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Old Apr 2, 2007, 2:54 PM   #41
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The article on dust removal was definetly worth the price of admission. Highly recommended! -- John


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Old Apr 2, 2007, 2:55 PM   #42
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jpmann66 wrote:
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What I am wondering now is about the durability of "sensor shift" IS systems. Are they more likely to get knocked out of whack than fixed sensors?
This is the first camera to use a CCD Shift method of Anti-Shake (introduced in 2003 by Minolta).



Steve was impressed with it. Here's a short quote from the review conlusion section (and make sure to see the sample images to see examples of anti-shake in action).

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We were impressed with the effectiveness of the A1's Anti-Shake feature. One of the most frequent disappointments for users of high-end digicams has been their inability to capture good hand-held images at concerts. The combination of telephoto focal length and dim lighting require slow shutter speeds, resulting in images ruined by camera shake. Minolta claim that the A1's Anti-Shake function will allow you to obtain a high percentage of sharp images at shutter speeds as low as 1/25 second, and our results back up their claim.


http://www.steves-digicams.com/2003_reviews/a1_pg6.html

I do see reports of failures from time to time. But, that's usually after a camera has been dropped.

Ditto for the newer DSLR models. Reports of Anti-Shake related failures seem to be pretty rare. I'm not worried about it (I shoot mostly with a Maxxum 5D).


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Old Apr 2, 2007, 3:13 PM   #43
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P.S.

I take advantage of my Anti-Shake pretty often. For example, here is a group candid from when we had some company over sitting in the den recently. It was at 1/15 second, ISO 800 and f/5. Sometimes I may not want to shoot wide open for sharpness and Depth of Field purposes, and may not want to use the highest ISO speeds available either (due to noise concenrs).

I use slower shutter speeds pretty often for group shots like this with wider lenses. You can get away with a higher percentage of keepers using a wider lens because subject movement is not as noticeable at typical focus distances since the movement occurs across a much smaller portion of the frame for a given viewing/print size, compared to shooting at longer focal length or closer focus distances. The human eye needs a certain amount of movement across the image being viewed before it detects blur and if you're careful to take photos when the subjects are relatively still, it's pretty easy to get shots of entire groups using slower shutter speeds.

There's an online calculator somewhere for determining what shutter speeds you begin to see blur with based on a variety of factors (you can plug in values for things like focus distance, focal length, format being used, direction of subject movement, speed of subject movement, viewing size for the image and more). It explains the logic behind how many millimenters of movement must occur across the image size being viewed before the human eye notices it, etc.

Anyway, even though you could probably get usable results if you're real careful without at for a shot like this one at a wider focal length, but it gives you a couple of stops beyond what you'd be likely to get without it and every little bit helps from my perspective. This is a stop slower than the rule of thumb for a hand held shot and Anti-shake gives you more confidence that you're going to get a shot like this (and this would sharpen, too).

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Old Apr 2, 2007, 3:22 PM   #44
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Or, for a more extreme example, here's another recent shot from the same weekend (taken Sunday before last on March 25th):

This one is at 1/4 second, 70mm (same angle of view as a 105mm lens on a 35mm camera) with a hand held Konica Minolta Maxxum 5D, and it was underexposed a tad, too, just to get shutter speeds up to that fast at ISO 800 and f/5. ;-)

Sure, I could have increased ISO speed, used a brighter lens, etc. But, you don't have to if you don't want to and can still get some keepers that way while your subjects are relatively still. lol

Note that this is well outside the design limits of AS if you take the rule of thumb for hand held photos into consideration, and subject movement can also cause some softness at shutter speeds this slow. Some people can hold a camera steadier than others and others may need even faster shutter speeds. The care being take has a lot do to with it also. But, the main thing from my perspective is that it can get you acceptable shots at slower shutter speeds than you could get without it.

It's just a snapshot of one of my teenage grandaughters by marriage when she was standing in our breakfast room while some of our relatives were visiting.

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Old Apr 3, 2007, 12:25 AM   #45
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NOW honestly folks... (if no convenient overhead white ceilng to bounce and flash mounted) can you see that shot with direct flash let alone loosing the moment fumbling to get it all together?

That's how I try to explain SR's biggest plus.

And honestly except that its a bit dark and not TACK sharp (not that you really want a portrait to be) that almost really looks (but just coincidentally and accidentally) studio lit. And sharp enough for protraiture type shots.
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Old Apr 3, 2007, 7:08 AM   #46
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Hayward wrote:
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NOW honestly folks... (if no convenient overhead white ceilng to bounce and flash mounted) can you see that shot with direct flash let alone loosing the moment fumbling to get it all together?
NOW honestly, Hayward, yes as a matter of fact I can.

with flash (unbounced):















But, hey - how about with no flash.

