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FORUMS Photo Sharing & Visual Enjoyment Sports 
Thread started 19 Oct 2007 (Friday) 17:37
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Some Volley Ball Tournament Tests **56K Warning!**

 
PhotosGuy
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Oct 19, 2007 17:37 |  #1

My home town High School had a tournament a few weeks ago. They were State Champs & the coach was State "Coach of the Year". Now they're down to two returning players & it looks like a "building year". ;)

So having played competitively (at a much lower level), & never having shot VB before, I thought I'd take a shot at it & pass on what I learned 'cause someone is always asking "How do I...".
The lighting was some sort of mercury vapor lamps, & my first recommendation is to shoot RAW & use Custom White Balance. See the links in post #3 for more info.
No noise reduction was used beyond the minimal default settings in RSP.

I used several lenses & ISOs for this to see what worked best. The 28-70 mm f/2.8 L, 70-200mm f/4 L, and my 50mm f/1.4 & 105mm f/2.5 Nikkors. Initial exposures were found using this: Need an exposure crutch?

First I shot a test with the 70-200mm f/4 L, the lens I most wanted to use because it seems to focus faster than the 28-70mm f/2.8 L, at ISO 3200 f/4 1/400 sec.
This is about a 60% crop. Post processing of this 4-up image & the others following was USM 100 0.8 1

#1 is as close to my exposure reading as I could get.
#2 is with the exposure (& noise) bumped up in RAW processing.
#3 is #2 with the WB corrected. I used the ball as my white.
#4 is #3 with some noise reduction with Noise Ninja on a setting of 13. Higher settings made her skin look unnatural, and second, processing would be needed with a Layer mask to combine good settings for her skin with more NR on the background. Still, it would be doable, & might make an OK 8 X 10" print.

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/V-ball-tests.jpg?t=1192828162


Conclusion: The noise isn't near as bad as I thought it would be, even at a 60% crop. More accurate focusing on my part would help, too.
More on high ISO noise: ISO 200-6400 20D Tests


OK, so it's game time. These two shots were at ISO 1600 f/2.8 1/400 sec. 28-70mm f/2.8
Things happen very fast & I missed my focus point! Nothing seems focused in the 1st shot, & notice that the scoreboard is almost nicely focused in the 2nd shot? ;)

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0093.jpg?t=1192828201

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0043.jpg?t=1192828224

FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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PhotosGuy
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Oct 19, 2007 17:38 |  #2

Back to the 70-200mm f/4 @ ISO 3200 f/4 1/400 sec, to try a non-action shot. I wish they hadn't changed into the black shirts?
This is probably 90% of the full frame, & exposure was bumped 2X in RAW processing.

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0224.jpg?t=1192828266

These last shots were taken from the bleachers.
The Nikkors have to be manually focused & I thought I had the net in focus. Wrong again! The chairs are nice & sharp, though.

70-200mm f/4 @ 100mm, ISO 3200 f/4 1/400 sec.
This is close to 20% of the full frame, & exposure was bumped .6X in RAW processing. Why not bumped the 2X in the above shot? Light levels in one part of the court aren't the same 8' away in another part of the court.

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0260-02.jpg?t=1192828371


105mm f/2.5, 1/500 sec, ISO 1600, about a 50% crop. Exposure was bumped 1.25X

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0337.jpg?t=1192828433


105mm f/2.5, 1/400 sec, ISO 1600, about a 40% crop. Exposure was bumped 1.25X

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0352.jpg?t=1192828465


Also 105mm f/2.5, 1/400 sec, ISO 1600, about a 40% crop. Exposure was bumped 1.25X

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0356.jpg?t=1192828506


50mm f/1.4, 1/500 sec, ISO 800, about a 10% crop. Exposure was bumped .6X

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0382.jpg?t=1192828539


50mm f/1.4, 1/500 sec, ISO 800, about a 20% crop. Exposure was bumped 1.25X

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/_MG_0380.jpg?t=1192828575

FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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PhotosGuy
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Oct 19, 2007 17:38 |  #3

Conclusions:
1/ If all you have is a f/4 lens you can get some usable shots. Especially if you only make small 4X6" prints & use some noise reduction.
2/ Even a cheap f/1.8 lens would be well worth the price.
3/ One day shooting these tournaments is not enough time to be comfortable anticipating the play, even if you know the game. Experience counts for a lot. Being able to zoom to the right crop, instead of cropping in PP will make a big difference in your results.
4/ If your lens is fixed focal length, move to where you expect the shot to happen & wait for it. Sooner or later, it will happen.
5/ If you have court-side access, introduce yourself to the refs & ask where they would prefer you to place yourself.
(Another guy there had a flash. They stopped the game & told him to bounce it off the ceiling. See the link in post # 15.)
6/ Unless you're a pro with a upload deadline, RAW! RAW! RAW! ;)


And finally, how do you salvage a shoot when most of your results look crappy? My solution was to make a poster where small images will look good. :D
Go Ye forth & come back with better results!

IMAGE: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v218/PhotosGuy/Forum%20Junk/8X-Poster_01.jpg?t=1192828615

Post #18 has links to shots the following year, and another poster, using the 85mm f/1.8.

Some related sports shooting threads:

Sports Shooting Tutorials and Advice

How to shoot volleyball (external link)

"Shooting Football with Robert Hanashiro" (external link)

Gym lighting:
Why stadium lighting fixtures (mercury vapor, fluorescent, etc.) often yield unexpected and hard to control shifts from frame to frame. (external link)

includes: "Discharge Light White Balance Tests (external link)"


Probably too much on Auto focus:
KennyG - Best use of location and AF points for motorsport
American High School Football Question.
https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=112654
https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=299391
https://photography-on-the.net/forum/showthre​ad.php?t=299446

Another "help me what do I do thread" (Sports Flash indoors - Good stuff from Gavin)


Soccer (Football) Shooting Strategies

Why do you guys use manual? AV makes more sense.

