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Frank Lauri wrote:
How do you like using the 600 for these guys.....is it a 100% use for the entire game or games or do you switch off to something shorter throughout. Do you feel it's sometimes a bit long or have you adapted to positioning yourself to accommodate the lens?
I use the 600 probably 90% of the time with day games. The cheerleader shots are usually with the 80-200/2.8L MDP.
I like the 600 because it lets me be lazy. I sit on the far 25-yard line and let the action come to me. I move to behind the endzone when/if the drive crosses midfield. So I only have to get up off my butt a couple of times each quarter.
IMHO, shooting with a long prime is also easier than leading the line of scrimmage with a 100-400 or 50-500 because you don't have to worry about zooming to compose... you get what you get. When the subject is close to you, you get a nice tight sportrait. If the subject is farther away, you get the helmet to cleats shot.
For youth sports, the 600 pairs nicely with the full-frame 5D3. It takes the extreme reach away that I get from using it with 7D and 1D3/1D4 (extra 30% or 60%). But sometimes 600mm is "wide enough" and you don't need the effective 960mm reach that a crop sensor would give. Sometimes I goof around and add a 1.4x TC on the 7D to get 1344mm equiv.
I like mixing in the FF 5D3 for youth sports where I have complete access to the whole field, but I'm not yet convinced that I'd want to invest in the full-frame 1DX as a primary body. I still like having the 1.3x and 1.6x reach for when I am positioned in safer designated spots on HS football, LAX, soccer, baseball, and softball fields.
I get some nice permutations from just 2 lenses (200/1.8 and 600/4L) and 3 bodies (5D3, 1D4, 7D). And then if I add a 1.4x TC to the mix, I can dial up any reach from 200mm - 1344mm.
Overall though, as much as I love the 600/4L (hard to decide if I prefer the 200/1.8L or the 600/4L most), I thought I might eventually trade it for a 400/2.8L. But I like that the 600 forces me to shoot a lot tighter than I was originally comfortable with years ago and it definitely captures shots that parents can't get with a megazoom kit lens from the stands.
It's not a subtle or discreet lens... a pain to travel with (I travel a lot) and it always draws the same conversations on the sidelines. But it also somehow streamlines access when covering a new field for the first time approaching the media gate or officials or AD's before a game. And I get a lot of parents that ask for my website address so they can see the pictures... something that probably doesn't happen as much if shooting with a kit lens.