Just purchased Rebel XT, I need help with lenses on shooting school sports shots

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by dreamweaver, Mar 15, 2007.

  1. dreamweaver

    dreamweaver TPF Noob!

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    I am a total newbie to the SLR world. I recently purchased a Canon Digital Rebel XT (DSLR). I received the lens that comes with it.

    I have searched and searched thru many pages of reviews on other websites and came up with different conclusions to lenses.

    First of all, I cannot afford a Canon L lens, not sure I would want one either, they are white, stick out like a store thumb and heavy, I would have to tripod them, which I do not want to do.

    I have heard that you need to get down into the f/2.? range to get the speed you need for sports shooting. Again the L lenses have these, but I just do not see anything else having these but the L lenses.

    I know there are other brands of lenses that fit my camera, like Sigma, Tamaron, there might be more. I did see a Canon Zoom Lens: EF 28-135mm f/3.5-5.6 IS USM, which appeared to be a great overall lens, but then the f/ range would not be good enough to stop sports action. Again this is just for high school sports (girls).

    Does anyone have any suggestions at all for me. I would prefer to have something not real heavy, not 50 inches long, not white, just something preferably smaller (except when it zooms) to reach the distance, black in color, and have the speed that I need.

    Sorry for this post being so very long. I cannot afford anything much over $500 price range.

    Thanks so much :)
     
  2. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    Welcome to the forum.

    As you seem to have found out...shooting sports requires a large (or fast) aperture because that will help to give you fast shutter speeds which you need to stop the action. Of course, with sports shooting, you are usually off to the side (side line) so you need a longer lens. The combination of large aperture and long focal length makes for very expensive lenses...usually much more expensive that your camera.

    That being said, you can get started with cheaper equipment and do the best with what you have.

    Look at the Sigma 70-200 F2.8. Brand new, it will probably be more than $500 but not by too much. You could probably find it for less on the used market (E-Bay).

    Another option would be the Canon 85mm F1.8 or the 100mm F2.8 Macro.
     
  3. MPowerM3

    MPowerM3 TPF Noob!

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    Not all L glass is white, and not all of it need a tripod/monopod. What sport are you shooting? I bet a 24-70 2.8 would be good to get you started. And can be had by Sigma/Tamron for around 400 bucks, or 1100 for Canon. All will be fast with the 2.8. And if you need more length look for a second hand 70-200 like Big Mike mentioned.

    Nice camera, I have one too.
     
  4. dreamweaver

    dreamweaver TPF Noob!

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    Thanks so much for the advise on lenses. It is much appreciated.

    My daughter plays Volleyball and Basketball (inside sports) and softball (outside sport).

    I also heard that if you put a certain mm lense on your Digital Rebel XT, the camera itself has some sort of mm stored inside, and the lens itself will extend further because of the camera's internal features. I hope that makes sense. I am no expert for sure!!!

    I did a lot of reading on the Rebel XT, it seemed like a very good camera, glad to hear someone else owns it.

    That is funny, because I was just looking at the Canon 85mm F1.8 on another website checking it out and you mentioned it. I will also check out all of my other options.

    Any way to tweak the camera to make the lens perform at better speed, up the ISO maybe? I have heard not to use the IS if your camera has one for sports, because it slows the process down even more.

    Thanks again :)
     
  5. MPowerM3

    MPowerM3 TPF Noob!

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    Well the internal mm you are talking about is the crop factor associated with dslr's. The sensors on them are not true full size 35mm sensors until you spend some big dollars on the 5d and up. So in retrospec if you have a 24-70mm lens with a 1.6 crop factor is effective range is 36-100. Make sense? And I think that would be perfect for indoor, close sports!
     
  6. DSLR noob

    DSLR noob TPF Noob!

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    I'd never turn down an L-series telephoto because it's white. L glass is L glass, there is nothing for a canon mount that can compare.
     
  7. DSLR noob

    DSLR noob TPF Noob!

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    click here. (this is just a joke)
     
  8. Big Mike

    Big Mike I am Big, I am Mike Staff Member Supporting Member

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    The crop factor is certainly a confusing subject so don't feel bad that you got it wrong. On the good side, that's the funniest thing I've read in a while. Again, please don't take that the wrong way...it's an honest mistake.

    As mentioned, what you read about is the 'crop factor' and it has been discussed and explained to death all over this site and the internet, so I won't go too deep here. I'll just say that it's a comparison factor that compares cameras like yours to 35mm film cameras. So if you are used to using a 35mm film camera and you switch to your camera...the lenses will feel longer by 1.6 times. If you are not used to using a 35mm SLR camera...then please, please forget all about it. Just know shorter focal length lenses (low millimeters (mm)) give you a wider view and longer lenses give you more magnification (longer reach, narrow view).

    You can turn up the ISO for shooting sports, you will probably have to for indoor sports but when you do that...you get more digital noise and the images don't look so good. It's best to use fast lenses, if you can afford them.

    IS (image stabilization) is a great feature which helps you to get sharper shots when holding the camera in your hands. It won't help stop a moving subject, so it's not a solution for shooting sports...but it's not a hindrance. It may slow things down a bit with smaller cameras but I wouldn't worry about that with this camera and Canon's IS lenses.

    It might be good to start with a good book about basic photography and exposure. This would give you a better understanding of the terms used and how a camera makes an exposure...which, in turn, will help you decide on a good lens to buy and help you take better photos.
     
  9. MikeR

    MikeR TPF Noob!

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    I'll try to make this non technical for new people to understand
    Crop factor note:
    The 1.6 crop factor will give a field of view equal to that of a focal length (MM) 1.6x greater than what you're using. The field of view will be narrower than if the same lens was use on a camera with a full size sensor.
    The subject in the shot will NOT be any lager. You are just getting a narrower view. 200mm x 1.6 = 320mm. The image would be the same size as if the 200mm was used on a camera with a full size sensor BUT the crop will be different, you will not have as much area around the subject as with the other camera.

    About L glass, I have a Canon 70-200 f/2.8 which is great for most sports and I have a 1.4x Teleconverter to attach when I need a little extra reach.
    Yes the lens is heavy,about 3 lbs, but can be hand held although it does come with a tripod collar. just get a comfortable strap. Hand holding it gives you greater flexibility for when you need to run around with it.
    It is a great lens for High School Sports. I have a Tamron 17-50mm f/2.8 for when I need a wider reach. It is lightweight and less expensive while producing IQ equal to my 70-200

    Have fun and don't get stressed over the terminology, Soon it will all make sense
     
  10. AdamZx3

    AdamZx3 TPF Noob!

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    Also look into a Mono-pod its just an adjustable leg that you can cary very easily and get steady shots when shooting at 200mm.

    For the indoor sports the 80mm 1.8 would be great for inside sports, you can get some great stop motion shots with that and around ISO 600-800. A low cost option is the fast 50mm 1.8 ($60), which might work if you can get in the front row or the sideline.

    For softball the sigma 70-200 2.8 would work nice. You might be able to get away with a Canon EF 70-200mm f/4L which is cheaper than the sigma and a better lens and not quite as fast, but outside with a modest iso should yield fast shots, its however white :) you should be proud to tote a white lens!
     
  11. keith204

    keith204 No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'd definitely go with some 2.8 glass. I have the Sigma 70-200 2.8 and the 2.8 has come in handy more times than you'd imagine.
     

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