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View Full Version : IS - Those Who Have It, Could You Do Without It? Those Without It, Do You Yearn For It?


Phaedrus
14th January 2011, 03:26 PM
There doesn't seem to be a sub-forum for general E-System (not model-specific) discussions, so I guess here's as good as any place to post this?

My E-410 doesn't have it (no, it's true), but I do hope to upgrade to an Olympus with IS, maybe this year.

Those of you who now have a camera with IS - would you change to an otherwise "better" camera if it didn't have IS?

Those of you without IS - is it a big deal for you? Are you saving frantically to upgrade?

theMusicMan
14th January 2011, 03:33 PM
NO, definitely. Any upgrade would have to have IS, it is awesome and allows you to get shots you simply otherwise would not be able to achieve.

I will at some point I am sure, upgrade to an E-5, but if it didn't have IS, I would not upgrade to it.

andym
14th January 2011, 03:40 PM
I'm of the feeling that it is very useful but I must admit I only use it when I feel it's needed.
As I started with an E500 and E1 without IS, it was a luxury on my later cameras.I supose it's somthing that's down to the individual and don't think its the be all and end all on a camera.

Just my thoughts

Nick Temple-Fry
14th January 2011, 03:57 PM
Well, it's worth having, but we probably overestimate that worth as IS only really comes into play near the limits of the lens capabilities (low shutter speed relative to focal length) and when we get near those limits other factors come into play (subject stillness for example). And of course it actually needs to be off for long exposure tripod mounted shots.

Worth having, certainly, and it will on occaisions let you get shots (at least at a lower iso) than would otherwise be possible.

Nick

snaarman
14th January 2011, 04:00 PM
When it works (which is most of the time) the results are remarkable. You have to play your part and hold the camera very carefully, but all in all its well worth having.. Being lazy I tend to leave it switched on.

However I do sometimes get shots from long lenses that have a characteristic "jerked blur" that I suspect is casued by the IS "losing it" during the shot. (I also wonder if it doesn't work for overhead shots).

So, I say its a great invention, but you need to consider that sometimes it goes wrong...

Pete

Phaedrus
14th January 2011, 04:04 PM
So if the replacement/upgrade for your camera comes out and it's better in every aspect, but doesn't have IS (obviously, we'd presume it would, but for the sake of guaging how important IS is to people, let's imagine it doesn't) would you trade up or stick with your current model?

I suppose the main factor is going to be the primary type of photography you do - obviously, if you don't need IS you won't value it, if you do you will.

Personally, one area where I struggle (in addition to all the usual novice areas) is with longer shots - candid family stuff when they're not aware they're being photographed, and recently wildlife. As such, I can't wait to upgrade to an IS camera.

theMusicMan
14th January 2011, 04:09 PM
It is all user dependent.

I use it almost every weekend when I take shots of Heather and her rugby team games. It allows me to get shots in the low light, cold shaking hands conditions of late afternoon winter games.

It also allows me to get shots of the birds on my garden feeders and in the garden generally. Sure, if they move during the longer exposure, then I don't get the shot - but often the light is so low that 1/10th of a second (sometimes less) with the 70-300mm @ 300mm is the order of the day - and as long as the bird doesn't move, I get the shot. This is only achievable with IS.

I strongly disagree with you there Nick and don't think it is overestimated at all.

Graham_of_Rainham
14th January 2011, 04:11 PM
Last night I did a talk to a camera club about using the camera in "Other than
Auto"

Because quite a few of the "beginners" didn't have DSLRs I used the E-PL1 to demonstrate all the "Other" modes. I forgot that I had left the IS switched on, and at one point was demonstrating how the exposure time is increased with reduction of the aperture and took a picture at about 1 second.

There was quite a bit of muttering from the club members as the image that came up on the projector, was clear and sharp with only the movement of the people being noticable.

When I explained that the E-3 would have done that even better as being heavier helps to reduce camera shake, they were very impressed.

The owners of the expensive DSLRs were a little surprised too, at the quality that a little thing like the E-PL1 can produce.

In body IS really is one of the best innovations that Olympus has developed and I would not want to be without the capability it provides.

David Morison
14th January 2011, 04:18 PM
I didn't use to have it but since I have had it I could not conceive being without it. Try handholding a DSLR (E5) with 300mm f2.8 (around 4.3kg!) targeting a bird in flight at a reasonable ISO and the only solution to hundreds of missed shots is IS! Even with it quite a few are discarded.

David

RogerMac
14th January 2011, 04:56 PM
IS was the main reason that I replaced my E500 with a E510 (now supplmented by a P1) about four years ago, and I have never regretted the change. As others above have said, it allows me to take pictures in impossible situations.

