Image stabilisation

What is image stabilisation?

A good composition, proper shutter speed, perfect light: click! But then you look at your screen and see the picture is out of focus. At this point, image stabilisation comes into play. If your camera and lenses have image stabilisation, you will never be left with blurry photos again. In this article, we tell you what image stabilisation is and the important need to knows!

What is image stabilisation | When | Benefits | What kind of image stabilisation to get? | Choose | Good to know

What is image stabilisation

Image stabilisation ensures the photos you take are stabilised. This actually just means the image stabilisation corrects any movement you make, as it is impossible to hold a camera completely still. Especially with a slower shutter speed, chances are it's already happening at your heartbeat or breathing. So, when you choose image stabilisation you have a chance of sharp images with corrected movements even without a tripod.

Image stabilisation

When do you use image stabilisation?

Image stabilisation isn’t something to add to your photos in every situation. You could turn it off at times when you are shooting from a tripod.

It does come in handy when you're shooting from the hand. At these times, of course, there is a greater danger of motion blur. The times you really have to use image stabilisation is when you are shooting by hand with a slow shutter speed.

stabilisation images photography


By now it should be clear that image stabilisation is especially useful when you shoot a lot from the hand. To make the benefits even clearer to you, we listed a few. Think carefully about whether it adds enough value for you because this feature does make the camera or lenses a bit pricier. But don't forget that you also get something in return.

  1. Shaking hands are no longer an issue when you want to take images with a slower shutter speed. This is especially useful when there is little light in the environment in which you are shooting. A slow shutter speed creates more light, and it is possible to use a lower ISO value. This option will add less noise to your photo, so better results!
  2. Working with a telephoto lens increases the risk of hand tremors. This is due to the increased zoom range. The stronger the magnification, the more visible the vibrations. By buying a lens with image stabilisation, you minimise the visibility of hand tremors.
  3. Do you film with your camera on a regular basis? Then image stabilisation really is a must. When you move the camera during filming, small movements are caught, the stabiliser corrects this right away.

What kind of image stabilisation do you get?

If you thought image stabilisation was one easy part of the camera, you're wrong. In fact, there are several types of stabilisation for your camera. Let's explain them briefly.


Optical image stabilisation is the variant you'll encounter the most. In this variant, the sensors of the camera/lens detect movement of the camera. As soon as the sensors see movement, they immediately cause the optical elements to move with them. It is worth knowing, however, that the optical elements only correct small movements, such as hand vibrations.


Digital image optimisation also has sensors in the camera that detect motion, but the difference is in the moment of capture. This is because the digital image stabilisation delays the photo until the camera is stationary, only then is the photo taken. In addition, digital image stabilisation involves additional sharpening by software on the camera. You can also do this with a software program on the computer.

Which should I choose?

The two types of stabilisation work equally well, but what you need to pay attention to is that the stabilisation quality is related to the quality of the camera. An advanced camera also has an advanced image stabiliser. Also worth knowing, a stabiliser in lenses is much more accurate than a stabiliser in the body. Do you really want to be 100% sure of a sharp photo? Ensure you always use a tripod.

Good to know

  1. Image stabilisation takes a lot of power out of a camera, so take this into account if you're going out for the day.
  2. Turn off image stabilisation when not in use.
  3. If you're photographing on a tripod, turn off the stabiliser. Because when it is on, it can cause unwanted vibrations.
  4. Some cameras recognise that they are on a tripod, and the stabilisation automatically turns off. So that's great!

Enough information gathered to make a good choice. If you want to know even more about photography or everything involved, take a look at our photography tips!

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