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FORUMS Photography Talk by Genre Sports Talk 
Thread started 09 Jun 2011 (Thursday) 22:47
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Qs for Basketball Photographers

 
Markd102
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Jun 09, 2011 22:47 |  #1

What focal length lens do you prefer?
I tried my 70-200 on a 7D, which gives me 112mm at its widest, and found it was too long.

Also, where in the stadium do you like to shoot from?




  
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JOEinSD
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Jun 09, 2011 23:12 |  #2

I'm sure most would say they like shooting from baseline; I do.


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DC ­ Fan
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Jun 09, 2011 23:44 as a reply to  @ JOEinSD's post |  #3

Basketball pictures from a Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 lens and a Canon T2i.

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 75.0mm
Aperture: f/2.8
Exposure Time: 0.0040 s (1/250)
ISO equiv: 3200
Exposure Bias: none
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Manual
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 70.0mm
Aperture: f/2.8
Exposure Time: 0.0020 s (1/500)
ISO equiv: 3200
Exposure Bias: none
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Auto
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 89.0mm
Aperture: f/2.8
Exposure Time: 0.0031 s (1/320)
ISO equiv: 3200
Exposure Bias: none
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Auto
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB


In an area where basketball is king and thousands of games are played each season, the most frequent single-lens photographic solution for the sport is a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. If there's a trick to using this lens for basketball, it's to position yourself where the lens is most useful -- typically at an endline corner, as done in these examples, where the action can be properly framed at both ends of the court.

There are basketball photographers who prefer a two-camera approach, having a 70-200mm f/2.8 mounted on one camera body and a wider lens on a second camera body. However, some of the busiest basketball photographers in this area, people who take pictures for money and bring their own strobes to games, use only a 70-200mm f/2.8 lens. One prefers the endline corner, while another always positions himself in the center of the free throw lane. All are satisfied with the lens' field of view.



  
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Effectivepull
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Jun 10, 2011 00:01 |  #4

Yup, the 70-200 on my 7D is a bit too tight when sitting under the basket (at least for me). Moving out to the corner will help. I prefer either a 50mm or 24-70 on my 7D when sitting under the basket.


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sun5150
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Jun 10, 2011 00:05 |  #5

I shoot baseline to the side of the basket.
I bring 70-200 and 24-70 .




  
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snyderman
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Jun 10, 2011 00:40 |  #6

I owned, but didn't bring the 70-200 f/2.8L IS to HS games at all. Gyms to dark to get fast enough shutter speeds. Not because it's too long at 70mm, but I found it too cumbersome to track and get good shots due the weight of the 7D, grip loaded with two batteries and an 8" lead pipe hanging off the front of the 7D.

Someone mentioned at 24-70. I've seen others shoot HS basketball with that lens as well. I haven't because again, the f/2.8 usually means really high ISO settings while shooting ambient light only.

What worked best for me was the 85mm f/1.8 or the 50mm f/1.4 if I wanted wider shots. Standard settings for HS basketball are 1/640 on the shutter, (note: I don't even like to go to 1/500) f/2 on the lens and ISO 2500 is about standard in most gyms. The best lit gyms the 1/640 and f/2 require ISO 1250, a poorly lit gym can be up to ISO 4000.

With an 85mm f/1.8, I could sit right where the baseline and sideline met and get great shots from the 3-point line to the basket all night long.

dave


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Markd102
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Jun 10, 2011 01:01 as a reply to  @ snyderman's post |  #7

I could try the nifty 50 I spose, but I worry about its rep for focus problems in low light.
Might be time to save for the 50 1.4L




  
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Effectivepull
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Jun 10, 2011 01:06 |  #8

I've tried the nifty 50 (1.8) and didn't have focus problems.


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dwarrenr
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Jun 10, 2011 05:49 |  #9

I only shoot basketball strobed so the 2.8 if really to wide. But I'll bring my 24-70 and my 70-200. I'll set on the baseline. But I've found 80% of my shots will come from the 24-70. Towards the end of the season I just stopped using the 70-200 all together and only shot with the 24-70.

The problem with the 50 (or so I've heard) is that it does not focus as fast as say the 24-70 and 70-200. Depending where you can set and if there is enough room, you could look at the 80mm 1.8. I have several gyms that I could use that at as they have a lot of room between the baseline and the wall/bleachers.


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Jun 10, 2011 05:49 |  #10

Markd102 wrote in post #12568290 (external link)
I could try the nifty 50 I spose, but I worry about its rep for focus problems in low light.

Basketball pictures from a Canon 50mm f/1.8 II lens.

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.0
Exposure Time: 0.0010 s (1/1000)
ISO equiv: 2000
Exposure Bias: none
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Auto
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB
GPS Coordinate: undefined, undefined

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 50.0mm
Aperture: f/1.8
Exposure Time: 0.0010 s (1/1000)
ISO equiv: 1000
Exposure Bias: +0.33 EV
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Manual
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB

IMAGE NOT FOUND
IMAGE IS A REDIRECT OR MISSING!
Byte size: ZERO | Content warning: NOT AN IMAGE


Focal Length: 50.0mm
Aperture: f/2.0
Exposure Time: 0.0016 s (1/640)
ISO equiv: 3200
Exposure Bias: none
Metering Mode: Matrix
Exposure: shutter priority (semi-auto)
White Balance: Auto
Flash Fired: No (enforced)
Orientation: Normal
Color Space: sRGB

The Canon 50mm f/1.8 II has worked well at actual basketball games.



  
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Cozmocha
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Jun 10, 2011 09:05 |  #11

50D + 50mm 1.8

IMAGE: http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2455/5773520162_87f5520cce_z.jpg

The thing is that the AF of the 50 1.8 will slow down your burst rate a bit and sometimes can be unaccurate. I notice I big different between the 50 and 85 1.8 in the amount of sharp photos and burst rate.

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MT ­ Stringer
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Jun 12, 2011 21:55 |  #12

70-200 f/2.8 almost exclusively with strobes.

I sit behind the baseline over to the right side (when facing the court). Sometimes I will move to the left side for a quarter. I have also used the 300 f/2.8 on the 7D to shoot the far end of the court. Whew! Sometimes it is hard for me to figure out who has the ball, and by that time they are coming back to my end of the court. Gets comical when I have the wrong camera in my hands. I have to stop and watch one play to get back in sync.


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Markd102
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Jun 13, 2011 01:40 |  #13

Strobes?
WOW. I didn't think it would be allowed. Thought they'd be too distracting for the players.
I assume you'd need permission?




  
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primoz
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Jun 13, 2011 01:46 |  #14

For me 70-200 is only way to go. And even that not on 70mm range but somewhere from 150 to 200mm. It's on 1d so it gives you 1.3x instead of 1.6x but still. Normally I shoot from baseline, not straight under basket, since there's space for TV cams and we are not allowed to be there, but on one side of basket. Personally I don't like wide shots (and neither do agencies and newspapers), so I don't have problems with being too long ;)


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dwarrenr
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Jun 13, 2011 05:28 |  #15

Markd102 wrote in post #12583654 (external link)
Strobes?
WOW. I didn't think it would be allowed. Thought they'd be too distracting for the players.
I assume you'd need permission?


I've never had a problem shooting at a gym with strobes. If I'm shooting at a gym I've never shot before, I'll tell the AD that I will be shooting with strobes and if any of the coaches or ref's ask me to stop I will stop. Never been a problem as long as they are setup high enough, it will not be an issue. Shoot I've seen news paper photogs even shooting with a flash on the their shoe. They have not even stoped them.


D. Warren Robison
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Qs for Basketball Photographers
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