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Indoor Sports Photography- Suggestions on a Budget
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Jan 14, 2020 13:54:18   #
brooklyn-camera I Loc: Brooklyn, NY
 
dsmeltz wrote:
Really?!?!? A lot of pro sports photographers would disagree.
You often (usually) need to control both aperture and shutter speed while relying on adjustments in post. In shutter priority aperture may be incorrectly changed resulting in missed focus. I often shoot at f4 to catch multiple players in a shot and do not want to open to 2.8. Having the camera decide to go to 2.8 because it thinks everything is too dark or close down to f8 or smaller because it is "too bright" can mean a ruined shot. ISO performance, card size and buffer speeds today allow a lot more play than 10 years ago.
Really?!?!? A lot of pro sports photographers wou... (show quote)


I must agree with dsmeltz.... I only shoot manual when shooting sports, maybe I'm a control freak?

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Jan 14, 2020 14:01:13   #
rehess Loc: not here
 
SteveR wrote:
12800 with no noticeable problems? You must have gotten one heckuva copy of that camera.
Comments here don’t reflect recent progress of bodies - all copies of the KP are quite good at higher ISO from what I hear.

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Jan 14, 2020 14:13:42   #
amfoto1 Loc: San Jose, Calif. USA
 
tgreenhaw wrote:
I'll go out on a limb stating that the Canon 85mm 1.4 IS is ultrasharp wide open at the corners :-)

"Goodness, you can see every detail on every blade of grass in the camera-original © file, and this is shot at f/1.4, where almost nothing is in focus, and it's ultrasharp out to the corners." - Ken Rockwell.

It is pretty much as sharp at the corners wide open at f1.4 as the Zeiss Planar T 85mm f1.4 is at f2.8 (https://www.opticallimits.com/canon_eos_ff/1039-canon85f14is?start=1 vs. https://www.opticallimits.com/nikon_ff/591-zeisszf8514ff?start=1)

I have learned that the 85mm f1.4 is a specialized lens wide open. Yes, you do get higher available light shutter speeds but the DOF is so narrow that you really have to know when to use it.

For indoor sports, IMHO good low noise high ISO and solid IS (or maybe a monopod) with a zoom in the f2.8 to f4 range is a better tool for the prosumer indoor sports job.
I'll go out on a limb stating that the Canon 85mm ... (show quote)



Yeah, the Canon EF 85mm f/1.4L IS USM is a wonderful lens.... But it's also a $1500 lens. Not sure why you're singing the praises of a lens that's triple the budget the OP mentions.

More realistic for the OP, with their $500 budget....

Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 USM is on sale for $299 right now (lens hood sold separately, recommended).

Canon EF 100mm f/2 USM (not the macro lenses) has been quietly discontinued and is no longer available new, but can be found used for under $400.

Regarding what exposure mode to use... It depends upon the situation.

With very stable lighting conditions, I prefer to lock in my settings with fully manual exposure. If shooting indoors that's usually doable for an extended time. But if outdoors, one should check every 15 minutes or half hour to see if lighting has changed enough to require tweaking the exposure settings.

With variable lighting conditions.... which include following subjects in and out of shadows or through brighter and more dimly lit areas of an indoor venue... one of the auto exposure modes may be necessary. More and more I use M with Auto ISO (which is not manual mode). Other times I use Aperture Priority AE or Shutter Priority AE. I very rarely use Program AE. I never use Auto ISO in conjunction with Aperture Priority, Shutter Priority or Program AE. And I never use full "Auto" or any of the Scene modes such as "Running Man/Sports". Those dictate far more than just the exposure settings. They take over control of AF, file type, and more. No thanks! (Heck, my primary sports cameras now don't even have Scene modes... They do have a "Point n Shoot" full Auto setting, which I avoid like the plague.)

You should learn how to use the AE modes too. M simply isn't the answer for every situation. There are times when AV/A, Tv/S, M+Auto ISO, or even P can work better.

Whether or not M+Auto ISO AE is usable on a camera depends upon how it's implemented. Older camera models I used had Auto ISO, but it didn't have a means of setting an upper limit and couldn't be used with Exposure Compensation. As a result, it was largely unusable. My current cameras allow both these necessities with M+Auto ISO AE, so I use it now fairly often.

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Jan 14, 2020 15:14:02   #
Notorious T.O.D. Loc: Harrisburg, North Carolina
 
I might contend that if you select M that is manual mode. With M plus Auto ISO the exposure is not changing only the amplification or signal gain applied to the light hitting the sensor based on the shutter speed and aperture.😎

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Jan 14, 2020 18:54:07   #
Webbie62
 
Thank you all for your suggestions. I think I will look to find a Canon 85mm f/1.8 USM. It looks like it will fit my needs.

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Jan 14, 2020 19:57:33   #
A. T.
 
