Please briefly comment on the addition of image stabilization.

Editor's picture
Now that independent lens makers like Tamron and Sigma have announced “shake-free” lenses it seems that vibration reduction lenses are becoming more common and available for all. Does the addition of image stabilization add value to a lens for your work?
Please briefly comment on the addition of image stabilization.
1) Yes, the ability to have more exposure leeway in low light and with long lenses is certainly worth any extra expense.
96% (583 votes)
2) No, I’d rather work with a faster lens and don’t find noise objectionable if I raise my ISO to a reasonable speed.
2% (14 votes)
3) I don’t need these lenses because my camera body has vibration reduction built in.
2% (11 votes)
Total votes: 608
Share | |
Comments
Raghu's picture

I'm interested in bird/wildlife photography and there are situations when the light doesn't allow more than 1/125 sec with a 100-400 lens. These are situations when I find IS very helpful, especially because I wouldn't want to raise the ISO because of higher noise.

Michael Forbes's picture

Most of my photos are taken hand-held. The stability of the lens has been a lifesaver many times.

Bob Noel's picture

I think it's a very good feature for most people. I don't need it myself because I shoot everything using a tripod for stability and so I can frame my shots just as I like.

Ron's picture

I think that it is a waste of money and added weight..anyone say "tripod"

Ken Slotkowski's picture

They're great for museums, churches and other locations where a flash is not allowed.

Lauren MacIntosh's picture

Shake control should be in the camera not in the lenses that way the manufacturers can build better glass and not have to worry about all those fancy frills in the lenses.

Herbert Sodher's picture

These lenses are a rather sophisticated way by the manufacturers of making your old ones obsolete. With my investment in optics, I avoid buying a body from any system that adopts and requires "in lens" VR system. Two can play this game, but I have the advantage of holding the money!

Monroe Nevels's picture

I have a Chronic Spinal condition, and my body is always moving. I have lost more good photos than I have captured, and this is in the thousands.

Jeff Elder's picture

I really appreciate the "IS" in the longer glass. I just wish more would offer it for the Four Thirds System to lower the overall cost across the board. To my knowledge only two manufacturers offer glass for the For Thirds of Olympus. There needs to be more competition in this segment of the market place. Good Glass is currently less costly for my Nikon gear than for my Olympus gear. In all, this technology helps but is not relied upon as much as a good tripod and steady hand.

Robert Mahan's picture

Anything which helps get sharper images is welcomed.

F.  Field's picture

I think VR is most useful for mid-range, "walk-around" lenses. For travel photography in places like Europe where the skies are frequently overcast, the extra stops of hand-holdability really make a difference. I don't think VR adds value to telephoto lenses -- those lenses belong on a solid tripod.

David Hull's picture

Image stabalization is benificial. I would rather see it in the lens so that there is less mechanical complexity in the body and the VF shows the stabalized image. The added expense of the lesnes that have IS is not that big a deal. I personally feel that the lens is the proper place to implement this feature.

Colin D.  Wilkinson's picture

I find them invaluable for stability..... especially with advancing years!!

Chuck Wilson's picture

Vibration-reduction lenses are a real blessing for event and sports photography when it's not possible or practical to use a tripod or monopod.

Ed Lefkowicz's picture

Having recent covered a few presidential primary rallies, I can safely say that image stabilization in my Canon 70-200 f/2.8 was definitely worth the money! Even with TV and video lights, those gyms really suck up the light, especially when your subject is not in front of the lights.

Dan Beauvais's picture

My requirement for image stabilization has nothing to do with low light. I shoot airplanes in flight. Using too high a shutter speed freezes the propeller and makes the plane look like a model on a string. To blur the prop and give the plane some dynamics, it requires a shutter speed much lower than the 1/(focal length) hand-holdable speed. Image stabilization gives me an additional 3-4 stops of hand-holdability so I can get that necessary prop blur. (I might typically shoot with 420mm equivalent focal length, at 1/125 sec.)

Travis F.'s picture

Pentax got it right when the built in the SR in their SLR's. Use any pentax lens with shake reduction no matter how old or new it is.

John Hicks's picture

I use Nikon and the VR lenses have made a big difference. I have increased my keepers at least three fold using my new 500mm VR over my non VR lens.

Andrew's picture

VR has never done that much for me.

David Shapiro's picture

Gaining 2 - 3 F-Stops of leeway, especially when I'm shooting sporting events with my telephoto in low light means the difference between getting the shot I want or winding up with an unusable blur. I own 3 stabilized lenses, and use them constantly. I wouldn't buy anything else.

Jim Sipos's picture

I'm a traditionalist who still shoots mostly film and doesn't mind using a tripod so I can design my photograph before I snap the shutter.

M Y Turner's picture

The older I get, the shakier I get. Image stabilization is now more important to me than it used to be.

John T.'s picture

It would be nice if these companies would add this feature to their higher end lenses instead of just the consumer grade lenses. I think VR/IS coupled with a constant 2.8 aperture is worth the extra money.

R.  J.  Straub's picture

Really helpful in low light areas.

B.  Adkins's picture

I shoot Canon and I consider my stabilized lenses basic.

Chuck Pine's picture

All my lenses have the advantage of stabilization/anti-shake since it is built into my camera bodies' sensors. I could not function without it in many situations.

Ernest Brown's picture

I use a Canon 3004L IS lens on a Canon 20D and find this is much faster for birding than a using a tripod or monopod.

Doug Fox's picture

As an exclusive user of Nikon cameras (film and digital) and as an older (the older I get the shakier I become) photographer- you bet!

Dawn K.  Thomson's picture

I have noticed my photos are much sharper when I use a lens with IS as compared to a lens that does not have IS.

James B.  Holder's picture

This technology is crucial for less expensive lens designs at a reasonable cost to consumers...bet the pros like it too!