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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Macro Talk
Thread started 02 Jun 2017 (Friday) 11:19
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New macro diffuser for MT24-EX

 
Dalantech
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Sep 21, 2017 02:22 |  #46

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456577 (external link)
Sorry, I've been catching up with some back orders but I should have a set next week to send you. I will send you a PM.

Actually more interested in a set for the MT-26 EX RT when it comes out (I have one on pre-order). Also wanted to discus the way that you designed the current diffuser. It looks like you've made it wider at the bottom, toward the lens, and then compensate for the change in angle by using flash shoe extenders. Have you tried making a set with equal sides on both the top and the bottom of the flash heads? I've done a lot of experimenting with Keiser adjustable flash shoes to change the angle of the flash heads, and except for a few situations it's almost always better to have the twin flash heads mounted directly to the Canon lens mount. It has to to with the angle between the flash heads, subject, and the sensor. Too low, like the MR-14EX II, and the light will be too "head on" and flat. Too high, like having both heads on extenders, and the amount of light striking the subject and coming back into the lens is reduced (so the flash has to fire longer). I've also noticed inconsistencies in E-TTL metering with both heads on extenders. The angle between the flash, subject, and sensor is pretty much spot on with the twin heads mounted directly to the Canon flash mount. The only time the angle needs to be lower (not higher) is at 4x and higher mag due to the reduced working distance above 3x.


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JasonC007
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Sep 21, 2017 03:27 as a reply to Dalantech's post |  #47

Yes I can make them for the MT-26 easy enough, I will try and get hold of the head dimensions.

My current diffuser is rectangular in shape but I have angled the body so that the bottom edge of the face is as close to the lens as possible. I've done this for a couple of reasons, 1. so that light is pushed out from the front of the lens instead of just from the sides so it lights up the front of the subject more, 2. the angle stops light bleeding back into the lens which causes flare and thus a washed out image. I used the mounts to achieve this angle and also to let me have a larger diffusion face because if the flash head is too close tot eh subject you don't get chance to diffuse, not without losing a lot of light anyway.

I've designed these to let as much light through as possible rather than adding multiple layers of diffusion. The graduated face is thicker in the middle than the edges and when used at the right angle for the magnification, the hotspot that would normally appear in the middle is eliminated. The only hotspot you would see on the subject now is the diffusion face itself which is much larger.

I've also designed them so they are as unobtrusive as possible so that you can get closer to subjects, meaning that with just the normal diffuser faces added, you won't get light coming from all angles, which is fine in most cases but, if you do need more light from say below or above you can attach the extensions I made. These extensions are obviously only reflective but they do actually give you that little extra light if needed. They are reversible so can can direct light up or down. The downside is that that are more obtrusive so more likely to scare off bugs.

The diffuser body is Black but has a White insert, whereas my previous DIY version was foil lined and had a paper diffuser face, which you would expect to be brighter, however I tested them both against each other and the new one with a White insert is actually brighter, which is most likely because of the diffusion face. I imagine using a foil lining in the new diffuser would give you even more light, but I have been trying to keep everything 3D printable to make them usable without any modifications.


Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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Dalantech
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Sep 21, 2017 04:06 |  #48

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456958 (external link)
Yes I can make them for the MT-26 easy enough, I will try and get hold of the head dimensions.

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456958 (external link)
My current diffuser is rectangular in shape but I have angled the body so that the bottom edge of the face is as close to the lens as possible. I've done this for a couple of reasons, 1. so that light is pushed out from the front of the lens instead of just from the sides so it lights up the front of the subject more, 2. the angle stops light bleeding back into the lens which causes flare and thus a washed out image. I used the mounts to achieve this angle and also to let me have a larger diffusion face because if the flash head is too close tot eh subject you don't get chance to diffuse, not without losing a lot of light anyway.

Without any diffusers the flash heads can be angled all the way down toward the lens when they are attached to the Canon lens mount. With your diffuser how far can the heads be pushed toward the lens -do the flash heads stop before the heads make contact with the lens mount because the diffuser is stopping them from going all the way down? The reason I ask is because if the diffuser it too large, or just larger on the lens side, the flash will start firing over the subject even with the MP-E 65mm below 3x and it's going to cause the duration of the flash to increase (reduced motion stopping power). Also you really don't want the light to be too "head on" with respect to the subject since you'll lose a lot of shadow control. The MR-14EX II produces flat light for that very reason. As for flare most people use the MP-E 65mm with a lens hood, so flare is a non issue. The Canon 35mm IS macro that I got in the mail yesterday came with a lens hood, so no flare issues as well.

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456958 (external link)
I've designed these to let as much light through as possible rather than adding multiple layers of diffusion. The graduated face is thicker in the middle than the edges and when used at the right angle for the magnification, the hotspot that would normally appear in the middle is eliminated. The only hotspot you would see on the subject now is the diffusion face itself which is much larger.

