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Archive 2005 · Fast Wide Prime + IS
  
 
discreet
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


RANT ON:

How come no manufactor is willing to believe that wide angle primes need IS?... i think it is a pretty good idea to have IS on wide lens as there are times when you need a large DOF and slow shutter speeds.

Anyway, for example, if Sigma added OS (their version of IS) onto the 20/1.8 and switch it to a HSM motor, it will be such a kick ass lens and Canon will be force to up the ante and add IS to their 24/1.4L and 35/1.4L....

RANT OFF



May 01, 2005 at 02:43 AM
data1ore
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


Maybe if they do a massive marketing campaign and 'brainwash' consumers into thinking they need one after years of massive cigarette/coffee addiction.

Maybe if Sigma starts doing it to their lenses, to allow people to shake their bon-bons while snapping furiously away at a club. No more stigma from owning a Sigma.

Maybe...maybe.




May 01, 2005 at 02:49 AM
charlesk
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


I agree, Discreet.

I've said many times before that I would gladly accept an additional pound and $400 on the 17-40 f/4L if they made an IS version. --c



May 01, 2005 at 04:12 AM
moondigger
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


Canon has not released an IS lens that has a maximum focal length of less than 135mm (or 135mm equivalent for EF-S), and it doesn't seem likely they will.


May 01, 2005 at 04:19 AM
phidong
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


If you can't handhold a wide angle lens without IS, I don't know what to tell you.


May 01, 2005 at 04:23 AM
jimhsu
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


wide angle lens usually don't need IS because the focal length is shorter than the big gun telephotos. Especially with the primes like the 35/1.4 or the 85/1.2: supposed to be able to use faster shutter speed with wide open apertures, thus lessen the amount of shake during the shot.

One thing that can appear as camera shake at the wide-open apertures: he DOF is very shallow, thus making many shots appear blurry when the subject moves even just slightly and out of the focus plane, but IS will not help that problem: it won't stabilize your subject. Those of you with kids: IS won't substitute your telling them to "keep your head still for a second."

The 17-40/4L was not a good lens for me indoors at night because of the f/4 limitation. I don't think IS would have helped me: the solution was called the 420EX.




May 01, 2005 at 05:25 AM
nutek
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


In what situations would you need a fast wide lens and IS? I can't seem to think of any.

However, IS on a normal wide lens might be useful for lazy landscape photographers like me who don't like to use a tripod. That way I can use my f8 or f16 for handheld landscapes and still get good results. But IS and fast wide lens? Hmm... remember, IS doesn't compensate for forward-backward movements which are uh-so-critical in shallow DOF operations.



May 01, 2005 at 05:46 AM
pachiu
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


I just don't understand why people keep saying IS on wide angle lenses are useless, to the point of rediculing those who want it.

Sure, wide-angle lenses are easier to hand-hold and can therefore go to slower shutter speeds even without IS. But isn't the point of IS that you can hand-hold EVEN BETTER? Hence, just as IS on a 300mm lens may improve minimal hand-holdable shutter speed from 1/300 to 1/60, IS on a 20mm lens may improve minimal hand-holdable shutter speed from 1/20 to half a second. The effectiveness of IS is the same. Whether or not it is useful for YOU is another matter completely.

Am I not getting something? Does IS cease to be effective below a certain threshold regardless of focal length?

In any case, I sure do find the IS on my 17-85 useful in both ends. I for one would VERY much welcome a fast wide prime with IS.

Andy



May 01, 2005 at 06:04 AM
jimhsu
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


What's the maximum aperture of the 17-85? I think it's f/4, isn't it? Yeah, a f/4 max ap might benefit from it, but I would be willing to go without it with a 16-35/2.8 or better yet the 35/1.4.

The IS I had was nice on the 70-200L, but if I had to get another lens of that range I would get the 70-200 2.8 without. IS made it heavier, which was also a source of hand shake.

Image quality may also suffer, as some would attest comparing the tripod images of 70-200L IS vs 70-200L without IS. (photo.net had a comparison, I think.)

So yeah, if it were a completely weightless, cost-free, image-nonaffecting addition, bring it on. But I think at or below a certain focal length the benefits might no longer outweigh the additional concerns about weight, cost, battery drain, or (at least perceived by some) image compromise. Canon has obviously made this determination, in terms of "how much it'd cost to make them/how many people think they need IS," so that below a certain focal length (135?) no IS is offered.



May 01, 2005 at 06:18 AM
nutek
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


pachiu wrote:
IS on a 20mm lens may improve minimal hand-holdable shutter speed from 1/20 to half a second. The effectiveness of IS is the same. Whether or not it is useful for YOU is another matter completely.


