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Old Apr 14, 2005, 4:00 AM   #1
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Hi,

I am thinking of Fujifilm S 5500 (S5100). I am not quite sure if I need a Optical Image Stabilizer. So further I have a look at the Panasonic FZ 4.

Question:Isan Optical Image Stabilizer such a big advantage? Regarding the good old time of mechanical cams, I was fine without a stabilizer even with a big zoom. -Nottalking about the qualitydifference of the cams!

Or is the stabilizer just a new moneymaker like increasing the MegaPix in low coast cams?

Thanks!
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 6:00 AM   #2
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Image stabilising is amazing. Ever tried to use a 400mm lens on a dull day? I would say it easily gives you the claimed 2-3 stops improvement. I have an indoor shot at 430mm at 1/6s which is quite sharp, although that was the best of quite a few shots. If the lens is only up the 100mm or so, it is probably not as important.

Keith.
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 11:14 AM   #3
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I have an S5100, and have no problems with shake or motion. That doesn't mean that when trying to snap a pic of a moving target (like a dolphin) from a rocking boat, you won't blow a few shots. I'm not convinced that any image stabilizing system can guarantee a good shot under the conditions just described.

Is it worth spending another hundred dollars for it? I think not. Spend your money on picture quality and features that you're going to want or need, such as megazoom, resolution, video capabilities, etc. Don't forget the essential accessories such as a case, batteries, charger and memory cards.



Good luck.

the Hun
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 11:54 AM   #4
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I've been surprised, amazed, and pleased, by how well the pictures come out with my S5100, even at 10Xzoom, or while in a moving vehicle, or capturing motion, Even in low light! and I'm not the steadiest shooter I've never had more then 3X zoom in a camera before,and I'm loving it! This camerais very predictable, (like an old school film camera)it shoots as you'd want, & expect it to. IMHO Image Stabilization is not needed. I even tried a Canon S1 compared head, to head, to the S5100, and was not impressed, I couldn't even tell when the IS was engaged on the S1?
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 12:15 PM   #5
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Obviously some steady handed replies! However, a simple fact is; whatever shutter speed you can hold a camera steady without IS, you can hold it slower with IS. Whether that is 1, 2 or 3 stops is debatable, not the fact that it has an effect.

Keith.
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 12:45 PM   #6
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If you have hands that enable to take a picture at 300mm with 1/300s shutter speed and that u take a picture at 300mm with a shutter speed of no slower than 1/300s, then you will not see a difference with or without IS. Its only when u go beyond your limit that the difference will show...

I know I personally wished my camera had OIS, but aside from Panasonic, its basicly reserved for ultra-zoom cameras. It will show more for shots where lots of zoom is used because those shots require very fast shutter speed, but even at less zoom it can be useful for situations where the lighting is less than perfect. Knowing that flash just doesn't cut it most of the time on a compact digital camera, it is often profitable to risk getting a blurry picture for me.

So, I have no OIS, but I wished I did.. it just gives you more possibilities... Hell if you want, you can just turn it off.
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Old Apr 14, 2005, 5:14 PM   #7
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rinniethehun wrote:
Quote:
I have an S5100, and have no problems with shake or motion. That doesn't mean that when trying to snap a pic of a moving target (like a dolphin) from a rocking boat, you won't blow a few shots. I'm not convinced that any image stabilizing system can guarantee a good shot under the conditions just described.
Quote:
Actually, IS is not intended for those types of situations. Those situations demand higher shutter speeds to cancel out the movement of the subject, or the rocking boat. Therefore, no one could guarantee that IS would provide a good shot.
Quote:
Is it worth spending another hundred dollars for it? I think not. Spend your money on picture quality and features that you're going to want or need.
Quote:
In general, I would certainly agree with this. On the other hand, I would also say that given the fact that you can now get IS in a broad range of prices, that you really don't have to spend a lot more to get IS. One can buy an FZ3 for $329, which isn't much more than many other 10x and higher zooms out there.
Quote:

IS won't guarantee you will always get the shot, nor will it freeze fast moving objects. It only cancels out small camera movement, which shows up in pics that are either at high magnification, or at long shutter speeds. IS just allows one to handhold at longer shutter speeds than what you could do without. Therefore, it won't make a difference in most photos, but it sure does come in handy from time to time.

For someone to say that IS is not needed -well, to a certain extent that is true. We don't need IS, just as we don't need a flash (just shoot in ambient light, and accept the slow shutter speeds) or a zoom lens (just get closer to the subject). But all these things are nice to have, and allows more flexibility in one's photography. Only you can decide if IS is truely needed (or not).

PhilR.
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Old Apr 15, 2005, 1:48 AM   #8
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Well..... Sometimes mfgs. compensate their slower optics with IS.
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Old Apr 15, 2005, 5:47 PM   #9
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I guess some manufacturers will use IS in place of a fast lens. But it does need to be pointed out that Pansonic FZ-10/15/20 have a 2.8 lens throughout the zoom range and the newer smaller FZ-4/5 have 2.8 at wide and only go to 3.3 at 12X zoom. Now that I have IS I will not buy another camera without it.
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