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Old Oct 6, 2008, 6:30 PM   #1
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im new to DSLR world, we have always used a point and shoot. so please dumb it down for me. i like to take a lot of sports photos of my son. i have the camera set to auto, and i use continuous shooting mode. while the football game is still sunny this works fine, but when the lights come on and it gets darker outside, the continuous shooting mode will not work as good if at all, and all the pictures are burry, i know i dont fully understand all that is going on so please help me out.
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Old Oct 6, 2008, 9:03 PM   #2
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First of all I am not a sports photographer but sense no one else has jumped in yet I will try to help you.

The reason your shots are blurry is most likely due to too a slow shutter speed. Any movement by the subject or the camera during exposure will cause blur. The longer the shutter speed the more blur. The longer ( more telephoto) the lens the more this becomes a problem. Again I'm not a sports photog but I would say you need to be shooting at, at least 1/125 of a second to get a sharp image. Faster if you are using a lens of 200mm or more.

So my fist bit of advice is, get off Auto.

You could put the camera in Sutter priority (S mode) set the shutter speed to where you need it and the camera will find the proper lens setting for good exposure.

Better yet set the camera in Aperture priority (A mode) Set the lens aperture to its largest setting (smallest number ) and the camera will pick the fastest shutter speed possible. You must however be aware of the speed selected as it may become too slow.

In order to get faster shutter speeds when light levels drop you can increase the sensitivity ( ISO ) of the camera. The higher the ISO number the more sensitive to light the camera becomes, the fast the shutter speeds you can use.

As a general rule the lower the ISO the better the picture Quality but when needed to get the shot its worth the price of a little noise in the picture. This is where Nikons Auto ISO comes in handy. You can set the camera to automatically increase the ISO any time it is necessary to maintain a minimum shutter speed that you set. I don't own a D40 so I cant tell you exactly how to set this up. Look in your manual.

Last but not least ( I saved this for last because it means spending money which may not be an option)
You should look into getting a faster lens (by faster I mean, lets more light in ) Something with a maximum aperture of 2.8 or even 2. This will allow you to use faster shutter speeds and should also make focusing faster.

Hope that helps I'm sure the sports guys will jump in here sooner or later

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Old Oct 6, 2008, 9:30 PM   #3
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thank you for your help, its all new to me so i will play around with all you mentioned and see were it takes me.
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