Luvin' the 1DX for gymnastics
/forum/topic/1172785/0



JohnPinette
Registered: Nov 10, 2009
Total Posts: 31
Country: United States

Shot my second meet of the season with the 1DX. Still getting use to it, but its starting to feel comfortable. Some of my favorites of the level 9/10 session, shot in crap lighting under a high flat black ceiling with big round lights spewing out an ever changing range of hideous colors.

First 2 are at ISO 25600, the rest at 12800 with the 70-200 f/2.8 II. I'm in love.

cc welcome!

John

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mdalby
Registered: Feb 06, 2011
Total Posts: 416
Country: United States

John,

Sounds like pretty challenging situation with the lighting. Were you shooting from the floor? Were you limited in being able to position yourself for each event? I haven't shot gymnastics yet.

I wish we could have seen more faces but I imagine you are limited on that.

The shots look good at those ISO ranges. Did you use any NR PP?

Thanks for sharing.



Tareq
Registered: Aug 17, 2006
Total Posts: 405
Country: United Arab Emirates

Nice results shots you did, this camera opened better joy in shooting sports or something else in so low light conditions, now i am going out to use my 1DX for forth time and i am happy with all previous games i did shoot, this camera will see the light in sports for long i think.



Russ Isabella
Registered: Jan 30, 2005
Total Posts: 9971
Country: United States

Really impressive set, John. Great action and impeccable timing! #10 is my favorite. I've never ventured into that ISO territory but it's good to see the possibilities. If you don't mind my asking, what Case are you using and how do you have your focus points set (single point? if so, with any surrounding point activated?). Thanks for posting.



Aqualung
Registered: May 19, 2007
Total Posts: 2066
Country: United States

Very nice, like #10 & #12...I'd just straighten your horizons on several, like #3.

chris



JohnPinette
Registered: Nov 10, 2009
Total Posts: 31
Country: United States

Russ Isabella wrote:
Really impressive set, John. Great action and impeccable timing! #10 is my favorite. I've never ventured into that ISO territory but it's good to see the possibilities. If you don't mind my asking, what Case are you using and how do you have your focus points set (single point? if so, with any surrounding point activated?). Thanks for posting.


Hi Russ, what I've found works best so far is start with Case #6 with the Tracking Sensitivity set to -2 for lower level gymnasts and -1 for higher level gymnast. I have AF point auto switching set to +2.

The AF point auto switching works extremely well. I use all 61 point auto switching for compuslary gymnasts and 9 point auto switching from the center point for optionals. If you can keep the subject in the AF field , the 61 point auto switching locks onto the eye socket and stays there. AF is tack sharp every time. I didn't even try the autoswitching the first 1/2 dozen times out because it never worked consistantly on the Mark IV and previous gens.

On vault I tried single point, single point with surrounding point assist, and 9 point auto switching, and the 9 point auto switching was vastly superior. Single point was pretty much the same as the Mark IV from my experience, which was not good enough when shooting 12-15 feet behind the vault table.

John




Russ Isabella
Registered: Jan 30, 2005
Total Posts: 9971
Country: United States

John: This is awesome information. Thank you! Even though I'd read the manual and the various white papers about the 1Dx's AF system, I'd not understood the auto-switching setting until now, after reading your comment and going back to one of the reference documents. I've always known there was more tweaking to be done, and now I know what to tweak. I can almost imagine vault becoming less of a nightmare to shoot!



Vancouver47
Registered: Sep 25, 2008
Total Posts: 364
Country: Canada

I have been viewing Russ' gymnastics work for the past year and love it. Now I have John's work to follow. Outstanding photos John.

Like Russ, I now have a far better undertsanding of AF settings. Thank-you



BillP57
Registered: Apr 07, 2010
Total Posts: 931
Country: United States

Great shots and timing. The clarity at those ISO's is really impressive.

Bill



Focus Locus
Registered: Apr 25, 2006
Total Posts: 834
Country: United States

#2 caught my eye. Probably because it isn't seen too often.

#14 is seen all the time, or rather something "close" to #14 is seen all time. One has to admit that the particulars of this specific #14 are unusually elegantly excecuted, by both the athlete as well as the photographer's timing. Does the capability of the camera facilitate this intersection between athlete and artist?

#10 is appreciated precisely due to the timing. Those back kick flicks happen in mere milliseconds, and there is not much "preparation" in the way of "cues" to let a photographer know ahead of time that this microsecond of a moment is coming. The athlete is already balanced and supported, and is not leaving the mat, so there is no deep breath, nor plie preparation, nor mat spotting to offer the clue. That kick just happens and it's gone... and unlike compulsorys or collegiate, where you know the routines by rote or by repetition, one never knows what optional levels 7-10 will do.

Yet here it is, absolute optimal peak, on both 10 and 14, and a rather rarely seen moment on vault. It is blasphemous to even suggest that experienced photographers rely on frame rate for their work. They don't. And they don't need to.

But I'm beginning to wonder, within the short micro bursts of double or triple taps, if there is indeed a world of difference between 14FPS vs 8 FPS? Not for blindly machine gunning, but for the more precise dithering of peak millimoments. where one can chose between eyes open and closed, for example.

The timing of 10 and 14 inspired this question, where "very close" no longer is good enough, because spot ON has been seen and achieved.



CW100
Registered: Apr 03, 2009
Total Posts: 4433
Country: United States

ISO 25,600 looks good !



MakoShark
Registered: Jan 05, 2011
Total Posts: 1200
Country: United States

very nice work! Its all said above, great job in horrible conditions!



fstop212
Registered: Jul 30, 2004
Total Posts: 3149
Country: United States

all I can say is WOW.



BlueReptile
Registered: Sep 18, 2004
Total Posts: 956
Country: United States

Great set John, finally a body almost as good as the D4 . We've had great feedback from this Rhode Island Invite, thanks to you Selma wants me to shoot more warmup candids on vault and bars instead of head shots now...



BobnJake
Registered: Dec 26, 2004
Total Posts: 1488
Country: United States

Thanks for opening up my eyes to AF point auto switching!!!
Bob



ifxbonz
Registered: Mar 02, 2004
Total Posts: 1733
Country: United States

Its nice to hear about the AF switching. I haven't ventured there either, but you open my eyes to give this a whirl. I like the image quality for the high iso and the timing, but I would like to see a little more post work with the colors an and vibrancy, the images are a little flat. What software are you using for your post work and were these jpgs or raw images?

Andy



lhryshko
Registered: Dec 24, 2009
Total Posts: 938
Country: Canada

John,

These are insanely good wrt timing. The 1DX looks like a game changer as it's extremely rare to see gymnastics shots at the shutter speeds you're showing here. Awesome stuff!



crfrey71
Registered: Nov 14, 2004
Total Posts: 773
Country: United States

So with the 61 points enabled and the EOS iTR enabled, did it take awhile to trust the AF to track? Where were you targeting the autofocus point? In the chest area? On the face? Just curious, since I shoot in similar conditions, with a similar type of subject. Thanks!