How good is your Camera image stabiliser?

How good is your camera image stabiliser?



In simple language, the image stabiliser, whether it is on your lens or on your camera body, prevents camera shake. Camera shake is caused by your shaky hands when hand holding your camera shooting a stationary object like the leopard below as an example at a lower shutter speed. If your shutter speed is high enough, image stabiliser is not effective at all.

How good is your image stabiliser
How good is your image stabiliser

Finding at what speed your picture starts to show camera shake is very important. As a rule of thumb, if you use a 100mm lens, the minimum speed that you need to use without camera shake is 1/100 sec or higher. So with 200mm lens, the minimum speed will be 1/200 sec or higher. The table below gives you an idea of the lens you use and the minimum speed needed in order not to cause camera shake.

Your lens (mm)Minimum shutter speed
50 mm1/50 sec
100 mm1/100 sec
200 mm1/200 sec
Minimum shutter speed for camera and lens without Image Stabiliser.

How good is your camera image stabiliser?

If you are equipped with an image stabiliser, your minimum shutter speed will be reduced by 2 to 3 stops depending on the specification of the image stabiliser. Newer stabiliser can go up to 5 stops.

Lens you are usingMin speed (Sec)2 stops (sec)3 stops (sec)
50 mm1/50 sec1/12 sec1/6
100 mm1/100 sec1/25 sec1/12
200 mm1/200 sec1/50 sec1/25
Minimum shutter speed for camera and lens with 2 stops and 3 stops Image Stabiliser.

Therefore, when the lighting is low and you have to shoot at lower shutter speed on stationary subject image stabiliser is a great asset when you want to maintain your low ISO to keep the ISO noise under control.

Join us in the 2 day Basic photography Workshop to understand more about how to optimise the image stabiliser to take great photos.

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