Is Lens IS worth it?

Discussion in 'Photography Equipment & Products' started by iolair, Oct 5, 2009.

  1. iolair

    iolair No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Oct 4, 2009
    Messages:
    508
    Likes Received:
    61
    Location:
    Exeter, England
    Under what circumstances is it worth the extra spend to get a lens with Image Stabilisation? Does it really make that much difference? Is that measurable? (for example, if I can currently get a shot at, say 1/50 without shake, will I now be able to go down to 1/25 safely)
     
  2. ErectedGryphon

    ErectedGryphon TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
    Messages:
    333
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Houston, TX
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    It comes in very handy especially when you need a tripod but don't have one. If you're good enough to go 1/50 with out shake, the IS might get you down another speed or two. It can also help those mornings you didn't have enough coffee, or had too much coffee, I would guess it could also help those with other shaky hand problems.

    I've had good results at 1/15 shutter speed with my EF 28-135 IS.
     
  3. frXnz kafka

    frXnz kafka TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jul 9, 2007
    Messages:
    517
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Maine
    Older IS systems, like EG's 28-135 are supposed to give an extra 2 or 3 stops. I'm sure newer IS systems will do even better than that.
     
  4. dxqcanada

    dxqcanada Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Dec 4, 2008
    Messages:
    5,507
    Likes Received:
    700
    Location:
    Woodbridge, Ontario, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    Try handholding a 300mm+ lens ... and you will know why IS was invented.
     
  5. Derrel

    Derrel Mr. Rain Cloud

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2009
    Messages:
    35,456
    Likes Received:
    12,796
    Location:
    USA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    IS or VR works great when panning--and it works better than any tripod or monopod form smooth,beautiful panning results. IS or VR works splendidly in windy conditions, like when photographing along coastlines, estuary areas, or large,open rivers where windy conditions constantly buffet the photographer,and where even a tripod will not help much. IS or VR works great when you a re a bit out of breath, or your heart is pounding, like when hiking, or when that 10-point buck materializes through the fog and your heart starts to pound as an adrenalin surge rushes through your body; under both situations, a stabilized big telephoto on a monopod is good for 3 or four stops worth of steadiness. VR or IS works great when photographic static landscapes or scenic views with pokey,slow lenses like the 80-400 or 100-400 or 18-200 at the long end of their range.

    VR or IS are unbeatable when photographing from moving,vibrating platforms like helicopters, aircraft, moving cars, fishing boats, ferry boats, etc.
     
  6. cfusionpm

    cfusionpm TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2009
    Messages:
    852
    Likes Received:
    6
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    I absolutely love IS with my telephoto lens. I was at an air show recently and was chatting with a fellow shooter who was using a 70-200 2.8L (non-IS) with a 2x TC. I was using my 70-300 IS. He let me take a few shots with it, and while it got me closer, the lack of IS made it perfectly clear that there was an often-overlooked advantage to IS: composition. Shooting at or above 1/1000 meant the shot would be clear regardless, but it was much harder to find, track, follow and compose shots. It was pretty shaky and difficult to aim accurately. When you have that silky smooth image through the viewfinder, along with the 2 to 3-stop compensation, taking pics is just much easier.

    I use IS on some midrange lenses too as somewhat of a safety net. I opted to go with the EF-S 17-55 2.8 IS over the 24-70 2.8L not just for the crop-friendly zoom range, but for the IS (and it was still a good 2-300$ cheaper than the L). Call it a crutch, but there are a lot of times where I can get managable shots out of situations where lack of IS would mean way too much motion shake.
     
  7. Buckster

    Buckster Been spending a lot of time on here!

    Joined:
    Sep 14, 2009
    Messages:
    6,399
    Likes Received:
    2,334
    Location:
    Way up North in Michigan
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos NOT OK to edit
    I find that the IS on my 28-135mm and 100-400mm lenses is VERY noticeably helpful. I haven't done any tests to find out the slowest I can shoot with it on and off and get a good clean shot, but just switching it on makes such a big difference when finding, framing and focusing, there's no doubt in my mind that it's worth it, especially on a long lens.
     
  8. altitude604

    altitude604 TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 2, 2009
    Messages:
    720
    Likes Received:
    5
    Location:
    Happy Valley-Goose Bay, NFLD, Canada
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    the IS on my 55-250mm is great. especially when i'm panning to grab shots of aircraft taking off of the runway or already mid-flight.
     
  9. chip

    chip TPF Noob!

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2009
    Messages:
    377
    Likes Received:
    0
    Location:
    Cypress, CA
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    on a telephoto or macro lens having IS or VR is a big plus. It really does give you a much lower usable shutter speed, usually 3-4 stops. It does not help if the subject is moving though. It does not replace a tripod either.
     
  10. usayit

    usayit No longer a newbie, moving up!

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2003
    Messages:
    9,523
    Likes Received:
    344
    Location:
    North New Jersey, United States of America
    Can others edit my Photos:
    Photos OK to edit
    It comes in handy especially with mild telephoto lenses. In the end, it doesn't replace a tripod, monopod, or steading against a solid wall.
     

Share This Page