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Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Sport lens

I have a canon t2i. I do a lot of indoor sports shots (pools). What do you suggest for a lens?
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎02-28-2013

Re: Sport lens

Without more details on budget, experience, intended use, it's hard to give a good recommendation.  And it's an easily debateable topic anyway.  In general, for indoor sports you're going to want a reasonably wide aperture (2.8 would be nice) and some reach (200 mm + would be nice).  The sky's the limit on this one, there's a large list of really nice (and expensive) lenses that fit the bill. It really comes down to your budget.

 

There's some good discussion here:

 

http://forums.usa.canon.com/t5/Lenses/Good-lenses-for-sport-wildlife-and-everyday-photography-budget...

 

And probably plenty others if you search around.

New Contributor
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Re: Sport lens

first, we study your camera

 

your camera burst speed is around 6-7 frame per second on RAW image, but this one is also depends on memory card type that you use.

 

if budget is no limit, you'll need a "fast" memory card which can write data on 90 - 95MB/second like the SandDisk Extreme Pro

 

As for lens, i recommend the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS II, it's fast and it's good for the range also

 

i use this lens for surf photography as well as wildlife photography for taking birds and tigers.

Binu Octa
1D Mark IV, 5D Mark III, EOS M
Respected Contributor
Posts: 1,735
Registered: ‎02-28-2013

Re: Sport lens


@binuoctayudha wrote:

first, we study your camera

 

your camera burst speed is around 6-7 frame per second on RAW image, but this one is also depends on memory card type that you use.

 

if budget is no limit, you'll need a "fast" memory card which can write data on 90 - 95MB/second like the SandDisk Extreme Pro


Have you actually tried doing a controlled test comparing the burst speed differences between a fast SD card and a "normal" card with a 30 - 45 speed?  There's next to no difference. 

 

Might as well save the money for that 70-200 mark II you recommended.

New Contributor
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Re: Sport lens

yes

 

say you shoot in RAW which generate about 20-30MB each files on 18MB sensor


if your "memory card" write speed is "only" 30MB/sec how do you expect to write (say) 3 files on burst speed? Smiley Happy

thus your camera will "stall" and waiting for the memory card finished writing and not to mention you loose the moment

 

remember, the thread starter is using it for "sport photography" which "moment" is one of the important thing on it

 

fyi, i quote "if budget is not a problem" that's why i suggest the Canon EF 70-200 f/2.8L IS II, and i do own this lens, so i really confident about suggesting this lens Smiley Happy

 

you're right, there's almost no difference between 30MB - 45MB write speed, that's why i suggest on 95MB write speed memory card, like the Sandisk Extreme Pro

Binu Octa
1D Mark IV, 5D Mark III, EOS M
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Re: Sport lens

I've read that this 70-200 2.8 lens is very heavy. What about the f/4L? Any comments?
Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,854
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Sport lens

The f/2.8 lens is going to give outstanding support in the typically poor indoor lighting.  The f/4 lens will work great outdoors... but it'll struggle indoors.

 

Yes, f/2.8 glass is heavier.  That's normal.  The focal ratio is simply the number of times the diameter of the clear aperture can be divided into the focal length.  Divide 200mm by 4 and you get 50mm -- so the widest clear aperture on the f/4 lens is 50mm.  Divide 200mm by 2.8 and you get 71mm -- that's an increase of 1.4x (which turns out to be the square root of 2) which means the area is literraly DOUBLE the size.

 

What that means is that the lens actually collects TWICE as much light.  You can use shutter speeds that are twice as fast or you can reduce the ISO sensitive to reduce noise in the shots.

 

Sure the glass weighs more... that's because each glass element is physically larger. 

 

If you really want the shots, it's not really a big deal.  The 70-200mm f/4L IS USM weighs in at about 1.7 lbs.  The f/2.8L weighs in at about 3.2 lbs.  So yes... it's an extra 1.6 lbs but it's not like 1.6 lbs is a lot of weight.  

 

Buy a comfortable strap... such as a Black Rapid or Carry Speed "sling" style strap and you can carry that camera body and lens combination around all day long and never get tired of it.

