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Archive 2013 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football
  
 
rebelshooter
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p.2 #1 · p.2 #1 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football






Sorry if I come off sounding harsh and insensitive but, how much do you love what you want to do Spend the money, nothing less than a f2.8 300mm (with 1.4 TC) or 400mm and a f2.8 70-200mm will do unless you go for the 200-400 with the built in 1.4 tc.

Ted



Not everyone has the cash to throw at getting the gear. I can relate, when you do it for a hobby and just happen to love what you do, it is hard to justify the $4,000-12000 that you recommend he spend. I enjoy shooting HS football, outdoors, crappy lighting conditions, I get by with my 70-200 2.8 and 100-400 with flash. Granted not ideal but if you don't have the disposable income or just flat out can't justify it, you make do with what you have.

To the OP, I would definitely look on the used market, I shoot 200mm but on a 7D and it is OK with some cropping, not sure how well it would work on FF. I think I would want at least 300MM no matter how you get it. Used 300 f4 would probably be the least expensive way to go. The Sigma 120-300 is said to be an awesome lens but could be a bit of a beast?? Have you considered a used 1DIII as opposed to the 7D? Price would be similar, loose a bit of reach but get the benefit of a pro body. You can occassionally find a Sigma 300 2.8 on here as well, think the last one I remember seeing was about $1800. Good luck on you search.


Jul 08, 2013 at 05:58 AM
gwaww
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p.2 #2 · p.2 #2 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


I've used a 200 2.8L on my 7D with a Tamron 1.4 TC at my grandsons night football games and got excellent shots at ISO 1600. Are they a little noisey? Yes. Can I correct them easily? Yes. I believe that you said that you only needed a few images. Quickly and easily done. I am retired and can afford to indulge on camera equipment occasionally and recently bought a 70-200 MKII. Does it take good photos? Sure. Is it noticeably better than the Sigma 70-200 2.8 OS that it replaced? Nobody that I have shown photos to can tell the difference! So I look at my Canon and wonder if all the money that is tied up in it could have been put to better use. A lot of expensive equipment is being discussed here, and for what you are doing, make sure that the decision you make is sensible.


Jul 09, 2013 at 01:29 PM
shane8168
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p.2 #3 · p.2 #3 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


jspytek wrote:
I've got an older sigma 120-300 2.8 (non OS), I know you can pick those up for below $1,500.


I was in your shoes LONG ago, I get it about the money constraints and the need for good glass...

Don't take jspytek's advice lightly... I have that lens and would not trade it for anything. In a dome, it will do exactly what you need it to do! You don't need the OS version for football.

Find one, buy it for a good price ($1500 is a great price right now) and never look back!

Good luck!




Jul 10, 2013 at 02:41 AM
Sneakyracer
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p.2 #4 · p.2 #4 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Poor Man's 300? There is no better value than this HERE


Jul 10, 2013 at 02:54 AM
Andrew J
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p.2 #5 · p.2 #5 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


The 200 2.8L works with a 2x TC like a dream, and the 1.4x is even better. You can get by with the Tokina (owned the 300/2.8 in that link) or Sigma lenses but the focus speed is 4/5 if you are very kind. 200/2.8L with a 1.4x I give almost 5/5 for focus speed (and quality).
Even on a 7D if you shoot jpg with Standard NR, 2000 ISO looks very good SOOC.



Jul 10, 2013 at 03:39 AM
robbymack
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p.2 #6 · p.2 #6 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


I find it hilarious the number of folks who think an f2.8 supertele is the only way one can catch good sports photos. No one has asked the most important question here, are you getting paid for this? If not then rock your 200 all day and forget about it. Maybe slap on a 1.4 but otherwise save your cash.


Jul 10, 2013 at 05:10 AM
gwaww
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p.2 #7 · p.2 #7 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


OP said he wasn't getting paid. Don't need to ask that question. Another option if you can find one is a sigma 100-300 f4. This lens always gets good reviews and Photozone rates it as highly recommended. It is no longer made and can be found for roughly 650-750. I had one years ago and regret selling it. I'd like to find another.


Jul 10, 2013 at 03:15 PM
pKai
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p.2 #8 · p.2 #8 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


I would not buy any Sigma anything. They ALL have had and the newer ones WILL have compatibility issues which Sigma may or may not fix. Every Sigma lens ever made has eventually had compatibility issues with a newly released Canon body. The newer ones, of course, haven't yet. Someday Canon will release a body that today's Sigma lenses will not work with. Lenses are long-term durable goods, unlike bodies.... Ideally you would want to keep a high quality lens that does what you need for life unless you wear it out. There are quite a few Sigma cheerleaders here, but what I say is true.... Research it and stick to camera-brand.

