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Advice on photographing night sports

Fideicrux

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I'm trying to improve my photographing of night sports. I use a d7100 (just bought a d7200) with a Tamron 70-200 2.8 (a009).

I was wondering if there are some tips anyone could provide.

I enclosed a photo to show an issue I am dealing with (learning to overcome). These two pictures were taken back to back. Nothing changed between the two, no settings, they were taken @6 fps. I'm trying to figure out why the color/exposure difference, and how to correct this for the future (is this post processing only?) Nothing has been changed in the photo's, straight NEF imports.
 

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I would suspect the type of lighting is affecting the WhiteBalance.

Also in stadium lighting your exposure can vary greatly especially if Focus/Metering is done near the edge of the field. I'd done night stadium sports and have noticed significant ISO bumps around the edge of the field where there is quite a bit of light dropoff.
 
I would suspect the type of lighting is affecting the WhiteBalance.

Also in stadium lighting your exposure can vary greatly especially if Focus/Metering is done near the edge of the field. I'd done night stadium sports and have noticed significant ISO bumps around the edge of the field where there is quite a bit of light dropoff.

Figured, I have been shooting them 1/500 @ 2.8 and letting the camera do the ISO work limiting it to 6400 (it usually stays 3200. I try to centerweight off the white helmets, and AE lock once metered. It's a game changer when the action kicks up a notch. Someone suggested to me 1/250 @ f/4 ISO 1250. Kind of dumbfounded by that advice...
 
These look at larger kids.

I don't know football as I do primarily soccer.
But with soccer if I'm slower than 1/1250 on FX with 15 yr olds then I start noticing motion blur. Speeds slow down a bit as they get younger for minimum shutter speed.

Your D7200 should be able to do higher ISOs to help compensate for higher shutter speeds.
On my FullFrame D750 I can go up to ISO 25,600 and 51,200 without significant noise degradation.

I'm in Manual as I select my Shutter and my Aperture and have ISO on AUTO with a MAX. I'm always shooting at f/2.8 as I'm normally far enough away for it not to be an issue while helping blur the background for better subject isolation.
 
Cool, thanks for the scenario. I'll jump up to 1/1250 and see the difference(s). Daytime hours wont prove an issue, the eeevil night will. I upgraded to the 7200 from the 7100 for that reason, the noise reduction.
 
It may be a LED flicker problem. Shooting wide open provides the best subject isolation, maximum shutter speed and lowest ISO. Shooting in stadiums less than pro/top college level is nearly always problematic not only with poor lighting, but severe light drop off along the edges. Fields that are dual-purpose soccer and football are particularly vexing for soccer as typically the lights are set for the less wide football pitch.
 
I checked in your manual for Flicker Reduction but it seems to be valid for Live View only.

This was a big advancement on the d500 as it was automatic and did a great job at it.
 
I checked in your manual for Flicker Reduction but it seems to be valid for Live View only.

This was a big advancement on the d500 as it was automatic and did a great job at it.

When I was setting the camera up, it had a Flicker Reduction setting... I think it was Auto / 50hz / 60hz, I left it on Auto... since I don't really know the frequency of strobes...
 
One of the "photographers" probably whipped out his smartphone and flashed a shot during your sequence. Many of the PHONE Photographers don't know how to turn the flash or the KEY BEEP on or off.
 
It may be a LED flicker problem. Shooting wide open provides the best subject isolation, maximum shutter speed and lowest ISO. Shooting in stadiums less than pro/top college level is nearly always problematic not only with poor lighting, but severe light drop off along the edges. Fields that are dual-purpose soccer and football are particularly vexing for soccer as typically the lights are set for the less wide football pitch.

I will add to this even at smaller college stadiums the lighting coverage is not 100% even across the field. And when storms come through they don't always go back up and re-align the lights after they move some. So, some High School and community stadiums are lacking even more (coverage and maintenance in alignment). Your scene you did pan to the right from first to second shot at least 20' maybe closer to 25' (going by the stands in the background). So you may have hit an area where the lighting was most likely different.

When I did sports it was lens wide open at f/2.8 and shutter around 1/250 or so with T-max 3200 film. On dark nights I would even push the T-max 3200 to 6400. I would take a black magic marker to the film case and black out one of the zeros. That would let the photo editor know I pushed the film one stop.
 
It may be a LED flicker problem. Shooting wide open provides the best subject isolation, maximum shutter speed and lowest ISO. Shooting in stadiums less than pro/top college level is nearly always problematic not only with poor lighting, but severe light drop off along the edges. Fields that are dual-purpose soccer and football are particularly vexing for soccer as typically the lights are set for the less wide football pitch.

I will add to this even at smaller college stadiums the lighting coverage is not 100% even across the field. And when storms come through they don't always go back up and re-align the lights after they move some. So, some High School and community stadiums are lacking even more (coverage and maintenance in alignment). Your scene you did pan to the right from first to second shot at least 20' maybe closer to 25' (going by the stands in the background). So you may have hit an area where the lighting was most likely different.

When I did sports it was lens wide open at f/2.8 and shutter around 1/250 or so with T-max 3200 film. On dark nights I would even push the T-max 3200 to 6400. I would take a black magic marker to the film case and black out one of the zeros. That would let the photo editor know I pushed the film one stop.

Was 1/250 good enough to stop the action? I get advice (sometimes unsolicited) that suggest to keep 1/500 or above.
 
1/250 will not freeze a player thats moving quickly. 1/250 would be the slowest I would go. And that was using a 300 mm lens (manual focus at that time). Sometimes on a mono pod, other times not. For freeze action, 1/500 for minimum is about right. 1/750 would be better if you can get it (1/2 stop adjustments).

1/250 with panning will get you good motion shots. Pan to freeze the body, legs / arms will show the motion of the player.

Also zoom in / crop in more. Show less of the stands. Especially if they are sparsely occupied.
 
That's on the edge, at 1/250 ... how fast and how large/small the subject is in the frame will affect the sharp the image appears. At 1/250 stopping action isn't an automatic. Benhasajeep is on the money to pan/follow the subject ... fill the frame with your subject. Also wait for the peak of action, a receiver at the height of a leap ... a running back making a cut, a QB releasing the ball ... all will help at 1/250.
 
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I manage that, there are some games they wont allow those with a camera past the gate. I don't have a 300, but my 200 on the aps-c has that uhhh FOV. Suppose I could put the 7200 in 1.3 crop, get an extra 30%

I do manage to get decent shots, just trying to perfect the night time shooting, not to mention my focus can use a little work.
 

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