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
Occasional Contributor
Posts: 6
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Re: Sport lens

great information.  I was hoping someone was going to tell that the f/4 was fine but oh well ($$$$$)

 

Esteemed Contributor
Posts: 3,854
Registered: ‎06-11-2013

Re: Sport lens

Scott Kelby has a video of a seminar he did on how to shoot sports.  Somewhere near the beginning he jokingly tells you that if you want to shoot sports, what you _really_ need is a suitcase packed full of money.  ;-)

 

If you think about the complexity of a given shot from an exposure perspective... taking a photo of a non-moving object on a sunny day is easy and any camera can do it.  Not only can any camera do it... if you were to take the shot with lots of cameras at various price points, you might actually have a hard time telling which camera was a high end camera and which camera was a low end camera.  That's because the shot doesn't test the limits of the gear.

 

Sports photography, on the other hand, really pushes the limits of the gear.  It's often either impractical or simply not permitted to use flash so you have to make do with the available light and that's usually not great unless you're shooting a sport played outdoors during the daytime.  For indoor sports or for sports played under artificial lighting, you're tring to operate at a fast enough shutter speed to avoid blurred subjects in limited lighting.  This means you can't really slow down the shutter - that's not an option.  

 

There are four things that you can do to affect exposure:

 

1)  Changing the lighting by adding your own lights with flash, reflectors, etc.  But for sports this is often not a choice available to you.

 

2)  Slow down the shutter so that the camera collects light for a longer amount of time.  Again... usually not an option for sports because your subjects are moving.

 

3)  Increase the ISO sensitivity of the sensor.  This _is_ an option, but it comes with the trade-off that if you have to boost the ISO too much, you'll end up with a lot of digital "noise" in the image.  The camera's processor can try to smooth the noise out of the image (if you're shooting JPEG) but this has yet another trade-off that the image will lose detail.  So while boosting ISO is a choice, it's not our first choice because it comes with undesirable consequences.

 

4)  You can increase the amount of light the camera collects by using a wider aperture (lower f-stop value).  But unless you have a lens that can provide low f-stops, you'll hit the limits of the lens.  In a typical variable zoom, the range is usually something like f/3.5-5.6.  That's f/3.5 only at it's widest end.  The scale is non-linear -- so usually by the time you're halfway through the zoom range, you're already at that f/5.6 limit.  For sports, where you're getting in tight on the action and using those longer focal lengths, you may as well think of an f/3.5-5.6 lens as simply an "f/5.6" lens becuase that's probably what your widest aperture will be all the time.    f/4 doubles the light collected as compared to f/5.6 -- but that's usually not quite enough.  f/2.8 doubles the light collection again... or four times the light collection of f/5.6 and NOW you're making progress.

 

I have never seen a zoom that can provide lower than f/2.8, but many prime (non-zoom) lenses can.  The EF 135mm f/2L USM is a fabulous lens... no zoom of course, but it sure does pull in the light (it doubles the light collection even over an f/2.8 lens... or eight times more light than an f/5.6 lens).  You do have to be careful as your focal ratio really starts getting low because now you're depth of field is really starting to get narrow.  If you're trying to get more than one athlete in focus you may not want to get down to f/2.   That 135mm f/2 lens is "comparitively" inexpensive. 

 

 

Tim Campbell
5D III, 5D IV, 60Da
New Contributor
Posts: 3
Registered: ‎09-12-2013

Re: Sport lens

@Tim Campbell ; you're the man, i think the thread starter get the "idea" very well Smiley Happy

@Thread Starter: you might want to consider the Canon 200mm f/2.8 L (non IS), is cheap, light & sharp and works alright on indoors (around $800) or a second hand canon ef 70-200mm f/2.8 L IS for around $1000. fyi, before you buy a second hand lens, you might want to check the optical to make sure it's fungus free (if the previous owner didn't store it on drybox) and also the Auto Focus system works well
Binu Octa
1D Mark IV, 5D Mark III, EOS M
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