Needing a new sports lens

Discussion in 'Beyond the Basics' started by Bryant, Jul 9, 2008.

  1. Bryant

    Bryant TPF Noob!

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    I was recently given the role of the sports photographer for my private school for next year and I'm in need of a larger lens. I have the 28-135mm, but I'm guessing i'll need a much larger zoom for shooting across the field, not a stadium but a field.

    I have a few ideas.

    70-200mm f/4L
    Or regular zoom lens up to 300mm

    I'd like the 7-200 because it is L, great quality, but i have the 28-135. Is this 65mm worth it? Would it be wise to sell the 135, buy the 200 and then buy like a 25-70? I'd rather not get rid of the 135, would the 200 give me what i'd like?
    Also is there a place where i can compare a shot taken with an L and a regular lens at the same F and distance so i can compare the quality difference.

    Also sorry for so many questions, would i be happier with a regular lens?

    Thank you so much for the help
     
  2. RyanLilly

    RyanLilly No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    What price range? The 70-200 F4 is fantastic, but you may be wanting an f/2.8. There is also the sigma 70-200 2.8, with the 2.8 and a 1.4x teleconverter you have a very usable 280mm f/4.

    Also what sports? just outdoors? Basket ball is a completely different story compared to football.
     
  3. Bryant

    Bryant TPF Noob!

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    Pretty limited. I'm iffy dropping it all on the L. I just droped 1.2k on my 40D. How is the quality on the Sigma? It's all outdoors, soccer, lax, football, tennis, field hockey, track. I'm not covering indoor swimming and bball. I really wouldn't have a need for the f/2.8 because I wont be shooting in low light.
     
  4. Bryant

    Bryant TPF Noob!

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    also will the 200 be substantial for all situations on the field? I am nervous, would i be happy with the 70-200 and the 28-135, with the large overlap in focal reach.
     
  5. icassell

    icassell TPF Noob!

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    I love my Sigma 100-300 f4. (bought it used in mint condition on ebay for about $500). With the Sigma EX 1.4X TC it becomes a 420mm f5.6 -- I'm not sure it's fast enough for indoor sports, but it does very nicely outdoors. I've used it often with the 2X TC but then AF doesn't work on my 30D. I've even stacked the two TC's at 840mm -- images suffer but are sometimes useable.

    Realizing that I'm not a sports fan, and don't even particularly enjoy baseball, here are some examples. No post-processing.

    #1 is at 154mm #2 is at 332mm #3 is at 420mm (all with 1.4X TC) -- All were handheld

    #1

    [​IMG]

    #2

    [​IMG]

    #3

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2008
  6. Bryant

    Bryant TPF Noob!

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    Any suggestions on the overlap in focal reach? Would it be worth selling my 28-135?
     
  7. Robin

    Robin TPF Noob!

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    I recently just went through all this because I'm dipping into sports photography. My main trouble was that I wanted a zoom lens - especially if the sports thing doesn't pan out, a zoom will offer more versatility. I spoke to professional sports photographers who said I definitely needed 300mm. But finding a zoom lens that reaches 300mm AND F2.8 all the way through is near impossible. Sigma make one but it's autofocus is reportedly very slow, making it pretty useless for sports.

    Canon didn't really offer anything affordable in the way of F2.8 or F4 at 300mm so I looked at Sigma and decided I was either going to have to give up the versatility of a zoom lens and go with Sigma's 300mm F2.8 or give up F2.8 and go with 100-300mm F4. I went with the latter (plus it weighs less). It's been fine in daylight but I am concerned if it will be fast enough when the light starts dropping off and I have to rely on the flood lights. We'll see. But for now, it's been great and I'm very happy with it.

    If you're going to be shooting only in daylight, I think F4 will be fine and the Sigma 100-300mm F4 would be a great option.

    I posted my first shots with it here: http://www.thephotoforum.com/forum/showthread.php?t=128854

    Edit to add: On the issue of selling your other lens, I wouldn't. The lens you'll be buying for sport is probably going to be big and heavy. I use a monopod with my Sigma 100-300mm so you might want to keep your other lens if it's smaller and lighter.
     
  8. Kajuah

    Kajuah TPF Noob!

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    canon does a good 100-400mm lens with USM it's prime for sports photographers. It's cheap and about as high as you want to go, especially if you get a 2.0x Teleconverter with it. If that fails then go for the 2.0x TC with a 50-200mm lens like previously suggested. I say 50-200 because it depends on the sport. I don't think I read anywhere what kind that was. Based on the sport and the situation, this is what I think you should do;

    70-200 = Baseball, soccer

    50-200 = golf, basketball, cricket, snowcross

    100-400 = swimming, football,


    Of course it all depends on just how damn close you are or can get...TCs are useful devices, a 2.0 turns a 100-400 into a 200-800 which will damn well shoot a full frame crop of an eye of an umpire's face from the center stand!

    Edit: Aight, so you're doing outdoor shots - go for the 50-200; it'll be perfect especially for walking around with and you'll get some pretty nice wide shots of the field as well as some pretty close ones thanks to the 200. You could also do asrobin suggested and go for the 100-300, but for me i think that's a bit overkill..especially considering its weight and you are only in school so i'm sure they're not expecting sports illustrated type shots.
     
    Last edited: Jul 14, 2008

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