I bought extension tubes to do some macro photography. The problem I am facing is that the tubes I got disconnect the aperture from the camera settings. So, I thought I will fix the aperture, disconnect the lens, put extension tubes in between, and connect the lens back. But the aperture always snaps to the smallest possible (f/32 in my case) when I try to disconnect the camera resulting in heavily underexposed images.

So the question is, how do you disconnect the lens, without moving the aperture size while doing it? I am using Nikon D3300. Lens is Nikon DX VR AF-P Nikkor 18:55mm 1: 3.5 :5.6G. The default one that comes with the camera.


1 Answer 1


TL;DR: you need tubes that have electrical contacts and aperture control linkage pass-through to control your "G" lens's aperture.

Nikon lenses that are not the "E" (electronic aperture) type have mechanically-actuated apertures. The lens has a spring-loaded aperture control lever that is controlled by a matching aperture control lever in the camera body.

Nikon "G" lenses, being a non-E lens, require mechanical aperture control. The "G" designates lenses without aperture control rings. Thus, the only way to control the aperture in "G" lenses is by the camera body, or some device that mounts on the lens and mechanically moves the aperture lever, such as the Nikon BR-6 auto diaphragm ring, or the Photodiox Nikon G Aperture Control Enabler.

(Note: both of the mentioned adapters are for reverse-mounted lenses, with the lens mount being exposed towards the subject, not for using inline between lens and body).

There are a few brands of extension tubes available with electrical contacts that pass signals between the body and the lens. The electrical contacts are necessary because even the aperture linkage is mechanical, the camera will not control the aperture if it doesn't know there is a lens attached. The identification of the lens is through the electrical contacts.

Thus, in order to control the aperture of "G" lenses mounted on extension tubes, the tubes must have electrical contacts to pass signals between the camera body and lens.

Below is a non-exhaustive list of tubes currently available that will work with "G" lenses (links go to brand websites, not retailers):

There are several other brands that don't have their own websites, that can be found on Amazon, B&H, Adorama, etc.

Disclosure: I own and use the Xit tubes. They work fine, and I have not had any problems with them.

  • 1
    \$\begingroup\$ I have those Meike tubes. They work great with all of my lens. My only issue is the plastic mounts scare the heck out of me at times. \$\endgroup\$ Aug 12, 2016 at 19:10
  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for stopping by and explaining it to me. Subquestion..what if I wanted to disconnect the lens and have aperture fixed at that size? What kind of lens do I need for that? For example while shooting timelapses, it is mandatory to disconnect the lens, otherwise you get a slight flickr. \$\endgroup\$
    – sanjihan
    Aug 12, 2016 at 19:41
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    \$\begingroup\$ @sanjihan That's an entirely different question. Rather than ask it in comments (which are not for extended back-and-forth question and answer), please ask a new question \$\endgroup\$
    – scottbb
    Aug 12, 2016 at 20:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @sanjihan You need a Canon EOS lens for that. :-) \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Aug 12, 2016 at 20:32
  • \$\begingroup\$ Is it possible to achieve that with Nikon lens? \$\endgroup\$
    – sanjihan
    Aug 12, 2016 at 20:35

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