whats a good flash for sports?

Discussion in 'Photography Beginners' Forum' started by redtippmann, Nov 6, 2009.

  1. redtippmann

    redtippmann TPF Noob!

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    I have a vivitar 285HV and went to a football game recently. It was a night game in a poorly lit field. So I set my D2H with a 55-200mm to a shutter of 1/250 and a f/5.6. And My flash at full power.

    But every picture came out really underexposed. So is there some thing I'm doing wrong? Or should I get a SB-600 or something else?
     
  2. robertwsimpson

    robertwsimpson No longer a newbie, moving up!

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    I'd suggest a lens with a maximum aperture of 2.8
     
  3. kundalini

    kundalini Been spending a lot of time on here!

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    I would certainly have used the max aperture and because the flash will freeze your subject, maybe slowed the shutter a bit for some ambient light from the stadium. Increase the ISO. I don't know what the GN is for your flash, but did you exceed it?

    Post a photo.
     
  4. Big Mike

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

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    The GN of that flash is 140' when fully zoomed out. So at F5.6...that's a 25 foot range at full power. You can increase that by turning up the ISO, but that's still not very much range when shooting football.

    Well, you were trying to shoot a football game at night, on a poorly lit field...with a slow lens. That's a loosing battle. Even with a faster lens, you would be in tough.
    Flash isn't often used for shooting football. Besides the limited power of the flash, the varying distances of the players would give you uneven light.

    Shooting sports (well) is one of the most demanding things on your equipment. Pro football shooters use $4000 cameras and $8000 lenses...and they are usually working in conditions with much better lighting that you will have.
     
  5. KmH

    KmH Helping photographers learn to fish Supporting Member

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    And pro sports shooters usually have 2 or 3 body's with lenses mounted and ready to go. Pros don't use flash.

    You would need to have the 285HV set to the tightest beam it can produce (zoomed to 105mm). An SB-900 can be zoomed to 200 mm and would work a bit better than the 285HV. The trouble is, as Mike pointed out, the real problem is that your lens has a variable aperture and it can't open wide enough.

    I have seen these used with some fairly limited success.

    Check out the inverse square law. Inverse-square law - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
     
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2009
  6. GeneralBenson

    GeneralBenson TPF Noob!

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    An Elinchrom Ranger RX might do the trick, but as everyone stated, small flashes don't really cut it, and you'l always be better off with faster lenses and better high ISO performance.
     
  7. benhasajeep

    benhasajeep TPF Noob!

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    I would like to mention that flash is a no no in most instances from field level or court side (direct eye sight level). If your shooting from the stands, your basically out of luck with your current set ups unless you had your ISO low. If your ISO was already dialed up. Your really running into the limitations of the lens and the poor lighting at the field. I am not so sure a 2 stop increase in lens speed is enough. When I shot sports for the paper. No matter the lighting we shot 3200 film! And even with the lights on in a very well lit stadium at night. I would still push to 6400 quite often. And that was with a f/2.8 lens!
     

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