Great idea on the graduated diffuser! But the light that the twin flash produces is like high pressure water coming out of a fire hose, and that's why I'm concerned about the angle between the flash heads, subject, and sensor since it's easy to overshoot the subject above 1x. The flash heads mounted directly to the Canon flash mount produces a "Goldilocks angle" that's just right. If the angle is low the light will look flat, too high and E-TTL metering gets inconsistent and flash duration goes up.

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456958 (external link)
I've also designed them so they are as unobtrusive as possible so that you can get closer to subjects, meaning that with just the normal diffuser faces added, you won't get light coming from all angles, which is fine in most cases but, if you do need more light from say below or above you can attach the extensions I made. These extensions are obviously only reflective but they do actually give you that little extra light if needed. They are reversible so can can direct light up or down. The downside is that that are more obtrusive so more likely to scare off bugs.

Understood -working distance limits how far the diffusers can extend out past the flash heads. Been wrestling with that distance for many years now.

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456958 (external link)
The diffuser body is Black but has a White insert, whereas my previous DIY version was foil lined and had a paper diffuser face, which you would expect to be brighter, however I tested them both against each other and the new one with a White insert is actually brighter, which is most likely because of the diffusion face. I imagine using a foil lining in the new diffuser would give you even more light, but I have been trying to keep everything 3D printable to make them usable without any modifications.

Probably not much more than a 1/3 of a stop difference in light output anyway, and that white plastic will diffuse light better than foil. Smooth foil does a better job of reflecting light than diffusing it.


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JasonC007
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Sep 21, 2017 04:20 as a reply to Dalantech's post |  #49

I'll need to post up some pictures to show you the angle more, I'll take some later on. The angle I have been trying to achieve though is to allow light from the sides but at the same time push forward to give you the best of both worlds. I didn't design these to over diffuse light like a ring light so they provide enough contrast, I don't like over diffusion.

When mounted on the mounts, the flash heads can be turned in all the way bar 1 notch and work fine at 5x. It's worth noting that some people have said they use flexible arms to mount the flash heads so I'm working on something similar which would allow more free positioning of the heads.


Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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Dalantech
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Sep 21, 2017 05:08 |  #50

JasonC007 wrote in post #18456973 (external link)
I'll need to post up some pictures to show you the angle more, I'll take some later on.

Thanks!


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JasonC007
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Sep 22, 2017 09:35 |  #51

Here are a couple more pics, hopefully showing the angle you wanted.

The last picture shows a bottom reflector I've been working on which fits to an adapter I made to fit around the MT24 adapter. I will also be making a ring for this adapter which will be White so even more light gets reflected. I'll also be making a light holder for this adapter which can be used as a better focusing light.

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4487/36989579560_bd7026d8c6_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4369/37244852871_cd32f94057_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4481/36575078493_82e95f41f6_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4333/37215390872_90fee4fd72_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4374/37215391122_a9aa9b2aa6_b.jpg

Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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Dalantech
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Sep 22, 2017 17:55 |  #52

Thanks for the additional photos!


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JasonC007
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Sep 28, 2017 14:00 |  #53

I'm currently working on some flexible mounts for the flashes which attaches to the MP-E65. I know there are similar solutions to this but all I have seen use a metal block underneath the camera that the arms are attached to. These arms attach to a new ring I have designed to go around the MP-E65 after taking the standard tripod ring off.

It is obviously much lighter than the metal variants but works just as well. The arms I am using are industrial cooling pipes which are very strong and can be shortened/extended when needed. The arms in the pictures are not long enough to go up to 5x magnification as I don't have enough segments but this is just a test. I have also made a small mount for the flashes which attaches to the flexi arm.

The arms attached to the 3d printed pieces with metal bolts and nyloc nuts.

Ignore the diffusers that are attached, they are half finished ones I've been printing :)

I need to make a couple of tweaks regarding tolerances and fit but the first print I did actually worked for a change, instead of after the first 5 or so prints :-(

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4513/36706525523_6d36023fbf_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4375/36706525113_692883fba3_b.jpg

IMAGE: https://farm5.staticflickr.com/4437/36706524503_e244f8407b_b.jpg

Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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Dalantech
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Sep 28, 2017 15:22 |  #54

Can't wait to see what you do for the MT-26EX RT!!


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Choderboy
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Sydney, Australia
Sep 28, 2017 19:07 |  #55

Any plans for diffusers for the Yongnuo YN24EX?


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JasonC007
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Sep 29, 2017 01:51 |  #56

Choderboy wrote in post #18462434 (external link)
Any plans for diffusers for the Yongnuo YN24EX?

Yes I've started working on those, I just wanted to get this Flexi mount sorted before I release them because the ring adapter on the Yongnuo is not so good.


Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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FPP
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Sep 29, 2017 11:50 |  #57

JasonC007 wrote in post #18462579 (external link)
Yes I've started working on those, I just wanted to get this Flexi mount sorted before I release them because the ring adapter on the Yongnuo is not so good.

Great! I need a set of those when they are ready.


