View Full Version : Help choosing a macro lens

12-08-2015, 02:15 AM
Hi guys,

I have a Nikon D3100 and am looking at purchasing my first macro lens. I'm having issues deciding which lens of the following lenses would work best for me.

Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 Di VC USD Macro for Nikon

Nikon AF-S 60mm Micro Nikkor F/2.8G ED

I would be interesting in photographing bugs/flowers, things at the beach etc. I understand that my camera is DX so the Tamron would be 135mm and the Nikon 90mm. Are there limitations to putting these lenses on a DX camera? The difference between the working distance of the lenses is 2cm so that doesn't really seem to be an issue, I'm just not sure if 135mm is too much zoom or 90mm is too little. Is it safer to go with a Nikon lens? I've heard the Tamron is just as good. I'm also wondering if having the Nikon would work better for me to be able to get a bit more background in the photo, but I also like how close of a photo I could get with a longer lens.

Thanks for any input you can give

EDIT: I also just realized that the Nikon lens does not have VR. Is that going to be a huge problem?

12-08-2015, 11:27 AM
The lower the focal number, the closer you have to be to your subject....since this can scare off insects I'd likely get the 90mm (IFF it has good reviews and I can return it if I don't like it.)
Feel free of course to go to a store and actually try the lens(es) to see their differences on your camera before purchasing. THAT will be your best test.
Hope that may help

12-08-2015, 01:09 PM
Thanks for your input. I was in the local photography store the other day and they do not have either of the lenses, but it has been suggested to me by a friend to see if they have approximately the same lengths to see the difference between the two.

12-08-2015, 05:49 PM
I have the older version of the Nikkor 60mm without the internal focusing motor. That's never been a problem for me when doing macro work and it can be had for half the price of the later model. Still, I wish I had opted for the 105mm 2.8. It seems as though the 60mm is often in its own way.

After more than a few years of shooting with Tamron glass, I can also say that money invested in Tamron lenses is money well spent.

12-08-2015, 07:03 PM
I love my Tamron 90mm 2.8 on my nikon D5100 and D7100

12-09-2015, 10:29 AM
Still, I wish I had opted for the 105mm 2.8. It seems as though the 60mm is often in its own way.

I agree and did this research years ago - I have the the 105mm 2.8 and it is fab for Macro!

04-17-2019, 05:50 AM
Oh boi! This is way too late for a reply. However, I feel like the Tokina AT-X M100 F/2.8 (https://www.s-worldelectronics.ca/product/tokina-at-x-m100-af-pro-d-af-100mm-f-2-8-nikon/) is a decent bet for you.
I guess you'd have purchased something similar back in the day.