I would not buy a 5D2 or 6D. Both are too slow for sports. The 5D3 you have is much better for fast action in iffy light as a FF body than anything else out there other than the (out of reach) 1DX. That said, your idea of a 7D for a 2nd body is the correct one unless you can afford a 1DIV or maybe a III. I would not go older than III on a 1D, as the older ones are not as good as a 7D except for build. I know others will disagree with this as well. I've had them all at one time or another, this is how I know....

Isn't indoor football played on a much smaller field than the outdoor variety? About half the size to be exact You may be fine with the 200 2.8.... which is, coincidentally, half of a 400 2.8 that pros generally use shooting outdoor football.

I would try what you have now before spending serious hard-earned cash on a theory. Worst case scenario is that you shoot one game with what you have (zero cost), you find that you could have made better images if you had XYZ... then you go out -- well infomed -- and get XYZ. This is what I would do if I had an interesting yet non-paying gig that may require new equipment.



Jul 10, 2013 at 03:32 PM
ahender
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p.2 #9 · p.2 #9 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


pKai wrote:
I would not buy any Sigma anything. They ALL have had and the newer ones WILL have compatibility issues which Sigma may or may not fix. Every Sigma lens ever made has eventually had compatibility issues with a newly released Canon body. The newer ones, of course, haven't yet. Someday Canon will release a body that today's Sigma lenses will not work with. Lenses are long-term durable goods, unlike bodies.... Ideally you would want to keep a lens for life. There are quite a few Sigma cheerleaders here, but what I say is true.... Research it and stick to camera-brand.

I
...Show more

With the 5D you have a fantastic camera to start with. The slower frame rate will not matter much for you since you only need a few quality images per game. As for a lens, if the field is smaller, a TC added to your 200 f2.8 should work fine. While some say big, fast primes are not necessarily needed to get quality sports shots, the reason they are used is because they focus fast. A 300 f2.8 IS will focus mush faster that a 200 f2.8. I have the 300 f4. While the image quality is exceptional, the focus speed is slow. Once you acquire focus, it works just fine. Been using it for 10 years.

If what you are shooting is arena football, I think the optimal combination for you would be the 5D plus a 70-200 with TC.

If your budget allows, go ahead and get the mkII version of that lens. I just bought the version I and I will upgrade as soon as the wife says I can.

From what I have read, the arena football field is only 50 yards long with an additional 8 yards at each end zone.



Jul 10, 2013 at 03:52 PM
splathrop
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p.2 #10 · p.2 #10 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Another vote for the 70-200 with 1.4 TC.

Reasons:

1. You are on a budget, and your best chances for unobstructed shots will always be close to you, not farther away, because there is less intervening field for a ref or an irrelevant player to get in the way of the action. That will stay true even after your ship comes in and you buy a 400 2.8.

2. For really close action down the sidelines, there will be times when even 70mm may have you backpedaling. You can't change a prime to get those great close-up action shots.

3. You get to choose your lens speed according to the lighting available, f/2.8 or f/4 according to taste, prioritizing speed or reach for an optimal solution that fits the shooting situation best.

4. Dont worry at all about degraded sharpness or contrast. I'm very picky about those, especially contrast. Even with the 1.4 TC you will get super images.

5. The Canon 1.4 TC on the 5D III w/70-200 IS II works GREAT. You will rarely if ever have a focus speed or tracking problem for field sports. I shoot track meets with that combo, and long jumpers coming straight at the camera stay in sharp focus for 3 shots in the air, reliably.

6. It's the right lens for the future. It will remain a keystone of your lens collection.

7. Did I mention the IQ will be pro quality, even with the extender, and the focus fast and reliable, even using your outer cross points? They will, really.

You can take that combo out and the only notable difference between you and the best equipped pro, in terms of results, will be you will be giving up the more-distant shots, which usually aren't your best opportunities anyway. That and some background blur; the pro with a super-telephoto will have an edge there.



