With modern IS, how essential (really) is the tripod?

Discussion in 'Casual Photo Conversations' started by sean_matheny|1, Jan 14, 2016.

  1. I'm getting back into enthusiast photography after a few years absence. I've done quite a bit of film photography and printmaking in the past, but I put the hobby down for a decade or so, and I am trying to adapt to new tech. In the film days, a good tripod was essential of course.
    Now, with reasonably fast lenses (f/2.8-4) and modern IS giving 2-4 stops of shake prevention, I'm finding I don't reach for my tripod very often. Obviously I'll take it along if I'm shooting a group photo that I'd like to be in, waiting for the right shot with changing light, or maybe with strenuous hiking where I'm not always steady. But I've found that for most shots, if I'm shooting slow enough to make use of 2-4 stops of IS, subject movement is going to be an issue before handheld blur, even in landscapes.
    I visited a waterfall yesterday, and got nice water motion blur with everything else usably sharp, handheld. I think it was f/22, 1/4s and ISO 50 (middle of the day). I understand that for low light, completely still landscapes, a tripod allows more freedom for deeper DOF, but i still usually get very sharp shots at f/8-11 handheld (which is about where I want to be). I also have an older body (Canon 1DS2), so I avoid ISO higher than 400. Although with more modern bodies, this might be another argument against the tripod.
    Am I being really obtuse and missing something, or is this a real trend?
     
  2. f/22, 1/4s and ISO 50​
    Small aperture means loss of resolution due to diffraction. 1/4s hand held is pushing it - even with IS.
    I'm finding I don't reach for my tripod very often​
    Me neither actually - I never liked using one much anyway. And IS/VR helps a lot. Nothing beats a good tripod though - but I find there are so many situations where I can't use one.
     
  3. Most of the time, it is easier to shoot without a tripod, and IS or VR certainly make hand-holding acceptable in situations that ordinarily would prevent it. There are occasions when setting up is much easier with a tripod than without. Here are three: 1) photographing large groups, 2) sports or astronomical photography that requires long and heavy lenses, and 3) extreme close-ups.

    I'm not ready to sell off my tripods, heads, L-brackets.
     
  4. I like landscapes, architecture, and night photography. Even with excellent VR/IS, a tripod is essential for truly sharp images to be printed and hung. I recently upgraded to a Calumet graphite/titanium with a ball head (similar to, but less costly than Manfrotto/Gitzo equivalents), and I have no regrets whatsoever. I still shoot mostly handheld, but there is no substitute for the stability of a good tripod in some situations.
     
  5. This shot would be impossible without a tripod.
    00dgmo-560240284.jpg
     
  6. Take a long lens like a 5 or 600 and see how you do with IS vs. tripod, also long exposures at night. See how the IS or VR does without the tripod.
     
  7. SCL

    SCL

    I use a tripod a lot more than I thought I would. Long lenses always get a tripod, and when I want crisp macros, definitely a tripod. If sharpness is a major criteria, IMHO a tripod is a given. Having said that, probably 80% of my work is handheld.
     
  8. I still fine a high quality tripod and head to be essential for many of the kind of photos I enjoy making. If nothing else it
    frees up my body from always being a human camera support
     
  9. it

    it

    Tripod is still 100% necessary for many types of images. That said, by combining the A7R2 with tilt shift lenses I am able to get a lot of shots hand held that i wouldn't have a few years ago.
     
  10. Thanks for all the input. Clearly some types of photography (and lenses) absolutely require one, and always will. Back when I shot my Canon A1, you just just didn't risk 135mm handheld at something like 1/60 (let alone 1/4). And more than a hypothetical can/can't threshold for situations, I guess it was expensive to bracket, and risky not to (etc) so I just wound up carrying the tripod everywhere.
    I actually have always enjoyed lugging it along. I've got a Feisol CF / Sirui combo now that I really like (and is reasonably light). I'm learning how to use IS/VR effectively, such as taking some identical extras when in doubt to improve the chances.
    Obviously for anything critical, I'll bring it along. I guess over time I'll figure out better when to bring it along and when to leave it home. Cheers.
     
  11. A tripod permits precise, reproducible composition and gives higher confidence of repoducible, optimal or close to optimal sharpness. With hand held VR shots the composition and sharpness vary from shot to shot. When making multiple bracketed exposures of e.g. sunrise, it is possible to include the whole dynamic range of the scene with high signal to noise ratio by using exposure blending. A tripod means your different exposures will have identical composition so there is no wasted space around the periphery. The same is the case when stitching panoramics, or when focus stacking: you get better results and don't lose the peripheral areas of the frame. It is also easier to align the shots in camera by using a tripod so there is no tilted horizon and if using tilt/shift lenses the adjustments can be made much more precisely, leading to better results both in terms of control of keystoning as well as optimal plane of focus.
     
  12. I just go minimal myself. I was at Yosemite a couple weeks ago in the snow and I just carried my F100 and a 50mm lens. I had a roll of film in my jacket pocket. I am pleased with the photos that I took. A minimal kit means you cannot get every shot but I have increased mobility when hiking. The good news is I have enough water fall photos and am not worried about it. However my Grandkids are changing quickly and I need a faster shutter speed to catch them buzzing about. I like f5.6 a lot.
     
  13. But you have to be aware of your environment. Streets with heavy truck traffic, subways rumbling
    underneath, airplanes flying low can create a lot of ground shaking. Maybe heavy surf. Sometimes hand
    held may be steadier.
     
  14. I have to confess that I am shooting more hand-held shots, such as this made out the car window at high ISO and fifty-five miles per hour. Turns out the shutter speed was 1/8000 sec.
    (Sorry about the blotchy noise, but weird processing to get black skies and glowing trees and grass can sometimes do that.)
    I still use my tripods a LOT for long exposures at night.
    --Lannie
     
  15. Here is one that I got of two alien ships that had landed across the street. I used a long exposure on a tripod.
    --Lannie
     
  16. david_henderson

    david_henderson www.photography001.com

    I'm probably now below 50% of shots on a tripod, and I feel I'm being lazy. I actually enjoy composing from a tripod better and using Live View , so it really is laziness, perhaps in combination with a recognition that many of the photographs I make don't matter much and are going nowhere. If I've found something that excites me, you can bet that I'll be using a tripod unless I absolutely can't.
     
  17. I hadn't thought of IS/VR in the way some of you commented; IS/VR is ultimately a roll of the dice. Even though a good outcome is favourable if you stay within the limits of the system, there is always the chance that you'll get a dud.
    I've noticed that even though I'm capable of making a very good composition handheld, I'm often very lazy about it. I agree that there's a discipline involved when using a tripod, that might help as much as the actual technical benefit.
     
  18. For a lot of applications a monopod is vastly more practical. Completely useless for long exposures mind you, but a lot easier to get where you want it without huge planning.
     
  19. Image stabilization is probably all you need 99% of the time, but it is never as clear as when using a tripod, even at fairly fast shutter speeds (> 1/100). This is particularly true with high resolution sensors, where you see doubling (or worse) effects at the pixel level. If you want to extract every last bit from new sensors and lenses, use a tripod, lock the mirror (if appropriate) up, and use a cable release. IS is virtually useless for closeups in nature, because camera motion tends to be a large in proportion to the subject area.
    Using a tripod encourages you to put a little more thought behind composition. It is also useful for consistency between shots, as for group shots and portraits, as well as stitched panoramas and bracketed HDRs.
     
  20. Is tripod essential? No, quality handheld photos have been taken for over 100 years - today's image stabilization and high ISO helps even more. To reach maximum sharpness from your gear - you still want to put it on a tripod.
     
  21. That there is something like image stabilization is a sign that camera motion is still a problem. Image stabilization helps, but can be a problem itself (it's in how it works: reactive. And with a mind of its own, else we wouldn't need to switch it off when using a tripod). Removing the need for image stabilization helps even more.
     
  22. I like having high ISO range somewhere, OIS elsewhere but even combining them wouldn't make all kinds of shots possible. - I guess we are at least one decade before the tripods' last days tech wise. While I occasionally benefit from a tripod, I'd be happier to have flash / strobes and handheld shooting for my main interest portraiture.
    My tripod's last vacation was a long long time ago, but I am doing happysnapping, not necessarrily serious photography during my vacations. - Being a shutterbug travelling with ordinary people is annoying enough. - Bringing tripods along makes you rather counter social.
     
  23. I still use one occasionally, but only rarely and when I know I will need it. I used to use my tabletop tripod all the time in the slide film days, but hardly ever now. So I think it fair to say that tripods are much less essential than they used to be.
     
  24. Less used = "less essential", Robin?<br>I think that (apart from the general stance towards quality vs convenience, where it is deemed acceptable to trade in the first for the second much more readily) not very much has changed. Use a tripod whenever possible. Don't when it is too cumbersome. Obviously do not when it is impossible. Shaky lens elements help a bit countering shaky cameras. But not that very much really. So what Thomas said: "To reach maximum sharpness [etc.]"
     
  25. We're not shooting Kodachrome anymore. As you note, modern IS is good for like 4-stops of stabilization. Shooting at ISOs in the 100 to 400 range and even ISO 6400 after sundown, allow us to get sharp images hand held, in situations where a tripod would have been routine ten-years ago. The tripod is needed for special effects still, astro, etc.
    My Canon 5DsR has 52mp and in broad daylight, I shoot it hand held at ISO 100 or 200 for landscapes and see sharp details when viewed at 400%. If I'm shooting the Grand Canyon at dawn, I might pull out the tripod to assure that I can shoot at ISO 100, to allow a 72" print with no fear, but the shot would likely be fine at ISO 400 and could still be blown up just as large.
     
  26. Yes, digital comes with higher ISOs and noise reduction.<br>It has to be understood, however, that when handholding there was nor is a safe speed. Things are difficult to put in numbers, because there is no set amoung of movement in our hands, but what we do know is that they are rarely (i.e. never) perfectly still. So there's always a degree of blur. With film and digital alike, you can get very good handheld results. But even at high speeds it is not hard to see a difference between tripod steadied and handheld shots. So high ISO and associated speeds are no guarantee. Thomas is right in his "To reach maximum [etc.]".
     
  27. While I hand hold a lot of shots (with VR and high ISO) that I used to use a tripod for, I still think that my tripod and monopod are absolutely essential pieces of gear. I would not go without them. In fact I'm considering a Really Right Stuff tripod as my next major purchase. My current tripod is sturdy but needs some work and may be beyond being repaired again -- it has served me for over 50 years. Unlike cameras and lenses tripods don't become obsolete, but they can wear out over time.
     
  28. Q.G. de Bakker said:
    Yes, digital comes with higher ISOs and noise reduction.
    It has to be understood, however, that when handholding there was nor is a safe speed. Things are difficult to put in numbers, because there is no set amoung of movement in our hands, but what we do know is that they are rarely (i.e. never) perfectly still. So there's always a degree of blur. With film and digital alike, you can get very good handheld results. But even at high speeds it is not hard to see a difference between tripod steadied and handheld shots. So high ISO and associated speeds are no guarantee. Thomas is right in his "To reach maximum [etc.]".​
    Here's where pixel-peeping is your friend. Look at your images at 100% and higher to assure that they are tack-sharp. Shooting birds and wildlife, I'll often look at the image on the camera's LCD preview and think, "That's a sharp keeper" only to get home and see it's not as sharp as possible. My hand holding technique has been honed by taking tens of thousands of bird in flight shots and perched birds, while hand holding a 500mm lens. When I switch to landscape shooting, I stay very aware of potential camera shake and turn my shutter to its "soft" mode, hold and breathe as if I'm hand holding 1000mm. It really does work. If in doubt, I'll take and extra shot or two.
     
  29. I don't use a tripod. Don't own one.
    I've taken over 3000 Raw captures of night scenes, inside my apartment lit by one 60 watt LED light bulb, macro using a long lens and 2x teleconverter with quite a few shot at 1/6's, f/8, ISO 800 handheld and tack sharp.
    On body image stabilization is the best thing since sliced bread.
     
  30. On a good day, your hands are going to impart an angular motion of about 2 deg/sec to the camera. You can get a reasonably accurate value by pixel peeping at fine details, knowing the shutter speed, focal length and pixel spacing, and applying a little trigonometry. Implicit in this statement is that without a tripod, fine details are going to be spread over several pixels with an high-resolution sensor (e.g., 42 MP in an A7Rii). The best I've seen in that camera, with image stabilization turned on and a 50 mm lens is 2-3 pixels spread. It doesn't seem to improve much even at shutter speeds 1/150 or more. I think image stabilization itself contributes to the uncertainty.
    Most of the time that's going to be good enough, but not if you want as much detail as possible in a grand landscape, closeup, document or artwork. A tripod is the difference between merely documenting a subject, and conveying a sense of texture and depth beyond the ordinary.
    A tripod isn't enough. You must turn IS and AF off, focus very carefully, let the camera settle after touching it, use the electronic shutter and a long, flexible cable release. Then hope nature doesn't send a gentle zephyr your way.
     
