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Image Stabilized Digital Camera on a boat

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Anonymous
February 22, 2005 9:24:51 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
shots of distant scenery or other boats)?

I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image Stabilization
might be a good thing at these high zooms.

I am considering cameras like the Canon S1 IS, Konica-Minolta Z3/Z5 or
Panasonic Lumix series.

While I read reviews that I.S. really helps remove a bit of "shakey
hand", I am now wondering if the movement on a boat would be way too
much for it and it might over-react giving a worse picture than without
it. (Of course I could turn the I.S. off in this case but if I can't use
it I wouldn't want to pay for it and add that complexity to the
camera, as it is one more point of failure.)

If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
comments.

Dave
Anonymous
February 22, 2005 10:00:22 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

I have a Sony with digital stabalization. Anything over about 5X zoom
really needs a tripod or gimbled/counterbalanced mount. Digital
stabalization is not like the mechanical stabalization in some binocs. It
helps with hand vibration but does little for major movement.

I have a Glidecam 2000 Pro mount (cheap Steadycam) http://www.glidecam.com/
that works well but it takes up a lot of space when working in the cockpit.
For a fixed rail mount http://www.horizontrue.com/ works pretty well for
keeping a reasonable horizon shooting underway but not very good for scenery
shots.

Niether will handle a camera over about 6 pounds so a waterproof case is
out.

--
Glenn Ashmore

I'm building a 45' cutter in strip/composite. Watch my progress (or lack
there of) at: http://www.rutuonline.com
Shameless Commercial Division: http://www.spade-anchor-us.com

"junktin" <junktin@telus.net> wrote in message
news:TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89...
> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
> I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
> replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image Stabilization
> might be a good thing at these high zooms.
>
> I am considering cameras like the Canon S1 IS, Konica-Minolta Z3/Z5 or
> Panasonic Lumix series.
>
> While I read reviews that I.S. really helps remove a bit of "shakey
> hand", I am now wondering if the movement on a boat would be way too
> much for it and it might over-react giving a worse picture than without
> it. (Of course I could turn the I.S. off in this case but if I can't use
> it I wouldn't want to pay for it and add that complexity to the
> camera, as it is one more point of failure.)
>
> If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
> comments.
>
> Dave
>
Anonymous
February 22, 2005 11:04:34 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Tue, 22 Feb 2005 06:24:51 GMT, junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:

>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?

I routinely use a Canon SLR (several film
and digital models) with their IS lenses.
I have used the Canon 100-400 IS as well as
their 300 IS lens with both the 1.4x and 2.0x
extenders. I also have some shorter Canon IS
lenses for these cameras (D30, D60, 10D and 20D).
(Anyone want to buy one of the older ones?)

My experience is on a power boat rather than
a sailboat, but in VERY choppy water. I was
covering a tugboat race in the Detroit River
from a 45' express cruiser. As you can see from
the pictures, there were 6-10' pyramidal waves
generated by the crossing wakes of these
racing tugs (34' to 120' and 155 to 3400 HP).
If the Canon IS lenses can prevent camera
shake under these conditions, they are
likely to help in almost any circumstances.
Nothing can help if you get thrown to the deck,
but if you can keep your target nearly centered
in the frame, you will likely get a decent exposure.

Here are a few of the shots (much reduced in
size for web use):
http://www.msen.com/~pwmeek/boat/tugs98.html
http://www.msen.com/~pwmeek/boat/tugs99.html

As you can see, they are grainy from reduction
for the web page, but not much camera shake
is in evidence.
Related resources
Anonymous
February 22, 2005 11:34:30 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"junktin" <junktin@telus.net> wrote in message
news:TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89...
> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
> I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
> replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image Stabilization
> might be a good thing at these high zooms.
>
> I am considering cameras like the Canon S1 IS, Konica-Minolta Z3/Z5 or
> Panasonic Lumix series.
>
> While I read reviews that I.S. really helps remove a bit of "shakey
> hand", I am now wondering if the movement on a boat would be way too
> much for it and it might over-react giving a worse picture than without
> it. (Of course I could turn the I.S. off in this case but if I can't use
> it I wouldn't want to pay for it and add that complexity to the
> camera, as it is one more point of failure.)
>
> If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
> comments.
>
> Dave
>

