help on buying new lens for sport shots
I have just purchased a Nikon 80 and a AF-S DX VR-Nikkor 55-200mm f/4-5.6 lenses. I am not really satisfied with it and would like to know if there are any other recommendations on another lense in that price range, 300.00 -400.00..

Some of the pics are not sharp enough and blurry. My main pics I take are baseball shots wildlife. Can anyone advise on another lens. Thanks for any advice!..

Comments (7)

The principal problem is almost certainly with the camera settings, not the lens. Can you post some shots or alternatively give the exif data (focal length, aperture, shutter speed and ISO) of one of the blurry shots..

Top quality lenses for sports are big, heavy and very expensive. You won't get one for $300-400, so learn to get the best out of the lens that you have.Chris R..

Comment #1

Certainly for the baseball and possibly for the wildlife you will need a fast shutter speed (1/500th sec or faster) to freeze the motion..

That means not much light gets into the camera - so you need a big aperture. f/2 or wider (i.e. a LOWER f/number) is recommended for sports. For example, the Nikon 200mm f/2VR - very expensive. Outdoors in bright light you might get away with f/2.8..

That ties in with the other issue: how much reach you will need, i.e. how far away are you from the action? Large aperture + long reach is expensive, but if you're fairly close then the cost may not be too much - maybe. Post some of your shots as a first thing. The blurring will be caused mainly by too slow a shutter speed..

But as a general tip for baseball: dial up the ISO to at least 800, maybe 1600..

Try to avoid the full zoom as that makes the maximum aperture smaller (f/5.6 while it is f/4 at the wide end. If you're close then an 85mm f/1.8 or evn 50mm f/1.8 could be OK - not too expensive..



Comment #2

Chasesmom91 wrote:.

I have just purchased a Nikon 80 and a AF-S DX VR-Nikkor 55-200mmf/4-5.6 lenses. I am not really satisfied with it and would like toknow if there are any other recommendations on another lense in thatprice range, 300.00 -400.00.Some of the pics are not sharp enough and blurry. My main pics I takeare baseball shots wildlife. Can anyone advise on another lens.Thanks for any advice!.

You would be better off learning how to use properly the perfectly good lens you have. The pictures are blurred because you are not using a fast enough shutter speed to freeze the action. What shutter speeds have you been using? What mode is the camera set to? Buying a new lens now is like buying a new car, then taking a couple of driving lessons, realising that you can't drive very well yet... so buying a more expensive car to see if that helps..

The best way to get the fastest possible shutter speed for action photography is actually to use aperture priority mode (Av). Set the lens to it's widest aperture and leave it there; then the camera will choose the shutter speed, which is the fastest possible for the light available..

Check what shutter speed the camera is giving you. To get sharp action pics you need at least 1/500 sec, ideally 1/1000 sec (unless you know about techniques like panning, which I'm guessing you don't as this is a beginners forum). If the shutter speed isn't this fast because the light is not good enough, increase the ISO setting of your camera until the shutter speed is fast enough. If you had the camera set to ISO 100 and were getting a shutter speed of 1/250 sec with the lens at it's widest aperture, increase the ISO to 400 and you will get 1/1000 sec..

Don't be afraid to turn up the ISO setting as much as you need (800, 1600...) to get a very fast shutter speed: a little bit of noise is much better than blurred shots, and your camera has very good performance at high ISO settings..

That should solve your blur problem as long as you are shooting in reasonable light (i.e. outdoors in daylight). If you are shooting in poor light (indoors) than you still need to do everything above but you will probably need a lens with an f/2.8 maximum aperture. But that will cost a lot more than your budget..

I hope this helps..

Best wishesMike..

Comment #3

Thank you all, I think I understand some of what I have done wrong. Actually I think I was backwards on most everything and also zooming in all the way didnt help either. We have a game tonight so will practice on what you have explained and helped me with and I will see how the pics turn out...Thanks again, Have a great day!.

PS. I would post some of the pics but new to board and havent read up yet on how to post them. I will soon....

Comment #4

I've been shooting youth soccer for several years, and I agree with the post about using aperture mode for a setting. the lens you already have will work in all but the worst light conditions(night with poor field lighting or early morning/late evening on a cloudy day). start out with the aperture set at it's widest setting (smallest number) and iso at 800; if you can't get at least 1/500 shutter speed, then either boost the iso to 1600 or just know that your action shots will be a little blurry. also, get a good monopod to steady your camera; my number of in focus shots has increased substantially since I started using a monopod instead of hand holding the camera.'The Rookie'..

Comment #5

If you're good with the range of the lens you have now I'd say get a 70-300 VR, It'l give you a little more range, and vibration reduction, failing that you're going to have to play with your settings, Up the ISO if you have to, use aperture priority, whatever needs to be done..

If you're not good with the range you've got on that lens and you want something higher than 300 then you're immediately going to start in the "OMG THATS EXPENSIVE" range.Justin DiPierroFort Ann, New York - 12827Nikon D50,Nikon SB-600 + SC-17 & StroboframeNikkor 50mm f/1.8Vivitar1 28-105 f/3.5-5.6Sigma 15mm f/2.8 FisheyeQuantaray 70-300 f/4.5-5.6Lowepro Slingshot 200 AW-

Comment #6

Daytime games... if there's a lot of light, f/4-5.6 might cut it with a suitably high ISO to allow a fast shutter speed..

Night games... unless there's an incredible amount of lighting, you'd be hurting even at double that budget, I suspect. With night games, without very high-end setups, you have to resign yourself to either (a) not stopping motion, leading to technically ugly but maybe vaguely artistic motion-blurred (and probably camera-shake'd) shots, or (b) extreme high ISOs and underexposure, where there will be substantial noise in the image...

Comment #7

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