  31. Edward, can you cite anything to support your assertion?
     
  32. A tripod is the cheapest thing you can buy to improve your images.
     
  33. What is cheap about a tripod, Tim? Mine cost several hundred dollars and I hardly ever use it.
    I'm awaiting Edward's support for his reasoning, which if it is indeed true, would be compelling for certain subjects.
    I DO NOT recommend a cheap tripod. If you're going to use it for long exposures, it needs to be very sturdy and you need to use proper long-exposure technique.
     
  34. David, if you don't use it, you obviously don't get it.
     
  35. Tim, you're having trouble with reading comprehension. I said that I hardly ever use it.
    You still didn't answer my question, "What is cheap about a tripod?"
     
  36. Edward, can you cite anything to support your assertion?​
    I don't have anything signed by Thom Hogan, if that's what you're looking for. My conclusions are based on tests I've performed over a period of time. Two deg/sec corresponds to three pixels of a 24 MP sensor at 1/60 sec. Actually resolving one pixel at that resolution requires a good lens and focusing too. You won't see it with a 12 MP Nikon nor with most Nikon lenses.

    In this example, I pulled out all the stops - tripod, IS off, electronic first shutter and electronic cable release, using my sharpest lens, a Sony 90/2.8 Micro and the A7Rii. The insert shows spider silk, which is 1 pixel wide out of 5304x7952. This statue is a familiar subject to me, in a sheltered environment, and I have many other examples, hand held and with other cameras and lenses, but taken over a period of several years. Different spiders, same silk, which is usually invisible. Camera motion can be estimated from the appearance of other details.

    [​IMG]
     
  37. I have to get back to work, but I think I have some examples which will illustrate camera motion, even on a tripod. Camera vibration on a tripod often appears as doubling in the image, which is fairly easy to measure. Hand held motion is more complex - you need the right subject details.
     
  38. What is cheap about a tripod is that one that costs several hundreds of dollars is a once in your life purchase. Today's favourite cameras, for instance, want you to spend several hundreds or thousands of dollars every three years or so.<br>But you have to make the right decision, choose carefully. Get a heavy aluminium thing, for instance.<br><br>The power of a place like PNet is that it brings together many years of experience. People know things because they have learned over the years those things to be true. That collective knowledge is constantly challenged by marketing, fashion and convenience fueled folklore and myths (like - and this is just an 'for instance' - that thing about carbon fiber tripods being better than the good old metal ones. They are not, only more expensive. Or - another for instance - that a partial and in itself also problematic solution to a real problem such as image stabilization is a perfect solution to a problem, the only other - but real - solution being very inconvenient. They weigh quite a lot, those tripods. And they have to, else they do not work. So it would be very desirable to believe that that partial solution would be a perfect solution. We want it to be, and so it is. Or is it? of course not.). That's what keeps a place like PNet ticking, going over the same subjects over and over and over again. The thing Edward cites in support of his assertion is just that: good ol' Knowledge. I would like to hear from David Stepherns what sort of evidence he would expect and be willing to accept.
     
  39. I've managed to collect a lot of tripods, mostly Gitzo, both aluminum and carbon fiber, and the difference is not subtle. The advantage of carbon fiber is twofold - lighter and considerably stiffer than aluminum of the same dimensions. Weight is important, because when shooting video, I have to carry and set up at least one, and often two or three for each job. Stiffness is essential because you can't have a camera bouncing when you pan zoomed out to as much as 600 mm (equivalent). The same principles apply to still photography too, except you might not notice it immediately in the results.
    I imagine that wood has an higher damping factor than carbon, but it is also a lot heavier for the same capacity and usually limited in height. I have one 18# tripod, and another is more than I care to imagine. Weight alone does little for stability, other than keep the setup from blowing over in the wind, or settling into a soft surface like grass. It's not hard to apply weight if needed (cameras come in bags with other gear). Besides strong legs, stiffness is important throughout, including the column (avoid if possible), head and the mounting system (no rubber or plastic).
    None of this is cheap, plus you need cases to protect gear if you move around a lot. Fortunately they last a long time with little maintenance. Cheap, strong and light - pick any two. Buy cheap, buy twice (or more).
    For what it's worth, my 18# (including the head) #5 aluminum Gitzo is no stronger than the #3 CF tripod I use for the main camera, weighing about 8# with the head. A similar tripod rigged for still photography is abut 6-1/2#.
    You can't use IS on a tripod. At long focal length, the image floats around randomly, and lags a moment or two after a pan. It's like walking uphill in loose sand - aarrrgh.
     
  40. Actually, with the Canon super-telephotos you can leave IS on. It'll rest when not needed. If needed, like in the wind, you can feel the IS spool up, so wait on that before you release the shutter.
     
  41. One of my pro wildlife photographer friends helped a tripod manufacturer with a comparison test between heavy aluminium, six-ply carbon fiber and wood. This was for nature photography, using a 600mm lens with mirror slap (Canon) as part of the equation. This was ten-years ago, so mirror mechanics were not as refined as today. Bottom line, the wood won by a large margin. The aluminium and carbon fiber had the same degree of resonance, just at different frequencies. The wood tripod weighed twice as much as the aluminium version.
    Anyone using a tripod for landscapes is going to lock the mirror up, or at the very least, use the soft mirror mode, if the camera has one. Don't rely on the tripod to damp mirror slap.
     
  42. Edward, we're all going to vary widely in our ability to hand hold a camera, so your personal experience has little validity for the rest of us. Some of have hand held hundreds of thousands of shots and some of us haven't hand held 1,000 shots. People on the shorter end of that spectrum, with no specific training at hand holding, probably will benefit from a tripod when shooting landscape shots; otherwise, YMMV.
    You have peaked my interest and I'm thinking of testing my own hand holding vs. tripod abilities at various lighting levels. It is a valid consideration and each of us will have a point where the tripod should come out. I want to know precisely where that is.
     
  43. One issue not mentioned is the forcefulness of mirror slap during shutter release which I'm seeing varies between camera brands/models. My 6MP Pentax DSLR has it so bad that it knocks my kit lens' somewhat loose feeling "quick shift" focus ring out of focus on handheld macro shots that now require me to manually focus with a tight grip on the focus ring and lens barrel. I could feel the slap of the shutter much more forceful on the end of my lens than on the camera's body grip. Sometimes it was so harsh the focus ring moved slightly even while gripping. All this time I couldn't figure out why auto focus nailed it in the viewfinder but didn't give sharp results.
    So a tripod wouldn't fix that problem except maybe a higher quality lens with a not so loose focus ring. Edward's claim of higher resolution sensors needing a tripod seems to make sense. But I wonder if he ruled out other factors similar to my little discovery about cheap lenses.
     
  44. When you do the tripod based shots, be sure to use electronic first curtain shutter and focus using live view. Unless you're using a supertelephoto lens, I would use the lowest ISO available on the camera to establish a point of reference for what your camera and lens are capable of. I moved from cable to radio based triggering to avoid any mechanical transfer of vibration. Turn stabilization of all kinds off. Use an aperture that gives optimal results for your lens and subject.
    Then compare to the results from your favorite hand held settings. If you repeat your hand held shots a few times you can see the variation in composition from shot to shot, as well as variation in sharpness. I think you'll probably see that printed images look crispier if shot using a tripod. Personally when I'm doing landscape, architectural work or macro, I don't really accept any variation from shot to shot, in sharpness or composition for that matter. For moving subjects, some imprecision in focusing is expected from shot to shot if using the widest apertures but I mostly shoot my moving subject images hand held (using fast shutter speeds i.e. 1/(3*FL) s*mm or faster to avoid hand held camera shake, 1/200s or faster if the subject is alive but not moving actively, and 1/500s or faster for slowly moving subjects; the most strict of these conditions is applied as the slowest possible shutter speed, usually 1-2 stops faster) but still I would not claim that the results are as good as tripod based shots would be; I simply hand hold my people images because of speed and practicality. For long lens images at 400mm or longer focal lengths I prefer a tripod also for moving subjects (gimbal mount mostly but also some other solutions), and have never seen 400mm or longer shots hand held that are not made visibly slightly dull by the camera shake.
     
  45. Lots of pontificating here.
    500mm hand held:
    [​IMG]
    The guy with the Gitzo didn't get the shot.
     
  46. Thanks Ilkka. I know that, but other readers could benefit.
    As for shutter speeds, hand held or not, I find that for human sports you need 1/1000-sec., for mammal wildlife, I find that 1/1500 is often needed, for big birds in flight I use 1/1500 to 1/2500-sec. and for small birds in flight, it's 1/2000-sec. to 1/3200-sec. For birds, I use ISO 800 as my base ISO and move down to 400 in bright sun and up to 1600 in overcast. I meet too many would be bird photographers thinking that 1/1000-sec. is enough and they think that it's more important to hold ISO down than get SS up. Of course, the problem is not camera shake, but subject movement.
    It seems that all bird photographers start out with tripods (I did), but hand holding frees the photographer to shoot straight overhead, change positions quickly and pan more easily. Tripods are fine for perched birds, but a negative when going for birds in flight.
     
  47. That's a nice photo of an American kestrel. I presume the 500 mm lens has image stabilization. It is sharp enough in this application, but 700 pixels wide, it's hard to judge with any objectivity.
    I've been looking for images which would illustrate my numbers, but they seem to be buried in antiquity. You need some kind of detail which can be distinguished from other factors, like focus. When I have time, I'm thinking of point a laser at the wall and shooting the dot at a known distance at various speeds, with and without IS. It would be more than one pixel wide, but sharply defined (at least to the first node).
    For now, it may suffice to rely on historical data. (1) The rule of thumb for non-IS shutter speed is the reciprocal of the focal length. (2) The rule of thumb for acceptable circle of confusion (depth of field) on 35 mm film is 0.025 mm. The arctangent of (0.025/50) is 1.72 MOA (minutes of angle). At a nominal 1/50 second, that number corresponds to 50 * 1.72 = 86 MOA/sec, or about 1.25 deg/sec. Camera shake alone tends to center on one axis, usually horizontal, and would appear sharper than being simply out of focus. On this basis, my estimate of 2 deg/sec from pixel spread is reasonable.
    How that translates into practice is subject to a lot of variation. I've taken acceptably sharp pictures at 1/4 sec, and 1/15 sec with a 35-50 mm lens is not a stretch. The key is "acceptable", which depends a lot on the subject and the desired results. For the time being, I am actually steadier as an elder citizen than in my twenties. Practice helps, and attention to details. Keeping rounds in a 2" circle at 300 yards goes beyond a steady hand and breath control. Even heartbeats count.
     
  48. A Tripod is like a pair of old boots. You stick them in the closet forgetting that they are there until one day it floods and you really need them. Not sure how good that analogy was, but a Tripod is a great thing to have especially if you like low-light photography, but it also comes in handy in Product photography, Portraiture, Macro work or anything that requires pin-point sharp focus.
    Tell you the truth if I were to lose any of my tripods, I would immediately go out and get a replacement, even though I don't really use them that much anymore. It's not that I don't like tripods is that they are a major inconvenience when you are out an about.
    Imagine carrying a big heavy Tripod into a restaurant or movie theater. Not only that, you are afraid you might leave it somewhere, never to be found again. These days with Digital, you can always bump up the ISO to astronomical levels. I wasn't that way with film. Remember the old days of getting caught at sundown with your last roll of ISO 100 film.
    The other day I saw a strange sight, it was a guy with his camera walking down the street carrying a Tripod. I said to myself "this guy is on a mission", that's how rare tripods have become, but my guess is that's for the casual user or hobbyist. Real Photographers still use them.
     
  49. An "acceptable" 0.025 mm circle of confusion on the 42 MP sensor of an A7Rii would occupy a width of nearly 6 pixels. Since the default magnified view in Lightroom is pixel = pixel, you tend to get obsessive about tripods when you want things really sharp, not just sharp enough.
     
  50. Ed, click through to Flickr and you can at least see the image full-screen. For understandable reasons, I don't allow full resolution downloads.
     
