Also known as Image Stabilization (IS), Vibration Reduction (VR), or simply image stabilization, anti-shake technology is a method of reducing the effects of camera movement on the photographic image. Image stabilization can be achieved in the lens or in the camera body. In-camera image stabilization is achieved by mounting the camera sensor on a ""floating"" micro-geared stage that rapidly shifts the sensor in the opposite direction of the camera's movement, which effectively cancels out the image movement. With in-camera image stabilization, the benefits of the system can be realized with any attached lens.
The alternative method of canceling camera movement is by employing a gyroscopically driven ""floating"" element in the rear portion of the lens that rapidly shifts the element in the opposite direction of the camera movement. Needless to say, either process is quite complex and requires extreme high-speed data processing coupled with precision lens/sensor movements to achieve the desired effect.
The ultimate benefit of image stabilization technology is that it enables you to handhold a camera several shutter speeds slower than non-image-stabilization-enabled cameras or lenses. Return to Glossary