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04-16-2007, 09:18 AM   #16
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QuoteOriginally posted by Khukri Quote
But I see very little discussion on this subject of SR efficiency in hand held shooting vis-a-vis Canon's IS or Nikon's VR lenses - say 300mm IS or equivalent; or equually at the othe rend - macro range with a 100mm lens, hand held. May I request people with experience of both to shed light on this please? Thank you.
It is always hard to compare, especially doing an objective test. That's why so far, there is no good objective comparison between various systems. Most are subjective impressions which are not very reliable.

The myth about IS/VR being better than in-body stabilization was started and perpetuated by the Canon White Paper. And Canon even took out a full page ads in a photo magazine emphasizing this fact. In the ads, there were numerous factual error. They claimed that they chose the in-lens solution from the beginning because they found it to be better than in-body solution.

Wrong! They chose In-lens solution because back in the film days, that was the ONLY solution available! It simply was technically not possible to have an in-body stabilization with 35mm film! And with the fat and healthy profit margin and price premiums on IS and VR lenses, Canon and Nikon would not use in-body stabilization unless there is intense market pressure. Actually they are already feeling the pressure, Nikon is coming up with a cheaper affordable VR lenses.

On an engineering and technical stand point, there is no reason why in-body CCD shift stabilization would not work as well as in-lens lens shifting system. So it is up to individual system implementation. And when you buy an upgraded new body, you basically have upgraded stabilization for ALL your existing lenses.

In real life, Pentax system works well, check out the convincing lawnmower test on the K100D :

Janneman's dynamic SR-Test, mufflers needed [imgs]: Pentax SLR Talk Forum: Digital Photography Review

There was a similar test for K10D, but I can't find it now.

04-16-2007, 10:01 AM   #17
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Don't leave SR on always

I leave it on by default and it easily provides stabilization for shutter speeds faster than 1/60s. Eg., at 200mm if I can't get a stable hand-holding position, I might need a shutter speed of 1/300s to get a reliably stable shot without SR. With SR, that drops to 1/50s or even slower.

However, when you are panning in a NON straight line (ie., following birds, bugs, or kids), you need to turn off the SR because, 1) the SR will try to counter your movements, 2) it'll hit the rails and you'll get vignetting because the edge of the sensor leaves the light circle. Even with fast shutter speeds (1/800s) I've had SR ruin a shot because I accidentally left it on during a panning action shot.

QuoteOriginally posted by WMBP Quote
My GUESS is this: Canon and/or Nikon have done these tests. They have found that in-the-lens stabilization is indeed better than in-body shake reduction - but only very slightly. They don't tout the results of their tests precisely because it would be a pyrrhic victory: It's better for them to be able to claim superiority without having to prove it, because proving it would require that they reveal how trivial the difference is. And at that point, a lot more people might wake up and realize that paying for IS in the lens over and over and over again is, well, kind of dumb.

Will

P.S. (added later) Ignore what I said above and see instead nosnoop's excellent and informative reply, which follows this message.
That's an interesting theory. I have seen various reviews that claim the lens IS is better, but only at long focal lengths (~200mm) and only by about 1/2 stop.

Besides the obvious reasons, the beauty of having it in the camera is if they come up with an improved version in the future (and you know they will), then you could upgrade your body and your whole lens collection gets updated with it. So your lenses don't get obsolete as quickly as they would with the IS in the lens.

Bart
04-16-2007, 11:56 AM   #18
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Pros and Cons of in-camera SR

QuoteOriginally posted by Khukri Quote
Hullo everybody! I'm new in town. One of the reasons I'd say many people - like me - may consider a shift to Pentax (from say Canon/Nikon) would be the K10D's SR. But I see very little discussion on this subject of SR efficiency in hand held shooting vis-a-vis Canon's IS or Nikon's VR lenses - say 300mm IS or equivalent; or equually at the othe rend - macro range with a 100mm lens, hand held. May I request people with experience of both to shed light on this please? Thank you.
Advantages:
Works on all lenses including wide angle lenses
Can correct for rotational as well as lateral and verticle movement
Involves a relatively large movement and a heavy mass to move, so provides good precision for large displacement, slow movements
Does not compromise lens quality by adding extra elements that move relative to optical path.

Disadvantages:
Cannot see the effect of SR in viewfinder. This is possibly why some users dont find it as effective because they cannot "time" the precise moment to press the shutter.
Does not currently sense panning motion and allow for it (though may do so in another iteration).
Is less efficient at correcting for short, jerky motion than a tiny lens element that has a limited degree of movement and is very light.
Does not enable camera maker to charge 2X the price for adding it to your favourite lens

I'd say honours are even as to effectiveness, but expectations are possibly over the top. SR works less and less well (in terms of stops gained) the lower the shutter speed because the longer the viewfinder is blacked out the higher the chance you have of drifting off target.

SR can correct very well if you are wobbling around a steady midpoint (net angular drift = near 0) but if the mid point is also shifting its less effective because it eventually runs out of movement (net angular drift >0). If the VF is blacked out even for a 1/5 second, its possible to drift off target quite a bit...