  51. Tim said:
    One issue not mentioned is the forcefulness of mirror slap during shutter release which I'm seeing varies between camera brands/models. My 6MP Pentax DSLR has it so bad that it knocks my kit lens' somewhat loose feeling "quick shift" focus ring out of focus on handheld macro shots that now require me to manually focus with a tight grip on the focus ring and lens barrel. I could feel the slap of the shutter much more forceful on the end of my lens than on the camera's body grip. Sometimes it was so harsh the focus ring moved slightly even while gripping. All this time I couldn't figure out why auto focus nailed it in the viewfinder but didn't give sharp results.
    So a tripod wouldn't fix that problem except maybe a higher quality lens with a not so loose focus ring. Edward's claim of higher resolution sensors needing a tripod seems to make sense. But I wonder if he ruled out other factors similar to my little discovery about cheap lenses​
    .
    Edward is clearly into pixel-peeping. My experience with my 52mp body is that, as a practical matter, it makes little difference in the real world. Viewing on a 4K, 65" UltraHD TV, the 8800x5600 pixels are compressed and still look stunning, when taken with good lenses and processed appropriately. Printing 20x30" is no problem at all. I haven't produced a picture with that body yet that I want to print at 50" or 72" on the long side, but I'm looking forward to that day.
    I DO look at my pix at 100% and 200% when decide on which to keep and process and I sense no practical decline in IQ going from a 22mp body to a 52mp camera. All I see is more detail. Hand held or on the tripod.
    Still, I'm intrigued enough to want to do some more testing of my ability to hand hold. I could care less about a spider thread at 10-ft at 400%, but I do want to see what I can see.
     
  52. Why would image quality decrease with increasing resolution? Do you tremble in anticipation, thus spoiling the shot? Hardly! You might expect it to increase, however. Whether it makes a difference or not is immaterial. The spider web is merely an illustration of what you can do if you expend the effort, which increases exponentially with resolution. (The insert is 100%, not 400%).
    Actually, I think it does make a difference. An image downsampled and printed 14"x 11" will have more detail and sense of texture than from an image barely adequate in resolution. One reason Blu-Ray discs launched so slowly was than standard definition discs look so good on an HD television. Even now I shoot at video at 1080p and downsample with much clearer results than from 720x480, or even 720p (1280x720). Soon I will do that with 4K too.
    I can't find Tim's comment about "cheap lenses." However I'm sure that there are lenses out there which would obscure the difference between 10 MP and 50 MP. I seem to have a few myself, most of them hyphenated.
     
  53. "What is cheap about a tripod?" Cheaper than good lenses and camera bodies.
     
  54. Accurate focusing is a really big deal, and a loose focusing ring would contribute greatly to that problem. The concept of depth of field is a convenient fiction. There is only one plane of sharpest focus, and perhaps not just one plane considering field curvature and astigmatism (q.v., the divergence of tangential and sagittal MTF curves). As I illustrated above, the normal conventions used to derive acceptable depth of field are far looser than the capabilities of modern sensors, and not all lenses are up to the task either.
    Auto focus has certain limitations. Most of the time it works well, but it doesn't always select the best area of the subject, and there are built-in errors (e.g., dead band) which prevent unnecessary hunting, but may miss the mark. Optical finders are optimized for clarity at the expense of accurate manual focusing. Live view is a partial redemption, but is often clumsy to use, and restricted to use with a tripod. That's where electronic viewfinders (EVFs) excel. Basically, and EVF is full-time live view, with focusing aids such as magnification and peaking (edge enhancement). A Sony A7, for example, provides magnification in two stages, 5x and 12x. The spider silk above is invisible to the naked eye, much less through a viewfinder, but easily seen at 5x magnification. Live view or EVFs are essential to critical focusing.
    "Pixel peeping" is often used as a perjorative. In fact, it is a tool to evaluate both images and technique. Other tools include histograms to evaluate exposure and image review (i.e., "chimping"). Someone who knows their equipment in depth is a "fanboy." I guess real photographers don't need light meters any more than tripods ;)
     
  55. Actually, I think it does make a difference. An image downsampled and printed 14"x 11" will have more detail and sense of texture than from an image barely adequate in resolution. One reason Blu-Ray discs launched so slowly was than standard definition discs look so good on an HD television. Even now I shoot at video at 1080p and downsample with much clearer results than from 720x480, or even 720p (1280x720).​
    Even my cheap kit lens & 6MP DSLR set to center point metering while auto focusing on my 720p HDTV from 7ft. away sees more than my eyes to where I have to resort to manual focus shooting hand held at 1/20's shutter speed because the metering senses the contrast of the TV's pixel grid rather than the edge of the image. Or maybe the DOF is so broad at f/4.5 at 7 ft. that it captures both image edge and pixel grid in sharp focus.
    Below is a Raw shot of my 32in. 720p HDTV of a scene from the Fargo series on FX channel broadcast at 720p. I slide back ACR's contrast to max at -50 to show just how much detail it captured in the shadows I didn't see on the display. Also note that it shows more of the pixel grid lines. Barrel distortion also plays into level of perceived sharpness.
    No tripod was used.
    00dhDu-560305984.jpg
     
  56. Tim Holte said:
    "What is cheap about a tripod?" Cheaper than good lenses and camera bodies.​
    I'll bet that my tripod and Arca-Swiss ballhead and Wimberley Sidekick cost more than the camera kit of 80% of our readers ($1,100). You can get away with less, but not with Edward looking at 400%.
     
  57. 720p (1280x720), expressed 600 pixels wide on Photo.net? Honestly! Have you been paying attention?
    Starting with some basics, a TV screen is nearly a flat plane. Depth of field is meaningless. Six MP is fifteen year old technology, less than cell phone quality these days. If resolution of the output is low enough, you can't tell the difference between 2 MP (720p) and 24 MP. A lens can have faint traces of "Coca Cola" embossed in it, and it will make no difference. You are fortunate that your 6 MP camera didn't show a lot of Moire with the TV screen, which is a problem when two low resolution media meet head to head.
    When I say down-sampling preserves detail, it is because a decision must be made in the process whether a pixel appears in the results or not. That depends on surrounding pixels to some extent. A single point will probably be lost, but a line one pixel wide has a good chance of being retained. Guitar strings, for example, are often visible when down-sampled, even if the final resolution is otherwise marginal.
    Most of my video subjects actually have strings, bows and such. If I shoot in SD (720x480), diagonal lines show a lot of staircasing, which looks pretty ugly. If I shoot in 1080p, interpolation of lines is much cleaner, and there is little staircasing. Other details are cleaner as well. The same thing occurs when I down-sample an high resolution image to print at 360 dpi, only on a smaller scale.
     
  58. 720p (1280x720), expressed 600 pixels wide on Photo.net? Honestly! Have you been paying attention?​
    Clearly you didn't even read what I said seeing you missed my point from my last post either by reading something into what I said as me contradicting you or you seem to need to be right about an issue in order to save face among your peers. I can't tell now from what now appears as pointless ramblings.
    The moire as you call it on the TV screen is actual pixel grid when viewing the Raw file at 100%. Downsampling to 600 pixels does not preserve detail even on 6MP captures. I know this from posting thousands of images and having to grotesquely over sharpen when viewing at 100% in order to fight softness and loss of detail downsampling for the web. I didn't even sharpen HDtv image so now I'm wondering just what your point is for bringing it up.
    Although now that I've posted this I now see it contradicts your spider web thread being so sharp which means my HDtv pixel grid shouldn't but that wasn't my intention or point. I have no idea how I've been able to get such sharp images shooting hand held at low shutter speed without a tripod so maybe you can explain that since you need to be an authority on the subject.
    On second thought just forget it. What's the point anyway? I get a lot of sharp images without a tripod. I see something, I say something. That's all I'm doing.
     
  59. Edward said:
    "Pixel peeping" is often used as a perjorative. In fact, it is a tool to evaluate both images and technique. Other tools include histograms to evaluate exposure and image review (i.e., "chimping"). Someone who knows their equipment in depth is a "fanboy." I guess real photographers don't need light meters any more than tripods ;)
    I'm a proud pixel-peeper. If you take it as an insult, then that's your problem.

    WTF are you getting off into histograms and exposure evaluation. This isn't a thread about exposing to the right or evaluating exposures. Given that test shots are almost free, "real photographers" probably don't need light meters. Instead, an experienced photographer will know what exposure will work, take a test shot and then adjust EV up or down, as needed, all the while exposing to the right in order to gather as much data as possible. Like I said, we're not shooting Kodachrome anymore.
     
  60. An "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. ;-)<br>(And remember that "experience" and "have been doing it for a long time" aren't necessarily the same.)<br>Such a photographer also knows that using a tripod whenever possible is as sensible as using a meter is.<br><br>And more or less (un)related: an "i'm above using a [...]" attitude in whatever guise or however it is worded signifies... erm... well... not experience.
     
  61. I apologize, Tim. I misunderstood your post and responded inappropriately.
    Well said, Q.G. A craftsman should know how and when to use the tools at his disposal.
     
  62. I tend to agree with David. In practical terms there is not much to be gained from a tripod when the shutter speed is high enough. I cannot see any difference between a shot taken at 1/500 s with a 50mm lens on and off a tripod. But if you want absolute control of your aperture and need to keep the ISO low too then you need a tripod, but these occasions have reduced markedly since film days. To respond to Q.G's language parsing, for those times when you need stopped down apertures on dull days and slow ISO, a tripod is essential, but these times are rare for me and I suspect for most people who habitually walk around with a camera around their neck. In film days, this just was not the case (as when I shot Kodachrome 64 at 50). So, for me, a tripod is no longer that essential piece of equipment it once was. I still have one and use it occasionally though. Overall I disagree with QG's assertion "a tripod whenever possible is as sensible as using a meter is".
     
  63. Q.G. de Bakker said:
    An "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. ;-)
    (And remember that "experience" and "have been doing it for a long time" aren't necessarily the same.)
    Such a photographer also knows that using a tripod whenever possible is as sensible as using a meter is.

    And more or less (un)related: an "i'm above using a [...]" attitude in whatever guise or however it is worded signifies... erm... well... not experience.​
    Q.G., these days, almost all of our cameras have very sophisticated "exposure meters" inside; however, an experienced photographer may elect to guess and test, look at the Preview image and the histogram, see how bad the "blinkies" are and adjust accordingly, all with or without looking at a meter, internal or external. Even then, we may allow our camera to automatically bracket the shot. After all that, we'll adjust the exposure to taste in Raw conversion and post processing. Some "experienced photographers" may feel smug and superior because they meter every shot, while there are lots of photographers operating in the 21st Century and taking full advantage of the new tools at our disposal.
    In high dynamic range situations, relying 100% on a meter, is more likely to lead to metering errors than using test shots. As a practical matter, any "experienced photographer" that uses his or her meter to set exposure would be a fool not to look at the feedback that the camera gives in the Preview and histogram. Also, the experienced photographer will know that their Preview and Histogram from the camera is based on a JPEG and not the Raw file (there may be bodies that are exceptions, but that's the norm) and adjust exposure accordingly, if shooting Raw. (Don't all "experience photographers" shoot Raw?)
    I'll change one word in your pontificate, "Such a photographer also knows that using a tripod whenever required is as sensible as using a meter is."
    Remember, we're not shooting Kodachrome anymore. Let's all move into the 21st century, even those kicking a screaming to stay back in time.
     
  64. Good point Robin. The tripod/hand-held trade-off often comes down to shutter speed vs. noise. I try to shoot everything as if I'll print it 50". For landscape shooting, using the latest sensors, I have no trouble going up to ISO 400; however, once the tripod comes out, then I drop to ISO 100.
     
  65. A tripod is still the go-to tool when you want the most precise composition, stitched panoramas, stacked exposures or consistency in general. Image stabilization removes most of the concerns over camera shake, but not all of them. Whether you "see" the difference or not depends entirely on how closely you look and what matters to you. Some people are happy with Ikea furniture, others appreciate good wood, fine joinery and rubbed finishes.
     
  66. I've got a 72", hand held, seven-image (taken with 700mm super-tele), stitched mountain panorama hanging on my office wall. I'll give it a "magic touch" on my way out to lunch.
    Guys and gals, we're in the 21st century. You can chose to use the new tools available to us, or not.
     
  67. David, no "experienced photographer" would ever talk about relying on a meter. Wouldn't need to test and check histograms either. That's what that word "experienced" really means.<br><br>Back to tripods: that "experienced photographer" knows that needing one is not a categorial yes-no thing. Hands always shake. Reactive counter measures help, but cannot be perfect. So if you wish to get rid of camera movement and what it does, the thing to do is get ridd of the movement, i.e. keep your ever moving hands off that camera. At all speeds and with or without image stabilization.<br>You're quite right though: if and when you don't care, you can and should do whatever you want.
     
  68. Q.G. de Bakker said:
    David, no "experienced photographer" would ever talk about relying on a meter. Wouldn't need to test and check histograms either. That's what that word "experienced" really means.​
    Q.G. that's absolute BS and you know it. Particularly now that we need to expose to the right to maximize our data collection. I and many others, know when a scene needs +1/3EV, +1EV or +2EV and get it right, but constantly improving sensor technology is increasing the dynamic range makes that a moving target. When we shot Kodachrome 64, that was an unchanging specification, but now it's in almost constant flux.
    Are you the same Q.G. de Bakker that said:
    An "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. ;-)​
    Either there are two of you, or you talk out of both sides of your mouth. Do you use a meter, or not? What would you recommend to a newbie trying to learn photography?
    So, to prove that you're an "experienced photographer", do you turn off the meter in your camera and never "chimp" by looking at the Preview screen on your camera? Do you only take one shot of each subject and then don't look at the result until you do your Raw conversion? If so, that's a gallant tilt at a windmill, but it proves nothing, other than it's possible. (I actually did that in 1958, at 11, because my Yashica 44 had no meter and I couldn't afford a hand held meter and I could barely afford one-roll of twelve exposures and didn't know my result until days later, when the prints came from the lab. Yet, that didn't make me an "experienced photographer", except, perhaps relative to most other 11-year olds).
     
