Go Back   Steve's Digicams Forums > Digicam Help > What Camera Should I Buy?

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Sep 21, 2006, 11:18 AM   #21
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Some answers:

Quote:
Why say "Gonna try and shoot soccer with an 85mm lens?" Why soccer?

That 85 mm lens will work great in places where your 300 mm will probably be too cumbersome to handle; the field of view will probably be too narrow for closer applications anyway. (Imagine myself carrying a 200-300 mm into a church to shoot some sports/action photography taking place there...)
I gave that example because the OP indicated shooting multiple sports - both indoors and out (althouh he said football not soccer). My point was and is that there is no single prime lens that works for all sports. So suggesting you can buy 1 camera and 1 fast prime is bad advice. You need the lens best suited for a particular sport. Buying one single lens will not let you shoot all sports. That's all I was saying. You must consider the needs of each individual sport you want to shoot.

Quote:
I think thatthe 200-300 mm lenses will be too long (in terms of focal length)and narrow for me to shoot the type of sports or action photography that I will normallyget involved in.
That's fine - but this thread wasn't about what you need it's about what the op needed. And a single lens was not going to allow hiim to shoot football, basketball, volleyball and hockey. That would probably require at least 2 different lenses. So my comments never addressed what you needed.

Quote:
So who says shooting sports in general requires "all those stuffs (Really long lenses etc...)"? You should have said "certain sports in general"
Let me re-iterate. The required equipment to shoot a given sport must be determined on a sport by sport basis. You can't make a sweeping statement - especially with regard to lenses. Every sport has different needs. The lens the OP would use for football would likely be different than the lens used for basketball. And, by the way the lenses he could use for football are dependent upon the type of football (all day games or possibly night games). Thosedetails make a difference in determining what body features a camera must have, or should have and what lens features you will need and won't need.

Quote:
BTW, lenses can get really long with the crop factors now a days.
Not as long as you'd think. A high quality 200mm lens on a 1.6x crop factor camera is still going to give you only about 30-35 yards of coverage in a sporting situation (assuming you want to accept the general practice among most sports shooters that the image crop should be tight around the action). That's not a whole lot of coverage. For a sport like football you can mitigate that issue by following the line of scrimmage. But, for a sport like soccer, say - you can't - you have to plant yourself in a location and let the action come to you. So, the more reach you have the more action you'll be able to cover. But that's the type of thing you learn when you actually shoot sports as opposed to theorizing about shooting it.

Quote:
I wonder why not the Fujifilm FinePix S6500fd? It has the F30's image sensor in a much more advance body>>> http://www.dpreview.com/news/0607/06071302fujifilms6500fd.asp:lol:
:!:

And it may turn out to be one. But it is as of yet unproven as a sports camera. When I can see galleries of work (not a single photo but a gallery) then a judgement can be made. Applied results are what's important - not stats on a sheet. How does the camera perform in the field. When someone proves it's a capable sports camera - people will recommend it as such. Until then, it's just conjecture - which I know you like - but it's dangerous conjecture.

Quote:
BTW, don't bother about the ISO 3200 feature on those cameras; the quality IMO is not worth it.


You're certainly entitled to your opinion but my experience with the ISO 3200 of my camera is that as long as you know what you're doing (and this is key) ISO 3200 is extremely usable. I've gotten very good 8x10 prints from ISO 3200 images. Again, you may not want to use it but and that's OK. I'm saying I've had ISO 3200 images that people were willing to pay money for. I'd say that might make it worth considering.


JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 21, 2006, 11:48 AM   #22
Senior Member
 
BenjaminXYZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 788
Default

Alright, points taken in hand.

