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2.8 Fast enough for night sports?
  
 
ryoung
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p.1 #1 · p.1 #1 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


Hey everyone,

Quick question. I am shooting the yearbook for my school, and I'm curious what everyone else uses for night sports. Our football games go well into the night and my current setup is not quite cutting it. Our football field lighting is sub-par too. I'm pretty much shooting into a black hole here.

I currently have a 1DIV paired with a 70-200 F4 non IS lens. I can get keepers at ISO 6400, but even then, my shutter speed is only 1/200. Only reason I'm getting some keepers is due to my steady hands and good panning.

Would a 70-200 2.8 IS lens make a huge difference, or would I be better off with a 100 F2 and a 50 1.8? And no, I can't afford a 1DX. Thanks in advance!



Nov 08, 2017 at 11:59 AM
TeamSpeed
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p.1 #2 · p.1 #2 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


Between a stop faster lens, and better post processing, you should be able to hit 1/500 shutter speeds at ISO 6400. That still isn't great for sports. You need a collective 2 stops of shutter speeds, through a faster lens, post processing tools and technique, and camera, to really make a dent in what you have to shoot. I know that the 1d4 can deliver keepers at ISO 12800 too, so there is one stop there with post processing.

This means with a f2.8 lens at ISO 12800 can deliver 1/800 shutter speeds, which is where you need to be.



Nov 08, 2017 at 12:07 PM
mb126
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p.1 #3 · p.1 #3 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


What's your budget? You may just consider buying the 200 f/2.8 prime since the other options you mention will be too short.

Using ETTR with the 1D4 you should be able to get a good number of keepers at 1/640, f/2.8, and ISO 10k or 12800. 200mm on the 1D4 is a little short for football but all of the other options require a big investment.

If you are looking at a bigger investment, the cheapest option is the 300 f/2.8 non-IS which go for ~1500 used these days.



Nov 08, 2017 at 12:46 PM
hotdog12
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p.1 #4 · p.1 #4 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


I shot for newspapers for decades and feel your pain about shooting HS night sports. A f/2.8 lens is essential, IMO. I've used one of the 70-200 f/2.8 versions ever since Canon started making them and I get more "keepers" with this lens than any other, including my beloved 300 f/2.8. I was especially pleased once I started shooting with the 5D III body and the 5D IV is even better.

The more recent sensors lets me keep a minimum shutter speed of 1/500th sec. and a usually a maximum ISO 6400. But a 70-200 f/2.8 is a key lens.

Good luck!



Nov 08, 2017 at 01:15 PM
ggreene
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p.1 #5 · p.1 #5 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


Any of the 70-200/2.8 zooms are nice to have. IS is not mandatory for action if you can get to 1/500. Offers much more versatility on shooting sports then primes. Perfect for indoor where you are usually closer to the athletes. For outdoor it's more of a challenge as you have a lot less reach to cover large fields. For outdoor you need to wait for the action to come your way or just follow the action. Having access to the sidelines would help.


Nov 08, 2017 at 06:28 PM
mikeinctown
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p.1 #6 · p.1 #6 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


The 2.8 is a huge deal in low light situations, but newer bodies have significantly better ISO performance. 12,800 in my 1Dx is far better than 6,400 was in my 5D2 and probably better than 3,200 was as well.


Nov 08, 2017 at 06:29 PM
NCAndy
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p.1 #7 · p.1 #7 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


I shoot our high school teams at night. The lights cycle and are not that bright, the endzones are 1.5 stops darker for example. What I have used that might work for you is a 7D2 with a 135 f2. It's not my first choice with the gear I have but I do take it on occasion and get good results at ISO 5000/6400, 1/1000s, and f2.0. The 7D2 has anti-flicker tech that is essential in my situation. I shoot raw and with good processing the results are certainly good for yearbook prints. The 1D4 and 7D2 are pretty similar for DR but you would lose a bit of reach using it over the 7D2 with the 135, though your 70-200 has more reach with the 1D4.