  69. I and many others, know when a scene needs +1/3EV, +1EV or +2EV and get it right,​
    Is that what "exposing to the right" means? I think you have it backwards. Digital and Kodachrome 64 (any reversal film) have an absolute limit to over exposure. On the other hand, digital has enormous latitude with regard to underexposure. Kodachrome 64 is a dead-end on either end of the exposure curve. Strange that there are no negative values in your list, as simple logic would indicate.

    There has been some interesting work regarding digital exposure, under the general heading of "ISO Invariance." The following is a primer in the basic concept of digital exposure and noise, in case your "experience" proves inadequate.

    http://www.dpreview.com/articles/7450523388/sony-alpha-7r-ii-real-world-iso-invariance-study
     
  70. David, there are tools, and there is knowledge, experience. The latter is needed to use the former. Without, you don't know what you are doing, and have to keep looking for confirmation (for instance using chimp screens and histograms). Experience means knowing when you got the thing you wanted, the way you wanted, without needing prior tests or confirmation afterwards. Pick up your tools, use them the way you know you need to, and it's over and done with in the blink of an eye.<br>And it's not that it is difficult. Anyone can learn. And while you learn, please do run tests and try things to see how they turn out. "Constantly improving sensor technology" only helps to make it even more fool proof. Constantly 'improving' gadgetry however (meters, for instance, that have a multitude of settings you need to get through 50+ pages in a user manual to get to know) may impress the inexperienced but are of no use to the experienced photographer. (Who also knows that the essential feature of any form of automation is the off-button.)<br>Once you've learned, and learned how really simple it all is, you'll know that it is not necessary, even a hindrance, to keep doing that test-confirm malarkey as if every next photo you're about to make is the first photo ever.<br><br>Say, since you appear to have all the time in the world to test and seek confirmation, why don't you put your camera on a tripod? ;-)
     
  71. Edward asked:
    Is that what "exposing to the right" means? I think you have it backwards. Digital and Kodachrome 64 (any reversal film) have an absolute limit to over exposure. On the other hand, digital has enormous latitude with regard to underexposure. Kodachrome 64 is a dead-end on either end of the exposure curve. Strange that there are no negative values in your list, as simple logic would indicate.

    There has been some interesting work regarding digital exposure, under the general heading of "ISO Invariance." The following is a primer in the basic concept of digital exposure and noise, in case your "experience" proves inadequate.​
    No matter your camera's ISO invariance, you gain data by exposing to the right ("ETTR"). My "list" was not meant to be complete. The obvious need for a negative EV, such as -1/3, -1 or -2 is when shooting a white bird flying against a dark BG. I used positive examples because that's the more likely scenario with most subjects.
    With digital photography, those of us with "experience", ETTR without blowing important highlights, so that the most data possible will be recorded. Even with a sensor with ISO invariance, you will gain dynamic range by gathering more information in the shadows. When converting from Raw, you "normalize" levels down to target level. Underexposing will require you to raise levels in Raw conversion, adding noise, even in the most ISO invariant sensor available. At higher ISOs, like ISO 800 and 1600, ETTR becomes increasingly important because the sensor's noise production starts out higher. Some people are scared to push to the edge of highlight blowout and give up dynamic range as a trade-off.
    Kodachrome gave us little tolerance for under or over exposure. Every exposure in a roll was processed the same way, unlike today, where we can apply different exposure compensation to each image. That's why I keep saying, "We're not shooting Kodachrome anymore."
    Q.G. is talking in circles. Dear readers, know you tools and use them as appropriate for your experience level and familiarity with your equipment. I think that he and I agree on that. I can't figure out what else he's trying to say.
     
  72. I've repeated it often enough, David: An "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. Pretty straightforward.<br><br>Oh, and: Such a photographer also knows that using a tripod whenever possible is as sensible as using a meter is. ;-)
     
  73. Q.G. de Bakker said:
    An "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. Pretty straightforward.​
    and then he said:
    ...no "experienced photographer" would ever talk about relying on a meter. Wouldn't need to test and check histograms either...​
    Okay, maybe there's a word missing or a typo. Are you advocating the use of a meter, or not?
    If you're trying to send some message especially for me, I didn't need a meter in 1958 and need one less today, but I'd still recommend that most photographers pay attention to their meters and histograms and/or preview screens. Those are all good tools to help anyone in doubt about the appropriateness of their exposures.
     
  74. others appreciate good wood, fine joinery and rubbed finishes.​
    I am that person, so I am not sure what you are suggesting to be honest.
     
  75. I am that person, so I am not sure what you are suggesting to be honest.​
    Me too, Robin.
     
  76. I am that person, so I am not sure what you are suggesting to be honest.​
    I use that as an analogy to appreciating what your equipment can do, and what is necessary to use it to its fullest.
     
  77. Edward said:
    I use that as an analogy to appreciating what your equipment can do, and what is necessary to use it to its fullest.​

    I agree 100%.
     
  78. Saw the moon, shot it, without walking back to the car to get my tripod.
    700mm, hand held at 1/499-sec.
    [​IMG]
    Click through to Flickr if you want to see it full-screen and larger.
     
  79. Great shot, David. Forgive me, but I am still left wondering what more detail you might have gotten with a tripod.
    It's not about you, of course. Here is one of my own that left me yearning for more resolution--always more resolution, especially where lunar detail is concerned, but with modest telescopes I am always left wanting more. In this case, I did use a tripod, but the limitations were either my gear or my technique, or both. Those limitations are obvious enough with the small image, but when one clicks on the image to get a larger image, the defects/limitations leave me shaking my head.
    Here is another of mine that leaves me wishing for more. On this one, I had a hard time knowing when I had infinity focus.
    Too much resolution is an oxymoron. As for pixel peeping, it is one of my favorite pastimes. I cannot see the logic of paying thousands for better sensors and lenses without checking to see if one is getting one's money's worth.
    Frankly, though, I just enjoy seeing more detail. I always have.
    --Lannie
     
  80. Yet, yet, I also find myself in situations where I have no alternative but to turn up the ISO and lean up against something (if I can find something) and shoot hand-held. Otherwise the shot is lost.
    [LINK]
    THIS ONE was shot a fraction of a second later and was heavily cropped. Still the 12 mp of the D3s did pretty well in terms of getting detail, I thought. (One can see some of the chromatic aberration that one gets with the D3s at very high ISO.) I am admittedly not the best with hand-held shots, but I do the best I can. Had the lens been a long lens (such as my Leica Telyt 560 or the Nikon 600 f/4 Ai-S), I doubt that I could have gotten much more than a blur. In fact, I would not have even bothered to try shooting hand-held with the manual focus Nikon 600mm f/4. Doug Herr used to get some incredible bird shots with the Leica Telyt 560, but that lens comes with a shoulder "brace" that helps a lot (although I have still never mastered it).
    VR or IS would have helped on all of my shots not made with a tripod, of course.
    --Lannie
     
  81. David, to end this repetitive theme: we use tools. A meter gives input that is evaluated by someone who understands how meters work in general, knows how the particular meter is, well... particular, knows what the meter is pointed at, and knows what his or her goal is. Such someone meters (which already involves making decisions the meter can't make), and then does his or her own thing.<br>A simple, and very well known (and age old) example that might help you understand is the black cat in a coal shed and/or white cat in the snow thing. An experienced photographer does not rely on his meter. He or she knows how to use the meter.<br>(And you say you do not need even that. Which i think is rather silly. If anything, experience shows that we mere humans are not very good at guessing light levels or contrasts. The reason we invented such a crutch to lean on to begin with. We must not only know our tools, but also ourselves. So instead of going through a trial and error cycle, chimping, looking at histograms - the display of a meter! - to adjust your guestimates, just use a meter...!) <br><br>Back to tripods, i'll keep on harping on that other repetitive theme: not using a tripod is always at a cost. A trade off of image quality vs convenience. Sometimes we have to. Often it is just not wanting to carry and set up a tripod.<br>That 700 mm moon shot you made, David, is clearly blurred. When there is not opportunity to put a camera on a tripod, so be it. But this one sure would have been sharper.
     
  82. Hey Lannie, LOL. Great shots. Love your work.
    I could have cropped a lot tighter, of course, you know. Did you click-through to Flickr, expand the image, hit F11 and then hit the + to see it full-screen plus?
    For me, the big variable on moon shots is getting a crystal clear sky. Ten-minutes earlier, with the moon only a little lower in the sky, a crisp shot wouldn't have been possible, due to atmosphere.
    BTW, if I planned to print this 50"x50", I would have run to the car to get my tripod. ;-) As it is, this is "good enough" for a 65" screen with 4k resolution, 27" monitors and maybe a 20x20 or even 30x30 print.
    Lannie, have you ever done a print up in the 50x50" range of one of your moon shots? I bet it'd be a stunner.
     
  83. Hey everyone, Q.C. is back and this time he says that we need our meters, but he calls it a "crutch". At least that's what I think he said this time.
    Anyway, I think that we have tons of tools in our modern cameras; meters, AF systems, image stabilization, high performance sensors, etc. Be familiar with them all and their capabilities and use them when you need them.
     
  84. With digital photography, those of us with "experience", ETTR without blowing important highlights, so that the most data possible will be recorded.​
    Q.G. is coming from years of experience with medium format, for which the camera is an inert tool, leaving all of the important decisions to the photographer. You learn to get it right the first time, or go broke trying. Shooting medium format WITHOUT a tripod is equivalent to using a Kodak box camera.

    It is clear that your "experience" is meaningless, many bad habits, repeated endlessly. For digital and reversal film, you determine the brightest object in which you wish to retain detail, and expose to the LEFT, two to four stops, OR expose for the mid-range, whichever is greatest. This is largely derived from principles Ansel Adams wrote about fifty years ago, updated of course. Your redemption is that in daylight, sun over your shoulder, "sunny 16" works well enough.

    You obviously did not read the article on ISO Invariance (or did not understand it). Perhaps it's just another wonky experiment of no use to those with "experience." It's not too late. At least the article will shed some "light" on where the detail truly resides in digital capture.
     
  85. Hey everyone, Q.C. is back and this time he says that we need our meters, but he calls it a "crutch". At least that's what I think he said this time.​
    We need a light meter because our eyes do not register light objectively. We need a crutch when our legs won't support us, or perhaps just a walking stick on a steep incline. In any case, a tool to be used when necessary. Spend a little more effort on reading comprehension, and less time on taking things out of context and parsing.
     
  86. Edward, I started in medium format and didn't move to 35mm until several years in. Digital was decades later.
    Edward, exposing to the Left of the brightest object is the same as exposing to the Right of an "Evaluative" or "Average" or "Center Weighted" meter reading. I use the ETTR nomenclature because it's more widely used in today's digital photography community. When I say "ETTR", most Raw shooters know what I mean, where if I said ETTL, I'd need further explanation, such as yours. I actually think that we're on the same page so far as digital exposure goes, just using different terms. I'm surprised that you're not familiar with the term "ETTR."
    I read the excellent article on ISO Invariance when it first came out and read it again when you cited it. Although an ISO invariant sensor will tolerate raising shadows in Raw conversion with less noise than a sensor that is not quite so invariant, both sensors will benefit from ETTR by collecting more data. Take two shots, one using an evaluative meter exposure (0EV) and then one using +1EV. The file of the +1EV image contain more data and you'll see that it has a larger file size. When you normalize the +1EV shot in Raw conversion, by reducing the exposure, the resulting finished TIFF will have less noise than the image shot at 0EV. Of course, this is more noticeable at higher ISOs.
    This concept is important particularly to nature and bird photographers that typically shoot at high ISO in order to get fast enough shutter speeds to stop action. Also, most photographers are NOT using the Sony sensor used as the reference in the article and their sensors are less invariant at low ISOs. Here again is one more example where it pays the photographer to understand his or her equipment and manage exposure accordingly. I say, "ETTR", you say, "ETTL", but we mean the same thing, although we may practice it to different degrees.
     