The image stabilization is for dampening out vibration due to shaky hands by
using gyroscopic stabilization through the use of acceleration detectors and
linear motors in the lens or camera. In my opinion it will not compensate
at all for the action of a sailboat if you expect it to be used to track a
subject as you pitch and roll. It will compensate for some pounding and
your shaky hands. Of course you are putting an expensive camera in jeopardy
of being damaged by the water.
Anonymous
February 22, 2005 12:02:02 PM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

junktin wrote:
> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
> I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
> replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image
Stabilization
> might be a good thing at these high zooms.
>
> I am considering cameras like the Canon S1 IS, Konica-Minolta Z3/Z5
or
> Panasonic Lumix series.
>
> While I read reviews that I.S. really helps remove a bit of "shakey
> hand", I am now wondering if the movement on a boat would be way too
> much for it and it might over-react giving a worse picture than
without
> it. (Of course I could turn the I.S. off in this case but if I can't
use
> it I wouldn't want to pay for it and add that complexity to the
> camera, as it is one more point of failure.)
>
> If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your

> comments.
>
> Dave

Dave, I'm a power boater, and I've always enjoyed taking photo's from a
boat, their's just so many opertunities for great shots as you know.
When I was using my old film camera I would get about one or two good
shots out of a whole roll, not good. So I bought a Cannon 5MP camera
about two years ago to replace it. I've found that if I use a high
speed setting I can get consistantly great shots on the boat, and power
boats really shake a lot. And, if the shot doesn't come out the way I
want it to, you can see it on the spot, and shoot it again. You might
want to try a non-stabilized digital camera first, you may be very
satisfied with the results, and save the money you would have spent for
an I.S. model. By the way, a 4 MP camera is just fine, I always use
mine at a lower setting.

Good luck!

John
Anonymous
February 22, 2005 12:55:11 PM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

"junktin" <junktin@telus.net> wrote in message
news:TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89...
> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
> I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
> replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image Stabilization
> might be a good thing at these high zooms.
>

It is a necessity at those higher zooms anyway. Shooting from both boats and
airplanes, though, I can tell you that IS will dampen vibrations from things
like boat motors, props, and sails, but not from waves.
Anonymous
February 23, 2005 2:16:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Interesting web site and certainly a nice product but even the
smallest/cheapest model is a bit expensive for a camera in the $500 range.

Thanks for your interest, though.

Dave

B. Peg wrote:
> http://www.ken-lab.com/index.html
>
> B~
>
>
Anonymous
February 23, 2005 2:18:08 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Thanks, that is pretty much what I would have guessed.

Harvey wrote:
> "junktin" <junktin@telus.net> wrote in message
> news:TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89...
>
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>>
>>I am considering purchase of a newer camera with 10x or 12x zoom to
>>replace my 3x capable camera. It occurred to me that Image Stabilization
>>might be a good thing at these high zooms.
>>
>>I am considering cameras like the Canon S1 IS, Konica-Minolta Z3/Z5 or
>>Panasonic Lumix series.
>>
>>While I read reviews that I.S. really helps remove a bit of "shakey
>>hand", I am now wondering if the movement on a boat would be way too
>>much for it and it might over-react giving a worse picture than without
>>it. (Of course I could turn the I.S. off in this case but if I can't use
>> it I wouldn't want to pay for it and add that complexity to the
>>camera, as it is one more point of failure.)
>>
>>If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
>>comments.
>>
>>Dave
>>
>
>
> The image stabilization is for dampening out vibration due to shaky hands by
> using gyroscopic stabilization through the use of acceleration detectors and
> linear motors in the lens or camera. In my opinion it will not compensate
> at all for the action of a sailboat if you expect it to be used to track a
> subject as you pitch and roll. It will compensate for some pounding and
> your shaky hands. Of course you are putting an expensive camera in jeopardy
> of being damaged by the water.
>
>
Anonymous
February 23, 2005 2:27:34 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Thanks Glenn,

The glidecam product is too pricey for my needs and the horizontrue
product seems really only suitable for video cameras (I am considering a
still camera).

Interesting to read about the products out there, but my needs are as a
simple (and poor) amateur.

Glenn Ashmore wrote:
> I have a Sony with digital stabalization. Anything over about 5X zoom
> really needs a tripod or gimbled/counterbalanced mount. Digital
> stabalization is not like the mechanical stabalization in some binocs. It
> helps with hand vibration but does little for major movement.
>
> I have a Glidecam 2000 Pro mount (cheap Steadycam) http://www.glidecam.com/
> that works well but it takes up a lot of space when working in the cockpit.
> For a fixed rail mount http://www.horizontrue.com/ works pretty well for
> keeping a reasonable horizon shooting underway but not very good for scenery
> shots.
>
> Niether will handle a camera over about 6 pounds so a waterproof case is
> out.
>
Anonymous
February 23, 2005 2:30:28 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Thanks Peter,

I enjoyed those web sites just for the content alone, without even
thinking about the I. S. issue but it did provide valuable insite to
that issue as well.

