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Shutter speed for moving cruise ship

Discussion in 'General Technical Discussion' started by jklofft, Jun 9, 2005.

  1. I’m going on an Alaskan cruise in a few weeks and would like to take some twilight shots from the ship (while we are moving). My question is how fast does the shutter speed need to be to eliminate the ships movement. I know that it will depend on the speed on the ship at the time, but I’m looking for some general guidelines.
  2. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    I have read that the vibrations on a ship should also be considered, as well as the other movements while under way. I'll be on an Alaskan cruise at the end of August. For "practice" I'll have my wife drive me at about 30mph in the car and play with some settings for mid and long range shots.

    I will use the highest speed I can while trying to keep the f-stop also as high as I can depending on the shot (speed should be at least equal to the focal length). I'm depending on my 24-120VR to help in all ways with motion issues, and I just bought a Sigma 50-500 "Bigma" for the long shots, and obviously I'll have to keep that one on a tripod.
  3. Hi, I just got back from a cruise down the Mexican Riviera and I can pass on my experiences. NOTE: I was using my D100 at the time, a D2X may have different results.

    I found that the ship had a LOT of vibrations while under speed, I tried my tripod with a medium length tele (85mm 1.4) and could tell the vibrations were noticeable. With a wide angle (12-24) it was more difficult to tell so to be on the safe side I just defaulted to hand holding while bracing myself against something like a railing or bulkhead.

    Your body actually makes a pretty good shock absorber as long as you're using a good holding technique it really does absorb a lot of the vibrations.

    I used the fastest shutter speed available - depth of field was not quite so critical as typically you tend to be quite a distance away from anything you're shooting so the DOF tends to be compressed.

    While anchored the ship was actually OK to use a tripod but if the ship is still moving with wave action you may have to time things a bit to get the shot you want.

    I used my 300mm AF and 180 AF on a tripod while the ship was anchored and got some spectacular results.

    FYI - I've been on 2 cruises and I've always been treated to some spectacular sunsets and sunrises. Keep an eye on the times as it may be different from where you are living.

    Enjoy the trip and post some pictures. Alaska is my next cruise.

  4. Ken-L

    Ken-L Guest

    The ship we're taking is the Radisson Seven Seas Mariner. It has 4 electric pods for propulsion, so the vibrations are supposed to be less - I hope. We sail from Whittier, AK and go south 7 days to Vancouver. It's an "all suite" ship so I'll be able to keep my tripod on our balcony, and maybe I'll cushion the feet with something like pieces of rubber or washcloths.....
  5. The ships props may generate less vibration the problem is with the bow of the ship slicing through the water. Any waves or chop and you'll feel it. If you find some solution let us know - cruising is a great vacation!

  6. Sounds like a job for a VR lens to me. The folks who've taken a cruise: do you think a VR lens wd solve the problem?
  7. VR should help the vibration, but I'm not sure about the moving ship.
  8. A rubber mouse pad cut up in to pieces will help dampen vibrations. I use them under my stereo system to minimize skipping of the CD player from the nearby speakers. Yes my stereo is probably too loud, but as a musician I tend to think music is to be experienced, not only played as background noise. Sorry for the tangent. The mouse pads really do work though.
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