Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Post Your Photos > Sports & Action Photos

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Jan 31, 2006, 12:29 PM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 2
Default

Newby here! I have a Nikon D70 using a Tamron AF70-300 and Tamron AF28-80 lenses trying to take action sport photos of high school basketball from the spectator seats in the stands.

Please coach me on three or four possible setting combinations I might try to overcome the poor lighting conditions inherent to gyms. All my attempts so far result in photos too dark to keep.

Any starter suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
TNTina is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Jan 31, 2006, 2:15 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 256
Default

TNTina wrote:
Quote:
Newby here! I have a Nikon D70 using a Tamron AF70-300 and Tamron AF28-80 lenses trying to take action sport photos of high school basketball from the spectator seats in the stands.

Please coach me on three or four possible setting combinations I might try to overcome the poor lighting conditions inherent to gyms. All my attempts so far result in photos too dark to keep.

Any starter suggestions would be greatly appreciated!
Hi Tina and welcome

I shoot a ton of HS basketball from the stands and it is asking alot of your camera. In my experience, some gyms lighting is better than others. I have a number of HS and college hoops shots posted here if you would like to have a look and see what kind of results I am getting. I use a Canon digital rebel xt. My HS shots are taken with the Canon 50mm f1.8 II and the college shots with a Canon 100mm F2.0 USM lens. One is cheap, one isnt. You can look at some of my typical results and determine how pleasing one is over the other.

The good news is that you have a great camera that is capable of providing you with exceptional results. The not so good news is that your lenses are not up to the challenge. If the lighting in your gym is very good, you might get mediocre results out of those lenses. I can make a recommendation or five on a lens that would give you what you are looking for if you can give me an idea of your budget.

As for settings, there are many schools of thought and everone has their own preferences that tend to be what has worked for them in their setting. I can tell you what works for me and you can try that as a starting point.

With the 28-80, I would shoot in Tv mode (shutter priority) and set my speed to 1/250 or 1/320. Understand that at 1/250 or even at 1/320 you are going to get some motion blur. To make that less of an issue you need to shoot at around 1/500, which with your lens would produce pictures that are too dark. I would also zoom my lens out to about 50mm and not go much beyond that. Doing so will increase your aperature setting to something that will produce pictures that are too dark. I would also set my ISO to 1600 ( ISO3200 if your camera supports it, I am not familiar enough with the settings of your Nikon to know if it supports 3200 ISO speeds) Lastly, I would read on how to set a custom white balance and set your white balance to custom

After the fact, there are things you can do with software to make your images brighter, less noisy, cropped to ring the subject closer, etc but it is important to have the best image you can get to use as a starting point. Understand also that most of teh pictures you shoot in this enviornment will require some after the fact editing to make the image the best that it can be.

As I said, I am not sure what your budget is, your skill level with image editing software, etc but the settings I recommended will get you going in the right direction.

I hope this helps. ket me know if I can help any further. There are some very knowldgeable shooters in here and all have great advice and have helped me a ton.

David
davidreeves is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 3:00 PM   #3
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Tina,

David has some excellent advice but the point I want to stress out of what David said is this:

Indoor sports photography requires either a lens capable of 2.8 aperture (for well lit - usually college level gymnasiums) or 1.8 (for most H.S. gymnasiums). There are a number of zoom lenses that have 2.8 capability but 1.8 capability is the realm of prime lenses - which makes shooting from the stands potentially expensive. Even with a 1.8 lens you may find yourself using 1.8 and ISO 1600 all the time to get shutter speeds over 1/320. As David pointed out, 1/320 will give you SOME keepers but you want to get 1/500 to remove motion blur.

I'm going to give you another route to try slightly different than David's advice. Set your camera to aperture priority mode and choose the widest aperture. Set your ISO at your highest level (1600 or 3200 whatever the d70 can do). Now, take some shots at various zoom points with your lenses - what shutter speed is the camera selecting? Since neither lens has a constant max aperture you should be able to find out what zoom range you have at the widest aperture before you lose a stop. In that range, what shutter speeds are you getting? If you can still get at least 1/320 then the solution without buying more equipment is to move closer so you can shoot at that range without having to do a lot of cropping on the PC. If you still aren't getting 1/320 then you need to get a new lens.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 3:11 PM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 256
Default

well stated and great advice, as always, John!

I'm guessing that the best solution for her will be a better lens however. I love my little thrifty-fifty for HS shooting.

I got my new 85mm 1.8 yestarday and I am dying to try it out, which I will tomorrow!

davidreeves is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 3:57 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 256
Default

Tina, an inexpensive lens for your D70 that will resolvemost if not allof your low light issues is this one:

http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...o&v=glance

For a hundred bucks you wont regret spending a penny of it once you get used to it and start looking at what it is capable of producing.

Understand that there will be a learning curve in terms of how you frame your subjects because the shallow DOF created by this lens will force you to pay close attention when focusing. You should be able to get well lit pictures at f2.0 / f2.2 / f2.5 as well

I use the Canon equivelent of this lens, the Canon 50mm f1.8 II lens which I paid 75 bucks for new.
davidreeves is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 7:09 PM   #6
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 14
Default

Like david and john said already, it can be done, but it isn't the easiest. This is from a midle school game, 50mm, f1.8, 1/250 (the speed and aperture might be a stop off since I was messing around the entire time) and ISO 3200. Camera's a Konica Minolta Maxxum 7D. Then I cropped and did some color work in Photoshop. You can get some decent photos, just takes a bit of practice.


ds3509 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 9:43 PM   #7
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 256
Default

In the school sports food chain, I think the further down the grade scale one goes, the worse the lighting

I took a tweak on your pic, hope you dont mind

The focus is off a hair which is why it isnt very sharp. Hard to get focus dead on at 1.8. I try and shoot at f2.2 - f2.5 in the HS gym ...
Attached Images
 
davidreeves is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Jan 31, 2006, 10:46 PM   #8
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 14
Default

David,
Thanks, that looks great. My girlfriend is a teacher at that school and the yearbook advisor. She had no pictures basketball to put in the book, so I offered to head up and do my best. By the time this gets shrunk down into the tiny space she has available, I'm not sure how it'll look. Although the book is in black and white, I can't tweak the photo to b&w, she has to submit a color photo.
ds3509 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Feb 1, 2006, 8:05 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 256
Default

if you want to email me the original shot, I would be happy to tweak it and convert it to b&w for you

wont take but a few minutes
davidreeves is offline   Reply With Quote
 
Reply


Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off



All times are GMT -5. The time now is 6:13 PM.