Taking the Nokia Lumia 1020 to the macro level

Nokia Lumia 1020
Nokia Lumia 1020 (Image credit: Windows Central)

We've got an interesting discussion going on over in the Windows Phone Central Forums about adapting the Nokia Lumia 1020 to macro photography.

Macro photography is close-up photography typically captured at life-size resolution and at really close distances. While the Nokia Lumia 1020 may not be able to capture images at life size resolution, WPCentral reader AccentAE86 has found a way to boost the magnification of the 41MP PureView camera by taping a close-up filter to the camera. 

The filter magnifies the image to pull in more detail and coupled with Nokia's zoom feature, the results can be fantastic.  Hit the break to see a few of AccentAE86's macro shots and the macro set-up he's using.

Photo by AccentAE86

Photo by AccentAE86

AccentAE86 does not that in shooting macro with the Lumia 1020, you are challenged with the inability to stop down the lens for greater depth of field. You'll need to be a little patient and may have to choose a better angle to approach things to maximize what depth you have.

Nokia Lumia 1020 Macro Set-up

Now I've shot my fair share of macro photos over the years and while taping a filter to the front of your Lumia 1020's camera may not be the most conventional approach to macro photography, the end product can hold it's own rather nicely. 

You can share your thoughts on using the Nokia Lumia 1020 for macro photos here in this (opens in new tab) Windows Phone Central Forums discussion.  Just be warned... the spider shot posted is ultra-creepy.

George Ponder

George is the Reviews Editor at Windows Central, concentrating on Windows 10 PC and Mobile apps. He's been a supporter of the platform since the days of Windows CE and uses his current Windows 10 Mobile phone daily to keep up with life and enjoy a game during down time.

  • That's an awesome ladybug pic holy crap. Nokia should send me one of those phones as a gift lol.
  • They should send me one ,just for being in agreement with you! Lol
  • Lol, I wish. :-)
  • Those are really amazing photos... O.O And... First? Maybe?
  • You'd definitely be first if you'd stopped typing at "photos"
  • Lol.
  • So. Why can't you use code scanning programs with the 1020? You cannot get close enough to get it to focus. Or I should say it won't focus because the code is too close.
  • Ditto, same with myfitnesspal scanning upc.
  • it'll focus on the barcodes / qrcodes, just don't hold it as close. You'll be suprised how far away it can still focus on the codes.
  • ^This
    Granted I haven't used the 1020 (damn you Verizon!), but for both my 822 and my wifes 928 we had the same focusing issue until I realized you do not need to be close at all.
    In fact you can be quite far away (Just did a 1.5"x1.5" QR code from about 14" and it picked it up right away.)
    With my Droid X2, I had to get up really close and fit it within a certain box and hold it for it to register right. Now that I realized how to actually use it on my 822, it is very quick and never fails.
  • That's one really annoything thing I've noticed with the 1020 - the minimum focus distance is much greater than the 920. Makes scanning QR codes, bar codes and the like kind of a pain. The code scanning feature in the Amazon app has become kind of useless unfortunately. I've found MFD on the 1020 is about 5", whereas it's about 2.5" on the 920. Makes a pretty big difference for the aforementioned applications.
  • It would be nice if the scanning programs allowed you to zoom in on the image.
  • Those are amazing pictures. I have great pictures of the Adirondack Mountains in NY (includes the Highest peak in NY). It would look great on my hiking ventures. Too bad my upgrade isn't til 2015. My NL920 will do the trick til then.
  • This is amazing. Maybe more camera grips with lenses?
  • +1
  • Brilliant idea!
  • A camera grip with a universal camera lens connector for hot swapping different lenses! It could be generic if it had to, but it would be awesome to be able to easily swap lenses.
  • Nokia should take the chance to close some deals with Sony to allow the pairing of their QX lenses to Nokia phones. They pair with NFC. It's stupid that they *could* pair to an iOS device (if Apple had NFC) but not WP.
  • Totes.
  • I cannot believe
  • Nice DoF on that ladybug pic! I've done some macro shots and video even on my 1020. My technique is to zoom in all the way first, then use Manual Focus to sharpen the capture, then shoot away! The results are usually pretty good.
  • Wow nice photos....
  • *greater depth of field. 
  • Didn't he mean shallow depth of field? 
  • I'm no xpert, but can't you zoom afterwards? Isn't that the point with 41mp? Thurrott made some amazing bug pics and said the point of the camera is going backwards. Like take photo first, then process the result. I'm confused.
  • Well after you zoom to,a certain extent you lose quality. This is the full rez photo of the lady bug in which you can still zoom.
  • I noticed this even with the 920. You have to choose Close Up in the settings for it to work too
  • Let's take this another step further shall we? I wonder if third party solutions for phone cases and attachable lenses could be made for the Lumia 1020...just like how you can attach a tripod to the camera grip Nokia makes? =D
  • Would be nice if Nokia could work a deal with Zeiss Optics for attachable lenses/cases for their phone products. My sis-in-law has a case for her iPhone that has a zoom lens that attaches to it. Maybe they could do something like that for us.
  • https://skydrive.live.com/redir?resid=5B700CA437579731!1827&authkey=!AOu... Taken with my 920
  • Nice pic man! Im about to choose between the 925 or 1020 
  • Hmmm... Count the number of legs. None total up to 8. So I'm not seeing a spider anywhere.
  • That's because the spider pic is in the linked thread.
  • Ah, I'll have to check it out
  • Hmm... Can't view the link on my Nokia Lumia 928.
  • Interesting, my 521 actually takes really good close ups.
  • I'm wondering how well those magnetic lenses work that wpc looked at earlier this year. I'm really tempted to buy a set for my 1020.
  • Manual review of spellchecking needed. "AccentAE86 does not that in shooting macro with the Lumia 1020..." - note.
    Great pics, btw.
  • I'm using a magnetic lens for macro now, the results are quite good. Can't post any pictures here, but they are quite clear and focused.
  • I've taken some great close ups with my L920 but I am quite intrigued by adding an additional lens for macro. I know what I'll be doing today.
  • "does not that in"
    The what who forever!
  • Im heading to my local camera store
  • now Nokia/MS should make a Camera Grip that has a mount at the front to attatch this Macro Filter and a lot of other attatchments
  • http://www.flickr.com/photos/71695177@N07/9639902220/   My absolute best macro shot so far with the 1020. No attachments or filters. BTW that is the scaled down version I posted to instagram...
  • What lens did he use to get those shots?