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Old Jul 19, 2006, 2:37 PM   #1
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Folks,

After MUCH research on the internet as well as many calls/visits to local camera shops, I am confused as to which lens will be most beneficial to shoot high school Varsity football on Friday nights under the lights? I will be on the sidelines.

I know I need f/2.8 but must it be a Nikon AFS VR Nikkor 70-200mm /2.8G IF ED?

The only problem I have with a heavy lens such as this is the physical strain it may have on the D50 camera body. (or so I've read/heard). It looks like a bazooka.

Any help/suggestions appreciated!
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Old Jul 19, 2006, 4:02 PM   #2
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The larger lenses typically have tripod mounts, meaning you mount the lens to the tripod, not the camera which reduces any strain on the lens mount.
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Old Jul 19, 2006, 5:21 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply & info!

Is a tri-pod more useful than say a monopod for shooting sports with this type of lens? Or, will I really be at a disadvantage being less mobile?

I use a monopod for baseball & it allows me to move around more.


Thoughts/suggestions welcome!


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Old Jul 19, 2006, 5:39 PM   #4
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A monopod will always be more mobile, as there is no setup time. Whenever you move a tripod it must be reset and balanced. I think a tripod is better if you are panning or trying to follow moving subjects, especially if you have a good ballhead. If you are focusing on one spot or area, or moving up and down the sidelines, a monopod is probably more convenient.
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Old Jul 19, 2006, 5:51 PM   #5
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Will the monopod take care of the weighty lens or am I just asking for trouble?

One of the key features of the VR system seems to be the ability to hand-hold the lens & eliminate the need for tripod/monopod but from what I understand, the Nikon D50 lens mount may not be able to safely support the bulky 70-200mm.

I had no idea folks would enjoy my work this much (as I have recently started taking sports pictures) & ask me to cover different sports - I don't have the cash to invest in a D2H, etc. so I'm forced to make do for now.


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Old Jul 20, 2006, 12:01 PM   #6
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A couple of observations:

1. You are correct, a 2.8 lens is an absolute must have.

2. It doesn't NEED to be a VR lens. Sigma makes a great 70-200 2.8 lens for less money - I've used it to great affect on my Canon 20D. They make a nikon mount as well.

3. 200mm is a bit short for football - I upgraded this spring to a Sigma 120-300mm 2.8 lens and look forward to shooting the upcoming football season with that (but it's a $2200 lens )

4. The weight of a 70-200 2.8 is really nothing. A good monopod will easily support the weight - just remember to attach the lens to the monopod not the camera. For reference I use the Bogen 679B monopod - great size and weight and no issues with my Sigma 120-300 lens which is quite a bit heavier than the 70-200. The lens mount on the D50 won't have any problems with you using this lens.

I do a lot of sports shooting - including HS football under the lights, so if you have any questions, feel free to ask!

Website: www.jagsportsphotos.com


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Old Jul 20, 2006, 2:55 PM   #7
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Thanks for the help !

Would it be possible to put a 2X converter on a 70-200mm f/2.8 to achieve 300mm+ without getting soft pictures?


I was hoping to cap spending @ $1500 if possible.
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Old Jul 20, 2006, 2:59 PM   #8
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Not for night football. Especially with only ISO 1600. You need 2.8 at night under the lights. Day games you can use a TC - although I would suggest only a 1.4x TC.
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