7D Mark II, 50D, 17-55 2.8 IS, 100-400L IS, 10-22, Sigma 150-600 C, Sigma 150 2.8 Macro, EF-S 60MM f2.8 Macro, EF-S 18-55 IS, 28-135 IS, EF-S 55-250 IS STM, 580 EX II, Gitzo GT2531EX, ARCA-SWISS Z1, RRS B2 AS II clamp, Kirk L-bracket for 7DII, Kirk L-bracket for 50D.

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Archibald
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Sep 29, 2017 12:31 |  #58

These diffusers look great.

But how does one assess the light quality that a diffuser makes? Just try them out on one's usual subjects and see? In the end, it is the quality of the light that matters, not how a diffuser looks.


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JasonC007
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Sep 29, 2017 16:33 |  #59

Archibald wrote in post #18462856 (external link)
These diffusers look great.

But how does one assess the light quality that a diffuser makes? Just try them out on one's usual subjects and see? In the end, it is the quality of the light that matters, not how a diffuser looks.

Before I made these I used DIY versions for years which I improved over time and after photographing thousands of subjects so, in the end I ended up being happy with the way they diffuse. I designed them using CAD because I am a CAD designer but it was just to create templates for me to make the DIY versions out of paper, plastic etc.

In recent months I got into 3D printing so decided to copy my original diy diffusers and 3d print them. The quality of light compared to my diy versions is better due to the fact I have created a graduated face which eliminates the hotspot from the centre of the flash, whereas my diy versions used a flat face which still showed the hotspot but also reduced light. The printed versions are also much more robust and give you various other options such as using an extender or face shapes just by snapping the components on with magnets.

Another reason I created them is because I know there are a lot of people who don't want to or can't make their own diy versions, so I thought I could make these for people like that to use as well. As it happens there have been a lot more people wanting these than I first anticipated and I've struggled keeping up with demand. I may buy another 3d printer at some point (I have 2 already) so I can supply them faster but it takes a lot of my time to do these and I already have a full time job running another company, so I'm not sure yet.

These diffusers haven't been designed to provide 100% diffusion, there are other options for that but, they have been designed to work well with 2 small flash heads which give you more options for light angles/ratios etc. They are by no means perfect and I don't have the resources of big companies to produce injection moulded quality parts but they are not far off, I've spent a lot of time tweaking and making prototypes to get them right, however I'm still making improvements.


Canon 80D | 24-105L | 100mm f/2.8L IS Macro | MP-E65 f/2.8 1-5x Macro | Tamron 150-600 | Sigma 10mm Fisheye | EF 24mm f/2.8 Pancake | MT-24EX | 600EX-RT |
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Archibald
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Sep 29, 2017 21:47 |  #60

JasonC007 wrote in post #18463002 (external link)
Before I made these I used DIY versions for years which I improved over time and after photographing thousands of subjects so, in the end I ended up being happy with the way they diffuse. I designed them using CAD because I am a CAD designer but it was just to create templates for me to make the DIY versions out of paper, plastic etc.

In recent months I got into 3D printing so decided to copy my original diy diffusers and 3d print them. The quality of light compared to my diy versions is better due to the fact I have created a graduated face which eliminates the hotspot from the centre of the flash, whereas my diy versions used a flat face which still showed the hotspot but also reduced light. The printed versions are also much more robust and give you various other options such as using an extender or face shapes just by snapping the components on with magnets.

Another reason I created them is because I know there are a lot of people who don't want to or can't make their own diy versions, so I thought I could make these for people like that to use as well. As it happens there have been a lot more people wanting these than I first anticipated and I've struggled keeping up with demand. I may buy another 3d printer at some point (I have 2 already) so I can supply them faster but it takes a lot of my time to do these and I already have a full time job running another company, so I'm not sure yet.

These diffusers haven't been designed to provide 100% diffusion, there are other options for that but, they have been designed to work well with 2 small flash heads which give you more options for light angles/ratios etc. They are by no means perfect and I don't have the resources of big companies to produce injection moulded quality parts but they are not far off, I've spent a lot of time tweaking and making prototypes to get them right, however I'm still making improvements.

Thanks, Jason.

Sorry, I wasn't trying to challenge you. It was an honest question. I have made many diffusers for use with flashes for the 100mm L and MP-E 65mm macro lenses. The results have generally been good IMO, but often I wonder if they could have been better. I see examples of the macro work of others and sometimes am really impressed with the lighting. That is to say, I suspect my lighting could have been better.

I use a tiny toy figure to test my lens/flash/modifier rigs. This allows me to check qualitatively for hot spots on the subject, and the shadows. I feel it is a somewhat rough way to test the lighting. My experience is that the LQ (lighting quality ;-)a) varies with distance and subject. Some of my test and in-the-field results baffle me.

That's why I thought I would ask about ways to test macro flash lighting. Maybe nobody has given it serious thought, and if that is so, that is fine, for now.


Pentax Spotmatic F with 28/3.5, 50/1.4, 50/1.8, 135/3.5; Canon digital gear
C&C always welcome.
Picture editing OK

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New macro diffuser for MT24-EX
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