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Forums DSLR Video Lens Image Stabilizer on or off for T2i video

  • Lens Image Stabilizer on or off for T2i video

     Norman Pogson updated 12 years, 2 months ago 6 Members · 6 Posts
  • Bob Hemphill

    April 2, 2010 at 4:20 pm

    Hello All,

    Just picked up a T2i this week and I’m starting to get my feet wet. At this point I’ll be using the kit lens.

    I have two questions. Does the Image Stabilizer work in video mode, and if so, what are your opinions or feedback as to the use of the Stabilizer?

    Thanks, Bob

  • Neil Abeynayake

    April 2, 2010 at 6:31 pm

    Hi Bob,

    Image Stabilization (IS) works on all camera settings including video (i.e. if the switch mounted on the lens is turned to the “ON” position).

    As you may know by now, Canon DSLR cameras use lens based image stabilization method. Some kits come with image stabilized lenses and some don’t. If you see a Canon lens with “IS” designation imprinted on its body, that lens is an Image Stabilized unit.

    Almost all IS lenses comes with an on/off switch and if you are using a tripod or other non-moving platform, you could turn off image stabilization. It is a personal preference when and where to use the IS. An example would be, if you are using the camera in a vehicle in motion, IS mechanism would dampen most vibrations. Please note that IS would not eliminate all camera movement and you need to get used to each lens’s comfort zone (so to speak).

    While the newest lenses can have the IS left on for shooting stills, for video it can introduce a movement to the image that is undesirable. Some professionals prefer not to use the IS function for video due to this reason.

    Here is a link with an example:


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  • Jonathan Ziegler

    April 2, 2010 at 9:09 pm

    I shot some footage last weekend with the default lens with the T2i. I was doing some handheld experimental stuff to get the feel of the camera and the footage with the IS on is nicer, but there’s no need for it with anything involving a moving or mounted camera IMO. Also, the camera is so light, it’s not a strain to keep it steady.

    So if you need to use handheld and have a fairly stable camera like with med/cu shots, use IS, but if the camera is mounted to something, don’t use IS. I kept my right hand on the camera and my left very lightly on the focus ring and my right elbow against my chest with auto-focus off and IS on. When I sat down to shoot handheld, I shut off the IS. Oh and the auto-focus sucks ass doing video, that’s the first thing to go – learn to judge the distance with your eyes from you to the subject (not the viewfinder) and adjust focus accordingly. Also, don’t zoom in/out with the lens – you will see the iris clamp down mid zoom which looks terrible.

    Jonathan Ziegler

  • Noah Kadner

    April 4, 2010 at 3:49 am

    I usually flip it on for handheld- subtle and helpful. But with a tripod or a dolly mount, be sure it’s off. Otherwise it will overcompensate and give unpredictable effects.


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  • Lance Bachelder

    April 6, 2010 at 7:07 am

    Yeah I disagree about the mounted/tripod stuff – you really need to test it for yourself – but when shooting with the 70-200 2.8L I got better results leaving it on at all times. I shot a lot of the MED and CU shots for our feature near the 200 end of the lens and subtle shakiness and jello was eliminated – this is on a pro tripod – by leaving IS on. With it off some shots display slight tripod vibrations etc which can cause jellocam and vibrating shots.

    Just my experience – not any rules here – results may vary depending on the lens and shooting situation.

    Lance Bachelder
    Southern California

  • Norman Pogson

    April 6, 2010 at 2:02 pm

    More pro’s are using the IS on a tripod mounted camera especially with a lens like the 70-200 f2.8, the still side of photography tells you not too but video is different.

    My Canon 7D Blog

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