ISO 1600, f1.8 and 1/20 (worse light than what Jim's photo was taken in - and this sharp):



this one at 1/30, f2 and ISO 1600



So hawyard, here is a whole slew of low light moments caught without benefit of IS. No moment lost because the PHOTOGRAPHER had planned. Because I had the right tool for the job ready (flash or bright prime) and had my camera set up with the proper ISO and I knew my equipment and could change values in 2 seconds - I captured the moments. So, I've shown a handful of shots of what comes from being a prepared photographer. Please share some of YOUR shots showing how IS was able to accomplish the same.
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Old Apr 3, 2007, 11:01 AM   #47
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By the way - my purpose is not to berate you Hayward, it's to demonstrate that there are things that HAVE A GREATER CONTRIBUTION to good photos than IS.

As any good photographer will tell you - most good photos are the result of good planning and execution on the part of the photographer. Failure to plan accordingly and hoping IS will bail you out won't generate much success. Knowing your equipment, knowing how to shoot in a given environment - knowing where to position yourself properly, knowing which lens you'll need, what white balance, what exposure settings, etc. will yield better results just about every time.

Sometimes IS isone possible tool you can use. Sometimes it won't help at all (moving subject), sometimes it won't help enough (lighting too poor). And, as mentioned there is ALWAYS a price. With canon and nikon the price is the added weight and cost of the IS/VR lenses. With Pentax and sony and now Olympus the cost is the more restrictive system(s). As TCAV indicated, he weighed the costs against the benefits and FOR HIM the benefits outweighed the costs. So it was the right decision. Your logic, as you state frequently is: it's a no-brainer to buy in-body IS. It would be a no-brainer if all systems offered it (or the in-lens IS did not cost extra)- but right now they dont. And whether you like it or not - there is a cost associated with choosing ANY camera system. If Pentax were clearly the best system then Canon, Nikon and Olympus would be out of business. But they're not.

I and others have tried to demonstrate that good photos can be taken without IS. So I still dispute that for every person, IS is a no-brainer. It aint that easy. It's a feature just like every other. An intelligent buyer needs to weigh the TOTAL FEATURE SET of the CAMERA AND SYSTEM against their needs and select the one that is the best match. That may include IS or it may not. But it certainly doesn't HAVE TO.




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Old Apr 3, 2007, 1:41 PM   #48
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Well Done, JohnG-

I love the series of photos. Here is my contribution: a Canon XT fitted with the Sigma 17-70mm lens ISO 800 AWB, inside, no flash, no IS and cropped only.

MT/Sarah
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Old Apr 3, 2007, 2:22 PM   #49
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JohnG wrote:
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Hayward wrote:
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NOW honestly folks... (if no convenient overhead white ceilng to bounce and flash mounted) can you see that shot with direct flash let alone loosing the moment fumbling to get it all together?
NOW honestly, Hayward, yes as a matter of fact I can.

with flash (unbounced):















But, hey - how about with no flash.

ISO 1600, f1.8 and 1/20 (worse light than what Jim's photo was taken in - and this sharp):



this one at 1/30, f2 and ISO 1600



So hawyard, here is a whole slew of low light moments caught without benefit of IS. No moment lost because the PHOTOGRAPHER had planned. Because I had the right tool for the job ready (flash or bright prime) and had my camera set up with the proper ISO and I knew my equipment and could change values in 2 seconds - I captured the moments. So, I've shown a handful of shots of what comes from being a prepared photographer. Please share some of YOUR shots showing how IS was able to accomplish the same.
Of course you can take shots like that without IS, but what if a flash is not desirable or you can't use a flash? Whatif you need a tripod and are not allowed to use one? What ifthe ISO speed and lens don't meet the controlled conditions you have in those staged shots? What about all of the above?

I guess you just won't be able to take the picture. IS, buys you a couple of stops and that little extra may make the difference. I guess you will just go home with dark blurry pictures and then tell us that you only shoot sports.
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Old Apr 3, 2007, 2:29 PM   #50
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I have seen the light (or not) and I am converted to the Church of true believers in Anti-Shake.

Praise be to the rapidly moving sensor, and the jiggling lens element.

Amen.



P.S. JohnG - there is no possible evidence you could present to demonstrate your point to the faithful. Belief is never subject to conversion through evidence (or lack thereof) the stronger your arguments the more vehement (and nasty) the faithful become.
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