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Thread: vr and tripods

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    vr and tripods

    equipment i use; nikon d7000, nikon 300mm, f2.8, vr2 . nikon manual; do not use vr when camera is mounted on a tripod. it confuses af and bad for af motor. nikon customer support; some agree, some dont. i use vr on tripod now with good results, no motor whine. i turn vr off when using a wired remote shutter or mirror up. due to conflicting responses from customer support i still am a little nervous about lens damage even though it seems to be working ok. any experienced thoughts on this issue would be appreciated. thanks

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: vr and tripods

    Quote Originally Posted by tomtom View Post
    equipment i use; nikon d7000, nikon 300mm, f2.8, vr2 . nikon manual; do not use vr when camera is mounted on a tripod. it confuses af and bad for af motor. nikon customer support; some agree, some dont. i use vr on tripod now with good results, no motor whine. i turn vr off when using a wired remote shutter or mirror up. due to conflicting responses from customer support i still am a little nervous about lens damage even though it seems to be working ok. any experienced thoughts on this issue would be appreciated. thanks
    Hi Tom,

    I'd be very surprised if it risks damaging the lens be that the VR motors (or the AF one!).

    It might result in a slightly softer image if you leave it on when tripod mounted, but that's the limit of the problem as far as I can see.

    Cheers, and welcome to the CiC forums from ...,

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    Re: vr and tripods

    dave, thank you for your response.

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    Re: vr and tripods

    I agree with Dave. You're not going to damage the lens while it's on the tripod just because you have VR on. The lens motors will experience more g-forces when you put the camera down on a table. It's more to do with the fact that the VR may attempt to compensate for movement when there is none, and by doing so actually softens the image by being unstable because the VR motor is working.

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    Re: vr and tripods

    The manual that comes with 300 VRII tells you what to do...

    "When using a tripod, set the vibration reduction ON/OFF ring switch to ON to reduce the effect of camera shake. Nikon recommends the switch be set to ON when using the camera on an unsecured tripod head or with a monopod. But when camera shake is very slight, the vibration reduction function may conversely increase the effect of camera shake by the movement of the system. In such a case, set the vibration reduction ON/OFF ring switch to OFF."

    The manual for other lenses say to turn off VR when the camera is mounted in a tripod (and the head secured.) So the answer depends on the lens, and for your lens you can leave it on (unless it causes trouble...then turn it off.)

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    Re: vr and tripods

    graystar,thank you for your response. one more thing please. i turn the vr off when i use a wired remote shutter. do you agree?

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    Re: vr and tripods

    Quote Originally Posted by tomtom View Post
    graystar,thank you for your response. one more thing please. i turn the vr off when i use a wired remote shutter. do you agree?
    I don't know for certain if the VR system turns on with the wired remote (I would think it does, as it turns on with the wireless remote.) You'll have to try it yourself. If the VR doesn't come on then there's no issue. If it does come on then I think the answer is to go back to what Nikon says in the manual. Nikon designed it, built it, and quite literally wrote the book on it...and gave that book to you. Best to follow what Nikon says.

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    Moderator Dave Humphries's Avatar
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    Re: vr and tripods

    Quote Originally Posted by tomtom View Post
    I turn the VR off when I use a wired remote shutter. Do you agree?
    Hi Tom,

    I think you are saying you turn it off when using the wired remote - because there's obviously less risk of camera movement if you are not physically touching it to start the exposure.

    However - depending upon the exposure time and focal length used, if you are not using mirror lock* up or the 2/10 second timer** also, there is still a risk on a flimsy tripod of shake due to mirror slap with a DSLR***

    The 'worst cases', where use of VR may well benefit are;
    long focal length lens (because it magnifies the anglular shake movement)
    and/or shutter speeds in the range from say, 2 seconds to 1/60s (because the shake probably dies out after about a second and so is a less significant percentage of the total exposure time)
    and/or light weight tripod
    and/or a tripod head that doesn't lock really securely


    * mirror lock up avoids the slap just before the exposure
    ** similarly, using the self timer feature allows the slap vibrations to die down before the shutter opens
    *** people with mirrorless cameras don't need to worry

    Cheers,
    Last edited by Dave Humphries; 17th February 2012 at 10:21 AM. Reason: expanded answer

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