I am always looking for not so usual combinations for my macro work. Yesterday I tried to combine the Jupiter-9 85mm/f2 with a complete set of extention tubes. This lens is a Russian portrait lens with no less than 15 iris blades, so the bokeh is very smooth. Although it's hardly longer than a 50mm standard lens, it's quite heavy.
I have a 1985 M42 copy of this lens, which is a Soviet copy of the Carl Zeiss Sonnar. I like it a lot, although I rarely use it. I think it's because of the 85mm: too long for indoor work, too short for real telework. The 85's are probably all dedicated portrait lenses, but that doesn't have to stop one from using it for totally different purposes! And that is how I thought to mount the Jup on my macro extension tubes, to see what it would do. It's not a scientific lens test, but a attempt to see how it would behave in real world circumstances...
Here are the results. Shot at ISO560 from a tripod. Hope you like'em!
#1: @f/16 = minimum aperture
#3: @f/2 = maximum aperture
At f/2, the DOF is very shallow, resulting in a hardly sharp photo. Besides, the Jupiter-9 is known for it's softness at maximum aperture, so it's not surprising the last example shown above is soft. At f/16, the max aperture of this lens, the OOF area is a bit quirky. I don't know whether I like it or not, it's a bit distracting in my opinion. At f/8, it's quite good usable as macro lens: the OOF area is pleasing, the subject is really sharp. I shot another one at f/5.6, from a totally different angle, to see how this would turn out (see below). And I like the result!
I think the Jupiter-9 is quite well capable of shooting decent macro shots. I like it's behaviour between f/5.6 - f/8, especially in the OOF areas. I think I will use this more often...