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Old Apr 22, 2005, 12:57 PM   #1
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Ok, probably a stupid question, but only due to lack of experience. :?

If I attach let's say a 28mm-200mm zoom to a DSLR without anytype of stabilization either in the sensor or in the lens, would I always need some type of support such as a tripod or monopod to produce clear, sharp pics under most normal shooting conditions?

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Old Apr 22, 2005, 1:13 PM   #2
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105sunset wrote:
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If I attach let's say a 28mm-200mm zoom to a DSLR without anytype of stabilization either in the sensor or in the lens, would I always need some type of support such as a tripod or monopod to produce clear, sharp pics under most normal shooting conditions?
No question is stupid around here. To answer briefly, it depends!. How stable are your hands and arms? How much light is available and/or how high can you set the camera's sensitivity (ISO speed) (in other words, how fast can you set the shutter?). Most people need a pretty fast shutter speed to hand hold a 200mm lens. You could pretty easily hand-hold a shot at the 28mm end, but as you extend the zoom, you generally need higher shutter speeds (or tripod, etc.) to prevent camera shake.

With 35mm film cameras, the rule of thumb used to be that you can hand-hold a lens with a focal length that is the reciprocal of your shutter speed. So if you have a 60mm lens, you can shoot hand held with a 1/60th second or faster shutter speed. 100mm lens needs at least 1/100s, and 200mm needs at least 1/200 second. These are figures for average people, and some people may need faster or get away with slower shutter speeds than this..

HOWEVER, things are complicated by digital cameras, since most slrs don't have full 35mm frame-size sensors. Smaller sensors means the magnification factor is different, and different conversion factors must be used; the Olympus E-1 and E-300 have a conversion factor of roughly 2x, so a 200mm lens on one of those cameras is equivalent to a 400mm lens on a 35mm camera, which means you need 1/400s to hand hold according to the rule of thumb.

Canon and Nikon cameras have different converson ratios (or "crop factors"), usually running about 1.5 to 1.6, so a 200mm lens on one of those cameras would be equivalent (very roughly) to about a 300mm lens in 35mm format.

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Old Apr 22, 2005, 1:49 PM   #3
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I agree with everything that Norm in Fujino said.
I wanted to add that there is also a question of your standards. For me, I started out shooting with a 100-400mm lens. I was happy with the results for awhile, but after about 4 months of shooting my standards went up and I started to shoot exclusively with a tripod.

So you can always get the lens without a tripod and try it. If you're happy with the results, then you're happy! And that is what matters! If not, get a tripod. Personally, I miss the freedome of not using a tripod, but at the same time I also am much happier with the results I get with one.

Eric
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