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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Nov 10, 2007, 10:21 AM   #1
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 3
Default

Hello,

I recently bought a Nikon D40 for which the main purpose is to take action shots of my two children playing soccer. I am a complete beginner when it comes to photography. After reading many of the posts, I'll try to be as specific as possible. With this being my first lens purchase, I would like to stay on a tight budget. I'm looking for a lens that will allow me to zoom in on my children during soccer games when they may be on the other side of the field (up to 200 feet away). The camera came with an 18-55mm lens. I was zeroing in on the 15-200 vr lens for the soccer shots. I read some posts that said it was a good lens for the money while other posts said it was not good for action shots. I'm now completely confused. Any help on a lens that will fit my Nikon D40 to take these possibly long distance action shots would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You
philbymo is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Nov 10, 2007, 1:53 PM   #2
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Phil,

First, welcome to the forums! The d40 is a very nice camera and you're going to be able to take some great shots with it.

Now for the bad news - you need to rein in your expectations. You're not going to take action shots of your kids 200 feet away. I'm a sports shooter, and I can tell you from a lot of experience that isn't going to happen - at least not decent shots or not without spending gobs and gobs of money.

A 200mm lens is good for maybe 75-80 feet and that's about it.

Now, that doesn't mean all is lost - it just means you have to adjust your expectations a bit.

First: how old are your kids? I.E. what size field are they playing on?

Second: are you allowed right off the touchline?

Third: what, exactly, is your budget?

Unfortunately, sports shooting is very demanding on equipment so we often have to make compromises in order to be able to get SOME shots within our budgets - distance often being the first compromise.

So letus know the answers to the above andwe can give you some suggestions on what lenses might be able to work for you.
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Nov 10, 2007, 4:20 PM   #3
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 3
Default

JohnG,

Thank you very much for your reply. My kids are 8 and 6 right now. I have no problem getting good shots of the younger guy. As far as the 8 year old, I can go right up to the sideline. My only concern was when she'snear the opposite sideline or further downfield from where I might be standing. She's playing on a 80x40 yard field for the next couple of years. Iguess, for me, the question is how much, if any, difference will the 55-200mm make over the 18-55mm lens? The 55-200mm lens is only a couple hundred dollars online. My accountant (wife) gave the thumbs up for the camera purchase but I don't want to push my luck with an expensive lens right now. Thanks again for your help.

Phil
philbymo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Nov 10, 2007, 8:15 PM   #4
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Well, the added reach will definitely give you a lot better results. People are right, the 55-200 isn't going to be a GREAT sports lens, but you're going to have to spend quite a bit more to actually get a really good sports lens. But it's definitely a step up from what you're using now.

The key to taking quality sports shots is to actually fill the frame (at least 2/3 of a portrait orientated frame) with your subject. With your current lens that means about 15 feet away. At least the 200mm gets you out to 25 yards. You'r still not going to get quality shots cross-field or down field. But you can get much better shots than what you're currently getting. Given your budget I'm not sure you'd get anything better at that price point.

The key though, especially with soccer, is to be patient. Choose your location according to her position (usually by 8 they're starting to stay somewhat in positions and not running in a gaggle up and down the field together :G). When she gets within range, then fire away:



So, I think the 55-200 would be a good choice for the budget. And if you have any questions about shooting soccer - especially after you get the lens - feel free to visit the sports forum and ask questions there. There are a few soccer shooters there and we're always glad to help out. Good luck and have fun!
JohnG is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Nov 11, 2007, 7:00 AM   #5
Junior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 3
Default

Thank you for your response. It's great that there is a forum like this where those with the expertise and experience are willing to share their knowledge with beginners such as myself. Your advise has been very helpful. I'll be sure to check out some of the sports posts. Hopefully Santa will leave the 55-200 under the tree this year. Down the road, who knows, maybe I can hit up the tooth fairy for something more expensive. I hear she's doing quite well these days:G. Thanks again for your help.
philbymo 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 5:56 PM.