Jul 10, 2013 at 05:17 PM
 

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kateman
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p.2 #11 · p.2 #11 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


pplskills,
FWIW, generally, i must agree w/ pKal re: sigma glass. it is much less $$ up front, but quality is a VERY big problem. now, having said that, i have used a sigma 70-200 for 7-8 yrs now on my 2nd body w/o issues. But, the 120-300 original was a piece of crap. i tried three different copies, all of them had focus issues, even after sending to sigma for"fixes". i know several of the posters here will disagree w/me. The mod on this board uses one of the 120-300 w/ great success. so... for the money, if you can find a "good" copy, it is a money piece of glass and as others have said, it is good glass for the $$, and is in the price range you suggested.
I shoot indoor arena football for a semi-pro team w/ canon Mk II's and now, Mk III's and i miss the zoom a lot. But now i use a 300 2.8 non is and the sigma 70-200 w/ good success. i have longer glass for outdoors. would love a new canon 200-400, but i dont want to rob a bank, so...
good luck and sorry for the long winded reply.
b



Jul 10, 2013 at 06:11 PM
CSStevens
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p.2 #12 · p.2 #12 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Haven't really read through much here but the Sigma 300mm 2.8 is a great deal for a lens going only $11-1300 or so. I used it before I got the Canon 300 2.8 and it was pretty good for what it offered.


Jul 10, 2013 at 06:32 PM
gwaww
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p.2 #13 · p.2 #13 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


pKai wrote:
I would not buy any Sigma anything. They ALL have had and the newer ones WILL have compatibility issues which Sigma may or may not fix. Every Sigma lens ever made has eventually had compatibility issues with a newly released Canon body. The newer ones, of course, haven't yet. Someday Canon will release a body that today's Sigma lenses will not work with. Lenses are long-term durable goods, unlike bodies.... Ideally you would want to keep a high quality lens that does what you need for life unless you wear it out. There are quite a few Sigma cheerleaders here,
...Show more

Let's see,
Back in the 80's I remember a company that had made a ton of lenses that wouldn't work on new Canon bodies. That company was Canon! All of a sudden all of my FD and FL lenses were not compatable with the new EOS bodies. Talk about frustrating! In the 50 years that I have owned Canon equipment, I have had more trouble with Canon lenses malfunctioning than Tamron, Tokina or even Sigma. I also have taken a lot of action shots with a 5D
MK II, but what do I know?



Jul 10, 2013 at 07:41 PM
pKai
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p.2 #14 · p.2 #14 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


gwaww wrote:
Let's see,
Back in the 80's I remember a company that had made a ton of lenses that wouldn't work on new Canon bodies. That company was Canon! All of a sudden all of my FD and FL lenses were not compatable with the new EOS bodies.


I can deal with a once-a-century mount change. Sigma, OTOH, reverses-engineers everything and eventually they do not work on a new body. Sigma will update firmware for a while and then drop support leaving you with a paperweight. Happened to me with a 400 5.6, 500 7.2, and an 80-200 2.8 before I learned my lesson. Buy it right or buy it twice.

Glass-wise, I will readily admit that some Sigma offerings are as good or even better (50 macro comes to mind) than Canon. This makes it even worse... eventually that tack-sharp piece of glass will die and Sigma will refuse to fix it even for a fee. Then you have a tack-sharp doorstop.

Don't know anything about Tamron and Tokina. Never had one. I suppose they reverse-engineer as well and eventually become incompatible. If they are better than Sigma when it comes to dropping support, then OK..... go for it if the savings are worth it.

gwaww wrote:
Talk about frustrating! In the 50 years that I have owned Canon equipment, I have had more trouble with Canon lenses malfunctioning than Tamron, Tokina or even Sigma.


Sorry to hear that.... you must have gotten a bunch of lemons. I've been doing this since the mid 1970s (age 13, Canon FTB) and have NEVER had a Canon lens compatibility-related malfunction after owning easily a couple of dozen various lenses over the years. EVER.. Not ONE....

OTOH, every Sigma lens I and everyone I know have ever owned, has been eventually orphaned in a similar manner. Those lenses that haven't suffered this fate are too young.


gwaww wrote:
I also have taken a lot of action shots with a 5D
MK II, but what do I know?


I never said it was impossible to make an action shot with a 5D2. I too have plenty because that's the camera I had in my hand when the action happened. I merely stated that I would not buy that camera for the purpose of making action shots. There are better choices out there for similar or less money. Besides, the OP already has a 5D3 which is THE prosumer full-frame action body. Why would he waste his money on a 5D2


Edited on Jul 10, 2013 at 08:18 PM · View previous versions



Jul 10, 2013 at 08:07 PM
ahender
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p.2 #15 · p.2 #15 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Below are links to "simple" reviews on the Sigma 120-300 and Sigma 70-200.