That's the point. What kind of pictures are you taking (presumably in low-light) with a fast wide lens? Can you hand-hold a camera still for 1/2s or longer without inducing forward-backward movement? I can't - maybe you can...

From a user-centric design and usability perspective, I would say there is not much use for a fast-wide lens with IS. Sure, people want it - but does it really help? I would argue it only induces more chances for user error and does not promote good photography techniques at all. Used a tripod recently?



May 01, 2005 at 06:19 AM
 

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nutek
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


that said, IS on a compact point and shoot would be very nice to have. I wouldn't care less about image quality or using a tripod with a P&S; DOF is already so huge - no problems about forward-backward movement there, so IS would certainly be a boon.

The Panasonic FX7 already has IS (they call it M-OS) in a slim, compact P&S body. If I were Panasonic, I would certainly take more effort into marketing that advantage more. Slim-form factor P&Ses (where the typcial users are the "mash-the-shutter-button" types) are the cameras that are seriously in need of IS - image IS on a Powershot S-class camera.. woohoo!



May 01, 2005 at 06:26 AM
data1ore
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


Anyone has any idea on the nature of IS on those P&S? Digital IS? Or some simple optical IS? I doubt they'd put complicated mechanical IS into those since that'll obviously bring up prices by quite a bit. I doubt those work the same way as the IS that we know of.


May 01, 2005 at 06:31 AM
PSquared63
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


I was taking pictures in a museum today with my 35L. Even at ISO 1600 and f/1.4 I was struggling to get 1/20 sec for some shots. I was using a polarizing filter to get the glare out of the glass display cases. Flash and tripod are not allowed in most museums. That's one instance where I would have liked IS even on a wide angle lens.


May 01, 2005 at 06:33 AM
phidong
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


PSquared63 wrote:
I was taking pictures in a museum today with my 35L. Even at ISO 1600 and f/1.4 I was struggling to get 1/20 sec for some shots. I was using a polarizing filter to get the glare out of the glass display cases. Flash and tripod are not allowed in most museums. That's one instance where I would have liked IS even on a wide angle lens.


I highly doubt it'd be as effective on a wide lens though, so it probably wouldn't sell well therefore would be a waste to manufacture and market.



May 01, 2005 at 06:40 AM
discreet
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


how about this.. you are shooting a concert....

At ISO 1600, at f 1.8, you are getting a decent shutter speed of maybe 1/30s

Imagine with IS, you have the choice of either
1) lowering ISO hence noise
2) increasing your f stop to get better DOF

and i think it is rude to imply that people who want IS on their lens cant hold them.

Look at it this way, if I had a wide angle zoom and a tele zoom and was given a choice to have one of them have IS, i would definetly choose the tele. But, would it be nice to have IS on a wide zoom to. You can get away with more stuff and the technology is there, why not implement it.

Canon or Sigma is not going to be condemned for releasing such lenses. apparently only people who use them will be ... :-D



May 01, 2005 at 05:53 AM
discreet
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


hmmm i think the FM server went crazy... i just posted a reply and it is way in front now....


May 01, 2005 at 06:57 AM
pachiu
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


nutek wrote:
That's the point. What kind of pictures are you taking (presumably in low-light) with a fast wide lens? Can you hand-hold a camera still for 1/2s or longer without inducing forward-backward movement? I can't - maybe you can...

From a user-centric design and usability perspective, I would say there is not much use for a fast-wide lens with IS. Sure, people want it - but does it really help? I would argue it only induces more chances for user error and does not promote good photography techniques at all. Used a tripod recently?


I think there are two separate issues here. The first is whether or not IS benefits wide angle lenses, and the second is that whether or not the benefit is useful in practice.

In the first case, I think we generally agree that IS indeed helps wide angle lenses just as it does for telephoto lenses. I am not sure if forward-backward movement comes into the equation here. Yes, at some point forward-backward movements dominate camera shake and hence IS is no longer effective. However, I believe this factor applies equally well to wide-angle and telephoto lenses. It would seem to me that the effect of forward-backward movements is equally prominant at 0.5 second for a 20mm lense as a 300mm lense at 1/60 second. Or is that not the case?

My point, therefore, is that IS benefits wide angle lenses just as it does for telephoto lenses.

As for whether or not the benefit is actually useful, well, I agree that it probably isn't as useful as IS for telephoto lenses. However, the musuem scenario above gives a good example of how IS CAN be useful. I am sure there are other examples too.