  87. David is on a self imposed mission... David, when you find people do not share your meaning, that is not necessarily so because they don't understand things as 'well' as you do. Get it? ;-)<br>What Edward said, David. A crutch. A prosthesis. Because we can't do it ourselves, we invent a thing that helps us achieve it anyway. "A tool to be used when necessary". The nature of and reason for things called tools. That is: in one meaning of the word.<br>You are a bit torn between trying to know how to use a tool ("important") and promoting a trial and error method. Why don't you trust yourself to know what you are doing?<br>And why do you rely on image stabilisation when you know that a tripod removes the need for that at best wonky crutch? Your moon shot is nice, compositionwise. But if only you had used a tripod... ;-)
     
  88. IS is a crutch, a tripod is a crutch. Chose your crutch.
    The moon image speaks for itself. Readers can click-through and decide for themselves.
    I'm not "torn between" anything. My images stand up to 50" prints and people have happily bought them, including art directors. (I don't make a living with photography, but it pays enough to be a "business" and offsets equipment costs, which are substantial).
    Q.G., I'm only responding to keep balance for the readers. I not on a mission to change yours or Edward's minds.
    Dear readers, I'll try to summarize and distill:
    In-camera or in-lens IS these days is really, really good, so much so that for many usages (small prints, internet usage viewed in "normal" internet sizes, including full-screen on a good monitor) you no longer need a tripod in situations that previously demanded a tripod. As you go up in file requirements, such as printing 50" prints of scenes that require shutter speeds less than 1/100-sec. and low ISO, then a tripod is REQUIRED to get the image sharp enough. "Sharp enough" to me means that the print viewer will first view the image from a few feet and then be drawn to bring their eyes mere inches from the print. If the viewers are not equally pleased with both perspectives, then the image is not sharp enough.
    There was a side discussion of exposure and meters, but I think that we all agreed that, ever how you do it, ETTR (expose to the right) gets the most information into the Raw file. Edward, I think it was, calls this ETTL (expose to the left) but we're talking about the same thing. Real photographers do and don't look at their meters. So long as the exposure is correct, none of that discussion about meters, chimping, histograms, etc. really meant a hill of beans. Do what works for you. YMMV
     
  89. Well, David, you are such an experienced photographer that you really do not even need a meter, yet propose that we shoot test shots and examine the histogram (the display of a meter...) on our camera to see whether we are getting close to where we want to be. What is it? Why don't you just use your experience, use a meter, and get done with it in almost no more time than it takes to press the release? You know: "an "experienced photographer" knows that using an exposure meter obviates the need for such a guestimate test and adjust and gets the right exposure immediately. Pretty straightforward." But i guess you'd rather be a "real photographer". Your choice.<br><br>And back on topic. Yes, both a tripod and image stabilisation are crutches. The question was whether a tripod is an essential crutch now that we have image stabilisation. And it still is, yes. The difference is that one is capable of removing the problem completely, and the other is not. Image stabilisation thus is a crutch for those wo don't like to or can't use the better crutch. It's better than nothing, so hurray for image stabilisation. But the other one provides the perfect solution. Is just a bit less convenient.<br>So, readers, know what you are chosing between! Image stabilisation is really, really not that good, and/so we still need a tripod. Whenever possible, use a tripod!<br>Unless, of course, you don't care. Then you can do whatever you want.
     
  90. Q.G., I'm sorry to read that you struggle with, "Image stabilization is really, really not that good" and that's probably the root of your need for a tripod. Many of us are using modern cameras and lenses with IS that is really, really good.
    I would hope that we can all agree that there's a shutter speed high enough for any specific lens where no "crutch" at all is needed, neither IS nor tripod. I also think that we can all agree that there is a point where shutter speed is low enough that we have no choice but to use a tripod. I'm saying that the cross-over point has moved considerably, thanks to modern IS performance, that can be in the range of 4-stops. Also, high-ISO performance has improved dramatically during the past few years, making the use of higher ISO a possibility for critical shots.
    When readers look at their files at a pixel-level, they should not forget to consider the planned usage for the file. 50" prints demand much cleaner files than images that will be displayed at 27", 24" and smaller at 1080p
     
  91. I would hope that we can all agree that there's a shutter speed high enough for any specific lens where no "crutch" at all is needed, neither IS nor tripod.​
    Well said, David. I have gotten shots with the D800E out the right window of a car at highway speed, hand-held, at 1/8000 sec (with the ISO turned up a bit but not too far). The shots were about as crisp as I could possibly want. No comparison with a shot using a tripod would be meaningful in such a case.
    As for 50" x 50", I would love to see that shot of yours printed at that size! Who would have thought that such a shot was possible without a tripod not so many years ago?
    --Lannie
     
  92. Thanks Lannie.
    Sharp, big prints blow me away. The only problem is wall space.
    I've got a buddy that has a big, commercial Epson printer that does all of John Fielder's prints. He's done just a few big ones for me and they blow people away. I've got a long panorama of Mount Evans, which I see out my windows and that was 7-shots, hand held, then stitched. Two grand canyon shots, with new-fallen snow at sunrise were printed 50" and were on the tripod. Most of the others are 20x30" and hand held.
    I just bought a Canon Pixma Pro-100 that does 13x19". I'm blown away by the results and the wifey is selecting six or eight to group in our library. It's fantastic printer with a LR plug-in that makes setting up for different papers and different sizes a breeze. After rebates, it's $149. Highly recommended to anyone wanting to start getting serious about printing.
     
  93. Edward, exposing to the Left of the brightest object is the same as exposing to the Right of an "Evaluative" or "Average" or "Center Weighted" meter reading. I use the ETTR nomenclature because it's more widely used in today's digital photography community.​
    Like I said, you have it backwards. I would never increase the exposure beyond what is necessary to render mid-tones (or average tones) correctly. It is not necessary and usually counter-productive. That's the other half of the"OR" in my original statement. The only occasion where that has been necessary, in my recollection, is to render face tones in a boy choir dressed in white smocks. Even then a full stop is as much as it gets, and 1/2 is usually sufficient. On the other hand, I frequently reduce exposure in order to keep highlights in bounds. "Expose to the Right" is either a myth or simply misunderstood, possibly a relic of black and white days where loss of shadow detail was an ever-present danger.
    DPReview has published results for ISO Invariance on several cameras, including a Nikon D750 and Canon 5Diii. While they don't do as well as the A7Rii, the results illustrate that it is a mistake to bump the original exposure to improve shadow detail. That is better done in post. Manage the highlights, and the shadows will take care of themselves.
     
  94. David, why do you keep discussing people who don't agree with you instead of the matter at hand? And do you really believe that they make very nice, modern lenses and cameras for you, while others have to make do with something not nearly as good? Really?<br><br>Image stabilisation is - as mentioned before - a reactive method, that cannot work perfectly. And it often makes things worse, because it 'anticipates' the wrong movement. It's the nature of the thing. "Experienced photographers" know that. Yes, from experience.<br>Fast shutterspeeds help limit (!) the effect of movement, but whether enough depends on how much movement there is (and on what you are happy with). Yes you can get lucky at 1/15. You can also run into problems at 1/1000. Again, the nature of the thing.<br>What lies at the root of the problem is movement. And there is a perfect fix: stop moving. We can't. So the thing we need to do is keep our hands off the camera. And we invented a thing that will help do that while keeping control over where we can take the camera and what we can point the camera at. Perfect for what it is supposed to do.<br>Much better than active image stabilization. Much better than fast shutters. But alas not always an option. But that does not make image stabilization better.<br>So instead of posing with unsharp images that demonstrate that you can't rely on image stabilization and had better used a tripod, just open your eyes and recognize the limitations of your tools. Then you can work with and around them. Else you shoot unsharp moon images. Use a tripod whenever possible!
     
  95. Google ETTR and/or "Expose To The Right." Edward calls it a myth and then cites and example of where he used it.
    Let's see your moon image Q.G.
     
  96. Let's make this another thread about ETTR! Whee!
    --Lannie
     
  97. That would not be fair, David. Sturdy tracking mount. On a decent tripod.<br>It's undeniable though that your example of how 'good' image stabilisation is, is not that good. Though it would be much worse, yes, without, i guess. So i'll quote landrum: "Forgive me, but I am still left wondering what more detail you might have gotten with a tripod.". Indeed.<br><br>ETTR is an attempt to raise the signal above the noise floor without clipping. That is done to turn up the gain even more, lifting the noise floor too. Requiring more lifting of the signal. Etc. Meanwhile clipping levels do not budge. A myth? Well... Sensible? Well...<br>However, with better sensors the need for such tomfoolery is disappearing fast. That's what Edward knows but you, David, don't. So it seems.<br>So instead of a thread about some old hat, how about a thread about the new?
     
  98. Lannie, you may be right. I thought ETTR had been hashed to death, but ignorance still abounds. Now I've got some guy saying that opening the aperture or slowing the shutter speed "lifts the signal." With the advent of more and more ISO Invariant sensors, the discussion has changed a bit. Why don't you start it? ;-) (Just kidding).
    Q.C., so you've got a tracking mount? You must be a serious astro photographer. Why don't you show us a shot of the whole moon (it doesn't need to be full), cropped and presented here 800x800p?
     
  99. Yes, ignorance abounds. We can agree on something, David. ;-)<br>Do you think we need proof that an image taken from a sturdy support suffers very, very little motion blur? Really? After all these years we have been using tripods? In a thread that has the words "tripod" and "essential" in the title? What would be interesting in this thread is an explanation of why despite using image stabilization that moon shot is still not free of motion blur.
     
  100. Q.G., is there a reason you don't want to provide our readers a sample? Let the readers see for themselves. You've certainly got all the equipment. I can't imagine that someone with a tracking mount wouldn't have taken an image of the moon in their first night working with it.
     
  101. Still demonstrating that you are not interested in the topic, David?<br>Or an "experienced", "real" photographer wanting to see a sharp image...<br>tisk tisk...
     
  102. So Q.G., inexplicably, no moon from you?
     
  103. Inexplicably, he says... Yes. What is indeed inexplicable is that people demand to see their misconceptions vindicated by looking at someone else's images. Would that work, do you suppose?<br><br>But David, i forgot the most important bit in my last post: you failed the test. Why would i need a tracking device to get a shot of the moon? ;-)
     
  104. Q.C., I and others (email contact) noted your ignorant mention of a tracking device. We were intrigued to see just how you would put it to use. You bluffed and your bluff was called. Clearly, you have no image to show us and your attempt at bluster is only highlighting your blunder.
    Will give you a day or two to have a clear shot at the moon, assuming that you don't already have such a shot. Go out, take a shot of the whole moon, using whatever equipment you like, crop it square and display it here at 800p. Simple.
     
  105. :))) David, David, David... Really...<br>Are you really going anywhere with all this that deserves appearing on PNet?<br><br>So yes, a tripod is still as essential as it ever was. Just see what David had to say about that, and it should be clear that it is indeed so. ;-)
     
  106. Q.C., while you were fiddling with your tripod, I took another picture of the moon. This time, out the car window, with no beanbag or other "crutch", except for my modern camera's IS.
    [​IMG]
    When can we expect yours? As they say, a picture is worth 1,000-words.
     
  107. Dave, that's the same image. The terminator has not moved.
    --Lannie
     
  108. Oops, thanks Lannie. How 'bout this?
    [​IMG]
    Interesting to see them close together. I used more Contrast the first time. As before, you can click-through to Flickr to see full-screen and larger version.
     
  109. Google ETTR and/or "Expose To The Right." Edward calls it a myth and then cites and example of where he used it.​
    In order to manage highlights, you expose to the LEFT when necessary. If it isn't necessary, you don't. If mid-tones (e.g., faces) are too dark, you move to the right (more exposure), as long as it doesn't blow highlights.

    In the same context, if the average scene is darker than mid-range, it's better to expose to the LEFT in order to maintain the essence of that scene. Examples would include a swamp, or the same boy choir dressed in black gowns (to properly render the faces). When faced with the impossible contrasts of wedding groups, I use an incident light meter and put the camera into full manual mode.

    Your ability to parse and misconstrue other's statements is extaordinary. Perhaps that is the expression of your "experience."

    You don't need a tracking device for the moon at the relatively low magnification of a 700 mm lens. although a tripod would help. To avoid the residual effects of a reactive image stabilization system, IS should be turned off (even with Canon lenses). The exposure is basically that of a surface with a reflectance of 18% in full sunlight - i.e., Sunny 16. Beyond a certain magnification you need a siderial tracking system (or manual tracking). A polar mount won't suffice.
     
  110. Edward said:
    In order to manage highlights, you expose to the LEFT when necessary. If it isn't necessary, you don't. If mid-tones (e.g., faces) are too dark, you move to the right (more exposure), as long as it doesn't blow highlights.

