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There are a variety of techniques you can use to reduce camera shake and increase the sharpness of the images that you take. Some, like using a tripod, have a fairly major impact (they’re no brainers really) while others do have an impact – but they’re generally fairly small.
One of those smaller techniques that a number of readers of DPS have been writing to me about recently is the use of shutter release cables (or remote shutter release devices).
The majority of digital photographers who are taking everyday shots of family and friends won’t go here – but serious photographers who spend a lot of time lining up shots and wanting to eliminate even the smallest camera shake will want to invest in a shutter release cable – particularly those shooting with longer shutter speeds where even the smallest camera movement (like the depressing of a shutter with even the lightest touch) can have an impact.
Shutter release cables are available for all major DSLRs and some point and shoots and come in a variety of flavors including the traditional cables and the more recent wireless models that often use infrared technology.
Of course if you’re using a shutter release cable you’ll want your camera to be mounted on a tripod or on some other completely still object.
But what happens if you don’t have a shutter release and you’re wanting to use a long exposure time and are worried about camera shake? Fortunately your digital camera has another feature built into it that can help – your self timer.
While digital camera self timers are not designed with this purpose in mind they are one way of ensuring no camera shake at all when taking an image. Of course you’ll need to anticipate the moment to take the image 10 or so seconds before taking it (not the best for any subject matter that’s moving or changing) however it’s a useful thing to keep in mind when doing landscape or still life photography.