I just bought a Sony A6000 with Sony SEL30M35 (E 30mm F3.5 Macro).

I need to take close up photos of small items (5-20cm, and not reflective or shiny) for stock photos, so I'll be able to set up the items indoors and take photos.

What kind of setup do I need?

I'm thinking a heavy tripod and a big square LED panel, but what should I consider?

I'd like a white background and I have a white table that I'm thinking of using.

Do I need to worry about the frequency of the light?

  • \$\begingroup\$ Have you looked at existing questions here with the [macro] and [product-photography] tags? \$\endgroup\$
    – Michael C
    Jun 4, 2018 at 2:41
  • \$\begingroup\$ How small? What kinds of items? Are they shiny and reflect light? What about the background? Need it to be completely white, black, colors, etc? \$\endgroup\$
    – OnBreak.
    Jun 4, 2018 at 17:50

2 Answers 2


LED is not necessary - with a Tripod you can run 30 second exposure without problems.

You will need a tripod - because unless you flood with light... you need to step down aperture in order to get a depth of field (16+ likely) and then you really need either a LOT of light, or a tripod.


homemade light box

After researching about this, I've realized that a homemade light box will be very useful.

It is made from a cardboard box with white paper to diffuse the light from 3 lamps on the left, right, and top.

The diffused light will reduce shadows and give a more consistent look across photos. This will be much better than just sitting objects on a white table, and the box itself will cost about $5 to make, plus the lamps and white 6700K bulbs.

I'll use lamps that I can clamp onto the table, and I'll attach the light box to the table, so that I can get even more consistent results.

  • \$\begingroup\$ That is, sadly, not an answer to the question, or an example that you do not know how to ask what you want to ask. The question is not about useful - it is about need. And diffused light is a style, and as such it is subjective and was not part of the question. You do not NEED a lightbox, but you ask what you NEED. I do a lot of macro photography without a lightbox. \$\endgroup\$
    – TomTom
    Jun 5, 2018 at 21:01
  • \$\begingroup\$ Maybe you do, but I didn't ask about macro photography, I asked about macro photography for stock items. This seems as necessary for photos of stock items as a tripod is. Technically a tripod isn't necessary either, because all you need for any photography is a camera. \$\endgroup\$
    – user75760
    Jun 5, 2018 at 21:08
  • \$\begingroup\$ Actually no. See, some common sense. First, when you get into Macro the DOF is super small. Which means you really need a stable platform. And I have actually outlined the reason for a tripod. Now, even stock photography does not need a uniform light. That would more be product photography, where it is often a requirement (amazon for example).Look up google "stock photography macro" and be surprised that the images pretty much all (with very few exceptions) can not be made in a lightbox. \$\endgroup\$
    – TomTom
    Jun 5, 2018 at 23:21

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