Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums >

LinkBack Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jan 15, 2010, 10:59 PM   #1
Junior Member
ken21212's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 12
Default when to use IS on my lens

I have lens that have IS. Should I use the IS when taking sports action shots or should I turn it off? Or does it matter?
ken21212 is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Jan 16, 2010, 6:46 AM   #2
Senior Member
TCav's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Washington, DC, Metro Area, Maryland
Posts: 13,826

IS doesn't hurt (except possibly when using a tripod) and it could help.

It's just not always necessary when shooting sports.

Image stabilization prevents motion blur due to camera shake. Camera shake happens because our bodies have a natural feedback system of tremors that helps us stand upright in our constant battle with gravity. Those tremors occur at about 18-22 Hz and usually are nearly vertical. At slow shutter speeds, relative to the focal length of a lens, those tremors shake the camera and cause the image to be blurred in a single direction (usually nearly vertically).

When shooting sports/action/wildlife, you would typically use a fast shutter speed anyway, in order to prevent motion blur due to subject movement, so if you do that, you've got motion blur due to camera shake covered as well.
  • The lens is the thing.
  • 'Full Frame' is the new 'Medium Format'.
  • "One good test is worth a thousand expert opinions." - Tex Johnston, Boeing 707 test pilot.

Last edited by TCav; Jan 17, 2010 at 1:07 PM. Reason: Typo
TCav is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 16, 2010, 7:33 AM   #3
Senior Member
Chato's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: NYC
Posts: 1,990

I don't have any lenses that use IS. Even though I wouldn't use it often, I sure wish all my lenses had it...

There is probably some ongoing conspiracy to keep me from having an IS lens. I blame Washington politicians. They're all out to get me (and keep me from having an IS lens).


Chato is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 17, 2010, 3:56 PM   #4
Senior Member
kazuya's Avatar
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 1,009

i leave mine on all the time, except when usin a tripod, because apparantly it can cause blur if on a tripod.
kazuya is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 17, 2010, 8:15 PM   #5
JohnG's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529

While all of the above is true, there are instances where IS can work against you when shooting sports. Anti shake is meant to stop the lens from moving. And while it doesn't necessarily kick in and fight you with a smooth pan it can when you suddenly shift the pan in a different direction. For example you're following a soccer player - nice smooth pan then they cut around someone and you switch dirictions and instead of panning towards 3 o-clock you suddenly go toward 1 or 2 o clock. During that switch, anti-shake can kick in and jerk you back. Now some IS lenses have a mode 2 which is meant for panning - it only detects movement along one axis - which is great for strait pans but when you shift like I mentioned above, even mode 2 reacts because now the lens detects movement along that axis.

Because of that, many sports shooters when using their big IS-capable lenses on a monopod will turn IS OFF. if they hand-hold they'll leave it on because handheld at 300mm with the weight of a 300mm 2.8 lens, IS can help more shots than it hurts. But with the monopod camera shake isn't an issue at the shutter speeds they're using so off it goes.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 12:31 PM.