Would I upgrade to a body without it? Only if that body was an order of magnitude better, for example if the long rumoured "triad" model comes out I might be tempted but without IS I would not even be considering an E5

Roger

Bobpatchcott
14th January 2011, 05:23 PM
Hi
I have it on my E-3 and I don't think I could live without it now.
I'm getting on a bit and am very shaky these days so it stays on at all times when using the camera hand held.

Regards to all.*chr

benvendetta
14th January 2011, 07:06 PM
No, it is insurance. Must say that I don't even think about it and rarely drop to a SS that really benefits from IS.

meach
14th January 2011, 07:27 PM
It never occurs to me that the function is even available, so I've never really tried it out properly. I experimented with it once but didn't really see any benefit (it probably wasn't needed for the shots I was taking) and even worse I forgot to turn it off again. The next pics I took were on a tripod and turned out really badly so of course I blame the IS

photo_owl
14th January 2011, 07:29 PM
it's going to depend a lot on what you shoot but in my case I wouldn't go out without it.

tomke
14th January 2011, 07:39 PM
IS was one of the main reasons I choose my first Olympus camera, the E510 and now E30. I am so used to it that I would not want to be without it. It surely helps me to make good photos in difficult circumstances.

David M
14th January 2011, 11:07 PM
Very rarely use it as my E-3 and E-410 are tripod mounted 99% of the time.

The reason I got an E-410 rather than the E-510 was because I didn't need IS

Zuiko
15th January 2011, 02:09 AM
I've probably got a skewed vew of it, as my hands tend to tremble (Parkinson's Disease). For me it's often essential, a real hobby saver! I can't envisage being without it now. However, do bear in mind that although it will greatly improve your chances of getting a sharp shot in marginal circumstances, it won't work miracles! Also, at slow shutter speeds it might stop camera movement but it won't have any effect on subject movement. Of course, for landscapes I still prefer a tripod, you won't get much steadier than that! :D

OlyPaul
15th January 2011, 08:31 AM
I always leave it on and would not be without it now, especially as I have got older I no longer like to cart a tripod around with me.:)

Also it helps to combat a flaw in Olympus's Auto modes, if like me you shoot a lot in Aperture priority and auto ISO then the camera tries to juggle the ISO and shutter speed to the same as the focal length being used as per the old 35mm adage to keep the shutter speed the same or higher than the focal length being used to avoid camera shake.

The problem is if say shooting at 300mm it sets a shutter speed to around 1/300sec but it does not take into account the 2x factor which means you are actually shooting at a 600mm equivalent and really need a shutter speed of 1/600 sec, so without IS and shooting in AP you would have a hard time getting any shake free images.:)

photo_owl
15th January 2011, 02:26 PM
I always leave it on and would not be without it now, especially as I have got older I no longer like to cart a tripod around with me.:)

Also it helps to combat a flaw in Olympus's Auto modes, if like me you shoot a lot in Aperture priority and auto ISO then the camera tries to juggle the ISO and shutter speed to the same as the focal length being used as per the old 35mm adage to keep the shutter speed the same or higher than the focal length being used to avoid camera shake.

The problem is if say shooting at 300mm it sets a shutter speed to around 1/300sec but it does not take into account the 2x factor which means you are actually shooting at a 600mm equivalent and really need a shutter speed of 1/600 sec, so without IS and shooting in AP you would have a hard time getting any shake free images.:)

given sufficient light it will but you have asked it to juggle, so it does! If you don't care about the ISO level just shoot M and auto ISO and select your aperture, 1/600th and leave the camera to sort the exposure via ISO alone.

Go to P or AUTO modes and it will give you 1/2xFL if it can *chr

timg
15th January 2011, 04:59 PM
The reason I got an E-410 rather than the E-510 was because I didn't need IS

This is the reason I got the E510 rather than the E410! I prefer the E410 body shape but I wanted IS...

Lord Minty
15th January 2011, 09:26 PM
IS is the reason I got my E-600. I've got a lot of legacy lenses and many are long ones. With IS I can make more use of them.

Bikie John
16th January 2011, 12:03 PM
Like John theMusicMan I shoot rugby, but unlike John I don't find IS particularly useful for it. Most of the time I try to use a fast shutter speed to freeze the subject - a bit of motion blur is good for some subjects but I've generally found that it's not good for rugby. Since I aim to shoot at around 1/800 or faster, the IS doesn't have time to be useful.

Where I find it most useful is in point & shoot mode - holiday snaps and so on. It could also be good for shooting musicians where you have a slowish shutter speed, perhaps because the light is poor or because you want to get some blur into the guitarist's strumming hand.

So I'll go against the tide and say it's no big deal.

