Macro Photography.


Mr. Muddle

Hi All.

I would really, really, really appreciate input from anyone with an opinion who reads this post, on the following questions:

1. Completely ignoring the cost of the camera, what would be the best digital camera EVER for macro photography (doesn't matter if it's old, new, discontinued, antique)?

2. Which is the better camera for macros; Nikon Coolpix 990 or 4500 (or another Coolpix)?



You can't say what is the best it's too subjective, and there's just too many great camera's to choose from now. Unlike the two you have chosen.

If you're a nikon fan, and want a good mid priced digital cam..look at the Nikon 5700


Active Member
The new DSLRs from Canon and Nicon can take the macro lenses from their ranges and that would be better than any digi cam.



Gotta be the EOS 1Ds Mark II. Brand new, absolutely fab and can take the high end and fast Canon IS Macro lenses :)

You're looking at around 5 grand.

Either that or a proprietary Leif setup with Medium Format capability and 22 megapixels and a specific lens...

These start at around 17 grand!


Mr. Muddle

17 Grand????!!!!!

When I siad money wasn't an issue, I didn't think that there was equipment THAT expensive!!!

Anyway, I forgot to add an important bit; I meant cameras which have their macro feature built in and not having to add external lenses.

Keanyboy, was that a typo or did you really say that the Nikon 990 and 4500 are not good for macros? I am confused now; I thought that they were one of the best for macros. Guess that shows what I know about digital cameras!

Ok then, how about...."name a few cameras in the approximate price region of the 990 and 4500 which are better at macros than these two (and which have their macro lenses built in).



Active Member
I'd go with Olympus 750z at around £280-£300 mark. 4M pixels and a 380 zoom but also a macro and super macro setting. The Nikon range are good for macro but the two cameras that you listed are old models and have been replaced with better and cheaper digi cams.

Mr. Muddle

Thanks GrahamC.

Do you mean the 750UZ? I couldn't find much on a 750Z.

I read the review for a 700UZ and it said it had a 'fairly good macro ability'. Maybe things have improved for the 750, I don't know.


Active Member
Yes thats the one. The 750 is a substantially better camera with a review here, Olympus 750uz

The samples gallery should give you a good idea of the camera.


Mr. Muddle

Hi Graham,

You say that the 750UZ is a 'substantially better camera'. Do you mean OVERALL? Please note that I am concerned about MACROS ONLY, so I wanted to know which was the best at MACROS.

Thanks for the link. I've seen the samples. The review states the following figures for the 750UZ-

minimum area of 3.33 x 2.49 inches (85 x 63 millimeters) in normal Macro mode

However, for the 990, it states-

minimum area coverage of only 0.78 x 0.58 inches (19.69 x 14.77 mm)

So from this, am I correct in saying that the 990 takes better macros AT THE NORMAL MACRO MODE?

The 750UZ however, has a Super Macro mode for which it is stated-

1.60 x 1.19 inches (41 x 30 millimeters)

What about the problem with the long 750 lens causing a shadow in the photos?

I found the following photos to be very good also....



Mark Grant

Novice Member
Hello Mr Muddle,

My vote goes for a Coolpix 990/995/4500 for macro shots.

The swivelling lens design is great for macros/closeups

Look here for an example

( a friendly hedgehog in our garden)

That shot would not have been possible with a fixed body camera, without laying on the ground and scaring off the hedgehog.

Also a great camera for really close macro shots of small stuff.

(I dont use the 995 anymore as I have a Canon 10D SLR and macro lens etc now.)



Active Member
To be honest any of the cameras we are talking about will take great macros and all of them get close enough to the object so as to have problems with shadow fall, be it from the lens or camera body. The long zoom of the Olympus might help with your ability to set a little back and allow natural light onto the object. Good macros are so much more than how close you can get to the object and still get good focus. You have to take into account resolution across the frame and the quality of the lens attached to the camera.

The new DSLRs will all take better macros in my opinion not simply because of the higher resolutions but also the quality of the lenses that can be used with them. The thing is price, £280 for the Olympus, £400 Nikon or £1000 for the DSLR and that’s a thing only you can decide on. If your unsure buy cheap and get a feel for what you want and what your likely to photograph, you can then sell on and you’ve not lost much money. In the end remember it’s not the camera that makes the great photo it’s the eye that sees the shot.

Mr. Muddle

Thanks Mark and Graham.

This one's a real headache!!!!

I really appreciate the advice received here. Thanks.

I originally posted here when my budget was £50; the very most being £70, but that was a while back and my budget has managed to increase slightly since then. I am glad I waited. I usually go for the one I want immediately rather than buy a lesser one and the sell it when it comes to buying anything. This may prove to be a little trickier in the case of a digital camera.

The thing is; I have my heart set on a 990 or 4500 (second hand of course), but I think the 4500 may be out of my reach just yet. I may JUST be able to get a 990 delivered under £150. I haven't a clue if this amount would be better spent elsewhere because my problem is that I don't know which cameras to compare these two with so that I could evaluate them against each other.

Thanks for the 750UZ tip, Graham. I have checked it out and will keep it in the running.

Thanks again all.


Well Mr Muddle, whilst I got an Olympus c550-zoom, for macro shots there is nothing better to me than enjoying the basics with a twin lens reflex camera, having to work out calculations such as parralax correction. Are you even more muddled?

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