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STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible

  
 
Jesse Evans
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


I was watching this video comparing Nikons 400mm lens and it confirmed for me my experience across tons of Sony and Canon cameras.

Much is made about voice coil motors in the Sony forum, but Iíve used just about every Sony XD motor equipped lens and I do not notice any appreciable difference in speed or audibility over my Canon RF nano USM or ring USM equipped (internally focusing) lenses.

With the recent launch of the Z8, this topic has come up even more, as a topic of whether you should switch to Nikon when most of their lenses are lacking in the sacred voice coil motor!

https://youtu.be/CsjFC4uedjc

If you skip to around 19 minutes youíll see that Scott Keys was expecting his SSVCM 400 2.8 TC to handily outperform the other lenses, but it doesnít. He couldnít tell any difference.

This is because Nikon has used high quality, strong, fast, quiet stepping motors and designed their lenses well around them.

Iím sure that under a high speed camera one can probably tell the difference, but I donít see any difference in focusing speed between the Sony 400 2.8 GM and the Canon RF 400 2.8L.

Canons RF STM lenses, however, are specced to a low budget and are very noisy, and mostly used with externally focusing designs, making them both noticeably slower and noticeably noisier.

The technology is only a part of the story. STM is certainly capable of being fast and quiet. Itís also capable of being loud and slow.

The biggest benefit of VCM is youíre more or less guaranteed it will be at least as fast as the fastest usm or stm lenses.



May 19, 2023 at 09:59 PM
Choderboy
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


You only need to use Hide Me for one person in the Sony Forum for talk on focus motors to return to a sane level.




May 20, 2023 at 05:12 AM
Jesse Evans
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


Choderboy wrote:
You only need to use Hide Me for one person in the Sony Forum for talk on focus motors to return to a sane level.






May 20, 2023 at 08:57 AM
RoamingScott
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


It has the added benefit of removing 70% of the posts from any given thread, making reading much more efficient.

Choderboy wrote:
You only need to use Hide Me for one person in the Sony Forum for talk on focus motors to return to a sane level.





May 20, 2023 at 09:12 AM
cvrle59
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


This thread doesn't have bright future, I hope, I'm wrong.
But, as an engineer, who spent 9 years through engineering schooling, and almost 40 years working in the industry, I can clearly say, talking about this subject without inside knowledge about specifics is completely ridiculous.
This is what we can see on daily bases on the internet and YT in particular, by people who don't have any connections with engineering, except using engineered products.
There are so many different lens designs, and there are endless hours of simulation, then real testing with deferent options available, before design is locked on and released to the production. Long time before best solution for focusing is chosen for particular lens design.
This whole process is behind closed doors, and details are never released to the public.
People grab the final product in there hands, and they pretend, they understand all about.
It makes me sick in my stomach, all I can say.
I don't design lenses, but certain principles are common in engineering, which I fully understand.
Some people write poems about voice coil here. There is nothing significant about it, technology is out there for ages, it's only matter what they pick to use.
There are advantages and disadvantages on both sides.




Edited on May 21, 2023 at 09:42 PM · View previous versions



May 20, 2023 at 09:31 AM
groob
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


The proof is also in the images. Thereís not a subject on earth the 400mm f/4.5 cannot capture. If stepper motors actually presented any sort of impediment, there wouldnít be dozens and dozens of in-focus photos of swallows in the 400mm f/4.5 thread. I just cannot understand why some people care more about the on-paper specs of camera equipment than the actual output.


May 20, 2023 at 09:42 AM
ilkka_nissila
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


You have to understand that the Sony users who spend a lot of time bashing Nikon likely used Nikon in the past and then divorced them and express the kind of hatred towards Nikon like a divorced person would have towards their ex after a ending of relationship that didn't happen on good terms. This is what it is all about for them. They constantly talk badly about their ex (camera brand) because they suffered from the divorce and they can't live with the idea that others could be happy with Nikon, so they do everything they can to prevent other people from being happy using Nikon products. This poisons the forum. I guess it could take 20 years before they forgive / forget.

It's really got nothing to do with what motors a particular brand uses in a particular lens.



May 20, 2023 at 11:09 AM
NonDecaf
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


cvrle59 wrote:
This thread doesn't have bright future, I hope, I'm wrong.
But, as an engineer, who spent 9 years through engineering schooling, and almost 40 years working in the industry, I can clearly say, talking about this subject without inside knowledge about specifics is completely radicules.
This is what we can see on daily bases on the internet and YT in particular, by people who don't have any connections with engineering, except using engineered products.
There are so many different lens designs, and there are endless hours of simulation, then real testing with deferent options available, before design is locked on and released to
...Show more

Agreed, there is nothing all that noteworthy (IMO) about the motors. Also, the funny thing is - even if you had inside knowledge about the motors - the actual performance bottleneck could be something completely different like the microcontroller.