Gee, it is hard not to like tugs!

Peter W. Meek wrote:
> On Tue, 22 Feb 2005 06:24:51 GMT, junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:
>
>
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
>
> I routinely use a Canon SLR (several film
> and digital models) with their IS lenses.
> I have used the Canon 100-400 IS as well as
> their 300 IS lens with both the 1.4x and 2.0x
> extenders. I also have some shorter Canon IS
> lenses for these cameras (D30, D60, 10D and 20D).
> (Anyone want to buy one of the older ones?)
>
> My experience is on a power boat rather than
> a sailboat, but in VERY choppy water. I was
> covering a tugboat race in the Detroit River
> from a 45' express cruiser. As you can see from
> the pictures, there were 6-10' pyramidal waves
> generated by the crossing wakes of these
> racing tugs (34' to 120' and 155 to 3400 HP).
> If the Canon IS lenses can prevent camera
> shake under these conditions, they are
> likely to help in almost any circumstances.
> Nothing can help if you get thrown to the deck,
> but if you can keep your target nearly centered
> in the frame, you will likely get a decent exposure.
>
> Here are a few of the shots (much reduced in
> size for web use):
> http://www.msen.com/~pwmeek/boat/tugs98.html
> http://www.msen.com/~pwmeek/boat/tugs99.html
>
> As you can see, they are grainy from reduction
> for the web page, but not much camera shake
> is in evidence.
>
Anonymous
February 23, 2005 7:32:55 PM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:

>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
....
>If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
>comments.

No experience, so take it with a grain of salt, but the rocking
and rolling of a sail boat is fairly low frequency, compared to
hand-held shaking. The motion from the boat should be catered
for by shutter speed, while the IS will cater for anything that
isn't helped by a (e.g.) >1/125 shutter. I'd say it will help.

--
Ken Tough
Anonymous
February 24, 2005 12:13:10 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Peter W. Meek wrote:
> On Tue, 22 Feb 2005 06:24:51 GMT, junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:
>
>
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
>
> I routinely use a Canon SLR (several film
> and digital models) with their IS lenses.
> I have used the Canon 100-400 IS as well as
> their 300 IS lens with both the 1.4x and 2.0x
> extenders. I also have some shorter Canon IS
> lenses for these cameras (D30, D60, 10D and 20D).
> (Anyone want to buy one of the older ones?)

I've used a Canon SLR (film) with a 300 F4 IS with 1.4x extender too.
It allowed me to get shots that I couldn't get in rough water with
my 70-200 F4 non stabilized lens.

Sorry I can't add more about the inexpensive IS digitals but I suspect
they will help _some_ with hand motions and small boat motions.

Evan Gatehouse
Anonymous
February 24, 2005 8:08:27 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

On Wed, 23 Feb 2005 16:32:55 +0200, in rec.photo.digital Ken Tough
<ken@objectech.co.uk> wrote:

>No experience, so take it with a grain of salt, but the rocking
>and rolling of a sail boat is fairly low frequency, compared to
>hand-held shaking. The motion from the boat should be catered
>for by shutter speed, while the IS will cater for anything that
>isn't helped by a (e.g.) >1/125 shutter. I'd say it will help.

FWIW, my Nikon 70-200 VR stabilized lens has two settings. One recommended
for use in moving objects such as cars or boats.
----------
Ed Ruf Lifetime AMA# 344007 (Usenet@EdwardG.Ruf.com)
See images taken with my CP-990/5700 & D70 at
http://edwardgruf.com/Digital_Photography/General/index...
Anonymous
February 24, 2005 8:10:49 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Ken Tough wrote:
> junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:
>
>
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
> ...
>
>>If anyone has used such a camera on a boat, I would love to hear your
>>comments.
>
>
> No experience, so take it with a grain of salt, but the rocking
> and rolling of a sail boat is fairly low frequency, compared to
> hand-held shaking. The motion from the boat should be catered
> for by shutter speed, while the IS will cater for anything that
> isn't helped by a (e.g.) >1/125 shutter. I'd say it will help.


Yes, that's a good observation and advice on using a high shutter speed.
Since most of my photography would be in good light, I could certainly
afford to use a higher shutter speed, and even the moderately priced
cameras I am considering will allow me control of that. (instead of
having to accept some arbitrary automatic settings.)
Anonymous
March 8, 2005 8:34:20 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

In article <TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89>, junktin <junktin@telus.net>
wrote:

> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?

In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
right as we bounce along.