Ciao ... John

photo_owl
16th January 2011, 12:12 PM
Like John theMusicMan I shoot rugby, but unlike John I don't find IS particularly useful for it. Most of the time I try to use a fast shutter speed to freeze the subject - a bit of motion blur is good for some subjects but I've generally found that it's not good for rugby. Since I aim to shoot at around 1/800 or faster, the IS doesn't have time to be useful.



IS is easily fast enough to be effective at 1/800th - hand holding, or mono-pod with the 300+EC20 would definitely benefit from it at that sort of shutter speed.

However, IS and sports need care. As I am following the action with rugby I generally have IS off because it's a mess when panning and I don't know from second to second whether I'm shooting landscape/portrait panning or not - so it's off *chr

ScottMorris
16th January 2011, 02:54 PM
The odd shot at the absolute fringes of what the camera's capable of aside, I suspect IS is one of these things you won't notice you're missing until it's gone.

The first camera I used seriously in some years was an E-510, then an E-600. At some recent point I yearned for some high class weather sealed action and picked up an old E-1, which is a seriously lovely bit of kit but I could not get used to not having that IS there when I needed it, and perhaps might not even been aware that I needed it before having it 'taken away'. Taking something in fading light at ISO400, perhaps.

I'm convinced if I hadn't been spoiled by IS I might have got on a lot better with it and I'd have appreciated the E-1 more. As i stands, I'd not want to go back to not having IS available. You could, of course, make the same arguments about any slab of technology incorporated into cameras, but I find IS to be one of the most useful developments of recent years.

Bikie John
16th January 2011, 03:16 PM
IS is easily fast enough to be effective at 1/800th - hand holding, or mono-pod with the 300+EC20 would definitely benefit from it at that sort of shutter speed.

However, IS and sports need care. As I am following the action with rugby I generally have IS off because it's a mess when panning and I don't know from second to second whether I'm shooting landscape/portrait panning or not - so it's off *chr

Hmm, 300 plus EC20 probably needs all the help it can get if it's not on an extremely solid tripod!

I tried IS with rugby when I went from E-1 to E-3 and didn't really notice any benefit. Of course it is impossible to do any controlled tests because the subject doesn't stay still for long enough to repeat the exposures - "Excuse me, could you score just there again please :)" - and the light changes very rapidly. But I didn't find IS made the hit rate any better once the sun went down.

Ciao ... John

Makonde
16th January 2011, 03:48 PM
Always on by default, I have to think when to switch it off, wouldn't be without it. I am usually shooting hand-held, often in poor light or evening street, and it gives me far more choice about other settings.

With the E520 I once did some test shots on a tripod with and without IS and frankly, there was only a very slight improvement without the IS even in that situation.

This is a really good OLy feature. You just have to remember that it does not help with moving subjects, only with camera shake.

Ellie
17th January 2011, 10:57 PM
I certainly wouldn't be without it now, it's switched on all the time. It's helped me capture some decent shots I wouldn't otherwise have got, as well as helping in low light situations.

I have to keep coming back to one of the earliest pictures I took with my E-30, of the Salisbury Font (http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showthread.php?t=7408). If you check the EXIF you'll see it was 1/3 second! Without IS I'd have needed a tripod, which I didn't have with me.

But I'll agree with Pete (http://e-group.uk.net/forum/showpost.php?p=98746&postcount=5) who doesn't think it works for overhead shots ... I'm not sure if IS works properly if the camera is pointed directly downwards.

I do tend to forget there are two settings though, one for standing still, the other I think is intended for panning. :o

Sabroc
18th January 2011, 10:30 AM
I probably take more shots without it than I do with it in, but either ways its a useful tool to have *chr

meach
22nd January 2011, 12:12 AM
When I explained that the E-3 would have done that even better as being heavier helps to reduce camera shake, they were very impressed.


I find this theory interesting as I got rid of my E-30 and 12-60 because, while tripod results with this combination were better, I found I got noticeably better hand held results with my E-510 and 14-42, which I put down to the difference in weight. Of course, had it occurred to me to try IS (which I usually forget is even there!!) I may well still have them. I now have an E-600 and 14-54 and find the weight is so much lighter that I feel I can hand hold at much longer shutter speeds - but that may be just my perception. But I'm certainly happier with the results - whichever of us is right!!!

Ross the fiddler
22nd January 2011, 02:57 AM
I started out with the E410 & moved up to the E520 to have IS & the ZD70-300 lens & found it's not really possible to get good hand held photos at 300mm in low light without IS. I now enjoy it with the E30 which gave another step in ISO & the E5 would be even better plus even more effective IS.
I wouldn't want to be without IS but there are times where you have to remember to turn it off when using tripod & long exposures etc.

Roberta
22nd January 2011, 06:54 AM
I forget about it, and am constantly amazed while out on a wooden cart with metal rims with one horse power, and you when you look through the view finder where nothing seeming to be standing still and I've only had a few fuzzies.
Roberta