Reversible lens adapter

At the request of readers, a short article on a reverse macroadaptor. The reversible adapter should not be confused with reverse ring.

Lens changer on camera, through reversing adapter

Lens changer on camera, through reversing adapter

Reversible adapter Is an adapter that allows you to attach the lens to the camera backwards. This is done mainly for macro photography. This installation looks rather funny, since the rear part (tail) of the lens is designed to be screwed into a bayonet mount. Actually photos of such an installation can see for yourself in this article.

View of the reversing ring on the lens

View of the reversing ring on the lens

That is, having any lens, it can be turned into a macro lens using a reversible adapter. The adapter ring is put on (wound) instead of a light filter and with it it connects to the lens. It turns out as shown in the picture.

Whale lens in reverse on camera

Whale lens in reverse on camera

The advantages of such an adapter - this is very easy, fast and cheap way to get a good macro. When used, a rather strong increase is obtained. Also, it is possible to attach lenses of any other manufacturer to one bayonet, it is important that the diameter of the filter matches the reverse adapter.

Sample photo using a reversing adapter

Sample photo using a reversing adapter

The disadvantage is a number of limitations:
1. In this position, the lens can be used, in fact, only for macro from a very close distance.
2. Focusing (focusing) practically does not work. Twisting the focus ring is often simply useless.
3. If you have a modern lens with built-in iris control, shooting is very difficult. You will have to either block the diaphragm in some way, or shoot on a fully open / closed aperture.
4. On a number of cameras, operation will be possible only in M ​​mode (manual mode), on a number of cameras it will be possible to use the aperture priority mode.

Sample photo using a reversing adapter

Sample photo using a reversing adapter

When working with such an adapter, it is important to remember that focusing is done by moving the camera-lens bundle back and forth from the subject. Depth of field is standardly controlled by aperture. It is best to focus with a tripod on a fully open aperture, close to the desired value and take a picture.

Macro with a reversing adapter

Macro with a reversing adapter

For example, on my Nikon D90, D80, D40 you can shoot only in manual mode with manual installation of the aperture on the lens and manual installation excerpts in the camera.

Macro with reversing adapter

Macro with reversing adapter

Examples of actual use:
When used with an 18-55 whale lens, the diaphragm can be controlled only through the lever (diaphragm jump), which is quite inconvenient and without certain values, but the macro is excellent. With exposure, it's just not real to guess. Using a fifty kopeck Nikkor 50mm F1.8D, you can control the diaphragm, which simplifies the entire process.

Macro with reversing adapter

Macro with reversing adapter

How to Install?

To choose an adapter, it is enough to know the diameter of the thread of the lens under the filter. For example, a number of my lenses have a diameter of 52mm, so for installation on the Nikon system I will need an adapter “reverse 52mm \ Nikon”, for Kenon it will be 52mm \ Kenon. Such an adapter is not expensive at all, since it basically cannot be with any kind of electronics. This is just a piece of iron / plastic. I use the old Soviet adapter "KO-N / 52", which means an adapter for thread 52 on a bayonet type "N" (Kiev, Nikon).

Macro with reversing adapter

Macro with reversing adapter

Note: you can still get macro quickly and cheaply when using macro rings. You can read more in my article about macro rings, and there’s an interesting option Bundles of two lenses for macro photography.

Macro with a reversing adapter

Macro with a reversing adapter

The photos below are taken on lenses in their reverse position, all photos without crop (cutting out parts of the frame), auto levels, conversion from RAW to JPEG with resize and watermark.

Macro with a reversing adapter

Macro with a reversing adapter

Conclusion: what an amateur photographer will never come up with to get the most out of his lens. So a reversing adapter will allow you to get a macro lens with good magnification from almost any lens.

Help to the project. Thanks for attention. Arkady Shapoval.

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Comments: 83, on the topic: Reversible adapter for the lens. Reverse adapter for macro.

  • Andrei

    Arkady, I have only a small addition. If you add two examples to the article: a photo at 18 mm and 55 mm using this adapter (for example, from the same whale), then this will already be an exhaustive demonstration of it (and visibility will increase significantly).

