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beginner needs camera for indoor volleyball
This volleyball mom needs help choosing a camera to take indoor volleyball photos. I have looked at Canon XTi and Olympus E-510 but wish there was a P&S that would do the trick- something smaller and simpler than an SLR. Any ideas?..

Comments (15)

I usually let the pro's here reply but since I see no one has, I'll give you my two cents worth. If you're going to be shooting volleyball inside a gym, you probably need to need a fast lens if you go the SLR route. My guess is that whatever kit lens come with it just won't cut it. If this is the route you're inclined to go with, it won't be cheap. You're probably looking at something within the 2.8 (aperture) range if you want quality pictures..

So, if your purse is a little light after the holiday, the p/s will probably be your best choice. I don't think you'll get the exact image quality, but you'll probably still be satisfied.Again, just my two cents worth from one beginner to another.Corona_Drinker..

Comment #1

I don't believe a compact will be satisfactory under these conditions and this is where DSLRs excell.......as long as you have the proper lens. Like the previous poster suggested, a fast lens capable of apertures larger than f2.8 would be ideal. If you're seated fairly close the 50mm 1.8 might be a good start and easy on your budget (under $100) since fast zoom lenses are going to be $500 and up...way up.Regards,Hank..

Comment #2

Even f/2.8 lenses will usually be too slow for indoor volleyball. If you like the feel of the Canon Rebel XTi, then add the 85mm f/1.8 lens (about $350). It will do the job nicely. On the Nikon side, the D80 and 85/1.8 would be the choice (a bit pricier though)...

Comment #3

Before you spend a fortune to buy into a DSLR system, you might look at the bridge cameras..

Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ18 and Canon PowerShot S5 IS are nice examples of how much a bridge camera can do for you.This forum lets you do side by side comparisons of cameras. You'll like it...

Comment #4

But none of the P&S or bridge cameras will do the trick for indoor volleyball...

Comment #5

DaveKl wrote:.

But none of the P&S or bridge cameras will do the trick for indoorvolleyball..

Exactly. Non-dSLR shots will be blurred, dark or both. You will really need f/2 or faster, in fact I think the Nikon 200mm f/2 lens was developed precisely for indoor volleyball. Very expensive though.....

I'd go along with the 85mm f/1.8 (or f/1.4 if you can afford it) assuming you can get close enough..

Alex.

Http://alexandjustine.smugmug.com/..

Comment #6

Between the XTi and Olympus models you're looking at, I'd go with the Canon..

Get a Canon 85mm f/1.8 USM AF lens if budget permits (around $325 right now at some vendors)..

If budget won't permit, get a 50mm f/1.8 AF lens for starters (under $100). But, the 85mm is a much better choice..

Zooms won't be bright enough for indoor sports in most school, even at ISO 1600..

JimChttp://www.pbase.com/jcockfield..

Comment #7

I hate to tell you, but shooting a hectic sport indoors is simply not for beginners..

Many may protest and say you can do it with the right equipment, but a) the right equipment costs thousands of dollars and b) even with the right equipment, you are likely to get frustrated because it requires very fast reaction times, good timing and lots of experience on the photographer's part to get these shots right..

Two weeks ago, an obviously very talented sports photographer called Donald Chin has posted a series of women's indoor volleyball photos athttp://forums.dpreview.com/...forums/read.asp?forum=1022&message=26073784.

I do not have the honour of knowing Mr Chin but I admire his photography. The shots he posted were taken with the combination of an Olympus E-3 body fitted with a Zuiko Digital ED 35-100mm f/2 zoom lens. In other words, a $1700 camera and a $2200 lens. I don't have either myself, but even if I did, I wouldn't be able to take shots like this - despite not being a beginner. So before you give in and spend megabucks on professional sports photography equipment, I would like to warn you that it may not be the greatest idea. If you need photographs of your child(ren) playing, you may be better off hiring the services of a photographer with a proven track record of great indoor volleyball images rather than try taking some yourself..

Photography is a wonderful hobby, but shooting indoor ball games is among the most difficult genres - I thought it was useful to know before making a decision.pbase Supporter..

Comment #8

I agree with the comments in this thread and want to add my .02 from my experience..

