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05-11-2012, 09:23 PM   #1
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How low can hand held go? Not ready for Vogue.

I have a K5 with DA* 16-50 & 50-135 along with a DA40. How low a shutter speed can I confidently go without the tripod and pushing the fore mentioned KIT while being average steady? With and without Shake Reduction for consistently sharp pictures. That shutter adjustment is so easy to use dial that it throws me off trying to balance the exposure in manual so I could be ready for Vogue.

05-11-2012, 09:48 PM   #2
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Depends on your technique and how steady your hands are. Everybody is different. The old rule of thumb is to have your shutter speed equal to 1/focal length to get a decent shot... so, on a DA40, that would be 1/40s shutter. For a sharp shot, that decreases to 1/(focal length x 1.5). The only way to find out is to experiment.

Sorry, I don't understand your last sentence.
05-11-2012, 10:00 PM   #3
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If I try hard I can get usable results at 1/6s (with SR on) with the kit lens. I usually try not to go below 1/20s though.

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05-11-2012, 10:12 PM   #4
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Ideally I like F22 and 80 ISO and then I can crop out any part of the light scape I've captured if there is something cool. Ideally the shutter speed without action wouldn't seem to matter with the right shake reduction. I have this shake reduction and how far can I make it fit in? With the zooms the lens and hood and flash don't shine. Natural light can be greater than I see if I push the ISO. I agree, I should be taking pictures. I am wondering how long some push the shake reduction and shutter in low light and technics extend to that.


Last edited by Mark K5; 05-11-2012 at 10:20 PM.
05-11-2012, 10:14 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by Adam Quote
If I try hard I can get usable results at 1/6s (with SR on) with the kit lens. I usually try not to go below 1/20s though.
Thanks, that's about where I'm at. It didn't work that good with Super Moon..
05-11-2012, 10:18 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mark K5 Quote
Thanks, that's about where I'm at. It didn't work that good with Super Moon..
Well that's a different story, because the moon is a moving object. You need to shoot at least 1/100s for that with a tele lens.

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05-12-2012, 03:49 AM   #7
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There is a study about the effectiveness of SR with the K7 by P Smith -- it showed SR to be effective down to about 1/8 second (Study of the Effectiveness of Shake Reduction in the Pentax K7).

Still, a lot has to do with focal length and just what you are shooting, your overall technique. SR will give you two to four stops benefit, but shooting astronomy events, you still should use a tripod.
05-12-2012, 04:10 AM   #8
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There are a ton of considerations. The rule of thumb, for film was 1/focal length, for hand held and being able to pring a full frame on 8 x 10 paper. Considering our sensor is 2/3 the diagonal, this means the rule holds still for digital considering a 4x 6 print.

The problem with digital is we tend to look at our images on much bitter monitors today so any rule will depend on how much you enlarge it to view,

shake reduction can give you a few stops on this

05-12-2012, 04:16 AM   #9
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Perhaps you could get enough DoF with f/11 or f/16. That would get you a stop or two extra light, which is important for handholding.
05-12-2012, 04:49 AM   #10
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With Pentax's in-body shake reduction I can get pretty sharp results at about 1/(focal length/4) if I try *really* hard. Competitive target archery has taught me quite a bit about keeping still....
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05-12-2012, 05:10 AM   #11
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Both the 16-50 and the 50-135 are heavy lenses. If you are shooting landscape (which I assume you are, as there shouldn't be anything else that requires or uses the DOF that F22 can use), then you are using that 16-50. The DA 40 is probably a bit long for landscapes. If you instead got a DA21, you should have no problems actually shooting it at 1/20s or even 1/6s with SR on, because that lens is light.
05-12-2012, 08:06 AM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Mark K5 Quote
Ideally I like F22 and 80 ISO and then I can crop out any part of the light scape I've captured if there is something cool. Ideally the shutter speed without action wouldn't seem to matter with the right shake reduction. I have this shake reduction and how far can I make it fit in? With the zooms the lens and hood and flash don't shine. Natural light can be greater than I see if I push the ISO. I agree, I should be taking pictures. I am wondering how long some push the shake reduction and shutter in low light and technics extend to that.
F/22, there's bound to be diffraction.

Shake reduction is not a miracle worker - it's an aid.

Generally speaking, SR & competing technologies are good for 2-4 stops.
05-12-2012, 08:15 AM - 1 Like   #13
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As mentioned, it depends on your standards and your technique. My rule for SHARP handheld photos is 1/FL with SR on, and 1/(FL*5) with SR off. I didn't invent this; blame Ansel Adams. For SHARP 'scapes, with aperture stopped-down for thicker DOF, use a tripod. For ACCEPTABLY sharp photos, I use 3/FL with SR on, and 1/FL with SR off. Handheld technique can be improved with archery or firearms marksmanship training.

QuoteOriginally posted by luftfluss Quote
F/22, there's bound to be diffraction.
And that diffraction may be noticeable with pixel-peeped tripodded shots, but probably not with handheld shots, where it will likely be swamped-out by lens-motion blur, even with SR on. Also, slight blur will be unnoticeable if the image is displayed small enough.
05-12-2012, 08:41 AM   #14
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Mark-K5,

With the low cost of film every time you take a photo with your K-5 may I suggest that you experiment and see for yourself exactly what your limitations under different conditions are.

Take an hour or two and put you and your camera to the test.

I tried it and came to realize that I am not nearly the hot shot I thought I was.
So I adapted.

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05-12-2012, 08:54 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by RioRico Quote
And that diffraction may be noticeable with pixel-peeped tripodded shots, but probably not with handheld shots, where it will likely be swamped-out by lens-motion blur, even with SR on. Also, slight blur will be unnoticeable if the image is displayed small enough.
You're right of course, but it depends on the lens. With my F 35-70, diffraction is very noticeable by f/13, whereas with the kit lens & Quantaray 70-300 things generally look good until f/22 or so. It's not just pixel-peeping, it's real-world results. My concern is that the OP is shooting at f/22 because he doesn't know any better, rather than from intention.
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