    In addition, the [lens | filter | magnifying glass | filter] bundle can also provide a cheap, painless alternative for a homemade macro (hand-made magnifying lens, so to speak). The whole “kit” costs about $ 3. in the Internet. An example in the photo (mounted on Nikon 50 / 1.8D):

  • Vladimir

    Tell me how to remove the reversing adapter from the lens?

  • mary

    Good day! I went to the experiment with the reversible adapter, having stopped working autofocus on the automatic. Regimes ... It’s possible to mind, what are they?

    • BB

      Return everything as it was, read the instructions for the device.

  • Peter

    Simple, intelligibly, clearly! Thanks!:)

  • Natalie

    I bought a ring. Put. The result is complete darkness. I have nikon 18-55. The camera says that it does not see the objective. He does not write anything on the manual. But still nothing is visible. How do I set up my camera? Help! Or hand over the ring?

    • KalekseyG

      On the lens removed from the carcass, the aperture is closed to a minimum, so it is dark. The carcass is in the “M” mode, open the diaphragm and block the engine with what and how it comes to mind. And then experiments with hole size, iso and exposure.

      • Natalie

        Thank you for your feedback, but still nothing is clear. Can you explain step by step what to do? What does it mean to block the engine? What settings need to be made when not inverted? Can exposure be measured in a shape-shifter? I thought only iso and exposure. Thanks…

        • KalekseyG

          1. near the back of the lens a pin which, if you move it, opens the diaphragm, it must be fixed in a certain position (for example, in the middle) with a piece of paper with a match, etc., etc. get a diaphragm of about 10.
          2. in the room put iso 400
          3. Now you will change the exposure by shutter speed, check the necessary experimentally 1/50, 1/10, 1/2.
          4. settings can only be changed in "M"
          5. The external flash brought out from the side of the subject, ignited by the built-in, is also not in vain

          • Natalie

            I tried it. The picture on Lv can be said to be excellent. If I move the shutter of the diaphragm, everything lights up and it only gets worse. Despite the fact that Lv is a good picture, on the slide it is still very dark. I would not want to use the flash of course.)

            • KalekseyG

              experiment will help you. Of course, a closed aperture is good for depth of field - you shoot macro, but you need to increase the iso and increase the shutter speed. Close the aperture, set iso 1600 and adjust the shutter speed when taking pictures

              • Natalie

                I see, thank you very much. The method is certainly good for static objects. Beetles and spiders will scatter. Will it be better with a flash? Maybe macro filters or rings are better?

              • KalekseyG

                Macro lenses - the picture is worse. Hood rings. beetles of telescopes of the U-37 type on the rings. Flash due to the fact that you need a large depth of field, and this is a closed aperture - little light.
                Arkady has an article about connecting two lenses for macro, he did very much advise.

            • Sergey

              I have a macro lens. There is no point in putting them on kit 18-55. I put them on a 70-300 lens, but more or less sane work at FR = 70 ... 180mm.
              The main disadvantage of macro lenses is their strong chromaberration. But sometimes you can get a pretty decent picture.

              There is an option with autofocus rings - everything will work there, but they are expensive + there is practically no point in using autofocus for macro photography: the percentage of misses will be too high.

              If you want to shoot macro with little blood without any special pretensions, then in this respect, "soap dishes" rule.

              • Natalie

                I saw rings for Nikon for about 1000 rubles. There are three large rings. But I bought a reverse one. What does soap dish mean? Probably depending on what. Nifiga, they don't focus at close range ...

  • Natalie

    Please show a photo using this ring. Is the game worth the candle?

    • KalekseyG

      I can not. laptop somewhere, where I do not know - in the process of moving to the Far East

    • Rodion

      That's it, that only candles are worth it.

  • KalekseyG

    it is on the assembly of two lenses it seems Yu-37 and G42-2

    • KalekseyG

      here

      • KalekseyG

        .

