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

Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Old Dec 2, 2010, 8:56 PM   #1
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Kirkland, WA
Posts: 107
Default Which Superzoom for kids sports?

I've accepted that I'm not going to be satisfied with a pocketable camera good for everyday use that also is good enough for HD video for my kids' sports. We don't have the budget for a DSLR and I'm really interested in the Superzoom cameras like the Canon SX30IS and the Panasonic FZ40 or FZ100.

What's the best bang-for-the-buck Superzoom if I'm most interested in good stable hand-held video with the occasional decent snapshot? What are the strengths and weakness of the SX30IS, the FZ40, and the FZ100? Are there better choices out there? What's the minimum level of zoom I'd want for shooting outdoor sports (including upper-body closeups) from the stands?

Last edited by nwtim; Dec 3, 2010 at 1:14 AM. Reason: corrected LZ to FZ
nwtim is offline   Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
Old Dec 2, 2010, 11:32 PM   #2
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,487
Default

The FZ100 will shoot the best video...it will also shoot 2,5,11,40,60 shots per second if required...it would be my pick for sprts as it's speed is going to get many shots the FZ40 and SX30 will miss...the SX30 has better detail, but sloowww! The FZ40 would do OK in high speed burst, but like the SX30 the CCD Semsor will streak in the sunlight during video...
LTZ470 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 1:16 AM   #3
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: Kirkland, WA
Posts: 107
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by LTZ470 View Post
The FZ100 will shoot the best video...it will also shoot 2,5,11,40,60 shots per second if required...it would be my pick for sprts as it's speed is going to get many shots the FZ40 and SX30 will miss...the SX30 has better detail, but sloowww! The FZ40 would do OK in high speed burst, but like the SX30 the CCD Semsor will streak in the sunlight during video...
So for sports I shouldn't consider the extra zoom of the SX30 enough to offset the speed of the FZ100? What about indoor events like basketball games in a gym?
nwtim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 5:13 AM   #4
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,487
Default

To be honest the SX30 can do well with still shots and in good light as the FZ100 also...but the SX30 is dead slow at Auto Focus and pic to pic time...the FZ100 can just blaze off the photos...what I find with too much zoom sometime is I cannot get the shot because I can't follow the subject as I can't keep the subject in the lens...so I have to back off on the zoom...if I am using full zoom it is usually still shots...
So with that said the 600mm is more than enough for kids sports...indoors in a basketball gym it will strictly depend on how much and how new the lighting is for the FZ100 if in very good lighting you may get some decent shots even still shots could be terrible at high ISO's...that is DSLR Territory with a large lens or Canon S95/G12 and it would still require more than normal lighting to keep from blurring the photo and a high ISO...
LTZ470 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 6:14 AM   #5
Super Moderator
 
Mark1616's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 7,452
Default

Outdoor sports you can probably do OK with the Panasonic or Canon (I would manual focus for the distance you want if doing so or pre focus and hold it). For indoor sports, forget it. Even a dSLR without the right lens won't get a good shoot indoors unless you are at pro level or very good college level lighting. A superzoom/compact just can't do the job as you need to have at least ISO 3200 and f2.8 assuming very good lighting. There are a lot of times when you want f2 or ISO 6400 to stop the blur from movement. You might think that some blur is OK..... it can be, but mix that with bad noise at high ISO and you have killed the photo.
__________________
[SIZE=1][SIZE=2]Any problems with a post or thread please use the report button at the bottom left of the post and the team will help sort it out.
Mark1616 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 6:38 AM   #6
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,487
Default

What Mark is trying to say is even in the shade outdoors the sunlight is still way brighter for a camera...than the indoors...if you have indoors with good through the window sunlighting and good indoor lights then it is possible...I thought the ones below turned out well for a P&S...of course the white ice helped the FZ100...the Goalie shot was awesome...
Outdoor Football FZ100:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...1&changemode=1
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=36552938
FZ100 Ice Hockey photos:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...00+Hockey&qf=m
FZ100 Pro Soccer:
http://forums.dpreview.com/forums/re...ssage=36537026
LTZ470 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 7:45 AM   #7
Super Moderator
 
Mark1616's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Posts: 7,452
Default

The ice hockey shots have turned out fine, however they are not the same level as would be for the OPs kids so the lighting is far far better.

If we bring it back into real world which we are more likely to shoot in then approx settings will be 1/320s, f2.8 and ISO 3200. The shots taken by the poster in the other thread (I'm taking the details for the 2nd as it seems the first was under exposed and pulled back quite a bit.... I could be wrong). If we work those back to the same ISO and aperture settings then that gives a shutter speed of 1/1250s which is a whole two stops brighter than the norm. Obviously all venues vary.
__________________
[SIZE=1][SIZE=2]Any problems with a post or thread please use the report button at the bottom left of the post and the team will help sort it out.
Mark1616 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 10:13 AM   #8
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 2,487
Default

I concur fully Mark I looked at some Canon 1D f/2.8L ISO 1600 shots and man those things are awesome...really nice indoor photo weapons...phenomenal clarity and IQ...
LTZ470 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 10:32 AM   #9
Senior Member
 
Biro's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 835
Default

nwtim... what kind of budget are you working with? It's true that you're simply not going to get the best results without a DSLR and, say, a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. But the combined price will be between $1300 and $2000.

And, while you say you're not satisfied with the results you get from a point-and-shoot camera, perhaps your expectations are not the same as those of some of us. Give us some more details about budget and planned usage and maybe we can come back with specific recommendations.
Biro is offline   Reply With Quote
Old Dec 3, 2010, 12:26 PM   #10
Moderator
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
Posts: 8,529
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by nwtim View Post
What's the minimum level of zoom I'd want for shooting outdoor sports (including upper-body closeups) from the stands?
First, I will say the football photos linked to for fz100 look really impressive for a digicam. Now, as Mark said - low light is another matter all together. You must accept the fact that your budget just isn't going to allow for high quality indoor shots. But, I hought I'd take a stab at this question. The answer, of course, is - it depends? What sport? What level of play? Shooting U6 soccer "from the stands" where the stands are 5 yards back from the touchline is quite a bit different than trying to shoot full field soccer from an NCAA stadium in the stands. The shocking reality is - you have to be a whole lot closer than you think to get "upper body closeups" For a 400mm equivalent focal length you'd want to be within about 30 yards to get a shot you could crop to that and have high quality. Think about that - that's 90 feet. That means if the sport is baseball you'd have to be standing on first base to be close enough for that type of shot of someone standing on 2nd base - and even then you'd start with a full-body shot that you'd have to crop to torso only.
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 10:10 PM.