Is Stabilization Worth it on 17-50 ish 2.8?

Discussion in 'Digital Photography' started by Designer Dale, Dec 31, 2010.

  1. Designer Dale macrumors 68040

    Designer Dale

    Mar 25, 2009
    Folding space
    When I get my tele, it will have some form of IS, but is it really worth the premium on a standard zoom? My Tammy 28-75 2.8 isn't stabilized and I have not really been in a situation where I cried over not having it. Did I just answer my own question?

    Any input on Tokina lenses in the wide or standard zoom range?

    Thanks and Happy New Year

  2. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    If IS can make the difference between shooting with ISO that is usable and ISO that is not I'm happy to have it. Is it worth the extra cost? That can't possibly be answered in general terms. That's really determined by what, where, and how you shoot.

    With that said, I've decided to sell my Nikon 17-55/2.8 and replace it with the Nikon 24-120/4 VR (VR is Nikon's IS), but I'm doing that just as much for range as anything.
  3. jackerin macrumors 6502a

    Jun 29, 2008
    I have the new Sigma 17-50 with OS, and while I haven't done any real-world tests to see how much the stabilisation affects what shutter time I can use, I'm still relieved to have it for those times when I really need it. Indoors I often find I need the slower shutter speeds even with iso 1600 and f/2.8.
  4. VirtualRain macrumors 603


    Aug 1, 2008
    Vancouver, BC
    I posted this a few months back to provide an example of where IS had benefited me...

    IS enables me to get a lot of low light shots without a tripod that I wouldn't otherwise get.

    For example, this one of the hotel lobby I was in recently... 1/8th at f5.6 and ISO 3200 handheld... (sure, you could capture this at f2.8 and 1/30th without IS, but the whole scene would not likely be crisply in focus at such a wide aperture)

  5. Cliff3 macrumors 68000


    Nov 2, 2007
    SF Bay Area
    This photo also serves to illustrate one of the limitations of image stabilization. Most of the people in this photo display motion blur as a result of the long shutter speed.

    Thom Hogan wrote a good article on VR/IS: The concerns he discusses should be universal. I imagine some of the setting recommendations are Nikon specific but I would think the other systems have analogous settings.
  6. rusty2192 macrumors 6502a

    Oct 15, 2008
    Thanks for that link, it was an interesting read.
  7. merkinmuffley macrumors 6502a

    Dec 3, 2010
  8. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    I'd see it as a bonus rather than an absolute must: the wider you go, the longer time times you can hold without a stabilizing. And at a certain point, you can't get much slower. The nice example posted by Virtual Rain only works because the shot is (1) fairly wide and (2) the people standing at the reception desk (this is where your eye is drawn to) aren't moving much. At such slow shutter speeds, the subjects motion becomes at least as important as camera shake. Even when you're at 1/30th of a second, people should move fairly slowly or better, stand still or pose.

    Regarding Tokina lenses, their UW lenses are superb, the 11-16 mm f/2.8 is the sharpest crop UW zoom on the market (beating both Canon and Nikon in optical quality and mechanical quality). I find the zoom range limiting, so I opted for the 12-24 mm instead. I'm very, very pleased with it. The build quality is very high and I'm very happy with the optics as well. The 16-50 mm f/2.8 is also very well constructed, but it's not as good as Canon's or Nikon's 17-55 mm lenses.
  9. RaceTripper macrumors 68030

    May 29, 2007
    I've been debating between the Tokina 11-16/2.8 and 12-24/4. Both are very well regarded. In the end I've decided I'm going with the 12-24, partly because I plan to get the Nikon 24-120/4 VR.
  10. OreoCookie macrumors 68030

    Apr 14, 2001
    Sendai, Japan
    Yup, I can use the 12-24 mm also as a `normal' lens (24 mm corresponds to 36 mm on full frame) without changing lenses.

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