On a 20mm lens, normal hand held speed would be 1/20. With SR you may get down to 1/10 quite reliably but thats only a stop. I've managed shots at 1/5 second but not with 100% success. Its still useful (an F4 lens at 1/10 and ISO1600 allows you to go pretty dark).

However on a 300mm lens normal recommended shutter speed is 1/300. In this case its perfectly possible to shoot down to 1/75 (2 stops) with excellent reliability and 1/40 (three stops) with a good success rate (around 60%). Net angular drift on such a short shutter opening is much less partly because the VF blackout is so much shorter and you can still se what your were aiming at.

Either way, in body SR is a great asset and a very cost effective solution. However, it really helps if you maintain technique (in other words do all the things you always would have done to get a steady shot and dont rely on the SR mechanism to make up for being sloppy - this is important because there is no VF feedback).

My own use would indicate its worth around 1 stop gain at wide angle and 3-4 stops at telephoto. Again these results are not valid if you are shooting macros when the depth of field is too small that even slight back and forth movement changes the focus point, but for subjects at a distance I'd say they are about right.
04-16-2007, 01:21 PM   #19
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my take is, leave it on
any location close to a major road
any large building
will introduce movement/shake, even on tripod,
we talking microns,....
how effective it is, that's another story.
just my 2 cents, Robert

04-18-2007, 07:43 AM   #20
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Although it is not in the manual, I believe I read somewhere that the shake reduction does not work properly on a tripod due to the frequency of vibration that might be present, and the inability of the shake reduction to take these out properly.

While people have written in that if you are on a tripod there is no need because the camera is stable, I am not sure that they have ever looked through a 500mm-1000mm lens on a tripod. There is all sorts of vibration, much of it very high frequency. This is why lots of pros use a sand bag to weight down the tripod.

What may need clarification from pentax is the use of the word "Caution" in the manual. Does caution mean don't do this, you'll damage the camera, or don't do this the picture won't turn out?
04-18-2007, 08:35 AM   #21
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old school

QuoteOriginally posted by TedP Quote
WMBP

Old school was basically anything 1/60th or faster at hand held you wre ok.Naturally keeping the camera as stable as possible. But if your shooting from a tripod,turn it off. Using telephoto lense turn it on,because shake is more noticable. if your shooting with a delay,your basically shooting from a stable base,ie, tripod turn it off . My hands shake continually,so I usually turn it off for high speed shooting.I turn it on when I get to the lower speeds but that depends on how bad my hands are shaking at that given time. But the beauty of Pentax is that all lenses have SR. by the replies it's six of one half dozen for the other.
Happy Shooting

TedP
Not really Ted. The "old school" rule of thumb was one divided by the focal length. So it was usually 1/60th for 50mm lenses. But for a 135mm portrait lens you would have used 1/125th at a push, or 1/250th for safety. On a 200mm lens shot, you would normally have used 1/250th. Just my take on "old school", being "old school" myself.
04-18-2007, 08:59 AM   #22
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lowell Goudge Quote
Although it is not in the manual, I believe I read somewhere that the shake reduction does not work properly on a tripod due to the frequency of vibration that might be present, and the inability of the shake reduction to take these out properly.

While people have written in that if you are on a tripod there is no need because the camera is stable, I am not sure that they have ever looked through a 500mm-1000mm lens on a tripod. There is all sorts of vibration, much of it very high frequency. This is why lots of pros use a sand bag to weight down the tripod.

What may need clarification from pentax is the use of the word "Caution" in the manual. Does caution mean don't do this, you'll damage the camera, or don't do this the picture won't turn out?
Note that I put this question to pentax directly and asked specifically if the caution was because you would damage the camera, or that the photo would not turn out because the camera could not compensate for the difference in vibration.

The pentax response is "Because the camera cant compensate for the difference in vibration."

I think that answers the question!

If this is the case, then what everyone could probably try, and for each and every one who does this, the result will be different, is to change the focal length (only for those who can set it at power up) and by trial and error determine an optimum setting for your particular lens / tripod combination. GOOD LUCK
04-18-2007, 10:26 AM   #23
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QuoteOriginally posted by keithlester Quote
Not really Ted. The "old school" rule of thumb was one divided by the focal length. So it was usually 1/60th for 50mm lenses. But for a 135mm portrait lens you would have used 1/125th at a push, or 1/250th for safety. On a 200mm lens shot, you would normally have used 1/250th. Just my take on "old school", being "old school" myself.
For the "new school", you need to multiply that by the "crop factor" though.
So for Pentax DSLRs, which have crop factor of 1.5x, the recommended shutter speed would be 1/(focal length x 1.5) or faster. I.e. 1/75 for 50mm, 1/200 for 135mm and 1/300 for 200mm.

