The idea of incorporating image stabilization (IS) in macro lenses has been of interest since the initial development of IS systems. In macro photography, in addition to conventional image stabilization, which compensates for angle camera shake, it is also necessary to compensate for shift camera shake – movements parallel to the imaging plane – which noticeably affect the outcome of close-range shooting. When shooting landscapes or other distant subjects, movement of the camera parallel to the imaging plane has very little visible effect, but for macro shooting, even a slight amount of movement can spoil the image.
Development of the new HYBRID Image Stabilizer (HYBRID IS) began with the search for a system that would sense and compensate for both types of camera shake. Simultaneous compensation for both angle and shift camera shake is an elusive goal: the solution was two sensors and a new algorithm. In addition to the conventional angular velocity sensor to detect angle-based camera shake. HYBRID IS incorporates a new acceleration sensor. Camera movement detected by the two sensors is integrated by a newly developed algorithm to calculate the amount and direction of movement.
The compensating lens group is shifted accordingly, resulting in a system that can simultaneously compensate for both angle and shift camera shake, the first to be incorporated in an interchangeable SLR camera lens. HYBRID IS far outperforms conventional image stabilization, delivering a high ratio of quality images even for challenging hand-held macro photography. Now it is possible to produce precise hand-held close-ups, even in inadequate lighting or when a tripod cannot be used. Incorporated in the EF100mm f/2.8L Macro IS USM, this innovative HYBRID IS technology heralds a new dimension in macro lens performance.