--
Jere Lull
Xan-a-Deux ('73 Tanzer 28 #4 out of Tolchester, MD)
Xan's Pages: http://members.dca.net/jerelull/X-Main.html
Our BVI FAQs (290+ pics) http://homepage.mac.com/jerelull/BVI/
March 8, 2005 10:05:41 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

> junktin wrote:
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>

Jere Lull wrote:
> In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
> C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
> Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
> right as we bounce along.
>

You must be a lot better at it than we are. I find image stabilization
helpful... not miraculous, as some people seem to expect, but it helps.

This pic was taken with a relatively inexpensive (<$450 all up) 3.2
megapixel digital camera with 12X zoom and optical image stabilization,
range is a little over 1/4 mile
http://community.webshots.com/photo/111973241/231774987...

Fresh Breezes- Doug King
Anonymous
March 9, 2005 1:55:59 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Interesting to hear that you have had good success in exactly the
conditions I would be shooting in. (I assume your successes are in
bright light to allow fast shutter speeds.) Thanks.

Jere Lull wrote:
> In article <TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89>, junktin <junktin@telus.net> wrote:
>
>
>>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>
>
> In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
> C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
> Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
> right as we bounce along.
>
Anonymous
March 9, 2005 1:56:00 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

junktin wrote:
> Interesting to hear that you have had good success in exactly the
> conditions I would be shooting in. (I assume your successes are in
> bright light to allow fast shutter speeds.) Thanks.
>
> Jere Lull wrote:
>
>> In article <TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89>, junktin
>> <junktin@telus.net> wrote:
>>
>>
>>> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>>
>>
>>
>> In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
>> C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
>> Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
>> right as we bounce along.
>>
>
In rough water, even IS might not be enough, but it will give you couple
of f-stops more light latitude.


--
Ron Hunter rphunter@charter.net
Anonymous
March 9, 2005 2:09:58 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

Doug,

Thanks for the link to this interesting photo. What make/model was the
camera?

Dave

DSK wrote:
>> junktin wrote:
>>
>>> Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
>>> camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
>>> shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
>>
>>
>
> Jere Lull wrote:
>
>> In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
>> C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
>> Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
>> right as we bounce along.
>>
>
> You must be a lot better at it than we are. I find image stabilization
> helpful... not miraculous, as some people seem to expect, but it helps.
>
> This pic was taken with a relatively inexpensive (<$450 all up) 3.2
> megapixel digital camera with 12X zoom and optical image stabilization,
> range is a little over 1/4 mile
> http://community.webshots.com/photo/111973241/231774987...
>
> Fresh Breezes- Doug King
>
March 9, 2005 10:06:06 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

junktin wrote:
> Doug,
>
> Thanks for the link to this interesting photo. What make/model was the
> camera?
>

You're welcome. It's a Panasonic DMC-FZ1
Last years model, which is one reason why it's inexpensive ;) 

>> http://community.webshots.com/photo/111973241/231774987...

DSK
Anonymous
March 13, 2005 5:55:56 AM

Archived from groups: rec.boats.cruising,rec.photo.digital (More info?)

In article <34qXd.16646$KI2.5830@clgrps12>, junktin <junktin@telus.net>
wrote:

> Interesting to hear that you have had good success in exactly the
> conditions I would be shooting in. (I assume your successes are in
> bright light to allow fast shutter speeds.) Thanks.
>
> Jere Lull wrote:
> > In article <TeASd.24583$NN.20453@edtnps89>, junktin <junktin@telus.net>
> > wrote:
> >
> >
> >>Does anyone have practical experience using a consumer grade digital
> >>camera with high zoom and Image Stabilization on a sailboat (taking
> >>shots of distant scenery or other boats)?
> >
> >
> > In my experience, stabilization is not required. I have the Olympus
> > C-700, 10x optical, and shoot at full zoom regularly as we sail along.
> > Shake isn't a problem. More often, my trouble is getting things framed
> > right as we bounce along.
> >
>

Yeah, we're normally shooting in good light, but that's not required. My
last emulsion camera is a Minolta SRT 101, pretty much all manual and
still good enough for professional work. I'm constantly astounded when I
ask the Olympus digital to do something in low light, as the results
always exceed my expectations.

I have a monopod, but rarely use it with the Olympus since it's so good
in "questionable" light. It has to be pretty dark before the Olympus
needs an exposure beyond my hand-held capability. I haven't found a shot
that required the absolute stability of a tripid.

--
Jere Lull
Xan-a-Deux ('73 Tanzer 28 #4 out of Tolchester, MD)
Xan's Pages: http://members.dca.net/jerelull/X-Main.html
Our BVI FAQs (290+ pics) http://homepage.mac.com/jerelull/BVI/
!