Image Stabilization Feature In A Camera: An Overview

Image Stabilization

Digital cameras which come with the image stabilization option are the ones which help you shoot good quality snaps. The image stabilization feature works in the lines of shock absorbers provided in two wheeler and four wheeler vehicles. As these absorbers soak up the shocks we will not get bumped and thus enjoy a smooth ride on vehicles.

Similarly, image stabilization feature present in high end cameras will minimize the blurs due to shaking of hands or when we stand on a surface that vibrates while taking the picture. Before purchasing a camera you should be able to understand what kind of image stabilization (IS) configuration is available.

Managing Image Stabilization

Camera manufacturing companies implement image stabilization feature in three different configurations. They are optical, digital and dual configurations. Image stabilization can be achieved through hardware or software implementations.

IS can be implemented either in the camera body or interchangeable lens or both. If a camera is equipped with image stabilization capability it will not guarantee that the snap shot with the camera will be vibration free.

The image stabilization feature will let you capture snaps by minimizing blur on pictures. You can easily trace the difference by taking snaps with two different cameras one featuring IS and one without IS. Picture distortion is more prevalent when you are using long zoom lens in dim light conditions and if the shutter speed is poor.

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Image sensor should be provided with enough light to visualize the picture. If the shutter speed is very high there will not be any cloudy appearance on the snap as the shot will be captured instantly. Hence, you should select a camera that comes with higher values of shutter speed.

Hardware based (optical) image stabilization

Basic to mid range cameras implement optical IS feature. Image stabilization is implemented through the hardware. Typically a gyro sensor is used in these cameras. Still cameras and video cameras implement this technique in which correction to the image is provided by varying the path to the optical sensor.

Usually the technology is implemented in the lens. The optical image stabilization procedure gives the best results. ISO sensitivity will not be taken into account as it is will give room for noise in the images.

Image stabilization software


Image stabilization is also accomplished through a change in the menu settings. Image stabilization software installed in the digital camera will accomplish this task through ISO sensitivity adjustments.

ISO numbers indicate the sensitivity of the camera to light exposure. It is obvious that if shutter speed is more and if the camera can capture snaps in low light conditions automatically the fogging effect on the image will be reduced. Digital IS will not accomplish noise-free images as there will be a certain level of mismatch of light exposure relative to hand shaking effect.

Certain models of cameras are featuring software which lets you edit the image later. This is equivalent to the popular image editing software. However, there will not be drastic changes in the picture.

Image stabilization through combined technique

Image stabilization can also be accomplished through hardware and software. Optical technology as well as ISO sensitivity is utilized to bring the desired levels of image stabilization.

Beware when you look for an image stabilization camera…

If your camera is not equipped with IS, the only means through which image stabilization can be achieved is through a tripod. If you want to arrest the deviation between the captured image and the original image, you are advised to use the viewfinder of the camera instead of using the LCD screen. You can capture shots at high shutter speed while to take a firm grip with your legs and hands.

In your pursuit of a purchase of IS camera, you should not be fooled with similar kind of terms like anti-blur, anti-shake cameras. Make sure you see the words “image stabilization” specifically mentioned on the camera. Otherwise, what you are purchasing is not worth the salt when IS in the foremost criteria in the selection of your digital camera.

Cameras with misleading terms usually employ high shutter speeds. These speeds will automatically minimize blur on photos and they cannot be compared to IS featuring cameras. There are various ways to cross check the credibility of digital camera featuring IS. You can check websites of respective camera manufacturing companies.

You can go through various reviews presented by qualified and experienced professionals in this field. As you compare various products available in the market, you can take time and hand pick the one that best suits your photographic requirements  as well as your budget.

Are you after the image stabilization feature in a camera?

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About the author

Jane Sheeba

is an entrepreneur and online business consultant. She shares her wellness tips at Slick Wellness. If you are into starting/running an online business and want success with life and business go here.

Rahul - May 3, 2013

These are some great tips which will surely come in handy for me and others. Shared this post on as many places as possible.

Ashutosh - May 5, 2013

Image Stabilization is really a very awesome feature of cameras providing us a very high output with high quality and high resolution images.
Thanks to this technology we can count the fins of the moving fan
Nice info, keep sharing!!! 🙂

Felix Lee - May 5, 2013

Before I purchase an item, especially a camera since I love taking pictures, I always check for product reviews online and make comparison on what will suit me best and what will fit my budget. This makes me easier to decide what to purchase.

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