Pentax DSLR Shake Reduction

The Shake Reduction system that Pentax uses in their DSLR’s is technically a nifty thing. It lets you leave the shutter open longer to let in more light, but it dampens minute motions of the camera body to reduce the blurring and shake.

Technical wizardry aside, it’s what it lets you do that really pleases me. Shake Reduction lets you take pictures in new ways, breaking old rules. And it let’s you do this without worrying (too much) about blurry images.

For starters, you can take shots in poor light, handheld, at reasonable ISO’s for low noise. This is a pretty standard use – nothing overly creative, just useful:

Hearst Castle at Christmas
1 second @ 18mm f/5.6 ISO 100

At higher focal lengths and in tighter spaces you can shoot macro shots without a tripod (and in the middle of someones garden 🙂

1/25 second @ 200mm f/8 ISO 400

1/2 second @ 200mm f/4.5 ISO 200

But you can also treat motion in different ways; like smoothing things out to calm them down…

Like the water in a stream…
1 second @ 70mm f/32 ISO 100

Or let a busy street streak past outside.
1.6 second @ 39mm f/6.3 ISO 100

You can suggest activity by letting people or things in motion be captured as motion:

A crazy carousel in Paris…

1/2 second @ 50mm f/4 (?) ISO 100

…or conference attendees in Toronto
(walking a VERY long hallway…)

0.6 seconds @ 16mm f/10 ISO 250

The neatest thing is that it lets you capture things that you didn’t even know existed:

Toronto Skyline (I swore I saw Batman…)
1/3 second @ 55mm f/2.8 ISO 400

All of these images were taken without a tripod, and at shutter speeds that should have ruined the images. I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Thanks Pentax!

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