I guess what I'm trying to say is that while IS for wide-angle may be more specialized than IS for telephoto, it CAN nevertheless be useful. I would not just dismiss it as pointless.

Andy



May 01, 2005 at 07:12 AM
nutek
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


Good point about separating the two issues.

I do not know the physics well enough as to whether the effect of forward-backward movement for a 20mm lens for 0.5s is similar for a 300mm lens for 1/60s, as this may be dependent on the distance to the subject as well. I would hazard a guess that keeping magnification (in the macro sense of the word) constant, the effects will be similar.

For the museum scenario, could we know how far away were most of the subjects? My guess is that, beyond a certain magnification, IS at less than a certain shutter speed will not be useful. However, if your subject magnification ratio is small, then yes, IS will be useful.

Too many factors, too many shooting styles... but that's the fun of photography



May 01, 2005 at 08:11 AM
phidong
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


I think the biggest assumption in this thread is that IS for wide angle works and that it is as effective as IS in other lenses.

First off, to understand if it is even possible to put IS into a wide angle lens, we really have to understand how IS works. When you shake your camera like a polaroid pictah, what is happening is that you're shifting the image plane around either up and down, forward to backward or right to left. But how does IS compensate for this? Easy. Theres an element or a group of elements that shifts the image and projects it in the opposite direction. Canon actually uses two sheets of glass on bellow like things that move together or apart at opposite angles. So now that we understand why it works, how exactly does it know what to do?? Motion detectors and gyros.

If anybody has ever owned a primitive IS lens, you've probably heard the advice to turn IS off when you put it on a tripod. But why? The reason is the detectors would shift the elements or IS mechanism in a sin-like motion (back and forth) because they would get confused. Easy fix, if the IS notices that there is little movement or doesn't detect a lot of movement it will switch to a mode where it only worries about the mirror slap.

Wait, did I just say if it detects little to no movement, it switches into a "stanby-sleep like" state? .. I think I did!

So now that we completely understand how and why IS works, why not in wide angle lenses? When you' deal with a telephoto lens with 10% FOV, a shift in the axis where the sensor is is a HUGE shift in the image plane. What this means is that the motion detectors and gyros will NOTICE a shake and compensate for it. That is why people invented that magic 1/focal length rule. The longer the lens, the shorter the shutter speed needs to be to produce an acceptable image.

On wide angle lenses, this is the reason some people can handhold a 20mm lens for seconds. No, I didn't make a typo. SECONDS. Keep in mind I said some people, this doesn't apply to everybody, but most people should still be able to get pretty steady shots even at some slower shutter speeds.

Now, why not IS in a wide angle lens? The answer is right above. The REASON you can hand hold a wide angle lens has nothing to do with it's size and almost everythign to do with the fact that your photographer's handshake has almost a negligable affect on shifting the image plane, basically you don't shift it enough. The problem then is, if I can hold handhold at 20mm for almost half a second (speaking of me now) and get an acceptable image, where the human eye probably couldn't detect shake...

how will the IS mechanism detect the "shake"? You have to ask yourself then, will IS in a wide angle lens be benefitial or detrimental to the performance of the lens? And even if it did help, how much would it help? 3 stops? 2 stops? 1 stop? Would it be worth the extra 500 dollars for people who can already handhold a wide angle lens at for 1-2 seconds? And for people who CAN handhold the lens that long, would the IS mechanism even be functioning during this time, or would it be in sleep mode because the image plane was being held so still? In which case, the photographer would just be carrying around deadweight.

Answer all these questions then make projections of how many people would buy the lens. IS in a wide angle is almost the equivalent of a 1200mm lens. It's cool, but it isn't practical and not everybody needs it. Well, when I say not everybody I mean very few people need it. So when you think about Canon as a business, it doesn't make financial sense to research and develop a product that few people will buy.

And there is the answer to your question.

Edited by phidong on May 01, 2005 at 12:37 AM GMT



May 01, 2005 at 08:25 AM
nutek
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · Fast Wide Prime + IS


discreet wrote:
how about this.. you are shooting a concert....

At ISO 1600, at f 1.8, you are getting a decent shutter speed of maybe 1/30s

Imagine with IS, you have the choice of either
1) lowering ISO hence noise
2) increasing your f stop to get better DOF





Again, this is a matter of style... but I'm sorry, but you won't catch me photographing a concert at 1/15s or slower... (unless if it was really a slow concert..., or unless you're trying out some fancy "drag the shutter" effect...)



May 01, 2005 at 08:25 AM
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