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Shutter Speeds and Blurry Images

What shutter speeds are used? Won't the images get blurred when the drone moves?


Official comment


A certain amount of "ground smear" is acceptable in aerial mapping. Generally, it is best to keep your ground smear, or the distance covered during and exposure period, less than the ground resolution.

Example: you are moving at 10 m/s and take and 1/10 exposure. The ground smear would be a meter. A meter of ground smear is terrible and won't work. However, if your exposure is 1/1000 the ground smear will only be a centimeter which is pretty good.

But yes, there can be issues with drone motion which is why we recommend that all mapping be done as close to solar noon as possible to maximize light availability.

At higher latitudes light availability can be an issue at solar noon to so further steps must be taken to limit ground smear. Reducing aircraft speed and decreasing the exposure compensation value will reduce the amount of ground covered and decrease exposure times.

The DJI cameras, while good, cannot work miracles and require a certain amount of light to get a good image at F2.8.

Another note: In low light, TAKE YOUR FILTERS OFF! We get a lot of jobs with people complaining about ground smear but then they tell us they had a huge ND filter on there.

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