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Old May 22, 2008, 5:59 PM   #1
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As you migt understand, I am a beginner.:O:O:O My aim is to make nice photos of outdoor sports sutch asfield hockey.The question is, shouldI buy a DSLR instant or start cearfully with a "bridge"camera???? Please Help.............:?

Ofcourse I do have to make this choice myselfbut al suggestions are welcome....:idea:
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Old May 22, 2008, 8:42 PM   #2
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I think you should buy what you're comfortable with. I researched cameras forever and ended up buying something that was not even on my list of cameras to buy. Recently I justgotthis newCanon PowerShot SD1100 IS for my brother, it's a great deal, on sale for only $179

http://www.***************/viewtopic....937&ru=290

You can go toa camera shop and trying a bunch out. You have to decide what is a good fit for you.

Good luck.
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Old May 23, 2008, 12:48 AM   #3
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erwin-

Naturally, a DSLR camera is going to give you more of what what you seem to desire, if that kind of budget is feasibile. However, even a "bridge" camera will be hard pressed due to the need for increased shutter speeds.

Sarah Joyce
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Old May 23, 2008, 9:48 AM   #4
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The major issue is what kind of lighting will be available for the field hockey? If it will be daylight then most of the better P&S camera will provide a high enough shutter speed for action stopping without raising the ISO excessively. If, on the other handmost events will be under artificial light then a DSLR with low noise at high ISOs (and a relatively fast lens) is the better (only) option.

The other characteristics you're looking for include a long focal length, fast focusing, low shutter lag and fast shot to shot times. Again, if you're shooting during the day the KOdak Z712/Z812, Panasonic FZ18 and Canon S5 are some of the viable options. At night virtually any DSLR produced in the last 3 years will be better than those cameras with the appropriate lens.
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Old May 23, 2008, 10:07 AM   #5
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I'd ask John G our resident guru on Sports Photographer for his advice.

I shot with a Fuji S9100 (bridge type camerra)I do pictures for the local newspaper of some sports stuff (on a part time basis)and the only sport photos that I am 100% happy with are baseball, softball and tennis. Football comes outify and the luck of the draw, basketball forget it, soccer forget it and field hockeyt/lacross forget it. I use the 9100 because at the time I bought it May 2007 I wanted the best camera I could get without changing lenses..... after 3 months of research this was the camera for me. The only thing I would change is to get one with a longer tele lens such as 14x vs the 10.7x the Fuji has. Otherwise it is still working well for me with no plans to replace it yet.

If I was doing this on a more serious note and full time I'd get a D-SLR. I know the guy who cover our county's sports scene as a professional photogrqapher (has a business selling his photos and does very well)uses a Cannon 5D and a 30D camera , carries 3 lenses and uses 2GB Sandisc Ultra II memory cards. He told me two of the lenses were a 100 - 300mm and a 14mm - 42mm that he uses for portaits and wide angle shots at graduations, stadium shots andfor making sports cards etc. He also has a 1.4x teleconveter as well. As for his third lens I'm not sure what it is

D-SLRs cost more but from what I have scene and heard they can do a lot more and give you a lot more usuable photos. Also you have to way the weight of carrying it around especially if you plan to do a lot of traveling with it.

dave
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Old May 23, 2008, 10:12 AM   #6
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Another factor, at least for me, is how much do you want to carry with you? At 73, I find less and less motivation to carry around a big DSLR and all the necessary equipment, even though I own five of them.

Sarah Joyce
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Old May 23, 2008, 12:30 PM   #7
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It really comes down to what quality of shots you want. You can spend $200 to $10,000 on gear to shoot sports.

The benefits of a DSLR are: much better focus system, better ability to track subject, better performance at high ISO, more frames per second, higher end lenses, shallower depth of field (this is hugely important in sports - having your subject in focus but the background blurred)

Benefits of a superzoom: compact, a LOT less money, lighter, good quality photos for non-sports stuff - often indistinguishable from consumer level DSLR photos.

But here's the thing with the DSLR route:

1. For field sports you need long lenses - at least 300mm preferably 400mm.

2. Not all dslr systems are created equal with regards to sports. Oly and Pentax are inexpensive bodies but lens availability/cost is an issue as is focus system and high ISO performance is less. Canon & Nikon offer the widest lens selection and proven autofocus systems designed for sports use. Sony looks very promising with their latest bodies but lens availability / cost is still an issue.

3. The money is often in the lenses. For sports shooting, the camera body is very often the less expensive part of the puzzle. You'll spend more money on quality lenses than you will the body (unless you're buying a pro level body like canon 1d or nikon d3).

4. Sportsshooting takes skill and practice. It's harder than it looks. So don't think you can throw a bunch of $$$ at it and get great results without developing the skills.

5. It's critical to success to be close to the action. For field sports like field hockey, soccer, football you really want to be shooting from right off the field of play not 15 yards away behind a fence or in the stands. So access to the field is a critical success factor.

All of which is why - if you're just a casual shooter a superzoom can be a better choice. You'll get OK results and you'll save a lot of money and heart-ache. I've seen a LOT (and I mean LOT) of parents at the fields and sidlines over the last year with their DSLR and kit lens. They have the wrong lens and don't know how to use the gear to shoot sports so their results are still poor. They just paid more money to get mediocre results. I don't say this to discourage you at all - sportsshooting is extremely gratifying. I love it. I just want people to go in with their eyes open about the costs and challenges. That way they don't spend $600-$1000 and still not be able to achieve their goals.

Having said all of that, I have 2 questions:

1. What is your budget.

2. How serious are you about sports photography?
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Old May 23, 2008, 1:18 PM   #8
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John,

I have a I have a Nikon D-50 and a 70-300 1:4-5.6 G lens. I assume that is one of the kit lens you are refering to. This has been a good starter camera and I would love a D300 but to your advise, would probably be better to upgrade the glass first.

My son will be playing Varsity baseball the next couple of years and most games are at night under lights. Coach will not allow parents on the field so I'm shooting through netting (not good) or I stand down the line past the dugout standing on a bucket. My son is middle infield so I can get good fielding shots from there. Once evening sets in, it's over for me. If I had $2000 to spend, what would you recommend for this situation?

Thanks!!


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Old May 23, 2008, 1:33 PM   #9
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Jim,

I don't want to hijack the OPs thread. But I'll take a quick cut at answering. My advice is: bump your budget to $2700 and get the sigma 120-300 2.8. You'll need 2.8 for under the lights and you'll need 300mm to shoot from the fence. Even then, shots will only be so-so because you'll be doing some cropping. But the nikon 400mm 2.8 is a bit more than $2000 so the sigma is the best you can do.

70-200 2.8 is way too short - it would be a waste of money IMO for baseball from outside the fence.
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Old May 28, 2008, 7:26 AM   #10
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Thanks every onefor all sugestions and repy on my question what kind of camera I should buy. I finally made my mind up and deciced to get a real DSLR.......

But witch one ??????????????

To make this last decision I'd like to know the oppinion of the proffesional about

image stabilisation, Do I really need this??????? And what is preferred ??? In the body or in the lenses??

Please help me whith this last question..................
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