Microscopy wth a Zhong Yi Mitakon macro lens

The photo you see here was taken with the most powerful marco lens I’ve ever owned, a Zhong Yi Mitakon super-macro lens.  Its most powerful setting – four and a half times normal size.

I am not kidding.

Four and a half freakin’ times normal size.  Holy John C. Holmes, Batman…

Anyways, Zhong Yi Optics, based in Shenyang, China, manufactures precision camera optics, and this recent creation – the Mitakon 20mm f/2.0 4.5x macro lens – just exited the factories last December.  It costs about $200 and takes three weeks to arrive from China.

So I bought one.  Three weeks later, it arrived at my doorstep.

And for my first test … I purchased some pansies at a local garden center.  Nothing major – just some viola tricolors (also known as “jumping jacks” or “johnny jump-up” plants).  Figured I’d get a shot or six out of them, probably an easy few dollars spent.

Viola Tricolor. BlackBerry PRIV camera phone. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

Just to give you a sense of scale, here’s the Viola Tricolor plant as captuerd by my camera phone.  Not bad, although this plant looks like it’s seen better sunshines.  It’s probably on its last days, the petals are almost mangled.

Okay.  On with the Mitakon.

And I ran into problems quickly.  Not with the lens, mind you – but with the power of it.  Every single vibration – the gentle rainy breeze, the pulse in my hands – looked like an earthquake in the viewfinder.  Had to get my tripod to do this correctly, or to at least minimize the vibrations.

Okay.  Let’s try this again.

And sure enough, as I focused in on the petals, I noticed something striking.

This pansy had what looked like petal-shaped eyelashes around its center.  Cool.

Oh yeah, and apparently the photo got bombed by a tiny bug.

Viola Tricolor 2. Nikon Df camera, Zhong Yi Mitakon 20mm F/2.0 macro lens. (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

Woah.  This is amazing.

Pretty damn good for a first try…

But I’m not thrilled about that little bug in the picture.  So a few more tries.

Viola Tricolor 3. Nikon Df camera, Zhong Yi Mitakon 20mm f/2.0 4.5x lens. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.
Viola Tricolor 4. Nikon Df camera, Zhong Yi Mitakon 20mm f/2.0 4.5x lens. Photo (c) Chuck Miller, all rights reserved.

Of course, now my brain is racing for new ideas and new things to photograph in microscopic scale. It’s amazing what you can see in this tiny world.  I want to do more of this.

And you know … I may not be able to construct something in time for Competition Season 2017…

But hey, Competition Season 2018 may need some entries, don’tcha think? 😀