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Thread: D300 for Sports Shooting?

  1. #1
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    D300 for Sports Shooting?

    Can I tap into your knowledge please?
    I am soon wanting to step up from my beloved Panasonic FZ100 to a DSLR so am starting the research what will suit me.
    Might be pure coincidence but recently, on a number of occasions, I have heard/seen/read about how good the D300 has been in the Nikon range, particularly with regard Sports shooting.
    Why would this be?
    My thinking is, I can save some serious pesos by buying used, therefore more to spend on decent lenses.
    A number of D300 units are coming up on the 'pre-loved' market at really good prices.
    Is my thinking flawed here?
    Fredo
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    I think you are spot on

    D300 (and get the grip and use AA batteries too) is a fine sport camera. Fast accurate focus, weather resistant, rugged, good buffer size, fast fps. ISO very good up to about 2000.

    D7000 looks OK, but I dont know it's particular sport credentials
    Darren
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    Geez that was fast Darren!
    Thanks for that. Just seems to make sense for me to go this way.
    If I do land one of these (and I am likely to) would you mind if I asked you about lenses?
    I have been trying to see what gear you use.
    Anyway, thanks again.
    Fred

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    Sure

    My sport kit is a d3 and a d300s, 70-200 2.8 and a 400mm 2.8 (I had a 300 2.8 when I "just" had a DX camera but on FX it was too short for field sports)

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    Sorry mate but I don't have the jargon down as yet so . . DX/FX - suspect you are talking about sensors but matching lenses to sensors types? . . I have no clue yet.
    More reseach required on my part.
    Do you find the 70-200 is enough for Field Sports? (Soccer/Footy/Hockey)

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    ahh, DX is effectively a 1:5 to 1 crop factor, FX is full-frame.

    The 70-200 is a bit short though with a 1.4 TC it's adequate on a D300.....300mm is better. Really depends on your budget - but a 70-200 for me covers a lot of sport indoors and out and sits on my D300 as a second camera. It would be the first lens id recommend to a sport shooter (and the sigma 70-200 is fine also)......the next step up is the expensive one.

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    Gottcha.
    I was thinking 300mm but depends what is on the market at the time. Again, pre-loved is okay for me.
    Hey thanks again Darren. Really appreciate it.
    Just had some good news . . well for me it is . . one of my shots has been published in the sports section of the Cairns Post and they have asked me for more. That's a real buzz for me!


  8. #8
    i don't shoot field sports, but i dabble in motorsports. i get a lot of keepers with d300 and 70-200 vr (they are pretty much always together). the af system is very good once i learned to use it to its full potential. for primarily sports usage i think the d300 is the minimum body you can get away with, but it is an awesome camera for the money. for indoor sports, before i got a d700, i had a lot of success with d300, 17-55 and 2 speedlights.
    Thanks,
    Nam

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    Moderately Underexposed I @ M's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Fredo View Post
    Again, pre-loved is okay for me.

    Just had some good news . . well for me it is . . one of my shots has been published in the sports section of the Cairns Post and they have asked me for more. That's a real buzz for me!
    A good D300 will be a very capable camera ( I see a secondhand one with 4,500 shutter clicks on it advertised for $600.00 on a reputable site at the moment) with good lenses and going by your posted image you should be able to get some excellent keepers.

    As for the newspaper asking for more --- congrats on being published but I would urge you to start asking the paper how much they are going to pay for your images, simply giving them away only means that they start to employ less photographers.
    Last edited by I @ M; 03-05-2011 at 5:19pm.
    Andrew
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    Quote Originally Posted by I @ M View Post
    As for the newspaper asking for more --- congrats on being published but I would urge you to start asking the paper how much they are going to pay for your images, simply giving them away only means that they start to employ less photographers.
    Thanks for confirming the 'goodness' of the D300.
    Um . . I think you might be overstating the relevance of my few photos to plight of newspaper sports photographers.
    Just for interest sake, how much would you charge for a shot like this?
    Fred

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    I can understand where you are coming from Fred, but what if you were a pro like me trying to sell photos to that same paper ? You are not alone though, heaps throw free stuff at papers, it's ruined the profession. Everyone should stop, maybe you could be the first ?

  12. #12
    Ausphotography Regular Tommo1965's Avatar
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    Fredo

    a D300 will be a awesome camera for your needs... Ive just bought a used D300s and im amazed at its AF abilities...it will focus very quickly with the right lens and is alway spot on...even in near darkness with the AF assist light turned off !!.

    a 70-200 MM lens will have enough reach for soccer and Hockey..but 200mm is sometimes a stretch on a footy oval if the players are at the opposite side to you .

    a tele converter can overcome this and Nikon make excellent converters...I just bought a 1.7 tele and can confirm that the focus speed on a Nikon 70-200 VRII is almost as quick as the lens itself and sharpness and lens IQ are also very good.

