Lens for basketball


TPF Noob!
Dec 2, 2007
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Kansas City
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I will be shooting basketball games next week and need a good lens. I have the Rebel XTI. I've heard great things about the Canon 85mm 1.8. It's fast and a great lens for the money. Is that a good route to go for quality and price?
where are you going to be? in the stands? on the side lines? what type of shots do you want, full body, head? all determines what lens you should get
The 85mm is one of the best 'bang for your buck' lenses that Canon has. The image quality and build quality are both great and it's not very expensive.

You might also consider the 50mm F1.8...which isn't built as well...but it's very inexpensive.
I'll be on the sidelines. I would love to get full body shots and also be able to get great head shots when they're close enough.
well the 85mm will give you great headshots... but full body shots may not be to great for unless they are around mid court. for example if your by end A and a player is going to make a shot at basket on end A you'd probably be able to get a shot of the ball and the net but not the entire shot of the player. But if they are at midcourt you could get a full body shot.

Maybe if you can the 85 and the 50?
If you REALLY want good shots, slap on the 50 1.8 and go under the basket. That is where the pros shoot.

Of course, it depends on if you can get access to this area...

If it is a HS game, you can generally go anywhere you want as long as you look like you know what you are doing...

I have a press pass, but I only use it to get into the games for free.

College or pro, it is a different matter of course... but generally HS sports don't care.

Just don't stand or sit "in the paint" between the lines, and stay right of the paint (most people are right handers and if you shoot from the left the arm blocks the face) if you go down low... also, refs stand on the right side of the lane, and you will get run into a lot by them if you are there.
Is this a pro game or college/high school? I only mention it because without a press/photo pass, pro venues do not allow "professional cameras" in the arena. Stopped my friend with a 40D & 24-70 f/2.8 L but let another with a Leica M8 in. Go figure.

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