04-18-2007, 02:26 PM   #24
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QuoteOriginally posted by nosnoop Quote
For the "new school", you need to multiply that by the "crop factor" though.
So for Pentax DSLRs, which have crop factor of 1.5x, the recommended shutter speed would be 1/(focal length x 1.5) or faster. I.e. 1/75 for 50mm, 1/200 for 135mm and 1/300 for 200mm.
Y'know, I've been wondering about this. The crop factor only refers to the field of view, which resembles that of a lens with 1.5x the focal length. The handholdability (if I may make up a word) relates to the focal length, which of course doesn't change. There are some minor differences in the resolution of film vs ccd, but I rather doubt they're enough to alter what is, after all, merely a rough rule of thumb. I certainly don't find I've had to increase my minimum shutter speed to hand-hold switching from film to digital.

Julie
04-18-2007, 03:01 PM   #25
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QuoteOriginally posted by foxglove Quote
Y'know, I've been wondering about this. The crop factor only refers to the field of view, which resembles that of a lens with 1.5x the focal length. The handholdability (if I may make up a word) relates to the focal length, which of course doesn't change. There are some minor differences in the resolution of film vs ccd, but I rather doubt they're enough to alter what is, after all, merely a rough rule of thumb. I certainly don't find I've had to increase my minimum shutter speed to hand-hold switching from film to digital.
I'm with Julie on this. The reciprocal rule seems to me to have originated before shake-reduction. I just apply the reciprocal rule and let SR help me out.

Will
04-18-2007, 03:06 PM   #26
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QuoteOriginally posted by foxglove Quote
Y'know, I've been wondering about this. The crop factor only refers to the field of view, which resembles that of a lens with 1.5x the focal length. The handholdability (if I may make up a word) relates to the focal length, which of course doesn't change. There are some minor differences in the resolution of film vs ccd, but I rather doubt they're enough to alter what is, after all, merely a rough rule of thumb. I certainly don't find I've had to increase my minimum shutter speed to hand-hold switching from film to digital.

Julie
All manufacturers, including pentax apply the crop factor to the shutter speed in their manuals, and the reason is simple.

If you take a 200 MM lens on a full frame camera (film or otherwise) and shoot at 1/200 you are reasonably safe relitive to the full size of the image. If you take the same image in a ASP-C sensor (where the 1.5 rule applies, and use the same 200mm lens, you are blowing up the image by 50% and only using the center of the image, but projecting it, printing it, or what ever back up to the same size as the original full frame.

This enlargement amplifies the movement. Remember sharp is really only relitive to the remainder of the picture. If you don't believe me, take a 20mm lens and enlarge it 10 times to get the center image that the 200mm lens would give. I'll bet it doesn't look as sharp any more.

All the rule of thumb gives you is something that, for a full frame is acceptable.

One thing I have noticed, after scanning all my slides and negatives however, is that the digital images are sharper. Even 6mp is better quality than a 10mp scan of a slide or negative, and you can blow them up bigger. this may be part of why you have not needed to change your rule ot thumb.

You also may be becoming a better technical shooter as well, and have a more stable hold. Good technique can still overcome a lot of other sins
04-18-2007, 05:07 PM   #27
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QuoteOriginally posted by foxglove Quote
Y'know, I've been wondering about this. The crop factor only refers to the field of view, which resembles that of a lens with 1.5x the focal length. The handholdability (if I may make up a word) relates to the focal length, which of course doesn't change. There are some minor differences in the resolution of film vs ccd, but I rather doubt they're enough to alter what is, after all, merely a rough rule of thumb. I certainly don't find I've had to increase my minimum shutter speed to hand-hold switching from film to digital.

Julie
The rule of thumb is only related to focal length on 35mm film because its convenient and easy to remember (1/50 at 50mm etc.) but the degree of shake is actually related to the angle of view. If your camera wobbles around 1 degree from side to side on a lens with a 100 degree angle of view (wideangle), thats only 1%. If the lens has a 10 degree angle, thats 10% even though you are wobbling the same amount. So you need 10X the shutter speed to reduce the shake.

Although focal length stays the same, the angle of view on an APSC camera is reduced by 33%, so it makes it worse.
04-18-2007, 07:47 PM   #28
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QuoteOriginally posted by Khukri Quote
Hullo everybody! I'm new in town. One of the reasons I'd say many people - like me - may consider a shift to Pentax (from say Canon/Nikon) would be the K10D's SR. But I see very little discussion on this subject of SR efficiency in hand held shooting vis-a-vis Canon's IS or Nikon's VR lenses - say 300mm IS or equivalent; or equually at the othe rend - macro range with a 100mm lens, hand held. May I request people with experience of both to shed light on this please? Thank you.
Go to DCResource and ask in the Canon or Nikon forums. They will love to explain the advantages of those in-lens systems. One "advantage" is the image in the veiwfinder is stabilized (if you don't can't tell what you are looking at anyway), and with the Nikon VRII system that allows you to use SR in one direction to aid panning on a tripod. Yawn and shrug.

Last edited by SpecialK; 04-18-2007 at 07:56 PM.
04-19-2007, 06:18 PM   #29
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Lowell and Steve, thanks for setting me straight - that does make sense. I'm still surprised at what I can hand-hold, though! There was a gap of quite a few years between regular film shooting and digital shooting, during which my skills didn't get improved, and my age certainly increased. Maybe maturity has its advantages, and I'm just shooting smarter.

Julie
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