I wonder where the thread starter had gone to...:-)(I hope all this wasn't in vain) :O
BenjaminXYZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 21, 2006, 1:43 PM   #23
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 22
Default

Not @ all. I enjoyed all the comments done in this post.
discovery is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 21, 2006, 5:43 PM   #24
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 822
Default

SR:

Other current popular superzooms like the Canon S3 or Sony H2 or H5 might be slightly better at ISO 400 than your P850. But they still start to get ugly at ISO 400. You're not really gaining anything worthwhile there. And most lack some nice features, like the hot shoe, that you have.

The Fuji S5200 is a bit better, but it's still only maybe a stop better in high ISO performance. Not much difference, though an afffordable option.

The Fuji S6100 has been on sale for a couple of weeks now online, but I've yet to see one or see anything from anyone saying they've gotten theirs yet. I'm not sure whether it's shipping yet or not. It sounds like it would be the only vialble non-DSLR option, and that's if it lives up to it's promise of F30 performance at high ISOs. And there you're gaining about 2 stops. And it won't be more capable than your Kodak of producing background blur--you would still have to do that in photoshop).

I think you're getting some decent results in football now, but could likely get a bit better with the S6100. Those couple stops might enable you to shoot at ISO 800 for example, where you would now shoot at ISO 200, enabling a faster shutter speed. So shots you're getting with a 1/120 shutter could be at a much nicer 1/480 (still a bit slow for some sports action).

But the Fuji also "only" zooms to a 300mm equivalent, while the Kodak goes to 432mm. And the Kodak also lets in a bit more light at the tele end, offseting a bit of the Fuji advantage if you are zooming in.

In indoor sports, it will improve things, but you'd still have tradeoffs. You'd likely end up often trying to shoot things at ISO 800 and maybe a 1/150 shutter. It might be hit or miss as to where you would get usable results with that. Or you would settle for using ISO 1600 and 3200, and gettting shots that might be useable for small prints.

You posted a basketball shot, for example, that was too dark at 1/125s, f/4, 400 ISO. That shot was about 2 stops underexposed. With the Fuji you could have shoot at ISO 1600 and exposed it properly; but even then the players and ball are going to be still a bit blurry from movement (as they are now). You maybe could have gained a stop by shooting at f/2.8 without any zoom and cropping (if you close enough for that to be practical). If you could have done that and shot at ISO 3200, you might even have been able to use a 1/500 shutter.

Even with a DSLR there will be trade offs. That ISO 3200 will look alot better. And you might not need it with a f/1.8 prime zoom lens. At f/1.8, you could have had 1/500 sec there at ISO 1600. But, even that f/1.8 prime is still normally a bit soft way open. You might sometimes have to decide if it's worth the trade off, or if you'd rather stop it down to f/2.8 or f/4.0 and use a higher ISO.

If you do want to go the DSLR route, I think you've gotten some good advice here from other posters. I think you will probably want to go that route eventually. But ff that's not in the budget right now, you have to consider whether the Fuji is a worthwhile stopgap. On a budget, you might be best off waiting and letting it come down in price a bit.

kenbalbari is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 21, 2006, 11:43 PM   #25
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 978
Default

I still like the S5200 as an interim solution. It produces ok ISO 800 images and has a wider aperture (I think f3.2 or something like that) at maximum zoom than the newer Fujis (f4.9). You can also get it for less than $250 online. I think the cheapest DSLR solution is over $1,000. If a person has money to burn, well, maybe it doesn't make a difference. I would really like to see if the S5200 has a successor with better high ISO performance while maintaining the wide maximum apertures. I know professionals will not be satisfied with this solution, but I think noticeable improvement can be attained without breaking the bank.
robbo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 22, 2006, 4:11 AM   #26
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Sep 2006
Posts: 2
Default

Not sure when you were hoping to get your camera, but as a few others have suggested the new fuji 6500 due soon should be the camera your looking for. For non-slr and low price point this camera should deliver.

