A Cheap Macro Lens for the Nikon D50

First published on: Monday, 28 July 2008

The Phoenix 100mm f/3.5 Macro Telephoto Auto Focus Lens for Nikon AF does amazingly well for its $100-ish price, as Steve325 demonstrates with these two superb images of a bee (you can even see the three small simple eyes (more bee info here) between the two compound eyes) below. I’ve been holding of from purchasing a macro lens for as long as I can remember, but I think this Phoenix optic might be just the thing to convince me to spend the money.
Bee pictures, by Steve325 with Nikon D50 + Phoenix 100mm f/3.5 macro lens

More information:


  1. Larger version of the images, and forum thread

  2. Magnification is 1:1 with the supplied adapter (a closeup filter / lens), and 1:2 without.

  3. Read a review of this lens at Nikonians.org.

  4. Steve got crisp, sharp and detailed images when the lens was stopped down to apertures of f/5.6 to f/8.

  5. Rob Knell gives a bit more information on Kenko and Nikon’s PN-11 extension tubes, and concludes the the Kenko tubes give better value and performance. You can read this very interesting article on the PN-11 and how to enhance it electrically, so that you get autofocus, metering and vibration reduction (VR) capabilities while using it.

  6. Steve has also provided 100% crops from both images, to which M-A-R-K comments that although the images are not as sharp as one would get from the more expensive Tamron and Tokina macro lenses, they’re more than acceptable for the Phoenix lens’ asking price.

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