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EXCERPT page containing first few paragraphs. 2022-07-05 03:48:55

Blur Caused by Image Stabilization

Image stabilization (IS) is a terrific feature, but it can cause blur on a stable tripod.

That’s because the IS/VR will detect and attempt to correct vibrations caused by the shutter. Using mirror lockup, I was able to reproduce the effect shown here at will, over and over again: sharp without IS, very blurry with it (Canon 200mm f/2L IS).

There are some exceptions that might vary by camera and lens: when shooting at 400mm on up, even the sturdiest tripod might not matter, because even the shutter itself causes vibration. Experimentation is in order for extreme cases; image stabilization might help, or might make things worse.

Nikon calls their image stabilization “VR” (Vibration Reduction), and Canon calls it “IS” (Image Stabilization). Both are optical image stabilization using a special lens group in the lens itself.

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  • Eases into photographic challenges with an introductory section.
  • Covers aspects of digital sensor technology that relate to getting the best image quality.
  • Technique section discusses every aspect of making a sharp image handheld or on a tripod.
  • Depth of field and how to bypass depth of field limitations via focus stacking.
  • Optical aberrations: what they are, what they look like, and what to do about them.
  • MTF, field curvature, focus shift: insight into the limitations of lab tests and why imaging performance is far more complex than it appears.
  • Optical aberrations: what they are, what they look like, and what to do about them.
  • How to test a lens for a “bad sample”.

Intrigued? See Focusing Zeiss DSLR Lenses For Peak Performance, PART ONE: The Challenges, or (one topic of many) field curvature.

Entire frame as shot at f/8 and 1/2 second

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