Digital/Optical Image Stabilization

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by augman0000, Dec 26, 2006.

  1. augman0000

    augman0000 TPF Noob!

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    I need some help.

    I am curious as to how good image stablization is in consumer priced digital cameras.

    I know a few differnet companies have this feature and I was wondering which is the best and is it worth it to go for that?

    I have very shaky hands when I shoot images and I can't seem to get good, clear, pictures without some motion blur this is why I'm considering the option of getting a digital camera with this feature in it.

    Will it help my shaky hands? Will it make the pictures clearer? And which of the companies offers the best image stabilizer in its digital camera?

    Thanks in advance.
     
  2. Alex_B

    Alex_B No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I am not sure what digital image stabilisation actually could be, the only thing serious I know is optical (you have an extra glass element in your lens which does the job, or you have the sensor vibrating, which in a sense is optical/mechanical as well).

    It will make your images clearer most likely. but if it works 100% depends on how much your hands actually shake. If it is really very bad, then a small tripod might help (those minipods you get for the small digicams these days). thos in compbination with using the timer should give nice shake-freee images. But it is not very good for snapshots of course.

    as for companies, i would guess all serious companies on the market produce good stabilisation these days. but others might be mor qualified to comment here as i am not an expert in that consumer segment of the market.
     
  3. darich

    darich TPF Noob!

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    image stabilisation in cameras isn't nearly as good as image stabilization in lenses. That's because the end of the lens moves so within the lens it's easier to compensate. But a tiny movement in the body could mean large movemement in the lens that's more difficult to correct.

    I see you're after a consumer priced camera - many DSLRs are consumer priced now although the IS lenses may not be.

    I've never used IS within a body but i assume it works but have no idea how well.
     
  4. fmw

    fmw No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    Like the others, I have no experience with the technology in a P&S camera but I can tell you the technology itself works well. How well it works in a camera body is a mystery to me. It can't hurt. That's for sure.
     
  5. Mad_Gnome

    Mad_Gnome TPF Noob!

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    If you can afford a little extra, you could pick up either a Sony ά100 or a Pentax K10D. They're both reasonably priced DSLR cameras (especially the K10D) that have optical stabilization built into the camera body. This means you wouldn't have to pay an extra few hundred dollars for every IS lens you ever buy. It would work with any lens you put on the camera body. Both cameras move the physical sensor to stabilize the image, which is far superior to the digital stabilization in P&S cameras.
     
  6. Don Simon

    Don Simon TPF Noob!

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    I have no experience of image stabilisation in compact or fixed-lens models. I do have experience of the Pentax K100d (the 6mp dSLR) and have found that it does live up to Pentax's "two stop" claim, and made a visible difference when using a 500mm lens (a cheap one, but it is a long lens). The system on the K10d is said to be even more effective. For telephoto work the dedicated stabilising or shake reducing Canon/Nikon lenses are almost certainly more consistently effective, but then there's something to be said for having the feature on any lens as you can with the Pentax or Minolta/Sony.

    It's important to remember that none of these systems can perform miracles. You need to do everything possible to reduce the amount of movement of camera and lens at the time of exposure. Where possible that means using a tripod or resting the camera somewhere, otherwise try leaning against something, controlling your breathing, applying the minimum necessary pressure to the shutter release etc. And of course increase shutter speed and open up the aperture or increase ISO if and when it's practical to do so.
     

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is optical stabilisation necessary?