Webbie62 wrote:
I am looking to photograph indoor (and outdoor, again in the late spring & early fall) sports. I am currently shooting High school basketball. I am beginning to realize that a EF 70-300mm 58ᶲ f/4-5.6 is not nearly enough to get good clean photos in manual mode. I can get some while using Sport Mode - but I am not really learning at this point besides blindly experimenting. I presume I will sell the above lens and get a similar with an f/2.8. I am looking for some suggestions while on a budget.
I am looking to photograph indoor (and outdoor, ag... (show quote)


Well, I have grand children who are involved in indoor sports and I use the nikkor 70-200mm f/2.8 and it stays on 2.8 in order to deal with the horrible lighting, keep my ISO as low as possible and keep my shutter speed high enough to freeze action. I don't think anything higher than f/2.8 in those conditions is going to cut it. Problem is, when you start looking at fast lenses the price tag goes through the roof; even used will set you back a pretty penny.

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Jan 14, 2020 20:09:29   #
A. T.
 
tomcat wrote:
Others have mentioned it here, but you cannot do this without a lens that will open up to at least f/1.8. I have been shooting high school sports for years, so trust me. An f/2.8 lens is not going to do the job. I typically use either an 85mm or a 135mm lens and I stand on the corners of the court/under the basket. A crop sensor camera is generally full of noise, so you will have to contend with that.

I could write paragraphs about this topic, but let's start with the basics first. Go get a used full frame body and a lens that is at least f/1.8 if your budget will not allow a new one.
Others have mentioned it here, but you cannot do t... (show quote)


Well, not to be argumentative but I shoot with a D500 for all of my sports with a 70-200 2.8 and I don't have a lot of noise at all; however, I have to stay at 2.8 in order to keep my ISO low enough to keep the noise out. Any way, I don't think he's going to be able to stay within his $500. budget with the aforementioned set-ups we have discussed.

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Jan 14, 2020 20:29:05   #
bleirer
 
Webbie62 wrote:
Thank you all for your suggestions. I think I will look to find a Canon 85mm f/1.8 USM. It looks like it will fit my needs.


I don't think you will be happy with the reach on a full frame body. Set your current lens to 85 and resist the urge to zoom for a whole game, see if you can tolerate it.

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Jan 14, 2020 22:34:13   #
Webbie62
 
I don't think you will be happy with the reach on a full frame body. Set your current lens to 85 and resist the urge to zoom for a whole game, see if you can tolerate it.

Last night I shot two basketball games with florescent lighting with just a 40mm STM with f/2.8 The photos all had good exposure (still using Sport Mode), but by the time I zoomed in close enough the subjects were somewhat blurry on my 27" monitor. I plan to use the "Best" of photos that I have taken to date an make simple 4x6 prints and put them in a 4 to 5 picture frame collage to give to all of the seniors. I plan to continue learning from the photo description properties. A majority of the photos were shot at 1/250 shutter speed and ISO between 1250-650. Regarding whether I would be happy with 85mm - While using my zoom lens I pretty much stay between 70 to 100 to get as much action as possible while still obtaining the player. That was one of many reasons I am considering the Canon 85 58dia f 1.8. The price is also well below the $500 threshold.

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Jan 14, 2020 22:37:04   #
Webbie62
 
I am not familiar with the Anti-Flicker mode.

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Jan 14, 2020 22:45:20   #
brooklyn-camera I Loc: Brooklyn, NY
 
Webbie62 wrote:
I am not familiar with the Anti-Flicker mode.


6D doesn't have the anti-flicker option, the D6MKII has.

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Jan 14, 2020 22:53:34   #
SteveR Loc: Dallas
 
rehess wrote:
Comments here don’t reflect recent progress of bodies - all copies of the KP are quite good at higher ISO from what I hear.


Then your model must be much better than Nikons. D7500's and D500's are Nikon's best low-light cameras other than the D5, yet my experience is that ISO 6000 is about the limit on the D7500.

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Jan 14, 2020 23:04:13   #
LFingar Loc: Claverack, NY
 
Webbie62 wrote:
I am not familiar with the Anti-Flicker mode.


I don't remember if the 6D has an anti-flicker mode or not. It would be in your menu. The icon that looks like a camera all the way to the left of the top bar.
Alternating current causes many types of lighting to flicker in time with it. The human eye can't detect it but the camera can. Depending on shutter speed and the exact instant when the camera meters the shot you can get pictures of varying exposure. Some over exposed, some under, and some right on. Anti-flicker will syncronize the camera to the flickers allowing for more consistent results. In my case I found that I got better results with anti-flicker mode off, which makes no sense. That's why I suggested you experiment, if the 6D has that feature. I sold mine 3 or 4 years ago so I don't remember if it has that feature.

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Jan 14, 2020 23:16:21   #
Webbie62
 
Thanks - That is encouraging. My shots are similar, with similar lighting and some blur on most. On occasion I can get a good shot. I think with all the pages of response, I have been taking notes. Thanks again.

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Jan 15, 2020 01:09:01   #
Harry0
 
El cheapo, just because ...
Get a decent sized lens hood.
Indoor venues can be fairly bright- because there's a LOT of overhead lights.
Near courtside is kewl- until you shoot upwards at the basket.

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