Movo Extension Tubes Hands-On Review

As some regular readers know I’ve been experiencing some quality and durability issues with my Vello Extension Tubes for Nikon 1. These tubes are in the process of being redesigned with metal mounts which should be a significant improvement over the plastic mount version currently available. Since I do a fair amount of work with my Nikon 1 gear with extension tubes I didn’t have the luxury of time to wait for the redesigned tubes. I decided to investigate some other options and recently I purchased a set of Movo Extension Tubes for Nikon 1. Their main selling feature are the metal mounts. What follows is a brief Movo Extension Tube hands-on review.

NOTE: Click on images to enlarge.

DSC_3847_DxOsmall

The Movo Extension Tubes for Nikon 1 come in a three focal length set: 10mm, 16mm, and 21mm. Each extension tube can be used independently or combined into various configurations. I did some testing with these tubes using the Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 and the Nikon 1 CX 70-300mm f/4.5-5.6 and in a recent article detailed some of my testing results.

DSC_3848 (3)_DxOsmall

As you can see in the image above, even when all three Movo Extension Tubes are joined together and mounted with the Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6 and V2 body, the result is a small, lightweight rig.

These Movo tubes appear to be more solidly built than the Vello tubes I’ve used in the past. The metal mounts really help create a solid coupling between the camera body and lens. They fit nice and snug and there is very little play once the tubes are mounted.

When using extension tubes changing the focal length of your zoom lens often acts like a primary focusing mechanism and having solid metal mounts creates a feeling of security when putting any kind of torque on the tubes.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 86mm, f/8, 1/400, ISO-5000
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 86mm, f/8, 1/400, ISO-5000, Movo extension tubes

I didn’t notice any kind of negative effect on auto-focus performance while using these tubes. This allowed me to focus quite precisely while shooting held-hand even in somewhat breezy, outdoor conditions, grabbing focus on the stamen in the flower image above for example.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/500, ISO-1100, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/500, ISO-1100, Movo extension tubes

I spent some time at the Butterfly Conservatory in Niagara Falls, Canada and captured a number of close up images. In an earlier article I featured a number of images of butterflies feeding.

Here are a few additional butterfly images captured with the help of the Movo Extension Tubes for Nikon 1.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 90mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-2800, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 90mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-2800, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 83mm, f/5.6, 1/160, ISO-1400, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 83mm, f/5.6, 1/160, ISO-1400, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 83mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-1000, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 83mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-1000, Movo extension tubes

Shooting outdoors this time of year in Southern Ontario is a bit of a challenge as many of the flowers are well past their prime and the majority of insects have disappeared. I was able to capture some images of flies buzzing in and around some of the last flowers in our yard. This really tested the auto-focusing speed of my Nikon 1 V2 as the flies were extremely active.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/800, ISO-3600, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/800, ISO-3600, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-4500, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-4500, Movo extension tubes

No extension tube review would be complete without a few close up images of flowers and I did manage to capture a few usable images.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-2800, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-2800, Movo extension tubes

To provide a sense of scale I shot one-handed in order to capture the thumb of my left hand in the image above.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-6400, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-6400, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 77mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-800, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 77mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-800, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-1600, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 110mm, f/5.6, 1/400, ISO-1600, Movo extension tubes

A lone beetle dropped in by chance which gave me an image opportunity.

Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 90mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-1100, Movo extension tubes
Nikon 1 V2 + Nikon 1 30-110mm f/3.8-5.6, 90mm, f/5.6, 1/1000, ISO-1100, Movo extension tubes

Whenever extension tubes are used there is a loss of light and you’ll notice that many of these images were shot at very high ISO’s since I was primarily shooting with all three tubes mounted at the same time.

I haven’t had these Movo Extension Tubes for Nikon 1 very long, but so far I am quite satisfied with their construction and performance. At $50 US on Amazon.com I think they are good value.

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5 thoughts on “Movo Extension Tubes Hands-On Review”

  1. Wow! Along with your Nikon 1 article, I have gained more of the info I wanted with these 2 articles than with countless ours of internet searching. All the blogs and reviews are about people arguing wether or not the Nikon 1 system is any good, and no substance. I am a green horn, wet eared photo rookie. I’ve only really turned on my v3 and took some auto shots. (My dslr classes start in 3 weeks). I have the 10-30mm for light quick grab. I just ordered the 1 10-100mm f4.5-5.6 PD Zoom. Should that surfice replacing the 1 10-30mm and 1 30-110mm? Is it as good quality? I didn’t see any of your photos being shot with this larger lens. Can I assume because it is big and heavy? Also you use multiple cameras at once, thus multiple lenses suit better? But not a quality issue?
    Also, I just got a great deal on a 1 30-110mm
    ($80) and plan on mostly just keeping the 3 Movo tubes connected to it for quick grab. (if I wouldnt have read this article, I would have no idea where to even start with macro by the way.) So I have 2 questions. 1) will the movo tube setup work with video? Can I make a macro movie? 2) Is there any way to get a macro ring light set up? Do those always require a hot shoe? (If so, I may have to dig deeper, cuz it seems as though the v3 hot shoe isnt just a basic hot shoe). I made this macro video in low light years ago with a pentax wg-1 w/macro light. And would love to make higher quality versions. (The stick didn’t hurt the spider, it was only a pine needle.) https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=BLEPJilB7mg Thank you for everthing. I will use your web sight like a Nikon 1 bible and check out your B&H affiliate link for future purchase!

    1. Hi Dustin,

      I’m very glad you that are finding my photography blog of value – thanks for sharing your perspectives! The 10-100mm f/4.5-5.6 is a very nice lens. It has good sharpness and the VR is quite good on it as well. I use my copy mainly for client video work. It is one of the larger and heavier 1 Nikon lenses so I use my 1 Nikon 10-100mm f/4-5.6 most of the time for still images as it is quite a bit smaller and lighter. It also has a shorter minimum focusing distance than the PD version.

      The 1 Nikon 30-110mm is my favourite lens to use with extension tubes for macro-type work. You’ll need to remember that you lose light when you use extension tubes so stacking all three may require an external light source. I don’t have any macro ring lights so I’m unable to provide any input on that particular type of gear. I would imagine that there are a number of different lights from which to choose, and some will likely not need a hot shoe. You should be able to shoot video when using extension tubes.

      Of the three lenses, the 10-100mm PD, the 10-100mm non-PD and the 30-110 the latter is the sharpest of the three and will give you a bit more reach.

      Tom

  2. Thank you for an excellent review of a potentially very versatile application for Nikon 1 extension tubes.
    I am quite interested in trying this for myself, where did you purchase Movo extension tube set?
    Thanks!

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