(I noticed that I could not use a silent shutter; even if my setting was SILENT, the mechanical shutter was used during the auto shooting. Don't remember reading about this restriction in the Z7's user manual.)
I did another focus stacking test. A yellow hibiscus flower: a five-lobed stigma tip, and some pollen shedding anthers. I used the same AF-S Micro Nikkor 60mm f/2.8, set at f/8, 4 seconds exposure. ISO 64. JPEG fine*. For focus shifting, I set No.of shots = 55, focus step width = 2, silent mode on. The focus depth did not reach as deep as I expected, but on my second thought, this is just fine actually.
If this were taken by someone else, I would have probably thought this was just a casual closeup shot of the flower, maybe taken by f/11 or f/16, because this shot looks very natural. But if you actually try this, you would realize the depth you can get in a normal shot is way shallower than you would like. Focus stacking is a nice technique to know if you are into this type of photography.
I am showing the final, stacked image here. The steps were fairly easy, but it took good one hour for Photoshop 2018 to merge this image. (Photoshop was tilting a few shots for alignment, even if my camera was firmly set on a heavy tripod during the shoot.) The result is an amazingly sharp depiction of the flower's stigma and pollen grains at 46MP resolution. (This Nikon macro is an excellent lens.) The magnification of this shot is close to 1:1- I did not use any extension ring.
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