Sony RX100 M4: Close-Up Experiences - Lensmate Adaper Tests

Introduction | Setting the Stage... | Sample Photos | References

This page and its companion pages discuss the macro, or better, close-up, abilities of the Sony RX100 M4. Although the camera has a macro mode (allowing shots from 5 cm), I would not call these photos "macros" and therefore use the term "close-up."

On this page, I present some experiments with close-up lenses at the Lensmate quick-change filter adapter. I use my 52 mm Marumi +5 and Dörr +10 achromats, which directly fit the adapter's filter holder.

 

Introduction

Since the lenses of the Sony RX100 models do not have a filter thread, I cannot use my existing close-up lenses with this camera. At least, I would have to buy some sort of "lens adapter" like the one that Sony sells (VFA-49R1), but, according to Sony, it fits only the models 1 and 2. In his book on the Sony RX100 M4, Alexander S. White mentions the Lensmate adapter for the Sony RX100 (all models). This seems to be the only option for using filters and close-up lenses at the moment, and has to be imported from the U.S.A. It costs about 25 $ (plus customs for Germany) as a kit (see below). I ordered this adapter kit (in its version for the models 3 to 5) plus five change adhesives at the beginning of October 2017, and received it on October 20 after it had passed the German customs (6.77 EUR taxes).

 

Setting the Stage...

The Achromats

    
     
 

Photos: Marumi +5 achromat (left) and Dörr +10 achromat

Please note that the Dörr achromat is part of the Dörr slide copier and not available on its own.

         

Photos: siocore +10 achromat with caps (left), caps off (center), and at the camera (right)

Weights: Dörr +10 = 85 g, Siocore +10 = 74 g , Marumi +5 = 58/59 g (all for a filter thread of 52 mm)

What Was Already Known...

When I measured the minimum object width for different zoom lengths (see here), I found out that only two zoom lengths are interesting for close-up shots, namely 24 mm and 70 mm (both equiv.). The latter provides a larger minimum object width (about 16 cm), but also a comfortable object distance of 30 cm. Adding hand-held close-up lenses to these tests (see here), I got the following results for the minimum object width for the Sony RX100 M4 and M1 (see here and here):

 
Sony RX100 M1
Sony RX100 M4
Focal Length
Close-up Lenses Setup
Focal Length
None M +5 2 x M +5 D +10 None M +5 2 x M +5 D +10
28 80 mm 67 mm 53 mm 55 mm 100 mm n.a. n.a. n.a. 24
100 200-205mm 62 mm 36 mm 37 mm 161-162 mm 68 mm 46? mm 46 mm 70

That is, at the telephoto end you get a minimum objects width of a little more than a postcard without a close-up lens, with a Marumi +5 achromat it is about 7 cm, and with a Dörr +10 achromat it is even below 5 cm. Thus, with any of these achromats you get a smaller minimum object width than with a focal length of 24 mm (equiv.) without a close-up lens. (A close-up lens would lead to very short distances at 24 mm (equiv.), which makes this set-up unusable.)

All this can be found here. For the newer siocore +10 achromat, see below.

New Test Shots Using a Ruler

Here are a few test shots at 70 mm equiv. using a ruler:

         

One Marumi +5 achromat (7.1 cm)

 

Two Marumi +5 achromats (4.5 cm)

 

Dörr +10 achromat (4.6 cm)

For the siocore +10 achromat, I got results between 4.5 and 4.7 cm, so that we can assume that it leads to about the same magnification as the other two solutions.    

 

 

siocore +10 achromat (4.5 cm)

  siocore +10 achromat (4.7 cm)

The +10 close-up lenses or lens combinations lead to about the same magnification, whereas for the Marumi +5 achromat alone, magnification is a little bit less than in the previous test. For the siocore +10 achromat, I got results between 4.5 and 4.7 cm, so that I can assume that it leads to about the same magnification as the other two solutions.

So this is my updated minimum object width table for the Sony RX100 M1 and M4:

 Sony RX100 M1
Sony RX100 M4
Focal Length
Close-up Lenses Setup
Focal Length
None +5 +10 None +5 +10
28 80 mm 67 mm 55 mm 100 mm n.a. n.a. 24
100 200-205mm 60-62 mm 36-37 mm 161-162 mm 68-71 mm 45-47 mm 70

Measuring the distance to the object is somewhat difficult for me. Sony states a minimum distance of 30 cm for a focal length of 70 mm equiv., but this seems to mean that the distance is measured from the lens's control ring. Using this approach, the minimum distance is about 16 cm for a +5 close-up lens and 12 cm for +10 close-up lens.

 

Sample Photos

In the following, I simply show "real-world" test shots using different close-up lenses or combinations.

First Tests

         

Dörr +10 achromat

 

One Marumi +5 achromat

 

No close-up-lens (70 mm euqiv.)

   

Dörr +10 achromat

 

One Marumi +5 achromat

 

No close-up-lens (70 mm equiv.)

Real World Tests

Here, I set the minimum distance manually and tried to focus on the center of the flower.

         

siocore +10 achromat

 

Marumi +5 achromat

 

No close-up-lens 70 mm equiv.

    The photo at the bottom right shows that at 24 mm equiv. you get nearly the magnification that you get with a +5 close-up lens. The differences is perspective are not evident in this example.  
   

For comparison purposes >>

 

No close-up-lens 24 mm equiv.

Here, I did not check exactly whether I actually used the shortest possible distance...

   

siocore +10 achromat

 

Marumi +5 achromat

 

No close-up-lens

   

siocore +10 achromat

 

Marumi +5 achromat

 

No close-up-lens

 

References

 

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11.11.2017