    ...
    ...​
    Wonderful explanation of ETTR, Edward.
    He also said:

    You don't need a tracking device for the moon at the relatively low magnification of a 700 mm lens. although a tripod would help. To avoid the residual effects of a reactive image stabilization system, IS should be turned off (even with Canon lenses). The exposure is basically that of a surface with a reflectance of 18% in full sunlight - i.e., Sunny 16. Beyond a certain magnification you need a siderial tracking system (or manual tracking). A polar mount won't suffice.​
    Your friend Q.G. is the one that proposed using a tracking device to shoot the moon. Maybe you should speak to him about why one is on his equipment list. I'm awaiting his image and very curious to see how he uses it. I've now posted two images. I assumed that when I said that they were hand held that you knew that I didn't use a tracking device.
    Post a 800x800p image of the whole moon, using a tripod, tracking device, whatever you need. I want the readers to see the huge difference that a tripod will make. I would think that you would be anxious to do this and blow my image out of the water. A picture is worth 1,000 words. Oh yeah, we're not shooting Kodachrome anymore.
     
  111. David, in all seriousness, what do you hope to learn whether or not Q.G. should happen to post a photo?

    As best I can see, nothing pertinent to the topic would be learned. If he posted a more detailed photo, you might say, "oh of course it's
    better; he used more specialized equipment." Or if it's less detailed, you might say "Oh look, Q.G. isn't so smart as he thinks." (I'm guessing
    this because of the tone of your last few posts.) In neither case do I see anything pertinent to the thread's topic.

    I think this is showing the bad side of photonet. Q.G. is being put in the position of a bar fight where some guy is trying to pick afight.
    Attempts to insult, "You bluffed and your bluff was called. Clearly, you have no image to show us and your attempt at bluster is only
    highlighting your blunder," giving ultimatums, "Will give you a day or two to have a clear shot at the moon ...," are failing to provoke a
    reaction. To be clear, I see Q.G. as taking the high road.

    I hope the discussion will get back on topic.I don't really see moderate mag photos of the moon as being good examples of the need for a
    tripod, although maybe they are. I haven't tried it nor have I done any math, so I don't have any real basis for this opinion.
     
  112. I have to say that that is a fine hand-held shot, Dave. The waxing gibbous moon can sometimes be a challenge, due to the relative absence of shadows. I typically shoot the moon at "sunny sixteen" on a tripod, since it is in full sunlight--but diffraction effects can begin to erode image quality. I have also shot the moon at f/22. Beyond that I do not remember. I am not sure what to do hand-held, since one has to drive the shutter speed up. I have used exposure compensation as well, but I don't remember specifics. I have made very few hand-held shots of the moon--but always without IS or VR since I don't have any long lenses with IS or VR. I don't see much alternative to doing a bit of chimping to check exposure in casual shooting of the moon, and even then it is good to bracket pretty widely, in my opinion. Regular moon-shooters probably know what exposure to use to get it both hand-held and on a tripod, but I am not sure what would be perfect. I am not beyond adjusting exposure in post on raw files. In my opinion, over-exposure can be a very real problem with the moon. It is bright! ETTR with the moon would be crazy, of course.
    HERE is one that I got hand-held (a couple of years ago) using an old Nikon 300 f/4 that I picked up on eBay for less than five hundred dollars. It is slightly under-exposed, but I like moonshots a bit dark. Others in the same folder are brighter. I could have done better with IS or VR, of course. All of those in the folder are mediocre, but it was the prospect of getting both the moon and the branch that appealed to me in this case. Resolution was a secondary consideration--rather rare for me.
    Dave, I still can't believe you got that shot at 700mm, hand-held. Generally speaking, I do recommend using a tripod when shooting the moon, since crater detail is everything, but you have gotten some very impressive results hand-held.
    --Lannie
     
  113. Here is a fish-eye shot by Ellis Vener that could almost pass as a moon shot!
    --Lannie
     
  114. Bill, according to Q.G., his shot should be clearly superior to mine because he would have used a tripod. This thread is about, mostly, with a modern IS system, can we dispense with the tripod in many situation? If we had equivalent pictures of the moon with and without tripod, then readers could judge for themselves if the tripod was worth the extra effort. I believe that demonstrating with and without is "on topic."
     
  115. Thank you Lannie and I really enjoy your pix.
    Are my hand holding abilities above average? You didn't ask that, but your awe made me think that readers should know my experience level at hand hold big rigs. I started bird and wildlife photography in late 2008, using a tripod for my 400/5.6 and later for my 500/f4 (Series I and then in 2015 S-II). In 2010 I started hand holding due to missed shots that I could blame on my tripod. Since then, I've certainly shot over 100,000 shots with rigs of 500mm, 700mm and 1000mm. The Series II 500mm is 1.5lbs lighter than the S-I and the IS is two stops better, so it made a honed skill even better.
    I've informally tutored several bird and wildlife photographers with a common theme to raise their ISOs and start hand holding, ALL with improved results, including two or three women. So, it does take practice, but it's practical.
    Yes, ETTR would have to be left of the highlights for sure when shooting the moon. ETTR does not mean, blow out the highlights.
    Since Q.G. doesn't look like he's going to post, would you post a tripod shot of the whole moon, in square format, at 800x800p? Give us the best you've got. ;-)
     
  116. Lannie, I only suggested that you post one of your tripod shots because I know that you're confident in your work and it'll be a good example of the potential.
    Meantime, I looked back at my hand held moon shots and this one has proven to be the most popular:
    [​IMG]
     
  117. Yes, that is a good one, Dave. I always like lunar shots that give good shadows and contrast with my old friends Copernicus and Eratosthenes.

    Speaking of which. . .

    No, no, definitely not hand-held. . . Might be good to use a tripod with a big Celestron.
    What is interesting about the Celestron shot is that it clearly shows the line of small craters running in a line between Copernicus and Eratosthenes. I just had a wild thought: Might you possibly have been able to get those small craters at 700mm had you used a tripod? I really, really don't know, since it seems likely that we are getting close to the limits of the resolving power of the lens that you used. Then again, how would I know? There is also the angle of the sun to be considered, especially if those are shallow craters.
    I am not saying that to take anything away from your shots as posted. They are extraordinary. I wish that I had such skill hand-holding such big lenses. I'm just wondering what might be possible with that lens if used with a tripod. As a resolution freak, it is my nature to ask such questions.
    --Lannie
     
  118. For macro shots, I find that I like something to hold the camera. It is about critical focus. Which of course is not just camera movement up and down or yawing. Focus is nailed by moving camera back and forth millimeters, less than mm... While adjusting exposure to suit subject. It just helps to have something to hold the camera while I aim the target. Think American Sniper. I just played with my stabilized OMD E-MI and the still crisp ED 50mm Macro. Was nice to have a table top platform. Essential no, if out in the field. But look again in the bag. You mean there is no room for a table top tripod. Ok,if you say you travel light. Hey, argumentatively speaking, does not high ISO eliminate the need for flash as well. Some say " not essential." All my cameras have an Arca Swiss plate on the bottom. For now, I will use it when the occasion calls for it. Plates and ball heads and even tripods are going to be around a while. Shoot the moon by hand...I have done it. I like the cosmos to float there. So I use a tripod. Even with my Fujinon Polaris binoculars it helps. But not essential. ( great binos but heavy mothers by hand) How about 'useful.' I think we kind of agree. No fun if we all the time agreed. What to discuss. No biggie.
    00dhfK-560374084.jpg
     
  119. Holy cow, Dave! Paynes Prairie! I spent nine years at UF doing graduate work (across three disciplines) and teaching PT at UF. I love these. Great place to get snake shots, too!
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/dcstep/albums/72157632475348102
    The first flying wild turkey that I ever saw was near the north edge of Paynes Prairie, perhaps in 1976, the year before I got my first SLR, a used Miranda with a 50mm f/1.4. I was carrying an Instamatic the day I saw the wild turkey flying and have no souvenir of that day. I'm not sure I even got a shot off, I was in such awe.
    --Lannie
     
  120. Gerry, how far away were the MM stamps? I doubt that you were doing sniping practice that day.
    --Lannie
     
  121. Close, Lannie. I did not crop much off the original, so I guess it was near 1:1 or close. I set up my camera on a rig. I may photograph it later on, hard to picture in words. It was a table top ball head and with an oldie but goodie Novoflex slide rail that I picked up for twenty dollars at an auction, and under it all a microphone stand with a 5/8" stud,- love to improvise... If you are playing with lights, fixed or strobe, and a subject that close, having a stable something to rest on is kind of nice. I have tried handheld closeups and they look super on the LCD but not so super when downloaded if you know what I mean... A stable brain and nervous system,even better, Lannie :).

    I have done some moon shots, and moon with trees and such, but the moon is only 4 degrees in relative size of the whatchamacallit...word escapes me today.

    Getting on target is easier with a platform. Cold stiff fingers and all...you understand. Plus locating the right buttons. Don't forget the buttons. Be well, keep warm, and keep in touch. GS
     
  122. Dave, I was just reading the specs and technical data that accompanied the Celestron shot. The Celestron shot was made using a Tahahashi EM200 Temma 2M mount. I looked it up--that mount alone costs between $6,000 and $7,000 these days.
    There are tripod/mount combos, and then there are tripod/mount combos. . . .
    Horses for courses, and all that. . .
    I have taken many a "hand-held" shot by leaning up against my car and extending my long legs and locking the knees. There are tripods, and then there are tripods.
    --Lannie
     
  123. Yeah Gerry, the atmosphere will kill details of the moon at such a low angle. Those big-moon shots, low to the horizon, need something else in the foreground to draw attention away from the atmospheric distortion.
    Well Lannie, I see why you use the Celestron. With that, why would you ever resort to a "short" lens like mine?
     
  124. Tell you what Lannie, hopefully I'll get another good opportunity in the next day or so and I'll try 1,000 and crop down to some small craters, just to see. Oh well, and while I'm at it, I could pull the tripod out of the trunk to see what it can do to improve. ;-)
     
  125. I have tried handheld closeups and they look super on the LCD but not so super when downloaded if you know what I mean --Gerry Siegel​
    I know exactly what you mean, Gerry. There is also the question of what is good enough to get a really good print. I am shooting fewer shots with tripods these days, but I keep at least one old tripod in the trunk of each car--just in case. For really important shots, I will also stash one of my best pods in the back seat before I head out. I doubt that I am the only one around with close to a dozen tripods. Not, it is not a buying addiction. Each one has its uses.
    As I understand Dave's posts, he is hardly advocating tossing our pods, just showing what can be done nowadays without a tripod. When the chips are down, though, I reach for the pod--if there is time. Dave is also saying (with regard to birds), sometimes there simply is not enough time. Then of course there is the street. . . .
    I can't remember the last time I saw somebody (besides myself) working the streets with a tripod. Even for myself, the need to get in and out quickly was one reason that I bought a used D3s on eBay. Sometimes I just don't want to advertise my equipment at night by hauling around a tripod.
    --Lannie
     
  126. Dave, that was not my Celestron shot. The only telescope that I have kept is my Orion 80mm ED.
    --Lannie
     
  127. Lannie said:
    Holy cow, Dave! Paynes Prairie! I spent nine years at UF doing graduate work (across three disciplines) and teaching PT at UF. I love these. Great place to get snake shots, too!
    https://www.flickr.com/photos/dcstep/albums/72157632475348102
    The first flying wild turkey that I ever saw was near the north edge of Paynes Prairie, perhaps in 1976, the year before I got my first SLR, a used Miranda with a 50mm f/1.4. I was carrying an Instamatic the day I saw the wild turkey flying and have no souvenir of that day. I'm not sure I even got a shot off, I was in such awe.​
    I hope this won't end our friendship, but I'm an FSU grad. ;-)
    I was down at G'ville when my brother had a successful heart surgery at the exceptional Shands. I only had one morning available and it started out overcast and foggy. The flying birds were pretty much a bust, but then I stumbled on those beautiful turkeys, that let me follow them at a respectful distance. I would have liked more clear shots, but beggars can't be choosers.
    I'd be there every day, if I lived down there.
     
  128. David, still at it? I'm almost (note: almost) tempted to post a handheld shot, taken in rather adverse conditions for handheld photography, that i managed to get tack sharp. That would be a better demonstration of handheld shots than your obviously motion blurred moon shot.<br>Knowing that i have managed to get sharp shots handheld (in poor conditions too), i still stand by that "use a tripod whenever possible" advise. That's "experienced photographers" for ya... It - unlike most (don't want to appear ungracious by telling the whole truth ;-) ) your rantings - just makes sense.
     
