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Lens for sports photography low light


I currently have a Cannon rebel t7 and I do a lot of sport’s photography.  I can get good shots with the lights and low light.  Can I get an ef 2.8 lens for a rebel or is that just a waste of money? I found them used.  I’ll eventually upgrade camera base. 



Yes, you can get EF Mount zoom lenses with f/2.8 constant apertures. E.g the EF 70-200mm f/2.8.  Of which there are three versions. I would say if you can get a decent copy of version II, that should be good. Do look though at used departments of reputable dealers such as KEH or B&H Photo.

There are also primes available with faster apertures. Depending upon the sports, an EF 135 mm f/2 lens would do very well. Though the 70-200 would be more versatile.


Camera: EOS 5D IV, EF 50mm f/1.2L, EF 135mm f/2L
Lighting: Profoto Lights & Modifiers


Ricky is providing an excellent recommendation and I would add to his list the EF 85 f1.8 which is a very good low light lens if you are close to the action with basketball and volleyball.  It focuses very quickly and is inexpensive used.


EOS 1DX M3, 1DX M2, 1DX, 5DS R, M6 Mark II, 1D M2, EOS 650 (film), many lenses, XF400 video


Depending on the sport either of the above mentioned lens may have fast apertures but their FL may not be ideal.

Since it is under lights I will guess the sport is football. Shooting football from a good location, like the side lines, even a 200mm lens may not have enough FL. So, a large or a fast aperture is not the single consideration. If you are restricted to shoot from the bleachers I can almost guarantee it will not be enough FL.

What's the answer? A fast aperture lens and a camera with very good high ISO specs.

Also keep in mind depending one what lens you are coming from a f2.8 may only be one stop to perhaps 1 and 1/2 stops faster. Although the numbers seem to be a fairly long way apart, actually they are not in photography. One stop is not a game changer a maker or breaker in most cases. Now of course if your current lens is a f5.6 and now you go to f2.8 that is two stops and that does become a nice improvement.

This is a 300mm lens, f2.8, SS 1/350, ISO 3200 from the stands handheld. It is fairly heavily cropped in Lightroom with lens correction applied to give you an example.


The best single thing you can do to improve your sports, any sport, photography is to shoot Raw (not jpg) and d/l DPP4 editor from Canon. It is free and very simple to use if you just want to do simple enhancements like push the f-stop (exposure) and crop. You can easily get that one stop advantage and more using DPP4 and Raw.

That can be the same thing as buying a faster lens and DPP4 is free to do.


EOS 1DX and 1D Mk IV and less lenses then before!
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