    I thanked you for your original post as its refreshing to see someone think about their purchases as you have ...nothing wrong with saving a few bucks on used gear...

    on that note...you might consider a D700 later on , as I predict a few will be on the used market when the D700 replacement is released . the D700 is great in Low light and will compliment a D300 very well as a alternative body when less reach is required as it has a 35mm FX sensor
    Last edited by Tommo1965; 03-05-2011 at 7:27pm.

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    Ausphotography Regular Tommo1965's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kiwi View Post
    I can understand where you are coming from Fred, but what if you were a pro like me trying to sell photos to that same paper ? You are not alone though, heaps throw free stuff at papers, it's ruined the profession. Everyone should stop, maybe you could be the first ?
    if a pro tog was at the same game..i can see your point...I can even see your point if they were not...but for us amateurs...to get your shot in a local rag would be a achievement many of us { me included } couldn't pass up ..

    Fredo

    you could always run that one past the paper...say your not that comfortable in doing pro Togs out of a crust....so how about some coin....Id ask $150....aint got a clue if thats anywhere near the right amount...but id be chuffed with it ..you might even get a repeat gig with them

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    I dont deny it's a thrill to get a photo published....been there too. But then what ? Start asking for money when you've been providing for free they just go to the next free guy, that's all.
    Last edited by kiwi; 03-05-2011 at 7:46pm.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    Also note too.

    Even tho you may well have(eventually) an extremely capable camera in the D300, don't skimp on a CF card for it. D300's take CF only.. D300s's take CF and SD cards.

    Speed of the CF card is a vital consideration to take into account when shooting sports.

    You don't necessarily need to purchase a $300 Sandisk card(I didn't!) but I orignially had a very cheap 8Gig card for my main purpose(landscape and general shooting) but once I dipped my toes into more fast paced action a while back, I found that the cheap 8Gig card was limiting the ability of the D300, in that the CF cards write rate was too slow.
    I don't know what the cheapie card's write rate was, but I eventually got myself a cheapish 90Mb's CF card and the difference in how the D300 now shoots is faster by a country mile.
    With the old slow card, I'd soon be hitting the camera's buffer(internal memory) after only 10-12 shots(I'm talking NEF not JPG), and the camera would grind to a halt and would eventually lock itself up whilst trying to clear the buffer.
    With the faster card(only cost $100 for 8Gig) the buffer is now no longer an issue.
    I can shoot up and I think over 25 frames before any slow down, and even if I do detect any slow down, if I stop for only a sec or two, the camera's buffer is immediately cleared and I can continue.
    With the slower card it may take up to 10 or more seconds for the buffer to clear, depending on how many shots I continued with.

    Get a fast card!! for sports shooting.
    I think they had 16G versions of the same card for approx $130 or so too.. regret now not getting the 16G version
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    Ausphotography Regular Tommo1965's Avatar
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    good point Arthur....at the moment I just shooting with a SD card as I havnt sorted out my Cf cards yet.....but ive seen some sandisk 60Mbs for $85 from a aussie seller . the 16Gig 90MBs were $165....sandisk again.

    my Sd card is 16 gig and only 20MBs...but I seldom shoot in anything other than single shot mode..i try and judge the action and time to press the shutter..so far its not been too bad like that...the card and the shots I mean..but Id imagine Id do better at multi frame mode
    Last edited by Tommo1965; 03-05-2011 at 8:11pm.

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    Indeed I have a 2nd hand d300s and the sd card 2nd slot, and video is definitely worth the small difference in price.

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    A royal pain in the bum! arthurking83's Avatar
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    all SD cards are slow ... well slower than CF cards anyhow.
    (the only real negative point against the otherwise brilliant D7000!)

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    Ausphotography Regular Tommo1965's Avatar
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    after replying to Arthur..I went and bought two of the sandisk 16 gig 60 MBs cards...$179 to my door from surfers paradise..not bad as my local HN wanted $120 for one!!.

    yep Kiwi..I like the second slot ..not that ive used it yet...but I will ...still in getting to know you mode with the D300s.....one thing I dont like is the ISO button location...it should have been where the mode button is and the mode button where the Iso is...I like to be able to change the iso with my eye to the viewfinder and with one hand...

    but I digress.....Fredo..perhaps a D300s might be worth a look mate...i wanted video in my DSLR...but in truth Ive never used it...its there for a what if moment only

  20. #20
    Ausphotography Regular Tommo1965's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by arthurking83 View Post
    all SD cards are slow ... well slower than CF cards anyhow.
    (the only real negative point against the otherwise brilliant D7000!)
    yes mate...but if Nikon had given the D7000 all that the D300s has..then no one would buy the D300s....I tried the D7000 in the shop....but I preferred the grip of the D300s....not as clean images at the high ISO...but for me ..it was the way to go

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