Here is an image with the 7D2 and 135 f2 cropped to 3450x2300, sharpening not optimized for posted size. It would certainly work for yearbook, newspaper, parents prints.




  Canon EOS 7D Mark II    EF135mm f/2L USM lens    135mm    f/2.0    1/1000s    6400 ISO    0.0 EV  




Nov 08, 2017 at 07:12 PM
Herb
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p.1 #8 · p.1 #8 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


The IS lens are not going to help you, you want lens speed....the faster the better. If you can get by with the 135 f2 that will help a bunch.....otherwise the 2.8 lens.....


Nov 08, 2017 at 07:26 PM
rstoddard11
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p.1 #9 · p.1 #9 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


100 f2 is a great lens. I have used the 135L f2 also and yes it is better at some things, but for $400 the 100 f/2 is 95% as good.




Nov 08, 2017 at 07:31 PM
NCAndy
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p.1 #10 · p.1 #10 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


rstoddard11 wrote:
100 f2 is a great lens. I have used the 135L f2 also and yes it is better at some things, but for $400 the 100 f/2 is 95% as good.



I agree though when one is already reach limited going to a shorter focal length is less ideal. I've used my 200 f2 on the 7D2 for night sports and it does great but it's in another league from those other lenses in price and weight. Bottom line is with a crop camera f2.8 is probably on the margin. If the OP is willing to shoot at 1/500s then a f2.8 lens would probably work. You risk some motion blur at that ss but compromises have to be made. I see motion blur in some photos at 1/1000s on the 7D2. Not all blur is bad though. It can actually enhance the image as long as the important parts are sharp.



Nov 08, 2017 at 07:43 PM
 

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1photoatatime
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p.1 #11 · p.1 #11 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


hotdog12 wrote:
I shot for newspapers for decades and feel your pain about shooting HS night sports. A f/2.8 lens is essential, IMO. I've used one of the 70-200 f/2.8 versions ever since Canon started making them and I get more "keepers" with this lens than any other, including my beloved 300 f/2.8. I was especially pleased once I started shooting with the 5D III body and the 5D IV is even better.

The more recent sensors lets me keep a minimum shutter speed of 1/500th sec. and a usually a maximum ISO 6400. But a 70-200 f/2.8 is a key lens.

Good luck!


I recently upgraded from 6D to 5D IV and 70-20mm f/4 to f/2.8 and I must say, I am blown away by the upgrade in image quality both indoors and outdoors. I am not sure why people are complaining so much about the 5D IV and jumping ship to the Sony camp.



Nov 08, 2017 at 09:12 PM
hotdog12
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p.1 #12 · p.1 #12 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


1photoatatime wrote:
I recently upgraded from 6D to 5D IV and 70-20mm f/4 to f/2.8 and I must say, I am blown away by the upgrade in image quality both indoors and outdoors. I am not sure why people are complaining so much about the 5D IV and jumping ship to the Sony camp.


I hear a lot of Sony hoopla, but I've yet to see a pro using a Sony in the field on a paying gig. I'm sure someone is, but it sure isn't popular with folks who earn their living with a camera.



Nov 08, 2017 at 09:40 PM
tshore
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p.1 #13 · p.1 #13 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


For badly-lit night football games, you need every stop you can get. a 70-200 2.8 non-IS would be a great choice for you. A 135 f2 would be good also, though losing the zoom would cost you some flexibility and reach and maybe some missed shots. I have the 100 f2, but have found its FL too short for football. Consider jumping the ISO to 12,800 if you are only able to get 1/200 at ISO 6400. You really want 1/400 minimum. You will lose IQ, but pictures will likely be better due to less motion blur.



Nov 08, 2017 at 10:17 PM
rek101
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p.1 #14 · p.1 #14 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


I've head that for sports, people try to stay at 1/1000 and are usually at ISOs like 8000. I would assume that they are all using 2.8 lenses to get their shutter speed higher. If you're only at 1/200 at ISO 6400, you would need two stops to get to sports like shutter speeds, so you're options are the 135 f/2 at iso 6400 or or the 70 to 200 f/2.8 at an ISO of 12,500. It sounds like there just isn't enough light to make anything but the f/2 or f/1.8 lens work. That being said, print some photos taken at ISO 12,500 and decide if you can live with them before choosing. I suspect the 70 200 zoom would work perfectly.