I own the 9500, nice camera, goes upto 1600iso, but really didn't try to use over 400iso due to the noise factor. But the 400-800iso shots that I took sure were better than some cameras at 200iso. I just traveled 6 months in South america with it, took some great pictures. The new 6500 and the 9600 coming out, they're putting in a much sharper lens which the 9500 lacked. The fuji rep bought one into the store a couple of days ago where I played around with it a bit. Without having a full play, but with the pastConsistency of fuji camerasover the many years of selling cameras, this camera will hurt a lot of other brands out there, just as the f10/11/30 have sent a lot of camera developers back to the drawing board with there in-your-pocket cameras.

The previous fuji range besides the 9500 frustrated me. To have a big zoomdriven by buttons was annoying, always over/under stepping the picture one desired. Cropping these days thou allows one to get the thirds rule on a picture later thou anyways, butI've always beenone to get my framming first time.To have the slr mechanical style ring zoom, nice 28-300 (10.7x) range, upto 3200iso (not that you would want to use it that often) fuji's super-ccd sensor, this would be the camera I would consider without stepping upto a proper slr.

Fuji for many years have always impressed me with their color and range of lighting.
And there video quality is addictive, also can zoom while recording with the 9500/6500....

The advantage I have is that I borrow a lot of the cameras we sell, I like totest them in a lot of different situations. These daysnatural lighting, they all perform well, It's low lighting, cloudy days,long exposure shots etc...that can reallyserperate one camera to another.I do find a lot of brands are very up and down per model, and some I feel sell simply because of there name or theregood looks. there are a lot of fashion statment cameras on the market.

If you're serious about 1600/3200 iso... I think there isn't a non-slr camera on the market you'll be happy with.....yet. Only camera I've seen without going to the proper slr has been the fuji range.
puresilk is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 22, 2006, 10:36 AM   #27
Senior Member
 
BenjaminXYZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 788
Default

This thread has some reallygood discussions going on and I really appreciate all of them. (Keep up the good work)

I just want to query this post about the F/1.8 lens;

Quote:
Even with a DSLR there will be trade offs. That ISO 3200 will look alot better. And you might not need it with a f/1.8 prime zoom lens. At f/1.8, you could have had 1/500 sec there at ISO 1600. But, even that f/1.8 prime is still normally a bit soft way open. You might sometimes have to decide if it's worth the trade off, or if you'd rather stop it down to f/2.8 or f/4.0 and use a higher ISO.
Which F/1.8 lens were you referring to?

In case youwere referring to the 85 mm F/1.8 AF prime Nikkor; it is actually very good wide opened as far as I can make out from this review>>>

http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len...5_18/index.htm

If you are curious, it is also sharper than the F/1.4 version>>>

http://www.photozone.de/8Reviews/len...5_14/index.htm

As far as I know, the Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM is also a superior lens.





BenjaminXYZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 22, 2006, 11:02 AM   #28
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Actually, focusing becomes an issue at 1.8 and to me that's a bigger deal for sports. As Benjamin pointed out - both Canon and Nikon make sharp 85mm 1.8 lenses. The problem is you have very shallow depth of field which means you have to be more accurate in your focusing.

At 15 feet, the 85mm lens at 1.8 has a dof of about 7.5". If you can close down to 2.2 the dof increases to 9.5" At 2.8 the dof increases to a full 12" That extra 2 inches of DOF can be very helpful in getting more focused faces. So, while shooting wide open down to about 2.8 is usually desirable for subject isolation of a human, once you get below 2.8 it gets tougher and tougher to get the face in focus. So, if sports is the aim (which it was for the OP) you only want to open up to 1.8 if you absolutely have to.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 22, 2006, 12:02 PM   #29
Senior Member
 
BenjaminXYZ's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 788
Default

Quote:
Actually, focusing becomes an issue at 1.8 and to me that's a bigger deal for sports. As Benjamin pointed out - both Canon and Nikon make sharp 85mm 1.8 lenses. The problem is you have very shallow depth of field which means you have to be more accurate in your focusing.

