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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 10:40 pm 
I'm having a bit of trouble finding what the "active" mode in the VR II of the VR 18-200 lens is designed to do.

From my testing of the VR system, I seem to get better results when using the "normal" mode (when you turn the VR on, you can choose between "normal" or "active").

The short instructions that come with the lens offer little help.

Could someone please give a hint? I just need an idea of what to use that "active" mode on.

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PostPosted: Tue Aug 28, 2007 11:05 pm 
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More sophisticated lenses with anti-shake typically have two modes - one which compensates in both axes, and the other which only compensates vertically, allowing you to pan horizontally without the system getting confused.

I think Nikon's naming is a little ambiguous, but as I understand it, Normal mode is for panning (ie only stabilised vertically), while Active mode is for all-round stabilisation.

Since most of us wobble vertically, you may not notice much difference between the two modes, but since we all wobble in different ways (!) I'd also suggest coducting some tests to see which mode is more effective for certain situations.


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PostPosted: Wed Aug 29, 2007 7:23 am 
The active mode is supposed to be used when you're in a car moving and you're tracking something else (safari). I have no idea how this actually works technically speaking. Like you, for every day use I see better results with it set to normal mode.

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PostPosted: Fri Aug 31, 2007 11:16 pm 
I missed such a mode on my 55-200 VR a few weeks ago when I took a bus tour around Washington DC and I tried to shoot from the bus while moving... :D


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PostPosted: Wed Sep 05, 2007 5:53 pm 
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Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2006 11:08 pm
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Location: Germany
Active-mode? Easy!
If you're using VR in active mode, the lens tries to damp your shake while having the shutter half-pressed BUT also keep the anti-shake mechanism near the zero position. When you then release the shutter the leeway to correct for shake during exposure is biggest. The result: while focussing the anti-shake may not be the strongest, but when shooting it is the best!
If you're using VR in normal mode, the lens tries it's best to combat anti-shake even when focussing. That may mean that when you press the shutter the VR has already compensated for some shake while focussing and than runs out of gas when shooting. The result: anti-shake is equally strong during focussing AND exposure, but the system may hit the limit of what it can compensate earlier!
Hope that helps...

Thomas (beware: Nikon-fanboy and moderator!) My Lens Reviews, My Pictures, My Photography Blog
D810+assorted lenses

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