenses were down to the life-size, in other words, they take a picture of  36mm x 24mm is the closest.  I simply wanted to close bit more.  (My attention tend to go rather small things.  🙂 )

—– And a real intention was to have much more exaggerated out of focus Bokhe.  (I’m tired with clear images which is everywhere and too easy to come by today.)     

Photo left :   With this close-up lens, when the master lens,  100 mm Macro lens was set to the infinity,   a small dole (36 mm tall) looks like this. (taken F 2.8)

Center Photo :  With close-up lens, when the Master Macro lens was set to the life-size, it produces  x2 larger image (dole’s head is 10mm).   Have look the Bokhe in F 2.8 = max open).  (This Bokhe is quite close to the Olympus Zuiko 50 mm F 2 Macro lens ! )  

Photo right :  A small beetle who happen to came to my room (it’s too hot these days,  the window was fully open) this photo was taken with a bounced flash-light with F 11.

Unlike most of the Proxer, this home-made close-up lens has double lens chromatic structure,  and fully coated. = Think, a cost of common cheap Proxer, and a Front lens which is the most crucial part of the lens structure in a  zoom lens.  

= Difference of quality is obvious.     As you can see it in those sample photos.  

Home-made Proxer(3)374-001A photo of a moth parched on the wall in my room, taken by EF 100 mm Macro with the handmade Proxer. = With F 2.8 the depth of focus is really shallow still, in the focused area, the image is very sharp.

EF 100mm at F2.8 at x1 + ProxerThis is a test shot of the screen of a Tablet (a photo of my umbrella).  This close-up lens maintained very high quality of the image = Very even, corner to corner.  And this is at F 2.8 ! (See details, by click it, and again)

Homemade Proxer Test(2)375Left photo is Macro lens alone and about  1/2 size.   Right photo is, with close-up lens but Master lens was set to Infinity.   Hence this combination can take photo from infinity to  1/1  and with this Proxer to  x2.  (By the way, Canon 5D mk-III has dreadful red-color cast when ISO was set to 6400.   In AWB and in any setting.  Though, at  ISO 100 much better.  = See the photos below)

Canon - Left ISO 3600 / Right - ISO 100(Photo left :  5D but Mk-II.   Photo Right :  The ISO setting was  100  = Much better !)(Those are hand-held photos = only for Color reference.)  To be fair,  I show you the photos by Nikon D810’s color  in similar setting.

Nikon D800 Left ISO 3600, Right ISO 100, 377-001

(Photo Left :  Nikon D810 — ISO 3600    Photo Right :  Same but ISO 100   Both with Micro Nikkor 55mm F3.5 — 1/2 )

Higher ISO setting mean, very low out-put of image sensor has to be amplified electronically to its limit.    While amplifying to such extent, still linearity has to be maintained, while the out-put of each BGR may not having exactly the same character.

= Can of warm is opened.  🙂   In the same time, higher amplification also amplify the noise as well.  

—– I admire and praise  the people who managed it and brought the benefit of very high ISO setting even if it was not (yet) perfect.

Proxer+EF 100mm(2)A09A9955

Proxer+EF 100mm(3)A09A9975

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11 Responses

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  1. bentehaarstad said, on July 19, 2013 at 00:01

    The last two pictures are very strange, and good ones. Special ones. Supermacro..

    • yoshizen said, on July 19, 2013 at 00:14

      Thank you very much Bente.
      That was what I worked for —– and your word meant to me that my effort was not in vain !
      (Soft focus, pinhole, etc. all in the same context.)

  2. elenacaravela said, on July 19, 2013 at 19:47

    Your technical process is astonishing Yoshi! And the shots are gorgeous.

    • yoshizen said, on July 19, 2013 at 20:57

      Thank you Elena.
      I know a little bit, hence I was an adviser to the Canon when they were designing EOS-1 as
      a rare breed of a photographer, knowing the technology as well.
      I hope you like the photos in the next post. 😉

  3. […] not close enough.  So that I specially made additional Proxer / Close-up lens my self. […]

  4. drawandshoot said, on July 31, 2013 at 13:55

    Wow, you are so creative (brave)! As are those last 2 images. I love the softness of them and especially the composition of the yellow flower.

    • yoshizen said, on July 31, 2013 at 15:11

      Thank you Karen.
      I’m not sure if I were anything brave since there was no danger or loose anything.

  5. Moss | Yoshizen's Blog said, on February 28, 2014 at 01:04

    […] Lest of photos were taken by Canon EF Macro 100mm F2.8 with Close-up lens. […]

  6. […] you may visit the old posts. Here and There. […]

  7. NZ Lens | Yoshizen's Blog said, on December 24, 2017 at 15:52

    […] I made close-up lens out of a front element of the zoom lenses.  So, I wanted to make something different from this Nikon zoom lens. (AF-S Nikkor 18~200 G ED)  […]

  8. […] that it was not because of the VR but the shatter makes very little vibration and the lens I used (Canon 100mm macro F2.8 with proxer) happen to be very solid and steady even for handheld […]


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