At 15 feet, the 85mm lens at 1.8 has a dof of about 7.5". If you can close down to 2.2 the dof increases to 9.5" At 2.8 the dof increases to a full 12" That extra 2 inches of DOF can be very helpful in getting more focused faces. So, while shooting wide open down to about 2.8 is usually desirable for subject isolation of a human, once you get below 2.8 it gets tougher and tougher to get the face in focus. So, if sports is the aim (which it was for the OP) you only want to open up to 1.8 if you absolutely have to.
So will the Sigma AF F/2.8 18mm - 50mm constant aperture zoom be more a more suitable lens for closer range sports/action photography? (Than say a 50 mm F/1.4 glass)

Generally, I think lenses with USM, HSM, SWM(silent wave motor) will be more effective for faster focus. (If Iam not mistaken)
BenjaminXYZ is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Sep 22, 2006, 12:23 PM   #30
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

BenjaminXYZ wrote:
Quote:
So will the Sigma AF F/2.8 18mm - 50mm constant aperture zoom be more a more suitable lens for closer range sports/action photography? (Than say a 50 mm F/1.4 glass)

Generally, I think lenses with USM, HSM, SWM (silent wave motor) will be more effective for faster focus. (If Iam not mistaken)
It depends on the light in your facility. More often than not, the answer is probably no. Most high school gyms I've been in seem to require around 2.0 or 2.2 to get an acceptable shutter speed at ISO 1600. Some require those apertures at ISO 3200.

College gyms are different - f2.8 and ISO 1600 is quite manageable there.

Of course it also depends on your preference for acceptable shutter speeds. I don't like to go below 1/400. At 1/400 you will still see some blur in hand or foot motion but not bad. By 1/250 you start getting serious motion blur in the hands and feet. By 1/125 you get unacceptable blur IMO. If you want the ball to be more frozen (basketball and volleyball) you want to be around 1/640.

When in doubt, a good rule of thumb to start with is 1/500. Certain sports require faster speeds but 1/500 is a good easy to remember rule of thumb.

Also, and this is very important IMO - the noise level in your photos will be dramattically reduced by exposing to the right. So, don't be fooled when people tell you to shoot raw and underexpose. A shot at ISO 1600 underexposed by 1 stop at 2.8 and pushed in raw conversion will look worse than the same shot properly exposed at f2.0. So the moral is: always try to cheat your exposures to the right. I'll often jump from ISO 800 to 1600 just so I can keep my histogram to the right. The noise level is much better than if I stayed at 800 and had a poor exposure.

But the best advice on this topic I can give is this: regardless of the sport - as long as it's a people sport, you want to expose for the faces not the uniforms. It's always the face that is the most interesting. And that's where noise really hurts you. If you get faces properly exposed in camera noise will not be an issue. So, don't let white jerseys fool you by driving up your shutter speeds. That little trick costs you shutter speed or requires wider aperture but the end result will be infinitely better.

So, if you're always shooting in the same faclity take some test shots of players with current gear to determine what exposure values will be. So if you have a camera with f5.6 lens and ISO 400 and you get 1/15 shutter speeds you know you need about a 4.6 stop shutter speed increast to get to 1/400. ISO 1600 gives you 2 of those stops. The other 2.6 need to come from aperture which means f2.2 (i think - if my math is correct). But when you test make sure your getting an exposure that properly exposes the face - which probably isn't the exposure your camera's metering will give you - especially if they have light colored jerseys.

But, bottom line - I don't think you'd want to shoot sports at 1.4 - way too difficult. I know the Canon 85mm 1.8 is lightning fast to focus. I don't believe the Canon 50mm 1.4 is faster to focus (I don't have one but seem to recall another thread somewhere claiming it was not). So, the extra reach of the 85mm is better than the extra aperture since that extra aperture can be too difficult to use. And, in all honesty, if it's too dark for a 1.8 lens then you should be using strobes or worst case external flash - or just pick a new team with more money to spend on decent lighting.
JohnG 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 7:08 PM.