Equipment

Could my RX10 be “Wired Wrong”


Sony RX10, f5.0, 8 seconds exposure. Lee 6 stop ND filter.
Sony RX10, f5.0, 8 seconds exposure. Lee 6 stop ND filter.

I know that it seems far fetched but this is the question I find myself asking given some of my recent experiences. It started with the image you see above. This was a long exposure shot on a tripod using a Lee 6 Stop ND filter.

To arrive at this image I had to make a few exposures. The first few were all soft or exhibited camera shake. I reasoned that the wind at the time was part of the problem and so I shielded the camera and pushed down on the tripod. The results improved but there was still a softness to the shot that shouldn’t have been present. My next step to improve the image quality was to switch off the Image Stabilization. When I did this the images suddenly became that much sharper and seemed to snap into focus.

Some of you might now be saying well that’s obvious but it isn’t. You see the RX10 firmware is supposed to detect that it’s mounted on a tripod and not try to stabilize the camera. More importantly though is that I left the stabilization turned off. As the day progressed I found that most of my images were sharp and crisp, even at slower shutter speeds and longer focal lengths.

This weekend I repeated the exercise and made some hand held exposures with the stabilization on and off. When it was turned off I found I could shoot at quite slow speeds to produce crisp images (speeds I could never achieve with the RX10 previously). When the stabilization was turned on I found a lot of my slower shutter speed images became soft and even blurred.

Interesting stuff but at least I am gaining a lot more faith in the capabilities of the RX10.

6 comments

  1. Hi, I think it is a possibility. I suppose there is no indicator on the display. You could check the EXIF files with PhotoME and see what is recorded there about IS.

    1. The only indicator on the screen is to show that your shutter speed is in the range where you may experience camera shake. I have checked the EXIF data and there isn’t anything else in there (although there are some strange things recorded).

  2. Dear Robin,
    nice picture, and let me thank you for your offer: I downloaded your Photoshop e-book, and am reading it with great interest.
    I had problems similar to the ones you describe with my Olympus E-PM1: some images are sharp and some are blurry, often very blurry. Switching off the IS helps aand introducing a shutter delay helps as well; but the problem every now and then resurfaces and since it is not constant it is hard to be sure how to avoid it. The best thing to do is to check the images on the screen and re-shoot, but the defect is annoying.
    A person posted a blog entry on the Olympus E-PM2 (https://lionoftheblogosphere.wordpress.com/2013/02/02/review-of-the-olympus-e-pm2-micro-four-thirds-camera/ ) with an interesting observation: the issue occurs more often in the first of a series of images, as if the IS needs to “warm up”.
    Best wishes
    Andrea

    1. Thanks and pleased you were able to take advantage of the book offer.
      I know what you mean about the Olympus images. Although I have never had a problem with the EM5 I always use the shutter shock setting at 1/8″ just to be on the safe side.
      On checking the RX10 there isn’t anything like that but I did notice the Steadyshot setting is now set to on. When I last used the camera I turned it off and left it off. Perhaps I’m getting confused.
      I did some other tests by shooting sequences of multiple shots in a sequence. Usually you will find at least one is sharp even at slow speeds. What I found is that if one of the images was blurred, all the other shots in the sequence were blurred and here is the strange bit, to the same degree. If one of the shots was sharp, they were all sharp. I did this around 10 times and found the same result every time.
      Anyway, I shall keep experimenting.

  3. My friends & me are going to Cambodia for photo tour for 6 days.We are leaving on 27th May 2015. I am only taking my Sony RX10 as main camera for this tour. I’ll upload same pictures next week.

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