  129. It was a table top ball head and with an oldie but goodie Novoflex slide rail that I picked up for twenty dollars at an auction, and under it all a microphone stand with a 5/8" stud,- love to improvise...​
    Maybe you can patent that rig, Gerry. I've been known to improvise.
    Gosh, I do love talking about tripods. I suspect I've got grooves on my shoulders from carrying them around. We spend far too much time talking about cameras, always cameras, it seems. Even the lenses don't get the attention they deserve. Tripods? You would think they don't exist to look at the number of new threads about them.
    --Lannie
     
  130. Tell you what Lannie, hopefully I'll get another good opportunity in the next day or so and I'll try 1,000 and crop down to some small craters, just to see. Oh well, and while I'm at it, I could pull the tripod out of the trunk to see what it can do to improve. ;-)​
    Dave, just past first quarter, please do see if you can pick up those little craters between Copernicus and Eratosthenes. I imagine that they tend to waft in and out with the thermals on smaller scopes. I am not sure that I have ever seen them myself on one of my own. Frankly, I doubt it. I am not really a lunar photographer, and my scopes were never that big.
    The Celestron used in the shot posted above had a 2800mm f.l., I believe!
    --Lannie
     
  131. I hope this won't end our friendship, but I'm an FSU grad. ;-)​
    It's strange, Dave, but somehow I never got around to seeing the Mighty Gators play. My alma mater was Furman, a school of about 1400 students when I was there in the sixties.
    --Lannie
     
  132. Puts my measly 1,000mm to shame, but can you hand hold it? ;-) Oh yeah, no IS.
    It's looking promising today, with a clear sky at 1 p.m. When I do the tripod shot, I'll even turn off the IS, even though it's a Canon. I'll eve lock the mirror up and do remote release. Right now, wind is low, so I've got a sporting chance. I'll put up a couple pixel-peepers' dreams, along with the 800x800p whole moon shots.
     
  133. Lannie, we're around the same vintage. I graduated in '69 with a BS in Accounting.
     
  134. I'm almost (note: almost) tempted to post a handheld shot, taken in rather adverse conditions for handheld photography, that i managed to get tack sharp.​
    Not to be combative, Q.G., but I would love to see what you got. They've got to be better than my own hand-held shots
    --Lannie
     
  135. Dave, I posted above about what a small scope could show between the craters Copernicus and Eratosthenes. Here is small crop from a shot I posted earlier (http://www.photo.net/photo/10263531&size=md ) using the Orion 80mm EF refractor and the Canon 50D. I wonder how the D800E with the same small refractor would do for showing more detail of those tiny craters between the larger craters. (I believe that the Orion 80mm ED has a focal length of 750mm. Its objective is quite good for its size, but an objective of that size has obvious limitations, even with the best of techniques.)
    Viewed large (as in the attached shot), I can just begin to see the small craters. They are obvious on the Celestron shot posted above. For that matter, my D7100 would have even greater pixel density than the D800E and ought to show even more.
    Copernicus is at the bottom and Eratosthenes is at the top right. I think that I used the low-end Celestron equatorial mount and tripod on this one, but without the motor drive running. (There was no need.)
    THIS LINK shows Jerry Lodriguss's shot that I posted earlier for which he used a big Celestron with the heavy Takahashi mount. In his shot, Copernicus is to the left with Eratosthenes to the right. The line of small craters between them that I am talking about runs from top to bottom on his shot. The small craters are very, very obvious using that scope--with a 2800mm focal length. I should point out that that Takahashi mount that he used has a precision motor drive. I have no idea which tripod legs he used--and it probably doesn't matter very much as long as they were sturdy. The mount and the optics of the Celestron were surely the limiting factors in his ability to get such great resolution of those tiny craters.
    --Lannie
    00dhgM-560375284.jpg
     
  136. David, this is the lens you want to try out.http://www.dvinfo.net/canon/images/images17.php

    Brian, holding it in photo near the bottom, used to call on us periodically. I came across the photo somewhere and we were laughing about
    the lens. He said it's just like carrying a toddler around, except that it doesn't wiggle around. I'm sure they offered to let us play with it, but
    that's so far away from our business use it would just be a waste of their time. Although it might have satisfied some prurient interests, if
    that's a proper use of the word.

    Since I have to make this somehow relevant to the thread, it doesn't have IS, so it should be used on a tripod.
     
  137. Bill, Dave wants to try using that lens hand-held--without IS.
    As for my own poor shot, here it is blown up even more. (Again, Copernicus is at the bottom and Eratosthenes is at the top right.) I can see the tiny craters, but I cannot see any detail. This is where an 80mm refractor can get a bit frustrating, although I would bet that someone here has done it and gotten a crisp shot of those small craters with comparable equipment.
    Again, HERE is Jerry Lodriguss's shot for comparison. That is an exquisite wavy line of small craters that his Celestron shot clearly shows! That wavy line of small craters is almost equidistant from Copernicus and Eratosthenes on his shot, running top to bottom.
    Dave, I know that you can do better that I have on that area (that wavy line of small craters) between the two larger craters.
    More than that, I can't help but wonder what your shot might have shown regarding that wavy line of small craters had you used a tripod. Sorry, but I just can't help but wonder.
    --Lannie
    00dhgd-560375484.jpg
     
  138. While I am on this no doubt now tiresome topic, HERE is what a shot in Sky and Telescope shows of the same area. The timing was perfect here, since the shadows were stretching on out and showing maximum detail.
    Those are wondrous rills of all sorts running down the sides of Copernicus--and onto (and into) the adjacent plain. Shots like this are why resolution freaks are, well, resolution freaks.
    HERE is a NASA link to a discussion of the age of lunar features in the same area.
    I have to confess that my lust for more resolution can be as equally sated with details of leaves on trees right here on earth--good old landscape shots! When my lust for more resolution is running high, I carry a tripod.
    --Lannie
     
  139. Took some moon shots tonight, but less than ideal light, due to almost full moon. I'll post them later and then come back in a few weeks and try with a waxing quarter.
     
  140. Bill said:
    Since I have to make this somehow relevant to the thread, it doesn't have IS, so it should be used on a tripod.​

    I think you're right about that. ;-)
     
  141. Conditions weren't great. It was almost a full moon, reducing shadows and contrast, plus thin clouds kept getting in the way. Still, we can get a good idea of hand held 1,000mm vs. tripod mounted. Differences will be smaller at shorter focal lengths:
    Tripod - Whole Moon
    [​IMG]
    Hand Held Whole Moon
    [​IMG]
    Tripod - Major Crop
    [​IMG]
    Hand Held - Major Crop
    [​IMG]
    Technicals: Canon 7D MkII, EF 500mm f/4L IS II, EF 2.0x TC-III, ISO 800, f/8.0, 1/800-sec. Tripod shots were on a Induro 6-ply carbon fiber tripod, model C414, with an Arca-Swiss Z1 ballhead and a Wimberley Sidekick, with LiveView, soft shutter, remote release, IS off and 30-sec. to allow tripod to settle. The IS was on for the hand held shots and I used no bracing at all.
    Sorry about the clouds. I tried for 30-minutes to get a totally clear shot with both setups, but it was getting worse and worse when I quit. For the tight crop, I tried to find areas with contrast and equal light. All were converted from Raw with the same settings, but final levels ended up slightly different due to the clouds.
     
  142. THE BIG SHOOT-OUT IN THE SKY
    Well, David, the nice thing about the moon is that we can all use the same test subject! On a given night, the same craters and their shadows will be there for everyone to capture and compare--provided that the skies are clear.
    I'm sufficiently impressed--truly impressed--by your hand-held results. I am sure that members of the other camp will have something to say. Best of all, they can trot out their own test results.
    No need to be shy any more, guys. Q.G., the moon is naked and waiting.
    --Lannie
     
  143. Dave, I am also drawn to the Tycho region in your shots--not that now is the ideal time for showing contrast there.
    HERE is one of mine of that region on my big old Orion 80mm ED APO on my Canon 50D. (I see now that that f/7.5 objective has a focal length of 600mm, not 750 as I mistakenly said earlier.) Time to haul that babe out of the attic and stick it on a more modern camera. (I used an old Celestron tripod for my shot.)
    The nice thing about using the moon is that even urban dwellers can get good images on the right night: light pollution cannot begin to compete with the brightness of the moon.
    --Lannie
     
  144. RUBBLE BY HUBBLE

    HERE is what the Hubble Space Telescope got of Tycho. Look at that central mountain shot way down the page! HERE it is up close. Feast your eyes on the rubble on the floor of the crater while you are at it, resolution freaks.
    --Lannie
     
  145. WE ARE ALL RESOLUTION FREAKS NOW. --Milton Friedman
    While we are talking resolution, HERE is the L.A. basin from the Mt. Wilson Observatory.
    --Lannie
     
  146. Lannie, love the shot of the mountain in the crater Tycho. Pretty amazing. Of course, the Hubble is weightless, so I would suggest hand holding. ;-)
    Is that your pano of the L.A. basin? Really nice. I would use a tripod for that one.
    When I get a few minutes, I'll zoom into the Tycho region on my hand held shot and put it up here.
     
  147. Is that your pano of the L.A. basin? Really nice. I would use a tripod for that one.​
    Dave, that one was made with one of the two big scopes at the Mt. Wilson observatory! (Well, no, not really. I see that someone did some stitching to get that one. It was made from Mt. Wilson, though.)
    I see that no one has responded to your challenge yet. . . .
    --Lannie
     
  148. Lannie said:
    I see that no one has responded to your challenge yet. . . .​

    Well, when I originally put it out there, I really expected that there would be a response. Having one group do the tripod and one do the hand held might have added an element of independence, with each trying to put their best foot forward. As you say, the same subject is available to all of us, but it might take a few days to get clear sky. Believe me, I didn't kick the tripod and I processed them exactly alike. Someone with a big wooden tripod might have done better than my relatively massive carbon fiber, but almost nobody will carry one of those around.
     
  149. Dave, as useful as tripods can be, the tripod companies probably don't want to hear what you are saying.
    I have to say that my own Orion 80mm f/7.5 600mm f.l. ED APO refractor (whew!) can, at only $500 (when I bought mine back in early 2007), match many more expensive lenses when used with a tripod. Then again, it is a dedicated telescope, albeit a very small one--not to say "tiny." Any refractor over 3" commands some respect. (Its objective lens is also apochromatic, way beyond the achromatic objective on the first telescope that my father gave me in 1958.)
    On the other hand, if one has the high-end bodies and lenses that you have, there are a lot of shots that can be done as well hand-held as with a tripod--if not better. Yes, there are applications where a tripod is essential, but what is striking from all of the give-and-take in this thread is how often it is that one can get high-quality, printable files without using a tripod.
    Frankly, for my kind of work (or play), I am not using either tripod or flash very much anymore. It is really nice to just be able to head out the door with a camera and lens (or two) and be able to come back with a very wide range of quality shots made under widely varying conditions. The D3s alone changed a lot of things for me in night shooting, although most of my best shots are still made with a tripod. As for the D800E, there has been the shocker: I really am getting great shots using VR and with the ISO boosted a bit so that I am shooting very high shutter speeds. People tell me how much I am losing by not using a tripod with such a camera, but very often I really am not losing anything at all that is measurable or even noticeable to my eye.
    Some people are going to keep denying that, given that the D800E is a 36-mp camera, but it is true.
    That is why your challenge is very worthy. You have evidence of the virtual equivalence of tripod-based shots and hand-held shots--for at least some types of shots. Those in denial only need to make their own comparison shots.
    --Lannie
     
  150. Yet, yet, some shots are going to remain beyond the reach of our primitive instruments--with or without tripods.
    --Lannie
     
  151. Here's an interesting irony, Induro asked me to do a blog piece about using their tripod to shoot the moon. They went through my Photosteam and selected several moon shots to include in the article and ended up with a mix of both hand held and tripod mounted. I didn't say a thing, not wanting to spoil their reverie. No, they didn't pay me. Anyway, I concentrated on exposure, waiting for the angle to get up, shooting waxing and waning vs. full-moon, etc., etc. and even included an image of my rig mounted on their tripod (why hand hold when shooting an eclipse for instance.)
    Your D800E opens up a whole new discussion of ISO Invariance and ETTR. Apparently, you can set your shutter speed and aperture and your ISO hardly matters, when shooting in Raw, of course. (It's still does matter, but nearly so much with less invariant sensors). Anyway, in Raw conversion, you simply adjust the EV and you "hardly" need worry about noise. Maybe I should avoid the term "ETTR" since it's proven to get hackles up in the past. We're not shooting Kodachrome anymore, are we?
    Hopefully some readers "got it", about hand held vs. tripod. I still use one, but not near so much as a few years ago. Look at the shot below, that I took out my window this morning. As I took this and several back-up shots from slightly different position, another photographer was running to get her tripod in position, trying to take a "perfect" shot. I'd driven on to another perspective by the time she pulled off her shot:
    [​IMG]
     
  152. Yet, yet, some shots are going to remain beyond the reach of our primitive instruments--with or without tripods.​

    It may be a while before we see that perspective again.
     