I bought a Nikon d50 and 85 1.8 lens 2 years ago to take pictures of my daughter playing high school varsity basketball. A fast lens is mandatory because of the the fast shutter speeds that are needed to stop the action. With good gym lighting a f2.8 may work but where I shoot 1.8 is needed. The problem I have with the 85 1.8 is the depth of field. The dof is so small at 1.8 that it's hard to get a shot that is properly focused. As far as being able to anticipate the action - continous shooting mode helps.



I really didn't accomplish what I wanted to by going the dslr route. If it weren't for basketball I probably would have purchased a bridge camera. However, the Nikon d50 is also our family camera and we all love the beautiful images it can capture in all the other situations that we phtograph...

Comment #9

MaryGierth wrote:.

I agree with the comments in this thread and want to add my .02 frommy experience..

I want to clarify that I was in agreement with all of the posts related to the OP's question not just the thread I replied to. Regarding sports not being for beginners, I agree in the sense that a beginner shouldn't expect to walk away with a bunch of good photos right off the bat..

I bought a Nikon d50 and 85 1.8 lens 2 years ago to take pictures ofmy daughter playing high school varsity basketball. A fast lens ismandatory because of the the fast shutter speeds that are needed tostop the action. With good gym lighting a f2.8 may work but where Ishoot 1.8 is needed. The problem I have with the 85 1.8 is the depthof field. The dof is so small at 1.8 that it's hard to get a shotthat is properly focused. As far as being able to anticipate theaction - continous shooting mode helps.



I really didn't accomplish what I wanted to by going the dslr route.If it weren't for basketball I probably would have purchased a bridgecamera. However, the Nikon d50 is also our family camera and we alllove the beautiful images it can capture in all the other situationsthat we phtograph...

Comment #10

It doesn't require $4000, but maybe $1500 to play. Check B&H pricing for a Canon 30D, 85/1.8, some kind of kit zoom for general use and some memory cards..

It does require some work - you'll have to understand about white balance, exposure, aperture, shutter speed, ISO and the camera's focus modes. The automatic modes will not give repeatably good results. You'll have to get comfortable shooting manual, and you'll still throw away most of the shots you take, but the remaining few will be pretty good...

Comment #11

The referenced volleyball pics are decent, but if you get set up correctly and shoot a few games your timing will improve and then you can expect to get a few shots like that at each event..

I probably would not choose a 4/3 camera for low-light sports applications as the noise performance is a bit behind the larger sensors in the other cameras, and the high performance lenses are quite expensive...

Comment #12

If you live close to a Best Buy (or similar store) buy a bridge camera and try it out. If you don't like it they will charge a 15% restocking fee but you will know..

With a bridge you will need to anticipate the action and adapt for shutter lag. Go to your daughter's practices to learn your camera and increase your knowledge of the game. Volleyball action is more confined than basketball giving you a better opportunity to catch the action..

There is no magic, you will miss more image opportunities and learn more about post processing with a bridge however, you need to have deep pockets to duplicate a bridge camera's capabilities in a dslr and that is the rub..

REd..

Comment #13

Lindzmom wrote:.

This volleyball mom needs help choosing a camera to take indoorvolleyball photos. I have looked at Canon XTi and Olympus E-510 butwish there was a P&S that would do the trick- something smaller andsimpler than an SLR. Any ideas?.

Hi.

My only experience at Volleyball was shooting Australia vs Switzerland with a Pentax film camera a few years ago....I think I use my 28-105 2.8-4 Sigma zoom from memory some of the shots where ok..

From the two choices you have I would go with a Canon XTI and add a 50 1.8 and a Tamron 28-75 2.8 and start from there..

Any dslr with decent high iso should get you some ok shots..you just may get a lot of duds along they way...the more you use it the better you will get comes as a given..

Neil..

Comment #14

If the light is like the gyms in my area, proper exposure will be something like ISO1600, f/2, 1/250s. What bridge camera can come close to that?.

At the wide end it might be f/2.8, so you could shoot at ISO1600, 1/125s and 36mm effective focal length - and get very noisy and blurry shots of the whole floor. If you zoom in, the aperture will slow to f/4 and you'll have to shoot at 1/60s. Image stabilization won't remove the blur due to player motion. You need a large sensor to have good high ISO performance. You need an SLR to be able to use a fast lens and to focus with adequate speed. Sorry - I wish there was a cheaper, smaller and lighter solution, but this is where the technology is today...

Comment #15

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This question was taken from a support group/message board and re-posted here so others can learn from it.

 

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