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Old Jan 5, 2006, 9:40 PM   #1
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Trying to take some action shots with my FZ5.* What would be a good aperture opening and shutter speed to try.* I have already messed around a little bit, increasing the ISO definitely helps but I am pretty much getting either big blurry fuzz blobs or black screens of nothingness...any suggestions?
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Old Jan 5, 2006, 11:17 PM   #2
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I'm assuming you're trying to photograph indoor basketball, if it were outdoor I doubt you'd have any trouble.

Few consumer cameras are very capable in this kind of situation. In order to capture fast action, you need to use a fast shutter speed. 1/60 is probably the minimum, but it will still be blurry, just that you'd probably be able to make out what's going on. 1/150 is more appropriate for this kind of action, but in that lighting you'll probably have to use 1/15 to get a halfway decent exposure. Typically you'd need a high performance camera like a DSLR to do this kind of photography.

If you want to give it a try anyway, turn your ISO as high as you can and open the aperture all the way (as low a number as you can get). Try to use manual focus since the dark setting may be difficult for the camera to adjust to. Don't zoom in close, the more you zoom, the less light you're getting into the lens and the darker your image. Now, take a few shots at different shutter speeds. If you can get usable shots at 1/30, you may find that you end up with a few decent images by the end of the game.

If it's still not of acceptable quality, and I anticipate this to be the likely case, then you'll have to use a flash if it's allowed, and a pretty powerful one at that. I don't know if the flash on the camera would be bright enough for a gym, so you might need to get an external flash, which I also don't know if that camera supports. If you do end up using a flash, try a lower ISO setting, ideally 100 or lower if possible, but if you need the extra light amplification to get a good exposure, then turn it back up.

Personally, in that situation I'd probably just bring a camcorder. I could pull stills from the video as well, and though they wouldn't be very high res, I'd have a lot of control to get an image of just the right moment.

Good luck.
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Old Jan 6, 2006, 6:11 AM   #3
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That is kind of what I was thinking was the case, I was sort of just hoping there was something I was missing.* Thanks for the update.
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Old Jan 6, 2006, 6:21 AM   #4
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Corpsy

What do you use to pull stills from the move?

With basketball I have had good luck with 125 shutter speed and 2.8 ap.

I use a fz 20 I think they are close. I have also tried shutter priority and raised it as high as I could till the exposure indication was about one to two steps low and adjusted with photo shop or picasa. Seem to get a lot of noise if I go to low on the exposure though. Hope that helps a Little. Do a little searching as this subject has been asked a lot before.
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Old Jan 6, 2006, 11:45 AM   #5
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I belong to a different camp I believe in using aperture priority set it at F2.8 and Set the ISO to 400.

Now take a picture see if things are anywhere near what you call acceptable.

Then play with the Exposure comp, set itto minus one, see the shutterspeed got faster.

Take a photo and see if you can live with that, if so set the exposure comp to minus 2 ...the shutter speed just got faster again...You are now shooting at the equivilant of ISO1600 and with all the noise that you would think would be in a FZ5 photo at 1600. but see if anything in between may be suitable for you. If you do this you will need a good NR program but they are getting very good.

One note if you are going to pro games or most college games you will not have much trouble as they have very good lighting...but HS's are another thing....Do not overlook the possibilities a flash offers.
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Old Jan 6, 2006, 12:27 PM   #6
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RP33, any video editing program should be fine. My camera came with Pinnacle Studio, and that does a decent enough job. You may need to de-interlace the still in Photoshop though.For action in low light, I think shutter priority makes a bit more sense. If you use aperture priority, it will default to whatever shutter speed it think will get the best exposure, and it will almost certainly choose something far slower than you need and you'll get very blurry pictures. Aperture priority makes more sense for shots of scenery, closeups and for portraits. If lighting conditions were ideal however, like in direct sunlight, either mode would be useful for controlling how your images look.
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