Cheap Macro Photos: How to Use Extension Tubes When You Can’t Afford a Close-Up Lens (VIDEO)

Let’s say you want to try your hand at close-up photography, but you can’t afford an expensive macro lens. Or maybe you’re not short of cash, but you don’t plan on doing enough macro work to justify the investment.

As you’ll see in the two-minute video below, there’s an affordable, effective solution for the occasional macro shooter. Pro David Bergman is best known for his impressive sports and celebrity photography, but in this quick tutorial he explains how to get great close-up photos with extension tubes.

An extension tube is nothing more than a purpose-built hollow cylinder than mounts to the rear of a lens to pull it further from the camera. These inexpensive accessories are available in various lengths. The longer the tube, the closer you can focus on your subject, thereby achieving greater magnification.

As Bergman explains, some extension tubes have metal contacts that interface with the camera, providing the versatility of full aperture control. In any case, while extension tubes don’t match the quality of a dedicated macro lens, it’s possible to get some pretty good results.

You can find more shooting tips on the AdoramaTV YouTube channel. And be sure to watch an earlier Bergman tutorial we posted, demonstrating how to shoot action photos while panning with your camera.