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Sigma-120-300mm-f-2.8-EX-DG-OS-HSM-Lens-Review.aspx

http://www.lensrentals.com/blog/2013/06/sigma-120-300-f2-8-os-sport-part-1-features-and-optics

https://www.lensrentals.com/rent/canon/lenses/telephoto/sigma-70-200mm-f2.8-ex-dg-hsm-os-for-canon

http://www.the-digital-picture.com/Reviews/Sigma-70-200mm-f-2.8-DG-OS-HSM-Lens-Review.aspx

From Lens Rentals:

"The 120-300mm f/2.8 OS has pretty much summed up my long-term love-hate relationship with Sigma. How could I not love an f/2.8 zoom in this range with great optics? How could I not hate that for 2 years itís been our most frequently repaired lens, lasting an average of 13 weeks before going back to the factory?"




Jul 10, 2013 at 08:16 PM
RyanL
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p.2 #16 · p.2 #16 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Found a steal right here...OS version!

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=130945722593&ssPageName=ADME:B:SS:US:1123



Jul 11, 2013 at 11:46 AM
84bravo
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p.2 #17 · p.2 #17 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Don't discount the 1.4 converter with your 200 f2.8. Maybe you could rent or borrow one before making up your mind. I find the TC-1.4 II pretty quick with the 70-200 f2.8 (both the newest and the older models) and adequate for sports with a 1D series body. The 5DmkIII will give you plenty of latitude with higher ISO and you can get away with some pretty dramatic crops. The focus on the 5Dmk III should be up to the task, however you may find the frame rate a bit slow. (I've got to chuckle sometimes when we complain about slow autofocus or 6 fps. We used to shoot pro sports with a Nikon F36 that did a whopping 4 fps and we had to follow focus with our hands!)

A 300 f2.8 with a 1Dmk IV would be ideal, but that doesn't fit your budget or your needs, considering that you're not being paid. If you start getting paid for sports then start shopping for a beater 300 f2.8 and a 1Dmk III and use it until you can justify a newer one.

I shoot a lot of football from high school to NFL. For night high school football in a dim stadium I typically use only the 70-200 f2.8. For college or NFL I use a 300 f2.8, a 70-200 f2.8 and a 16-35 f2.8 each mounted on three separate bodies. The 300 is used 90% of the time and the 70-200 is used only in the end zones. The 16-35 only gets used for a couple of frames and is typically a "grab" camera for when a play happens right in front of me. It's seldom used, but when it is it's worth carrying.

Good luck!

LarryK



Jul 12, 2013 at 01:53 AM
pplskills
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p.2 #18 · p.2 #18 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


Carl Auer wrote:
Moved to correct gear talk board.


Sorry about that Carl Noob mistake. Also did I see you mention that you were going to try to use the 120-300mm Sigma for basketball? I guess you could get some decent shots from other end of court but never thought of using anything past 135 or 200 for basketball. Then again, I don't know much.

______________________________________________

Sneakyracer wrote:
The 200 f2.8 is a superb lens. You can try using a 1.4x on it. I had it for a while and sold it to get the 70-200 but I miss that lens both for its optical quality (not just resolution but bokeh, color and contrast) and it's small size and light weight.

That said the 70-200 IS is a must have lens since it is very useful for a very wide range of situations. If you can get one, get it. Most 70-200 are sold by people switching to another system (nikon?) or upgrading to a newer version of the
...Show more


Ya the 70-200 is pretty standard. I should really ditch the 200mm prime and get either a Canon 70-200 2.8 or a Sigma 120-300. I would be using Monopod if I got monster 120-300. The 120-300 would be the perfect lens for football with a ~85mm on 2nd body for wide shots.

shane8168 wrote:
I was in your shoes LONG ago, I get it about the money constraints and the need for good glass...

Don't take jspytek's advice lightly... I have that lens and would not trade it for anything. In a dome, it will do exactly what you need it to do! You don't need the OS version for football.

Find one, buy it for a good price ($1500 is a great price right now) and never look back!

Good luck!



Yeah maybe I should just find a reliable copy of the old Sigma 120-300. Selling a 50 1.2 would almost cover it and I could still keep my Canon 200mm 2.8 prime for other sports that don't need zoom as much.

robbymack wrote:
I find it hilarious the number of folks who think an f2.8 supertele is the only way one can catch good sports photos. No one has asked the most important question here, are you getting paid for this? If not then rock your 200 all day and forget about it. Maybe slap on a 1.4 but otherwise save your cash.


