Best Lens to Buy??


TPF Noob!
Sep 18, 2010
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Douglas, MA
I have a nikon D40 camera. I'm looking to purchase a lens to take some action Photos of my son playing football. I have the 50-200mm with auto focus and anti vibration but it just seems that it is just not enough. What would you all recommend with out breaking my bank account.
You'll need to be a little more descriptive about what 'breaking your bank account' means. For side-line sports, I usually shoot with a 70-200 2.8. Used the VR I version can be had for around $1500 ish; the 80-200 2.8 (No VR, but monopods are cheap) can be had for as little as $650 dollars if you're lucky.
The 70-300 Nikkor VR is a great deal for around $500. Or if you have a bigger budget the Sigma 150-500mm will get you a lot closer. They're about $1000 new. I have the older model (170-500mm) that I am willing to sell for if anyone is interested.
Both won't do well indoors/low light but you'll have to spend a lot more if you want to do that.
What kind of football? Rec-ball or highschool? Day or Night?

I too use my 70 - 200 2.8 from the sidelines and it works for me...
You'd be lucky to find fast, good zoom glass for that price, like mentioned above if your shooting under the lights of a football field, speaking out of experience here, your main focus point can be blurry if he's throwing the ball, running, or anythign like that, same with the background. Unless your using a 2.8 that won't be a factor then. I myself am saving for something better I want the 70-300mm for $500.00 but it will only be able to shoot in daylight. I can forget about under the lights.
If you're looking for more reach I'd recommend a Sigma APO 150-500mm F/5-6.3 DG OS HSM

You'll get more then double the reach, and still have VR (OS is what sigma calls it).

I'd only recommend this if the lighting is very bright, which it usually is at football games, and you'll likely want to use a monopod with this lens.

They sell for around $1000.
I would keep an eye on craigslist for a used 70-200 VRI. The old ones can be found for $1000-1300.

You aren't going to find fast glass for under $1,000. You can try the above mentioned lenses (70-300, Sigma 150-500, etc) but none of them will freeze the action unless you shoot in nothing but bright sunlight.

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