View Full Version : IS and tripods?

4th October 2013, 07:03 PM
I have read on various forums that either you should switch off IS when using the E-M5 or that it doesn't matter. Is there a definitive answer to this?

I did some test shots on my tripod with it on and off over a 30 second exposure but I couldn't see a difference...however as I should wear glasses more often that doesn't mean a lot!

Does any one know for certain?


4th October 2013, 07:11 PM
It has been officially stated that you should switch IS off when on a tripod. However, I've also seen it somewhere that some cameras - can't remember which - are sensible enough for it not to matter as they can sense this. Also, in my view, there is a tad of vibration in most domestic tripods, especially if only a light camera is used.

So, in short, I dunno!

4th October 2013, 07:33 PM
if you can't discerne a difference then don't worry.

IMO there is one, but it can only be observed under controlled test conditions including, as Stephen points out, a proper tripod and extreme magnification.

shot these many years ago with an E


edit, these are already tight crops but it's still only when you get to pixel level that you can see the difference

this is still at 50%


from memory the colour difference was auto WB and I didn't want to correct/manipulate at the time.

I should probably make clear that these shots were taken on a large video tripod, concrete floor and remote set up with no-one anywhere near the camera for over 1 minute each time - those sort of test conditions!

In real life, even if it's tripod mounted, I wasn't concerned about having IS on or off if my hands are operating the camera

David Morison
4th October 2013, 09:09 PM
Even on a very substantial tripod there is a degree of movement enough to make MF difficult with long non-native lenses, so IS helps with this. However I find that it is best to switch IS off before actually making the exposure, I get many more keepers that way. The one thing that disappoints me about the OMD cameras is that IS cannot be assigned to a button to make this procedure easier. The E30 and E5 had this facility.


Ralph Harwood
4th October 2013, 10:49 PM
Hi everyone!

My moon shots improved considerably with IS off when on a tripod with the E-30 and 500mm mirror and ec-14, but I also found it easier to MF without IS as well - not sure if it is an issue with the adapter I was using though as it is the chip type and it displays a focal length of 65535mm on Exif data (I haven't checked what it shows with the EC-14 on as well - could be interesting). Obviously if the camera really thinks it's got a 65535mm lens on the front any compensation will be well off! I do set the correct length on the IS menu, but whether it uses that or the adapter data I don't know.

It is definately better with IS when hand held with that lens combination though, but that could just be my shakey hands - it's certainly never better handheld than on a tripod.

Hope this helps more than it confuses,