Yeah, I'm probably getting way to caught up in the gear huh. I don't have a lot of hobbies so this is one I'm willing to throw some cash at. Also, a good lens holds its value and hopefully can be used for years and years. I would rather not use a 1.4x as that would changed 2.8 to 4 and if I make the move to 300mm I would like to stay at 2.8. I agree that I should be rocking that 200 all day .


pKai wrote:
I would not buy any Sigma anything. They ALL have had and the newer ones WILL have compatibility issues which Sigma may or may not fix. Every Sigma lens ever made has eventually had compatibility issues with a newly released Canon body. The newer ones, of course, haven't yet. Someday Canon will release a body that today's Sigma lenses will not work with. Lenses are long-term durable goods, unlike bodies.... Ideally you would want to keep a high quality lens that does what you need for life unless you wear it out. There are quite a few Sigma cheerleaders here,
...Show more

1D III looks nice but double price of 7D. Probably just go with 7D for now. Do I keep hearing rumors about 7D MII?

This is standard American college football field (100 yards).




ahender wrote:
With the 5D you have a fantastic camera to start with. The slower frame rate will not matter much for you since you only need a few quality images per game. As for a lens, if the field is smaller, a TC added to your 200 f2.8 should work fine. While some say big, fast primes are not necessarily needed to get quality sports shots, the reason they are used is because they focus fast. A 300 f2.8 IS will focus mush faster that a 200 f2.8. I have the 300 f4. While the image quality is exceptional, the focus
...Show more


Thanks for advice on focusing speed. I'll cross off that 300mm f4 from my list for sports.


To everyone else: Thanks for all the replies. I think this is the community for me. Look forward to posting some photos soon.



Jul 12, 2013 at 05:46 AM
OntheRez
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p.2 #19 · p.2 #19 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


pplskills,

You've been given lots of advice, much of it useful, based upon a lot of assumptions that you haven't spelled out. We don't know anything about how much light there is in this "indoor football stadium. You really need to determine that before you spend money on anything. Also everyone has assumed that you are referring to American style football as opposed to soccer. There are differences in how I approach the two sports. Another missing key piece of information is where will you be shooting from? If you are on the sidelines a 400mm prime will quite often be useless.

I'm the sports PJ for a very small newspaper and every venue I shoot in is waaay dark. I do shoot from the lines anywhere on the field except where I'd interfere with the line judge (assuming American football here). My 300mm f/4.0 is just too slow. In fact given how dark and rough it is on the sidelines, I just can't shoot with primes. That might not be so much of an issue indoors. I shoot 95% of the time with the 70-200 f/2.8. Even wide open (and my 1DIV cranked to ISO 25600) I'm generally still at least a stop too slow. Yes, there are times I lose a shot because I don't have 300mm capacity. Yes, the Sigma 120-300 f/2.8 is attractive. They've gotten a lot of bad press so I hesitate as the pay at this level is pitiful that any expenditure is a major effort.

I started with an old, battered 70-200 f/2.8 no IS. Took great pix. I'd suggest you start there as this focal range - at least from my shooting vantage - works about 80% of the time. Both of your primes are beautiful lenses. (I have them and use the 135 for indoor winter sports). I think you'll find them too limiting given the wildly variable distance of photographer to subject that can happen in football.

Good luck. If you're like me, there is an amazing amount to learn.

Robert



Jul 12, 2013 at 03:44 PM
jay tieger
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p.2 #20 · p.2 #20 · Cheap Mans 300mm for football


When I shot h.s., college, and pro sports it was before auto-focus and the standard set up for football was 105, 200 and 300mm lenses, each on its on body

This was the 300...$100 on fleabay...it's a fine lens and for the price you get a lot of quality "reach"
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Nikon-Nikkor-H-AUTO-300mm-F-4-5-SN-421164-Non-Ai-Lens-/221253312636?pt=Camera_Lenses&hash=item3383b9a07c

...for basketball the standard setup was 35/2, 50/1.4, 85/1.8 and 135/2.8 depending on courtside position...

Somehow we got along just fine without zooms and AF...some of us still do...and since no one had mentioned the 300 mf Nikkor as an affordable option, I thought I would.



Jul 14, 2013 at 12:51 AM
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