Nov 08, 2017 at 10:43 PM
TeamSpeed
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p.1 #15 · p.1 #15 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


I shoot basketball at 1/2000, at f3.2, with auto ISO in manual mode. I no longer care about the ISO, the 5d4 does so well, it frees me to worry about other things that are more important.


Nov 08, 2017 at 11:01 PM
AmbientMike
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p.1 #16 · p.1 #16 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


What are you using for NR?

If you shot at 25,600, you'd be at 1/800, which should be enough.

An f/2.8 lens should approximately double your ss, so you'd be at 1/400. I don't do a lot of sports, but that sounds low.

I tried using a 55-250 for basketball one time, thinking I'd get something, with the IS. It didn't seem like it was working. I went back to the 50/1.8, but that's probably too short, for football.

Are you doing a regular yearbook? If so, the photos are pretty small, so you might get away with the higher iso. Try the Neatimage free download. Yeah, you can buy stuff but most students don't have a lot of extra money.



Nov 08, 2017 at 11:12 PM
NCAndy
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p.1 #17 · p.1 #17 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


TeamSpeed wrote:
I shoot basketball at 1/2000, at f3.2, with auto ISO in manual mode. I no longer care about the ISO, the 5d4 does so well, it frees me to worry about other things that are more important.


In our HS gym it's more like 1/1000s, f2.8, ISO 8000 and under the basket is another stop less light than mid court.



Nov 08, 2017 at 11:52 PM
level1photog
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p.1 #18 · p.1 #18 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


hotdog12 wrote:
I hear a lot of Sony hoopla, but I've yet to see a pro using a Sony in the field on a paying gig. I'm sure someone is, but it sure isn't popular with folks who earn their living with a camera.


Most hype on the internet are around "influencers" pushing Sony. Blog/article/influencers sell hype and get some kick back off affiliate links/YouTube views. Most of them are either teaching or shooting mostly models for TFP not working professional. It wasn't until the A9 or A7RIII that make it a viable professional camera. However, most features like eye AF, 20FPS just make things easier to get the shot. Canon pretty much catch up on ISO/DR and it isn't noticeable difference between most camera manufacture nowaday.

Sony camera also have alot of features, but the lens are so expensive than Canon counterpart. Canon have less feature rich camera but more affordable lens. While it is true that Canon has been pretty boring when it come to specs, people like to jump ship to try out new gear (I'm tempted too), but the 5D Mark IV is a solid camera for still photography.

I know alot more wedding photographers shooting Canon than Sony. It is better for focusing low light, reliable, dual card slot, 30mpx, ergonomic, and alot of first and third party lens for cheap. Canon 5D IV can be had for $2700 refurbish. I'm a big believer in investing in lens than camera.




Nov 09, 2017 at 12:14 AM
pjbuehner
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p.1 #19 · p.1 #19 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


It seems that a few posters have confused the benefit of Image Stabilization (IS). IS freezes camera shake but has ZERO impact on freezing motion of whatever you are taking photos of. The only way to freeze subject motion is through shutter speed or strobe. When shooting sports, IS has very limited usage. Some will say that it helps them see the object when looking through the viewfinder but I haven't really noticed that personally.
The reality of nighttime sports in many venues is that you really can't capture good images no matter what you are using for gear. You can only hope to capture good enough.



Nov 09, 2017 at 12:37 AM
TeamSpeed
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p.1 #20 · p.1 #20 · 2.8 Fast enough for night sports?


NCAndy wrote:
In our HS gym it's more like 1/1000s, f2.8, ISO 8000 and under the basket is another stop less light than mid court.


I shoot at ISO 16000, sometimes up to 25600 in rare cases.



Nov 09, 2017 at 12:43 AM
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