  153. Landrum, why did you buy a D800E and not a D800?
     
  154. Q.G, my first full-frame digital camera was the Kodak 14n. Although it had some defects, one thing that it did not have was an optical low-pass filter. I liked the sharpness/resolution, and I liked the fact that it used Nikon lenses.
    When the D800/D800E choice came along, I finally had an opportunity to buy my first Nikon full-frame DSLR, and one that also had the sharpness of the big Kodak. I also liked the fact that it used the same battery and charger as my D7000. I like to keep things simple.
    --Lannie
     
  155. Interestingly, the pixel density of the D7000 and the D800E are likewise nearly identical. I shoot both quite often without a tripod at high shutter speeds by boosting the ISO two or three stops. Some of my lenses have VR, and some do not.
    --Lannie
     
  156. Q.G., why do you never post any significant photos on this site? You have posted on over 11,000 discussion threads, but you do not post pictures.
    --Lannie
     
  157. The difference between an e and plain D800 is much smaller than that between a handheld shot and one from a tripod.

    "What is indeed inexplicable is that people demand to see their misconceptions vindicated by looking at someone else's images. Would that work, do you suppose?"

    What is significant though is you two's display of the need for a good tripod.
     
  158. Lannie said:

    Dave, I am also drawn to the Tycho region in your shots--not that now is the ideal time for showing contrast there.​
    The expected lack of contrast was made worse by thin clouds in that region. The hand held sucked right there and the tripod shot looked even worse. If you look at the whole moon shots, you can see that they're darker in that region. I probably do have a held held shot that displays that region nicely. I'll look for one.
    BTW, I saw you over on Flickr. I've got a modest little "Astro" album. Nothing spectacular, but I could show the Tycho region in one that you like.
     
  159. Q.G. de Bakker said:
    The difference between an e and plain D800 is much smaller than that between a handheld shot and one from a tripod.​
    I suspect that you're correct about this Q.G. I own Canon's 5DsR, which I purchased vs. the 5Ds, thinking that I might get more feather and fur detail, thanks to neutralization of the aliasing filter. I don't have a 5Ds to compare, but when I compared images of my 5DsR and my 7D MkII, which have the same pixel-pitch, I could not see a difference at 100%. I needed to go to 200% to begin to see a difference. I doubt that it would show in a very large print, even 72". I have not run into a problem with moire'.
     
  160. Q.G. said:

    What is significant though is you two's display of the need for a good tripod.​

    I was ready to let you off the hook and then you go and denigrate my tripod rig. Show us something better that is practical to use. It can weight 30-pounds, just show us that you actually use it. The moon is still out there, begging to have its portrait taken.
     
  161. The difference between an e and plain D800 is much smaller than that between a handheld shot and one from a tripod.​
    Categorically so? Well, Q.G., if you read that on the internet, it must be true.
    You are operating in an empirical vacuum on these issues. You have no experience with either the D800 or the D800E, but you have your dogmas. Reality will have to adjust itself to fit your dogmas.
    In any case, I shoot some shots with a tripod and some without the tripod on the D800E. I am not going to let the potential of the camera limit the shots I make. The camera is my tool, my mechanical slave. I am not its. Its potentialities will not set my photographic agenda or my technique on a given shot. I do not shoot just to show how good my gear is. I shoot because I see something worth shooting, and I shoot with what I have with me, using the technique that fits the situation.
    Q.G., sometimes I think that you love to argue more than you like to take pictures. Indeed, it would appear that you like to argue just for the sake of argument. Sometimes a picture really is worth a thousand words, or eleven thousand posts. Show us some pictures, Q.G.
    Trust me, Q.G., both Dave and I do know how to use tripods. Perhaps you do as well. Why don't you prove it by posting a picture or two showing your great ability with a camera--any old camera. The fact is that you are in way over your head on this discussion, due to your lack of experience with superior digital gear--including those with VR or IS or whatever. Go back to your 6x6cm film machines. They are still great machines, but they are no longer king of the roost.
    --Lannie
     
  162. :) The "empirical vacuum", Landrum, is - quite apparently - all yours.<br>Oh, i trust you and David to know how to use tripods. I was congratulating you two with the demonstration of why such a thing is still an essential, despite David's protestations that it isn't. Good to see how you two turned this thread around from straying away from the (already given) correct answer, passing by the moon and memories from years long gone by, back to the correct answer again. Though i get the impression you two quite forgot what you were discussing here, it's always good to have something end well. ;-)
     
  163. Q.G., look again at the lunar limb on David's comparisons on his post above on Jan 22, 2016; 11:34 p.m. I do not see any demonstrable proof that either type of shot is better than the other. In any case, we have not argued that the hand-held shots are better, simply that they are comparable--and thus often good enough. If one can show that with a "stationary" target like the moon, how much more so can one show it with birds that suddenly fly up with no warning, or spontaneous street shots, when there is no possible opportunity to set up a tripod? I still find it astonishing that David can produce printable bird shots made hand-held under such circumstances, due largely to image stabilization and the capacity to turn up ISO to 800 or so with very little noise on modern DSLRs--thus freezing the action with very high shutter speeds. If we could compare tripod-based shots made of a covey of quail with hand-held shots of the same covey of quail at the same instant, we would offer them here for comparative analysis. We cannot, and so we are showing. . . the moon. Anyone can do their own test shots of the moon (or other stationary or near stationary subjects), and that is what both Dave and I are encouraging. We are not asking anyone to take our word for anything.
    As for myself, I have not offered comparative shots, and so neither you nor anyone else can make a valid comparative inference of any kind. My shot certainly cannot be compared to David's in the region of the crater Tycho, since my shot was made when the terminator was in that region (and closer to the first quarter) whereas David's shots were made when the terminator had moved to the very edge of the lunar image (near full moon, when detail is always notoriously lacking across much of the lunar surface). What my shot shows me (for the nth time) is the limited resolving power of an 80mm objective--as if I needed to see more evidence of that. Here is a shot by Steve Mandel with a 7" refractor, and here is mine made with a 3.15" (80mm) refractor. I did not post it to show the limited resolving power of a small diameter objective, but that is mostly what it shows. I posted it simply to show what a small and inexpensive ($500) apochromatic refractor can do--on a tripod, at that. I would not presume to try to hand-hold a telescope for lunar or astrophotography in general, and I would not use an 80mm refractor to show fine lunar detail or to split difficult double stars.
    Yet, I am quite sure that you already know all of the very limited technical points that I am making--and more besides. So. . . what is your point?
    --Lannie
     
  164. My point, Landrum, is pointing out that your post (filled with ignorance about who i am, what i have, what i know, what i do and are capable of) is very much besides the point.<br>But also that, after a display of justified (i think) enthusiasm about telescopes and lunar shots, i am glad to see the thread conclude with the recognition that you should use a tripod whenever possible.
     
  165. I am glad to see the thread conclude with the recognition that you should use a tripod whenever possible.​
    Q.G., I do not deal with "should" regarding photographic technique. That is for ethics.
    I do recognize the very real superiority of tripods for much work. I have never suggested otherwise, nor has any other contributor to this thread. In spite of that fact, sometimes I will forego the use of the tripod because hand-held can be good enough for my purposes--and often is. If I suspect that I might want to print, I will use a tripod--just in case the difference might be visible in the print, as it often is.
    I will apologetically concede that I over-reached in making inferences about your lack of experience with digital with the use of IS, VR, or the equivalent. I am quite sure that you are well-acquainted with digital photography in general--and I do not blame you for your love of the old 'Blads. I love them, too, but I am lazy where scanning is concerned. I prefer to scan now at the instant that I make the shot--thus am I now virtually exclusively in the digital camp, although the big freezer does contain a lot of film (various formats) that I keep telling myself I am going to use someday. I still love film. I just don't use it much anymore.
    --Lannie
     
  166. Q.G. said:
    i am glad to see the thread conclude with the recognition that you should use a tripod whenever possible.

    This hasn't happened and doesn't look like it will.​

    I wonder what our OP thinks? It would be interesting to hear from some other observer.
     
  167. As a moral philosopher, Landrum, you know that any 'should' is derived from a recognition of bad, good and better, and that this is not (has never been) the exclusive domain of 'moral' behaviour. You also know enough not to try to suggest that any "should" would be an absolute statement and argue against it as if it it were.<br>I know you haven't disputed the role of the tripod, but our mutual friend David was rather unclear about it. In his much heated attempt (also through being rude) to convince everyone that we don't need a tripod, he also said "then a tripod is REQUIRED to get the image sharp enough." "Required", note, as in "should". ;-)<br>But, he now says, it doesn't look like that we will conclude that there is a "then" when such a thing is "REQUIRED" :)) "Confused? Tune in to next week's episode of With modern [etc.]" ;-)
     
  168. i am glad to see the thread conclude with the recognition that you should use a tripod whenever possible.​
    That's still not quite my point of view, Q.G., on any interpretation of the word "should."
    It might be better to (i.e., "Maybe you should. . . ") let Dave, me, and others speak for ourselves. I think that we have been remarkably clear and consistent throughout the thread. Yours is the kind of parsing that can drive away readers and participants, so please just let-it-go. Argument for the sake of argument is not why people (most people) come to Photo.net.
    --Lannie
     
  169. I said:
    As you go up in file requirements, such as printing 50" prints of scenes that require shutter speeds less than 1/100-sec. and low ISO, then a tripod is REQUIRED to get the image sharp enough.​

    Then Q.G. took that out of context and said:
    I know you haven't disputed the role of the tripod, but our mutual friend David was rather unclear about it. In his much heated attempt (also through being rude) to convince everyone that we don't need a tripod, he also said "then a tripod is REQUIRED to get the image sharp enough."​

    Who's "rude?"

    My point was crystal clear to anyone with the least bit of reading comprehension. I gave an example, which I think is actually pretty rare these days, where one would actually use a tripod. Q.G. makes the preposterous leap, bordering on lying. to try to support his case.

    Q.C., since you're refusing to take a shot of the moon to show us how a tripod will aid in shooting the moon, why don't we each shoot a dollar bill taped to the wall? Somewhere I thought you said that you had an 80mm lens, so you can shoot with an 80mm prime and I'll shoot hand held at 80mm and at 1/100-sec., using my 70-200mm zoom. You must also shoot at 1/100-sec., but that's the only essential criteria. Let's make the distance the same, so, using a full-frame or crop sensor (you tell me which) the corners of the bill will touch the edges of the uncropped image. You don't even need to leave your house to do that.
     
  170. David, you should start reading your own posts. Better still, start thinking about what to write before you do.<br><br>Landrum: "you should" or "maybe you should"... let me put it in David's well chosen words: "to anyone with the least bit of reading comprehension" 'maybe' it should be "crystal clear" that there is indeed a good deal of parsing going on (or again as David puts this: "preposterous leap, bordering on lying" being made), with David's "REQUIRED" (his emphasis) being taken as a quite friendly advice while "should whenever possible" is not letting people think for themselves. Same would go for the OP's "essential" - 'what does he mean! How dare he suggest such a thing! We decide for ourselves, thank you!' Come on... really... Just read the way David has been bending this thread time and again, see what you are siding with. "Argument for argument's sake" you say. You've been looking in the wrong place, i'd say. <br><br>The answer to the OP's question is still: yes. Image stabilisation can only do so much, and there is still quite a lot that requires a tripod.
     
  171. Wow, when faced with clear evidence of his own "bending the thread" by carefully selecting words out of context, Q.G. counterattacks with no support.
    Q.G. your ploy is clear for all to see.
    Q.G., what do you think of my dollar bill shot proposal?
     
  172. I think most folks on this thread understand when a tripod is needed or not. If not experiment and work it out.
    "David, you should start reading your own posts. Better still, start thinking about what to write before you do" Q.G
    Time to have a nice cup of tea and a digestive biscuit, Q.G.
     
  173. I use a tripod for self portraits and don't use one for selfies.
     
  174. Wow, when faced with clear evidence of his own "bending the thread" by carefully selecting words out of context, Q.G. counterattacks with no support.
    Q.G. your ploy is clear for all to see.
    Q.G., what do you think of my dollar bill shot proposal?
     
  175. Fred, do you find a selfie-stick indispensable? :)
     
  176. LOL. No, but my arm is!
     
  177. I use a tripod for self portraits and don't use one for selfies.​
    Fred, I always wondered what the difference was. Thanks for clearing that up for me.
    --Lannie
     
  178. Image stabilisation can only do so much, and there is still quite a lot that requires a tripod.​
    On this we can certainly agree, Q.G.
    --Lannie
     
  179. Hey, Dave, our teams are going to go head-to-head in the Super Bowl!
    --Lannie
     
  180. That should be great Lannie. The Broncos D must show up, or it'll be over before the half. I think they'll relish the chance to show their stuff against Cam and crew, some I'm expecting a good game.
     
  181. Well, the Broncos sure showed us a good pass rush yesterday. I will be interested in seeing which Panther team shows up--the one that builds up huge leads, or the one that squanders leads, typically in the second half.
    --Lannie
     
  182. For macro and critical composition I find a tripod necessary as moving around can cause you to lose your composition. Same can be said for critical focus.
     
  183. With my stiff old joints I value the tripod since my camera with its fully articulated LCD enables me to work the picture without bending down. But for most, careful handling and OIS, serves me well.
     

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