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FORUMS Canon Cameras, Lenses & Accessories Canon EF and EF-S Lenses 
Thread started 14 Jun 2012 (Thursday) 11:23
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Shutter Speed vs Image Stabalization

 
Ralph ­ III
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Jun 14, 2012 11:23 |  #1

At what point, in your opinion, does Shutter Speed render I.S. useless?

I shoot quite a bit of tennis and never resort to I.S. (Tamron 70-300mm Di VC) at anything above 1/800 (generally speaking) but was curious as to others take on it.

BTW, I rarely shoot sports at anything under 1/1000 but if it's getting dim outdoor or heavy shadows then ISO goes up and shutter speed may come down. There are also times when some motion blur may be desired...

Thanks, Ralph


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chongkiat
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Jun 14, 2012 11:32 |  #2

shutter speed is use to capture speed movement subject while IS is to shoot still subject , when u wan to shoot handheld at 1/30 iso 1600/3200 , IS turn very usefull , after sell off my kit lens 18-55mm IS (which can get clean shoot at 1/15) and get the tamron 17-50mm f2.8 , i very miss how the kit lens IS work , with tamron non-vc i need to be take care my shutter speed when zoom at 50mm , otherwise picture turn blur


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Nature ­ Nut
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Jun 14, 2012 11:43 |  #3

Generally IS is rated to X-number of stops below the 1/focal lenth rule for clean non-IS shots. Following the old (1/x shutter to lens mm) rule or utilizing a solid support of some kind can render IS "not required" for the shot. That or magically steady hands.


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kf095
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Jun 14, 2012 11:45 |  #4

IS will help you for hand-held shots if exposure /xx(x) number is less then focal xx(x) length number.
And with panning.


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Jun 14, 2012 11:50 as a reply to  @ chongkiat's post |  #5

My sports is without IS at 1/800 minimum and usually 1/1000 or faster. Also, I try to have my shutter speed at least 1/ 1250 or faster if I'm using the 400mm.

The new Super telephoto lenses (series II) using the new mode 3 is a great improvement.


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TripleG
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Jun 14, 2012 11:52 |  #6

One thing that IS can help with for shooting moving subjects is a steadier viewfinder which may make keeping your AF point on target a little easier. It's rare that I turn it off even for sports.



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thephotographynut
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Jun 14, 2012 21:26 |  #7

Ralph III wrote in post #14578525 (external link)
At what point, in your opinion, does Shutter Speed render I.S. useless?

Depends on the focal length, lens, the subject, the shooting conditions and the camera body.

Focal length:
The longer the glass, the more noticeable camera shake. IS at 1/60s @ 50mm will look much nicer then IS at 1/60s @ 300mm.

Lens:
Newer generation lenses typically have better IS so you can get better low-light IS results. For example the 100-400mm f/4.5-5.6L IS is first generation and the IS is much more limited then newer lenses such as the 70-200 f/2.8L IS II or even some of the EF-S lenses.

Subject:
Some subjects you want a little lens blur such as when panning so IS is not useful here.

Shooting Conditions:
If you are on a tripod, IS does not matter.

Camera Body:
Standard rule for Full Frame is 1/FLs, where FL is focal length. So at 100mm, you need to shoot 1/100s min, or at 300mm you need 1/300s min. With an APS-C sensor you needs to times this by 1.6 so 100mm would be 1/(100x1.6) = 1/160s, 300mm is 1/480s (or 1/500s rounded up).




  
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Charlie
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Jun 14, 2012 21:36 |  #8

trick question, IS is always useful when used to frame a shot.... did I say always? well almost in case of hand held I think. Cant remember ever turning it off other than tripod uses.


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Lowner
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Jun 15, 2012 04:16 |  #9

Charlie wrote in post #14581147 (external link)
trick question, IS is always useful when used to frame a shot.... did I say always? well almost in case of hand held I think. Cant remember ever turning it off other than tripod uses.

Same here, it does no harm, so why not.


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Jun 15, 2012 05:17 |  #10

TripleG wrote in post #14578663 (external link)
One thing that IS can help with for shooting moving subjects is a steadier viewfinder which may make keeping your AF point on target a little easier. It's rare that I turn it off even for sports.

This.


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birderman
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Jun 15, 2012 05:33 |  #11

Is IS an exact science ? The nature of IS is to move one of the lens elements in the opposite direction to any vibrations detected and as such the vibration/camera shake isn't necessarily going to be constant at the time the actual exposure is made to the time when the measurements are taken.

Personally I believe that whilst it may help under certain conditions there are also going to be situations where it will probably add movement to the captured image. For video work IS makes a lot more sense but for still photography I believe that it should be used sparingly. Since IS is a recent innovation I still need to do a lot more tests with my outfit to convince myself if it is worth keeping it on or off. In the days of film I never had the luxury of IS and had to learn to hold the camera steady and use suitable shutter speeds to reduce motion blurr.

Freezing motion is also something that shouldn't be confused with IS. I have calculated previously that an object moving at 120mph will move approx 8 inch within 1/250s on a cropped sensor as in the EOS550D for an object 16m in length covering the entire sensor this movement would cover approx 64 pixels which would result in quite a soft focus image. Panning will obviously help reduce this, but I believe this shows that even at what we may consider a relatively fast shutter speed we are still likley to get some image blurr if the camera is not held and panned correctly. For absolute stationary and pin sharp image the subject must remain perfectly still relative to the sensor during the exposure.