        • Yarkiy

          Emm, do not consider it nit-picking, but the dust should be “vacuum cleaned” with Photoshop. The laws of the genre, you know, and all that.

          • KalekseyG

            this is not my photo, I won’t get mine yet, see above

        • Natalie

          Oh!…

          • Yarkiy

            Natalie, the reverse ring method is suitable exclusively for immobilized insects or static objects, the optimal exposure parameters are selected experimentally, experimentally. The metal valve that controls the diaphragm is called a jump rope, I will say from experience that it is most convenient to use the broken tip of a wooden toothpick for fixing. ISO use only 100, the lens is 18-55, and so is not a sample of sharp glass, and if you also lift the ISO, you will not get a clean picture at all. Using a flash is a must, the easiest and cheapest option is any suitable flash on a wire. If there is one that is ignited by the built-in, on-camera flash, this is good, if there is a radio trigger even better, and if the all-in-one with a softbox is generally a fairy tale. For the convenience of focusing, use something like a desk lamp, focusing on a dark object is extremely difficult. Put the camera either on a tripod or firmly fix it on a fixed surface, shoot in the 2x or 5 second delay mode to avoid camera shake from pressing the shutter button. For a significant increase in the scale of shooting, you can use macro rings, while the maximum increase is achieved when the lens is set to 18mm.

            • Natalie

              Thank you very much for such a detailed answer. I will try. Is the built-in flash suitable?

              • Yarkiy

                No, the built-in flash does not fit, it is not possible to direct the subject at the desired angle.

          • Yarkiy

            This is with macro rings.

            • Natalie

              That is, with macro rings you also need to turn the lens over?

              • Yarkiy

                This is one of the possibilities to achieve greater magnification.

          • Yarkiy

            This is with two sets of macro rings. The increase is very large, the depth of field is mycoscopic.

            • Natalie

              http://www.pixelur.ru/makrokoltsa-dlya-kamer-nikon Here is a little found. Will it fit?

              • Yarkiy

                Yes, it’s suitable, this is not an autofocus version of the macro rings, they can be used with manual lenses in the normal position and with changeling. There are also autofocus rings. Here you can see how they differ.

              • Yarkiy

                Autofocus rings can be used with both conventional lenses and macro lenses, in which case the increase will be even greater despite the fact that the image quality does not change. And with this kit you can work in the field. It looks like this.

            • Natalie

              That is, a non-autofocus option may not fit an autofocus lens? Or can I switch to manual mode? Autofocus are more expensive ...

              • Yarkiy

                Autofocus rings retain autofocus with autofocus lenses. Ugh, butter. Because they have all the contacts and the jump. Naturally, the manual lens can also be screwed. And not autofocus rings, it's just iron tubes.

            • Natalie

              Clear. I have an 18-55 autofocus lens. Will non-autofocus rings suit him?

              • Yarkiy

                The first two photos are 18-55 on non-autofocus rings with a reversing adapter.

  • Kristina

    Good day. I read this article and articles about macro lenses and macro rings. Now I think that it’s still more optimal: rings or a reversing adapter? Now I’m shooting on an inverted lens without any mount at all (I hold the lens with my hand). As far as I understand, with a reversible adapter I can attach any lens, regardless of brand, if only the thread fits the filter. And with rings, how?

    • Yarkiy

      Kristina, take a look at a couple of comments above, this is exactly what this is about.

  • Andrei

    Hats butterflies on a soap dish. The DSLR scares them all away. Thank you for the article.

  • Anton

    Valuable information. Thank.

  • Andrei

    Hello Arkady, after reading your article about a reversible adapter, I tried a similar method on my lenses, Helios-81N showed an acceptable picture, but Jupiter 37a flatly refuses to focus in the reverse just a blurry spot, doubt about the lens crept in, did anyone turn over the rear lens while disassembling to clean up to me, in normal mode it works well, contrast, focus is fine, the picture pleases. Carcass D90.

  • Vladimir

    Another disadvantage: the rear lens is open and catches dust.

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English-version of this article https://radojuva.com/en/2011/09/revers-macro-ring-for-nikon/