Puzzle with 'anti-shake' function

Discussion in 'UK Photography' started by john watkins, Jul 15, 2011.

  1. john watkins

    john watkins Guest

    Have just bought a Nikon Coolpix S3100 sold as a special offer by Argos. It
    has an 'auto scene' mode, which automatically chooses settings depending on
    what you are photographing. (example of the specific scenes that you can
    choose manually are: Portrait, Landscape, Sports, Night Portrait,
    Party/indoor.....all in all their are 19 of these different variations.

    In the auto-scene mode, it indicates that the 'anti-shake' function is in
    operation, by a small anti shake icon appearing in the top right hand

    This camera has a completely different choice of mode of operation simply
    labelled: 'Auto'. But in this Auto mode, the anti-shake icon does not

    Phoning Nikon technical support, I was told the anti-shake *is* in operation
    in the 'Auto mode', even though the anti-shake icon does 'not' appear. He
    said it just comes on when you need it.

    The anti-shake function is of importance to me, since I botch so many photos
    by not holding still enough.

    When I put the camera in 'auto scene' (with the anti-shake icon showing )and
    click the shutter whilst moving the camera in a continous circular motion, I
    get a sharp picture.

    But in 'Auto' mode(with no anti-shake icon showing) whilst moving the camera
    in circular motion, i get blurry edges.

    Being a novice I might be doing something very silly here, but am puzzled by
    all this.

    I have scoured through this instruction manual and cannot find anything that
    enlightens me further.


    Grateful to know what you might do in this situation. Thanks.
    john watkins, Jul 15, 2011
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  2. john watkins

    Rob Morley Guest

    I'd hold the camera steadier, use flash, faster shutter or shorter
    focal length as appropriate. :)
    Rob Morley, Jul 15, 2011
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  3. john watkins

    Savageduck Guest

    You have provided your own answer.
    Read the manual. You did actually read the manual didn't you?
    You need to get beyond turning the camera on and off.

    On page #51 you will find a list of camera setting which cannot be
    applied simultaneously.
    in the "restricted function" list you will find "Motion detection".

    "Motion detection" and "Electronic VR" are not the same thing Page #145
    will tell you all about "Motion detection" as implemented by your

    Then on page #144 you will find "Electronic VR"
    The default setting for "Electronic VR" is off.

    To turn it on read page #136 which guides you through the menu where
    one of your options is to turn "Electronic VR" on.

    Remember using VR sometimes will not save you from bad technique for
    holding your camera steady or having to resort to a tripod. It is not a
    miracle cure for the shakes.

    Under notes you will find the following:
    Electronic VR does not function under the following conditions or in
    the following shooting modes:
    - When slow sync with red-eye reduction is used.
    - When exposure exceeds a certain length of time.
    - When ISO sensitivity is set to auto. (This one is a clue to your problem)
    - When "blink proof" is set to "On" in smart portrait mode.
    - In the following scene modes: Sports, Night portrait, Dusk/dawn,
    Night landscape, Museum, Fireworks show, Back lighting.

    Now go back and read the manual. It seems this is a camera which takes
    most of the control options out of the users hands to apply what is
    Savageduck, Jul 15, 2011
  4. john watkins

    Geoff Berrow Guest

    Not helped by the modern trend of having cameras without viewfinders
    so pics have to be taken at arms length.

    Still there are steps you can take to minimise shake. Make sure you
    squeeze the shutter rather than jabbing at the button and try to keep
    your elbows by your sides. Where possible try to find something to
    lean on (or to place the camera on or against), such as a door jamb or
    a fence, and take a breath and hold it while taking the picture.

    I assume you don't want to use a tripod but if you are out walking, I
    think you can get walking poles with a tripod screw to make a handy
    monopod. Even steadying the camera on an ordinary pole will help
    Geoff Berrow, Jul 16, 2011
  5. john watkins

    Woody Guest

    I don't know your particular camera but do remember that many
    with 'electronic VR' simply ramp the ISO up so that the shutter
    speed is quick enough to avoid camera shake. In this instance
    also they often use maximum aperture hence why you might get a
    'soft' result.
    Woody, Jul 16, 2011
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