May 20, 2023 at 12:03 PM
 


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RoamingScott
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


ilkka_nissila wrote:
You have to understand that the Sony users who spend a lot of time bashing Nikon likely used Nikon in the past and then divorced them and express the kind of hatred towards Nikon like a divorced person would have towards their ex after a ending of relationship that didn't happen on good terms. This is what it is all about for them. They constantly talk badly about their ex (camera brand) because they suffered from the divorce and they can't live with the idea that others could be happy with Nikon, so they do everything they can to prevent
...Show more

When I moved from shooting Sony to Nikon (and thusly started posted on this side more), I was warned that the Nikon forum posters had a little brother complex and harbored a lot of butthurt towards Sony users.

Funny how this has shaken out over time. Nearly everyone I have hidden are Sony shooters that simply will not leave the Nikon forum.

It seems to me that the majority of Nikon shooters just largely want to be left to discuss NIKON products on their board without constant interruption from meddling know it alls who shoot the A1. Shocking.



May 20, 2023 at 12:06 PM
Choderboy
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


cvrle59 wrote:
This thread doesn't have bright future, I hope, I'm wrong.
But, as an engineer, who spent 9 years through engineering schooling, and almost 40 years working in the industry, I can clearly say, talking about this subject without inside knowledge about specifics is completely radicules.
This is what we can see on daily bases on the internet and YT in particular, by people who don't have any connections with engineering, except using engineered products.
There are so many different lens designs, and there are endless hours of simulation, then real testing with deferent options available, before design is locked on and released to
...Show more

I think your spell checker (assumed) typo may have inadvertently created an appropriate portmanteau.

Radicules: ridiculous statement made by a radical.

I think the thread is going quite well so far.




May 21, 2023 at 07:32 PM
cvrle59
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible




Choderboy wrote:
I think your spell checker (assumed) typo may have inadvertently created an appropriate portmanteau.

Radicules: ridiculous statement made by a radical.

I think the thread is going quite well so far.



Thanks for pointing out, I hope the message isn't lost because one misspelled word.




May 21, 2023 at 09:46 PM
Choderboy
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


I'm sure your message was understood.
It was a well written post that made a lot of sense to me.
The confidence in some people making posts that we are talking about is astounding.
They never 'suspect', or think 'maybe' elements of the design exist for a specific reason, it's stated as fact.






May 22, 2023 at 03:40 AM
silmarill
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


But when the Northrup couple tested Z9 vs A1, people critized that they put Z9 at a great disadvantage by using Nikon's STM lenses vs Sony's XD (i.e. voice coil) lenses and that the worse focusing performance of Z9 was not the camera's own problem. Was this claim wrong?


May 23, 2023 at 12:44 AM
CanadaMark
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible


silmarill wrote:
But when the Northrup couple tested Z9 vs A1, people critized that they put Z9 at a great disadvantage by using Nikon's STM lenses vs Sony's XD (i.e. voice coil) lenses and that the worse focusing performance of Z9 was not the camera's own problem. Was this claim wrong?


Depends on the exact lenses they used - not all STM motors are created equal. As a general rule of thumb, any information you get from the Northrups is questionable at best. They have no credibility in the photographic community based on years of absurd claims, poor testing methodology, and creating intentional controversy just to drive traffic to their YouTube channel. They are masters of clickbait and seem to have no shame.

It's all about using the right AF motor for the job. One major factor that goes into AF motor selection is how big/heavy the focusing group elements are - those elements also carry a lot of inertia and have to come to a stop, very precisely. Not every lens needs to move elements like a 400/2.8 has in it, and can get the same results with a less powerful motor. For example, there is no appreciable AF speed difference between a Nikon 400/2.8, 800PF or Sony 400/2.8. All 3 use different motors. Some people say linear motors are faster, some people say stepper motors are more accurate, but Sony doesn't have a problem with AF accuracy and Nikon doesn't have a problem with AF speed, so it just doesn't matter. We can trust that the lens engineers know what they're doing and there is no evidence to suggest otherwise that I have ever seen. A stepper motor vs a linear motor is like a V8 and a turbo V6 both making exactly the same power - just different ways of achieving the same thing.

People love to test AF speed by seeing how fast it will rack from MDF to infinity and back and I can't think of a more useless AF test. There are no normal shooting scenarios that require that kind of response from a lens, and every lens has a different amount of AF travel depending on the design/application. Comparing AF speed objectively between different lenses is near impossible. AF motors are not all created equal and there are different grades of stepper motors, ring motors, linear motors, etc. Some lenses have one motor, some lenses have 2 or more motors. Just looking at the type of motor a lens uses doesn't mean much. Cheaper lenses use cheaper motors, but they are generally light, compact, and don't have a lot of glass to move around. All the high-end stuff from every brand uses a motor that is more than adequate for any subject matter you can throw at it.



May 23, 2023 at 05:47 PM
groob
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · STM vs SSVCM Isnít Perceptible




CanadaMark wrote:
Depends on the exact lenses they used - not all STM motors are created equal. As a general rule of thumb, any information you get from the Northrups is questionable at best. They have no credibility in the photographic community based on years of absurd claims, poor testing methodology, and creating intentional controversy just to drive traffic to their YouTube channel. They are masters of clickbait and seem to have no shame.

It's all about using the right AF motor for the job. One major factor that goes into AF motor selection is how big/heavy the focusing group elements are -
...Show more

What is all this logic and fact and even objective information sprinkled in? Donít you know this a photography forum?!



May 23, 2023 at 06:52 PM







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