Most subjects that we photograph are moving or maybe made handheld so there will always be a certain amount of movement and IS is just one of the facilities available to help with movement of the camera during exposure but is only a compromised assistant to good technique and shouldn't be relied upon as means to get tack sharp images.


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Jun 15, 2012 07:24 |  #12

thephotographynut wrote in post #14581110 (external link)
Depends on the focal length, lens, the subject, the shooting conditions and the camera body.


Subject:
Some subjects you want a little lens blur such as when panning so IS is not useful here.

.

IS will not interfere with motion blur while panning. That is only related to shutter speed (background blur while panning). IS is very useful for panning shots.


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Wilt
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Jun 15, 2012 11:04 |  #13

I think one point of the OP question has been not addressed in the responses so far, but I am not sure I know the answer to this (paraphrased) question...

"IS is able to effectively neutralize the motion of the lens+camera, to reduce photographer-induced motion blur in the photo. But it would seem that a suitably high shutter speed also neutralizes motion of the lens+camera by itself, too (which is why the 1/(FL*1.6) rule of thumb for APS-C cameras and 1/FL for FF cameras...so at what shutter speed is our photographer-motion sufficiently stopped by shutter speed alone, and IS becomes superfluous?"

...because the OP comment, " There are also times when some motion blur may be desired... " applies primarily to SUBJECT motion. Yet it could also apply to deliberate camera+lens motion while panning the camera to almost freeze the subject but blur the background in motion.

Upon further thought, it might be based upon the concept that, without IS at some speed above 1/(FL*1.6) motion blur of the lens+camera is so small as to be not noticeable, which I would conceptually identify as 1/K(1/FL*1.6). The answer is dependent upon the angular rate of change of the lens front as it swings thru space due to photographer shake...IS reduces the angular rate of change of the optics in the opposite direction. The value K might by hypothetically K=2 or K=3, or some other value related to the angular rate of change. Therefore,

θ = 1/(1/FL*1.6*K)



...,where θ is the angular rate of change.
Our problem is that Canon gives us no parametrically defined value for quantifying what IS itself is capable of neutralizing, so our K value is a total guess for trying to quantify it. Furthermore, the real answer to K and θ are both also related to the ability of the human eye to detect motion blur, which has some relationship also to the Circle of Confusion blur circle size that we can see, which itself is related to the size of print and the viewing distance that it is viewed from!

Any high school scientist out there want a topic for a paper?!


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Jun 15, 2012 11:42 as a reply to  @ Wilt's post |  #14

Our problem is that Canon gives us no parametrically defined value for quantifying what IS itself is capable of neutralizing, so our K value is a total guess for trying to quantify it. Any high school scientist out there want a topic for a paper?!

They don't need to because our shaky okoles are the huge, overwhelming variable in the equation. They would just be issuing numbers that nobody had a means of usefully utilizing because...

... your "K" is variable from person to person--wildly so. It's variable from hour to hour even for the same person. It's even variable as the same person changes camera body models or changes from vertical to horizontal or changes in body posture. Not only is it variable, but who has a way to measure it in the same units?*

The hoary old "1/f" thumbrule was for the days when hardly anyone enlarged beyond 10x, and it was also subject to the same variations. No photographer who cared about his craft ever bet a picture on that thumbrule--"Photographer examine thyself!"**

*I once did this to get a feel for my "K": I attached a small pen light to the end of a lens and photographed a mirror in a dark room at various shutter speeds (set the aperture to give you the correct exposure). Enlarging the image, I got a good feel for how much wandering my lens was doing as I handheld it through the exposure. These days, I'd use a small laser taped on the lens pointed at a white wall.

**I also did some extensive tests comparing my handheld shots at even fast shutter speeds with tripoded shots at the same speeds. That was humbling. Even up to 1/1000, the tripod detectably beat my handholding ability at 16x20 with a 50mm or longer lens. And that was 30 years ago when I was a much younger guy.


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Wilt
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Jun 15, 2012 11:58 |  #15

RDKirk wrote in post #14583438 (external link)
They don't need to because our shaky okoles are the huge, overwhelming variable in the equation. They would just be issuing numbers that nobody had a means of usefully utilizing because...

... your "K" is variable from person to person--wildly so. It's variable from hour to hour even for the same person. It's even variable as the same person changes camera body models or changes from vertical to horizontal or changes in body posture. Not only is it variable, but who has a way to measure it in the same units?*

The hoary old "1/f" thumbrule was for the days when hardly anyone enlarged beyond 10x, and it was also subject to the same variations. No photographer who cared about his craft ever bet a picture on that thumbrule--"Photographer examine thyself!"**

*I once did this to get a feel for my "K": I attached a small pen light to the end of a lens and photographed a mirror in a dark room at various shutter speeds (set the aperture to give you the correct exposure). Enlarging the image, I got a good feel for how much wandering my lens was doing as I handheld it through the exposure. These days, I'd use a small laser taped on the lens pointed at a white wall.

**I also did some extensive tests comparing my handheld shots at even fast shutter speeds with tripoded shots at the same speeds. That was humbling. Even up to 1/1000, the tripod detectably beat my handholding ability at 16x20 with a 50mm or longer lens. And that was 30 years ago when I was a much younger guy.

^^^
...and then there would be a ton of unknowing debates on POTN and elsewhere about whose "(manufacturer) IS is better than theirs"


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Shutter Speed vs Image Stabalization
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