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Old Nov 10, 2007, 8:12 AM   #31
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Savannah, GA (USA)
Posts: 22,378

Indoor sports photography is *very* demanding on a camera (even a DSLR).

You really need higher ISO speeds (i.e., ISO 1600 or ISO 3200) with a bright prime (fixed focal length versus zoom) lens that's f/2 or brighter for best results in most high school type gyms. Most zoom lenses are not bright enough and you need higher ISO speeds along with a bright lens to get fast enough shutter speeds to stop most motion blur.

Forget it with a non-DSLR model like yours (and even a DSLR with a skilled photographer is going to struggle with indoors sports photography). Any camera is going to have limitations, and indoor lighting is much dimmer to a camera than it appears to the human eye.

The same thing applies to things like your Choir shots to a certain extent. But, because you don't have rapidly moving subjects the way you do with indoor sports, you can probably get some keepers if your're persistent and take a lot of photos, catching them when they're very still to increase your percentage of shots without blur. You may find that a monopod or tripod can help with blur from camera shake.

This thread can probably give you some tips on things to try:


But, if you plan on doing a lot of that type of photography, I'd consider moving up to a DSLR model (and make sure to get a bright prime lens to go with one, as the "kit" lenses are not bright enough for that purpose. Something like a 85mm f/1.8 or 100mm f/2 would make a good choice if you can get close enough.

I use a 100mm f/2 for that kind of thing. It's twice as bright as a higher end zoom that can maintain f/2.8 throughout it's focal range (f/2 is exactly twice as bright as f/2.8, allowing shutter speeds twice as fast for the same lighting and ISO speed).

An f/2 lens is 8 times as bright as most "kit" type lenses by the time you zoom in much (most of those are down to a widest aperture of around f/5.6 by the time you zoom in much, and f/2 is 8 times as bright as f/5.6, allowing shutter speeds 8 times as fast for any given lighting and ISO speed). IOW, lens choice is just as important as camera choice for photos of non-stationary subjects (i.e., people) indoors without a flash.

For the choir shots, you can probably get away with a bright zoom. For the indoor sports, you'll want a prime (fixed focal length versus zoom lens), and use your feet for zoom (move closer or further away for the desired framing).

If you can get close enought to use a flash, and flash is allowed, then you don't need to worry as much about that kind of thing. But, flash is not allowed in many venues (especially indoor sports), and you've got a *very* limited flash range with a built in flash anyway (it's going to be useless for most things like indoor sports, shots of performers on stage, etc., even if it is allowed, because of flash range limitations from a small built in flash).

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