7Artisans 60mm F2.8 II - Solid Budget Macro Lens

I recently bought myself a new budget macro lens, the 7Artisans 60mm F2.8 II Macro. Not many people know this, I don't actually have macro lens for my Micro Four Thirds setup. Previously I did have the Olympus M.Zuiko 60mm F2.8 Macro, which was borrowed from Olympus when I was their ambassador, but of course I have returned the lens to them after I left the program. I do have multiple macro solutions, mainly the Raynox DR250 Macro filter as well as Extension Tubes, both worked well enough or some macro shooting but they also come with their own inconveniences and limitations. I have decided to pay more attention to macro shooting lately, so I thought maybe a true, dedicated macro lens would benefit my shooting needs. I have shared my thought on the 7Artisans 60mm F2.8 II Macro in video format here (click). 

Full disclaimer, I currently have no affiliation to any camera manufacturers or brand. 7Artisans did contact me and offer to send me their 60mm F2.8 Macro (the first version, not the one I have), but the email came after I have purchased the macro lens with my own money. So, I politely said no to them since there was no point for them to send another macro lens to me. I am not doing a full review, as I am currently quite busy with photography shoots (jobs) and other real-life commitments, but I did have enough time to go out for a quick insect macro shooting round at a nearby park, got some cool insects and spiders shots and I definitely can share some quick impressions using the 7Artisans Macro lens. 

Obviously the biggest selling point of this 7Artisans 60mm Macro is the budget-friendly price tag. The lens offers full 100% magnification which brings me super close to the bugs. Considering I used this lens on my Micro Four Thirds system, that doubled the field of view, effectively producing 2:1 fully captured magnification on the image sensor. The lens needs manual focusing, and you have to control the aperture manually, but other than that I don't havemuc to complain about using the 7Artisans 60mm lens. It is a cheap lens; I don't expect it to produce miracles at the same time. 

The image quality at close up magnification is very good. Images came out sharp, detailed with good contrast. It renders about the same level of details as kit lenses from Olympus or Panasonic, but definitely there is a gap of performance when compared to higher grade lenses like the Olympus 60mm Macro lens. You get what you pay for, so that is to be expected. The lens does come with some optical flaws like chromatic aberration, vignetting, corner softness when used wide open, but none of these things matter when shooing insect macro. I practically stopped down the F- number to F5.6 or beyond for most of my shots to achieve sufficient depth of field, which effectively offset most of the lens flaws. 

The lens is heavy for a lens designed for Micro Four Thirds. It weighs more than half a kilogram, and I recommend using this lens with larger camera bodies such as the Olympus E-M1 series. Handling on the lens is good, there is sufficient space for the hand and fingers to grip and hold comfortably while shooting. The lens feels well-constructed, it is made of metal all around and it does not feel cheap at all. There are two controls on the lens, manual focusing and aperture ring. I disliked the click-less aperture control, since I have to always look at the ring to know which F-number I am adjusting to. 

I have mentioned I used the Olympus M.Zuiko 60mm Macro extensively before and had them in my bag, thanks to Olympus when I was their ambassador. I never bought a macro lens because I am doing macro shooting purely as a hobby, and I have not earned anything from my macro images. I see no reason to splurge on a macro lens. I guess, since it is the start of 2023, I do want to get back to shooting macro more frequently, and having a true macro lens will greatly help that. 

If you are on a seriously tight budget, go for the 7Artisans 60mm F2.8 II Macro. I enjoy using the lens, and I am generally satisfied with the results. 

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1 comment:

  1. Thank you Mr Wong. As an amateur MFT user I was looking for cheap macro paths. I've tried tubes and kit lenses for a long time. I got reasonable results, but they weren't good enough. Obviously, they were not easy. I will try this lens soon.
    I am sorry for my English. I'm not very good.