vertical vs. horizontal setup

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vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by proullard »

What have photographers here found to be the advantages and disadvantages of a vertical camera setup vs. a horizontal setup?
Right now I have a horizontal setup, that is with the camera/rail system on a horizontal plane. I like this setup because I can move my camera back and forth to accommodate larger butterflies
and I can put them on a scissors platform to raise and lower them as need be. I tried a vertical setup, but I was anxious that I would drop a lens on my subject if I needed to swap out a Canon 100mm macro lens for 65mm Canon MPE lens. I can also use a product photography light box easier with a horizontal setup than vertical.

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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by rjlittlefield »

I prefer horizontal, mostly for safety and illumination, but there are cases where vertical plays better with the subject.

Those are mostly subjects that are conveniently held by gravity, including shooting through liquid.


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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by JKT »

I use vertical for butterflies and moths. The main reason is space. Copy stand takes care of larger camera movements. Furthermore, it makes underside pictures easier; I have not figured out a system that would hold the pin end reliably in horizontal and yet be small enough to hide behind the subject.

Len Willan
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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by Len Willan »


I recommend a Horizontal System as opposed to a Vertical System to reduce the chance of damaging the specimen.

3mm stainless steel tube for holding pin when filled with Rodico

Refer for set up t

All these moths were done using this method

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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by JKT »

I haven't had problems damaging samples at the setup. Once I put them on the "stage", I can just slide them under my light setup. It is designed so that there is enough space under it.
Operating one in micropins is dangerous for the sample, but the setup direction has no bearing on that. I have to admit that I'm not going to reach that four-minute turn-over time. 8)

Some samples:
Stigmella sorbi
Oxyptilia ericetorum
Janthinea friwaldszkii
Catocala fraxini

The first one really does need some improvent. MP-E isn't the best one for that size ... though this may have been taken with stacked LOMO for testing purposes. The others are OK by me.

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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by ray_parkhurst »

I primarily shoot coins, which would be difficult to shoot with a horizontal setup. I also like the compactness of the vertical setup. Mine takes up just 6"x10" on the desktop, though it's about 20" tall. I also shoot other subjects, and find that most random subjects work well with a vertical system. Just put the subject on the stage, and shoot it. I guess it fits well with my many years of working under a microscope. It was just natural to do vertical since that's how most microscopes are set up.

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Re: vertical vs. horizontal setup

Post by Deanimator »

As others have pointed out, it depends upon the subject and the circumstances.

Rather than limit myself, I constructed a rig made with 80/20 aluminum extrusions that's easily convertible between vertical and horizontal. My Wemacro easily mounts to and dismounts from it.

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