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Stabilizer Mode 1 and 2
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Feb 24, 2017 13:18:41   #
dblack1
 
On my Canon Lens there is a button for Stabilizer Mode 1 or 2....what is the difference and when to use either one.
 
Feb 24, 2017 13:21:23   #
jeep_daddy (a regular here)
 
Use mode 1 for a static shot, and use mode 2 for when you are panning to take the shot.
Feb 24, 2017 13:23:27   #
Kiiski
 
Mode 2 is for panning.
Feb 24, 2017 13:32:26   #
dblack1
 
Thanks for the quick replies...
Feb 25, 2017 09:35:34   #
salmander
 
I have the Canon 70-200mm f4.0L with stabilizer 1 and 2. Function 2 stabilizes horizontal movement (panning), while function 1 stabilizes both horizontal and vertical movement. Function 2, as a result, has quicker response from the camera, because it doesn't have to process whatever information is involved for both movements, enabling a larger percentage of successful photographs of subjects that move horizontally. Function 1 can also shoot horizontal movement, but with diminishing returns when compared to using function 2 only, for that reason. I once photographed special cars (in a parade) that lept into the air from a moving ramp. With function 2, they came out super sharp, as if they had been frozen in the air. I am not a professional, and shot hand-held, so I was surprised and gratified that photos like this can be had without any kind of special planning or preparation.
Feb 25, 2017 10:52:01   #
amfoto1 (a regular here)
 
dblack1 wrote:
On my Canon Lens there is a button for Stabilizer Mode 1 or 2....what is the difference and when to use either one.


To expand on the above and correct a couple things...

Mode 1 is STANDARD two-axis stabilization (both vertical and horizontal) and is what you will want to use most of the time.

Mode 2 is for PANNING... providing only single-axis stabilization (on the vertical axis only, regardless of lens/camera orientation). Mode 2 turns off horizontal stabilization so it doesn't work to counteract the deliberate background blur being done with the panning motion and a slower shutter speed (i.e. "dragging the shutter").

Here's a panning example (EOS 50D at 1/60 shutter speed, ISO 100... 70-200/2.8 IS lens at 100mm and f16)....



And for comparison, here's an action-freezing example (EOS 50D at 1/640 shutter speed, ISO 200... 300/4 IS lens at f5.6)...



So, basically there are two ways to depict action in still photos and/or help isolate a subject from a busy background. Panning will usually make for fewer "keepers"... some percentage of shots simply won't work out, but IMO often makes for a more "active" looking image. The partial blur effects produced by panning also work to separate a subject from a background (or foreground), much like controlled depth of field effects can, when using a large aperture with a longer focal length.

Canon now is also putting "Mode 3" on some lenses (EF 100-400mm IS USM "II", for example). This is INSTANT stabilization. It provides two-axis, but only during the actual exposure. IS doesn't run constantly, the way it does in Modes 1 and 2. Frankly, I'm not sure when or where I might use this. I like that standard or panning IS also stabilizes the image in the viewfinder, much the way that stabilization on binoculars is helpful, especially when tracking distant, moving subjects with a long focal length lens. Also, after 15 years using Canon IS lenses, I think it often helps autofocus a little by stabilizing the subject the AF sensor(s) is trying to focus upon and track. (Note: Nikon users feel the opposite, that their VR actually slows AF). But, even if I never use Mode 3, at the very least it suggests the lens' IS system is extremely fast, in order to be able to do its job during the fraction of a second of an exposure!
 
Feb 25, 2017 10:56:43   #
texaseve
 
Thanks for asking this question. I just learned something new and went to change the mode on a Canon lens I have.
Feb 25, 2017 10:57:47   #
texaseve
 
Thanks for asking this question. I just learned something new and went to change the mode on a Canon lens I have.
Feb 26, 2017 07:32:28   #
salmander
 
amfoto1 wrote:
To expand on the above and correct a couple things...


I stand corrected. I got the same results, but for the wrong reason. It seems my panning abilities are better than I assumed, leading me to this erroneous conclusion. The clarity of the background with stabilization 2 gives the effect of greatly improved camera performance and photographic ability. Thank you for such a good explanation.
 
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