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Thread: Canon Lens with IS

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    Canon Lens with IS

    I have a Canon EF-S 15 to 85 mm lens. It came with no instructions, and my research doesn't tell me the answer to my question.

    Do I put the IS switch in the 'ON' position and leave it there? Or, do I only use it in some situations?

    Looking forward to your comments.

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    Sunrise Chaser
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    From what I've heard , If you use it on a tripod turn the IS off , My personal experience is also if using at high shutter speeds , For arguement sake 400th + you may as well turn it off unless you have a Really /Really shakey hand , The high shutter should counter act and stop the movement . PS : Just my opinion though
    Last edited by William; 09-01-2012 at 2:15pm.
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    rule of thumb. If there is camera shake evident (from hand holding etc), turn IS on. If the camera is stable and not shaking (on a tripod, resting on a fencepost, etc) turn IS off
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    I never turn mine off unless I'm using a tripod. One more thing to remember.

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    A couple of interesting articals Re : IS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_stabilization And another : http://www.canon.com/camera-museum/tech/room/tebure.h Ya gotta remember when us old guys started there was no IS/VR or OS you had to deal with it , Fast shutter speed was always the option I was shooting with a Takumar 600mm lens for Surfing in 1967 , No IS/VR then , But we used Kodak Tri-X ISO1600 Film that stopped the action : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kodak_Tri-X
    Last edited by William; 09-01-2012 at 4:39pm.

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    Ausphotography Veteran Speedway's Avatar
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    I have two IS/OS lenses and I turned the IS on when I got them out of the boxes and other than when I did a little testing to see if there was any difference when used on a tripod (I found none) it has always been left on.
    Keith.

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    and to confuse you even more

    Some of the newer versions of IS have two stages of on. There is OFF and On 1 / On 2. Look in your manual, but generally one of them is to reduce all image shake and the other is to stop only vertical shake, so that sport photographers can use IS and pan with a fast moving motor car/bike/player etc and only have the vertical movement countered by the IS, leaving the horizontal movement alone, cause by panning, the photographer wants horizontal movement.

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    Quote Originally Posted by William View Post
    A couple of interesting articals Re : IS http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image_stabilization And another : http://www.canon.com/camera-museum/tech/room/tebure.h Ya gotta remember when us old guys started there was no IS/VR or OS you had to deal with it , Fast shutter speed was always the option I was shooting with a Takumar 600mm lens for Surfing in 1967 , No IS/VR then , But we used Kodak Tri-X ISO1600 Film that stopped the action : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kodak_Tri-X
    my IS system is still a sandbag dangling under the tripod

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    I've read elsewhere that having IS on continuously reduces battery life, so I tend to leave it off unless i'm hand-holding in low light (where camera shake might become an issue).
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    Quote Originally Posted by StephenM View Post
    I've read elsewhere that having IS on continuously reduces battery life, so I tend to leave it off unless i'm hand-holding in low light (where camera shake might become an issue).
    IS switches on the moment u half depress the shutter button, and remains on for a set period of time after the actuation - somewhere around the 5 second mark before it stops again.

    yes IS does drain a tad bit more battery life, but for most people you wont notice the drain at all, so really - just keep it turned on. Unless u are constantly depressing the shutter button to keep it active all the time.

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    Alf, as one of the newer Canon IS lenses, the EF-S 15-85 has a current-generation IS system. Like all Canon IS lenses released in the current century, it has tripod detection. The IS system, in other words, is smart. It turns itself off as and when required. You need do nothing other than appreciate the very significant benefits of image stabilisation.

    There are still circumstances where it is best to switch IS off manually, but they are rare. Very rare.

    Note that many of the answers in this thread are from Nikon and Pentax users. Their responses are doubtless correct with regard to the Nikon and Pentax IS systems, but do not apply to your Canon system. Canon still make a handful of old-design IS lenses without tripod detection, but the vast majority of Canon IS lenses require no action from you at all. Just leave it on. The effect on battery life is neither here nor there given that your battery is good for several days shooting anyway. The tripod issue only applies to some very old lenses, some of them not even manufactured anymore.

    (As I understand it, it also applies to a rather larger number of Nikkor lenses for Nikon cameras - for some reason unknown to me, Nikon developed a tripod-sensing version of its VR technology some years ago and incorporated it in several lenses, but continues to release other lensese with the old-style non-tripod compatible VR. I have no idea why. But I am no Nikon expert, maybe I have misunderstood something. You can rely, however, on the Canon-specific information earlier in this post. Indeed, you can easily check it for yourself. Start with this Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_E...age_Stabilizer As you can see, Canon's IS technology added tripod-sensing 13 years ago in 1999.)

    Short answer: turn it on, leave it on.
    Tony

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    Thanks to all - nice comments and the reasoning behind them. Will switch on and leave on until I get a tripod.

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    Thought I'd mention something regarding IS as well on top, whilst we are on about battery consumption!

    Half a year ago I switched completely to using prime lenses for my wedding work - both of my 2 main primes do not have IS, this is coming from using a 70-200 IS extensively for indoors and outdoors. The 5D2 I am using with the primes on both fully charged batteries now manages somewhere around 2200 shots roughly before going flat - with minimal chimping involved. Using a battery grip and 2 batteries.

    This was coming from averaging around 1500-1600 shots used in the same conditions with IS lenses. Something I thought was interesting for myself personally.

    So yes it can drain, but for 99% of users it still wouldnt matter at all

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    quite right. for canon user, just leave it on...for the the simple reason is that it works.
    400mm handheld? you can't even frame the shot without IS

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    Administrator ricktas's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tannin View Post
    Alf, as one of the newer Canon IS lenses, the EF-S 15-85 has a current-generation IS system. Like all Canon IS lenses released in the current century, it has tripod detection. The IS system, in other words, is smart. It turns itself off as and when required. You need do nothing other than appreciate the very significant benefits of image stabilisation.

    There are still circumstances where it is best to switch IS off manually, but they are rare. Very rare.

    Note that many of the answers in this thread are from Nikon and Pentax users. Their responses are doubtless correct with regard to the Nikon and Pentax IS systems, but do not apply to your Canon system. Canon still make a handful of old-design IS lenses without tripod detection, but the vast majority of Canon IS lenses require no action from you at all. Just leave it on. The effect on battery life is neither here nor there given that your battery is good for several days shooting anyway. The tripod issue only applies to some very old lenses, some of them not even manufactured anymore.

    (As I understand it, it also applies to a rather larger number of Nikkor lenses for Nikon cameras - for some reason unknown to me, Nikon developed a tripod-sensing version of its VR technology some years ago and incorporated it in several lenses, but continues to release other lensese with the old-style non-tripod compatible VR. I have no idea why. But I am no Nikon expert, maybe I have misunderstood something. You can rely, however, on the Canon-specific information earlier in this post. Indeed, you can easily check it for yourself. Start with this Wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canon_E...age_Stabilizer As you can see, Canon's IS technology added tripod-sensing 13 years ago in 1999.)

    Short answer: turn it on, leave it on.
    thanks for clarifying how the Canon system works.

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    Ausphotography Regular agb's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by alf6 View Post
    Thanks to all - nice comments and the reasoning behind them. Will switch on and leave on until I get a tripod.
    Even when you get the tripod you can just leave it ON.
    If you turn it off I can bet you that the very next time you use the lens you will forget to turn it back on and wonder why things are shaky.
    Just turn it on and forget about it is the best idea.
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