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Thread: Best type of lens for Action/sports

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    Best type of lens for Action/sports

    Ive been reading up on a few different lenses and I think im more confused that ever now, im currently working with my 200mm kit lens and while the photos I take are ok, they are just too noisy for my liking and id like to make them sharper.

    I mainly take photos of AFL, always indoor and low lit (hence the noise with the high ISO) a few basketball games and the one month in Jan when I go to the Aussie Open Tennis which is usually indoors as well.

    I use a Sony A380 atm, can anyone suggest anything for me that I can look out for?
    "Anything that is perfect is a series of mistakes"

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    Your biggest problem is going to be the low light.
    I have just used (for the first time) a 100-400 f4.5:5.6. Initially was very happy but then realised the light drop off at 400 means I have to do some rethinking.
    If you are happy with the focal length you are getting with the 200 then look for a better lens of similar specs but with a much lower f number or much larger filter diameter.
    My favourite lens at the moment is a 18-135 with a 72mm filter diameter.
    I just looked at the Sony lenses and there are 2 that I would consider for myself but they fall within my parameters.
    Best to see if you can go somewhere and put your choices on a body and try them out. That's what I ended up doing.
    Peter.

    Some of my photo's are at www.peterking.id.au

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    Thanks for the advice Peter, I will have a look around, I think i have chosen a difficult path for myself with low light action, but I will persevere and see how I go

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    You will want an f2.8 lens, especially given the high ISO performance of you camera is a bit behind the Canon and Nikon offerings. Something like the Sigma 70-200 would be a good place to start.

    Cheers
    Leigh
    Nikon D600, 24-70, 300 VR1 2.8, Tamron 60 f2 macro + Kenko tubes. SB800.



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    yep sound advice from Peter, low light/ indoors +fast sport= fast lenses so as Peter says the smaller the f number the better. This also usually means BIGGER $$$'s.
    Have you investigated noise reduction software? while its no replacement for a fast lens it can render some slightly noisy images salvageable.
    I know little about Sony cameras but if this is your chosen field, maybe investigate if Sony has a higher end camera with less noise or look at some other brands that may be more suited to this field of photography.
    Just some ideas
    Cheers David.

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    Member James T's Avatar
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    I don't know about Sony kit, so can't recommend specifics. But for indoor sports, fast primes are usually the way to go. 85 f/1.8 is a go to lens for a lot of basketball photographers, along with the 135 f/2 (speaking from a Canon perspective).

    70-200 and 24-70 can also work (when don't they ) but are a full stop, or more slower than the primes.

    You need as fast a lens as you can get, not only for keeping the ISO manageable, but also for focussing speed and accuracy.

    Indoor sports is also a time when a better camera body will make huge differences to your images.

    PS Indoor AFL? Didn't know that existed, is that some cavernous air hanger that they play in?

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    Quote Originally Posted by James T View Post
    PS Indoor AFL? Didn't know that existed, is that some cavernous air hanger that they play in?
    Etihad stadium James, its

    Thanks for all the ideas, so far I have to change brands, get a better camera and spend a whole lot on a good lens and then im set!

    Haha, I will look out for a f2.8 secondhand and see how I go, I only take photos for myself so I dont need them to be super perfect, have tried some noise reduction software but with the backgrounds being so detailed it is hard to get right.

    Id love to put a few pics up but they get taken off (AFL copyright )

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    Ah the Etihad, I don't really think of that as indoor, though I suppose technically, half the time it is.

    I've shot AFL in there, f/2.8 is fine as their lights are pretty good. Ideally you want more than 200mm for AFL, but you can get by if you chose your position and pick your moments wisely. (All the AFL stuff on my site was shot on full frame cameras with a 70-200).

    You can manage with slightly slower lenses, say f/4 but it limits your options somewhat.

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    just get something fast in the focal length you require. 70-200 f2.8 is popular. if this is too short then maybe a 300 f2.8... starts getting expensive tho.

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    Quote Originally Posted by James T View Post
    you can get by if you chose your position and pick your moments wisely
    I have a reserved seat on the fence, so whenever they come past I often have to pull it in, but id like to get some of the shots in the forward line (im right on the 50) They arent too bad now but if I go anything under 200 I dont think it'd be worth it, plus the security will be on my back about having something over 200mm.

    I would like to try out the 200mm f2.8, I could then use my 2x teleconverter on it and get a decentish shot...

    Is there much difference between the brands like Sigma, Tamron and Sony? Im guessing they all do the same thing

    Ving - Id love the 300mm, but I dont think my bank balance would, they do certainly jump up in price from there

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    Linnie i use a sigma 70-200 on my 7d and have been really pleased with the results, for the price, you can't go wrong, and I don't think you have any other options in focal length without taking a second mortgage out on you house, Sony do have a 70-400, but has an aperture of 4-5.6, so you'll probably struggle to get a fast enough SS, so this really only leaves the sigma, tamron and Sony 70-200's, while the Sony will be a great lens, but it will cost you, grey price is around $2,500, from what I've read, the tamrons focus could be too slow, but is known for it's IQ, where for around $900-$1000 you can get the sigma, fast focusing, good IQ at 2.8, but gets really good at around 3.5-4 and you don't have to worry about stabilization as that's in the camera.
    Hope this helps some more.
    Jayde

    Honest CC whether good or bad, is much appreciated.
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    Quote Originally Posted by dulvariprestige View Post
    Linnie i use a sigma 70-200 on my 7d and have been really pleased with the results, for the price, you can't go wrong, and I don't think you have any other options in focal length without taking a second mortgage out on you house, Sony do have a 70-400, but has an aperture of 4-5.6, so you'll probably struggle to get a fast enough SS, so this really only leaves the sigma, tamron and Sony 70-200's, while the Sony will be a great lens, but it will cost you, grey price is around $2,500, from what I've read, the tamrons focus could be too slow, but is known for it's IQ, where for around $900-$1000 you can get the sigma, fast focusing, good IQ at 2.8, but gets really good at around 3.5-4 and you don't have to worry about stabilization as that's in the camera.
    Hope this helps some more.
    Yeah for sure, a lot of recommendations for the Sigma, I will get one of these for sure, thanks everyone for your help, I would have never thought of anything like this

    Ill be sure to post some pics when I get one, hopefully before my upcoming holidays

    Thanks again everyone for all the advice

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    I got the Sigma 70-200 a couple of months back and think its a great lens. I use it for motorcross and its pretty good I think. The HSM focus is excellent and makes a real difference with its speed and is virtually silent & IQ is great to.(now I need to get better).
    Sigma have just released a new version with better glass and OS but its more expensive, (over US$1600) and now the older (APO 70-200mm f2.8 EX DG HSM II Macro) version may become hard to get as stock gets low.
    C R Kennedy (official importer) has a bit on their web site about matching prices on Sigma lenses that are offered by grey importers so thats worth looking into as well.
    Pentax K20D & Grip, Sigma 17-70 f2.8-4.5 DC Macro, Sigma APO 70-200 f2.8 EX DG HSM II, Metz Mecablitz 48 AF-1 flash, LowePro Flipside 300 backpack, Photoshop CS 5, Lightroom 3, Manfrotto Monopod & 498 RC2 Ball Head, GoldPhoto "Tracker" Tripod, Hoya CPL and UV filters, Yongnuo RF602 flash triggers.

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    For sport, I believe Canon got better camera body and better fast lens than other brands. 70-200mm f/2.8 is great for the job.

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