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There have been a lot of fantastic pics posted here by some very talented photographers. Most of the pics, however, have been of still life. I'm also interested in action shots. I'm starting to shop around a bit and it seems that a lot of people prefer the Nikon D series of DSLRs. Would this hold true for action photos as well? I'm trying to move from the point-and-shoot world into something more sophisticated. However, the underlying reason for looking into this is that my kids are invovled in sports and I'm tired of the dark, blurry photos and want something better. I'd also welcome any pointers anyone might have for acheiving better quality action shots indoors.

:help:

Thanks

Kerry
 

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Nikkon, Pentax, Cannon & Sony all make excellent excellent dSLR bodies that are very capable of capturing action sports in low light. But it is the lens that is on the body that will be the limiting factor. For what you describe a fast telephoto lens would be the ticket, and Nikon & Cannon are probably the two best known (and available) lens makers in that category (and as you will see... it is reflective in the lens pricing). From my experiences thus far, definately spend some time talking to the guys at Pro Photo Supply, Citizens Photo & The Shutterbug before making the purchase.

Have fun & enjoy!
 

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Actually the big advantage is any SLR (digital or film) for shooting sports, action, and things in motion is the fact they have a mechanical shutter and when you push the shutter release there is no appriciable delay in from pushing the button to actually taking the picture. Most digital point and shoots have an 'electronic' shutter where there is a delay from when you push the button to when the image is recorded.

For example, say you were trying to take a picture of a fish jumping clear of the water. You see the fish jump, and push the shutter button while the fish is in midair. A point and shoot will typically delay so much that the image is only going to be recorded after the fish falls back into the water leaving you with only a nice picture of a splash. In the exact same scenerio, the SLR camera is going to give you a picture of the fish in midair at the instant you push the button. Use that same analogy with crossing a finish line, catching a football, a baseball swing, etc... and you will soon see that a SLR is the ONLY way to shoot sports photos. the 'D' in DSLR only refers to 'digital' which is just a matter of preference over film, the important part for sports is the 'SLR' which stands for single lens reflex camera.

The speed of the lens is just photospeak for how much light it lets into the front end of the lens. More light means you can shoot the picture at a higher shutter speed, the higher shutter speed reduces motion blur. A shutter speed 1/500 of a second will freeze pretty much anything. For outdoor sports a lens that opens up to f/3.5 is dandy, and f4.5 will work. For indoor sports you really need a lens that is f/2.8 in my expierience. As that 'f' number fets smaller, the lens gets bigger, heavier, and more expensive.

- Brad
 

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Kerry,

Our shooters and those of just about every other paper across the nation are/have switched to Canon. Hands down winner in the photo technology and ease-of-use race.

Canon SLRs are rewriting the books on lighting, versatility, etc. (no, I don't work for Canon).

The D40 in Costco is a fine camera at a good price, but its there for a reason. It doesn't hold a candle to comparable Canons. If you can spend more, do.

Also, experiment as much as possible with the point-and-shoots. I've been shooting all my photos with a simple Canon Power Shot SD700 IS (6 mp) that has a delayed trigger...

Both these were taken with it







It's mostly a right-time, right-place thing.

Again don't give up on the little guy for action. Lots of great ifish photos were shot with the hand held.

The multiple beauties of using the smaller point-and-shoot are it's convenience in a jacket pocket instead of hanging around a neck, the ability to see what you're shooting, mobility in moving your hand and arm around to get the best angle and the on-off capabilities of the powerful little batteries.

Good luck!
 

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Forgot to mention that some sort of image stabilization (in-camera, in-lens, monopod or tripod) will be a big help to keep sharp pictures when taking telephoto shots. The more zoom you apply, the more the handshaking gets amplified and will cause noticable blur.
 

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our pentax k100d catches great action shots I got one of Daniel Jumping in mid air rp
 

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...I'm trying to move from the point-and-shoot world into something more sophisticated. However, the underlying reason for looking into this is that my kids are invovled in sports and I'm tired of the dark, blurry photos and want something better. I'd also welcome any pointers anyone might have for acheiving better quality action shots indoors.

:help:

Thanks

Kerry
I went with the Nikon D50 because I have toddlers who do not stop moving. A good chunk of the shots are indoors with a subject on the go. I have been very happy with it. It will get the shot very quickly. One thing I made sure to do was spend the extra money and get the largest and fastest memory card I could find anywhere.

For action shots at a longer distance than in the home, I suggest getting a supplemental flash - several of the DSLRs are able to hold them.
 

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expensive... more than I wanted to spend. I used a small tripod and swung the base back towards me so I could press two of the feet back into my shoulder sockets. much cheaper since I owned the tripod.
 

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One thing about DSLR cameras is that you wont be able to take video with it like a regular point and shoot digital. Also, DSLR'S dont have a image screen to see what you are shooting.... you have to use the view finder.
Your best bet is to hold em all in your hand, get a feel for which one feels best to you, then comes price.......then lenses! Most DSLRs will come with a kit lens which is usually a good quality lens. As far as which one is better, they all have there place whether it be price, quality, feel etc. I think for a novice they will all do wonders for you! One other thing to mention, you may want to take a photo class before you buy any camera and just use what you already have. Like Bill says, alot of good pics dont necessarily come from the best cameras. I have a Nikon D70s and I love it for the feel and ruggedness of it over it's rival the canon 20d
 

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Here is a pic I shot of a buddy last year using just a simple canon 3 megapixel point and shoot. He was moving extremely fast and what I did was just followed him to the point where I took the pic.......just as if you were hunting ducks! yah gotta lead em. (by the way the guy on the bike is 260lbs and the bike is a modified honda 50, aah the fun)

 

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I bought a Canon 30D SLR with the standard kit lens (18-55mm), along with the 24-105MM "S" lens with image stabilization and auto-focus. This has been my everyday lens, but it has some limitations when shooting indoors as it's not as fast as I would like under low-light conditions.

He's right, the camera bodies are all good, it's the lens, a little luck and the guy behind them that makes for a good shot. I personally think it's a coin toss if you're choosing between Canon and Nikon. I'm a complete novice, so I read everything I could get my hands on before deciding on a make and model of camera and I was probably more confused than when I started : ) But, I think I made a good choice.It works,the pix come out pretty much as expected and I have had no glitches.

A good friend of mine has the Nikon and feels the same way.
 

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I bought the Nikon D80 with a 70-300 zoom lens. I bought my camera for taking pictures of my boys wrestling and my daughter playing soccer. With wrestling you need to be able to take indoor action pictures without a flash. I am new to photography but with what I am finding out it appears you need to also figure in what kind of lens you will need with your camera to take the pictures you are wanting to take.
 

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I have a Nikon D80 and am very happy with it.

Here is a link to some pics, some better, some worse:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/[email protected]/

Also, if you choose a Canon Powershot, you can hack the firmware to do really cool stuff with it (super fast shutter speeds, super slow shutter speeds, abnormal ISO's, interval shooting time lapse movies)

Offical discalimer: I haven't tried this stuff yet, but I intend to.

http://chdk.wikia.com/wiki/?rdfrom=...om%2Findex.php%3Ftitle%3DCHDK%26redirect%3Dno

Yeah, the lenses for DSLR's are expensive.


RC
 
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