Question about shooting high school & league sports School sports & model releases.

FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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Croasdail
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Oct 19, 2007 21:08 |  #4

Interesting stuff. When I shoot volleyball, I take 1 lens, my 85 f1.8 and this it is. We have sort of a relationship going on, any other lens would fell, well, unfaithful. Now when that 200 f1.8 ships, I might be tempted into cheating a little.

The conditions you shot it, two or more matches going on makes it amazingly hard to get clean shots. All things considered, looks like you made the best of it. The good thing about VB is there is none of this sitting around waiting for a shot to present itself. There are plenty of opportunities.

Good post... muchas gracias amigo




  
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PhotosGuy
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Oct 19, 2007 22:36 |  #5

Thanks, Mark.

When I shoot volleyball, I take 1 lens, my 85 f1.8

I expect that I'll do the same with the 50 f/1.4 I was amazed that the 10% crop held up as well as it did. If I get closer with it, it should produce some nice shots.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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TooManyHobbies
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Oct 20, 2007 08:22 |  #6

I still love the 70-200 f2.8 IS the best, but I can go high ISO with a MIII. I converted the 20D to IR. I used my 85 f1.2, but I wasn't close enough. It's also slower AF than the 1.8. I really like closeup action shots. I shot VB for the first time recently to test out the camera not realizing how hard it was going to be especially with a new camera that I hadn't mastered switching focus points on quickly. I got one shot that I liked.

http://www.photography​-in-nc.com/smf/index.php?t​opic=217.0 (external link)

I took 2 lenses obviously and used the 70-200 more.

I can't wait for college gymnastics to startup!

I tried swimming for the first time too.

http://www.photography​-in-nc.com/smf/index.php?t​opic=229.0 (external link)


~ Jeff

Canon EOS-1DX & 1Ds MkIII, 20D(IR), G12, G9, G5, ... Gear List
JMM Photography ~ Discovering Art in Everyday Lifeexternal link | Model Mayhem #675060external link

  
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Oct 20, 2007 12:33 |  #7

PhotosGuy wrote in post #4157556 (external link)
Thanks, Mark. I expect that I'll do the same with the 50 f/1.4 I was amazed that the 10% crop held up as well as it did. If I get closer with it, it should produce some nice shots.

Tons of CA on that 1.4 though...Looks really soft IMO


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PhotosGuy
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Oct 20, 2007 20:07 |  #8

Looks really soft IMO

I've used that lens for almost 40 years & I'm sure that fault is with the operator. ;) I think it will be fine at a larger crop & I get some more practice with MF.
I'm not ruling out getting the 85 f/1.8, either.
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FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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kona77
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Oct 20, 2007 20:40 as a reply to  @ PhotosGuy's post |  #9

Nice shots Frank and thanks for taking the time. VB can be very tough, cramped area. tough light, and hard to predict play.

I like how you handled it, make a poster.:)
I will be busy the next couple of days, my main computer $&%^ the bed and I have to format and reinstall EVERYTHING.:cry:


Proud father of a 10 year old son with Down Syndrome.
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PhotosGuy
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Oct 20, 2007 21:36 |  #10

VB can be very tough, cramped area. tough light, and hard to predict play.

That's partly why I shot it. I'm getting bored with the car season over. :D

and I have to format and reinstall EVERYTHING.

I'm seeing that on my horizon, too. I'm still trying to find an XP install CD without all the extra "free" crud on it.


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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kona77
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Oct 20, 2007 21:50 |  #11

PhotosGuy wrote in post #4161779 (external link)
That's partly why I shot it. I'm getting bored with the car season over. :D
I'm seeing that on my horizon, too. I'm still trying to find an XP install CD without all the extra "free" crud on it.

I used Acronis to create an image onto another HD so I can have all my info. The pain in the @$$ is reinstalling all of the programs. I would back up your HD now to make sure you have all of your info. Do you need a new cd for installation? I might have an extra copy, unused. Just let me know.


Proud father of a 10 year old son with Down Syndrome.
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Jan 10, 2008 20:36 |  #12

Excellent solution with the poster idea -- I'll remember that one for our indoor 'shoots' for the kids.


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Melissa ­ in ­ ND
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Jan 23, 2008 21:10 |  #13

Thanks beautiful photos. Wow, someday.......


Melissa in ND:)
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PhotosGuy
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Jan 24, 2008 11:14 |  #14

Thanks, Melissa. I wouldn't call them "Wow" as other people in "Sports" have done much better, but the next shoot should be higher quality.
And, just to "Feed My Frankenstein", I picked up the 85mm f/1.8, so I'm out of excuses now! ;)


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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PhotosGuy
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May 22, 2008 09:03 |  #15

As I said before, most refs don't allow flash unless it's bounced.
I just ran across Curtis's excellent thread: No more excuses about high ceilings and bounced flash

This should be a "MUST read" before you shoot in these underlit school gyms!

Thanks, Curtis!!!


FrankC - 20D, RAW, Manual everything...
Classic Carz, Racing, Air Show, Flowers.
Find the light... A few Car Lighting Tips, and MOVE YOUR FEET!
Have you thought about making your own book? // Need an exposure crutch?
New Image Size Limits: Image must not exceed 1600 pixels on any side.

  
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Some Volley Ball Tournament Tests **56K Warning!**
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