T3i indoor sports

Started Jan 31, 2012 | Discussions
Distracted mom
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T3i indoor sports
Jan 31, 2012

I am looking to replace an older Canon DSLR and have been hearing good things about the T3i.

During the winter months I take a lot of indoor soccer photos in low light conditions.

Does anyone have experience with these kinds of shots using the T3i? Feedback on how the camera works in these conditions would be helpful.

Thanks to all!

Canon EOS 600D (EOS Rebel T3i / EOS Kiss X5)
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wave01
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Re: T3i indoor sports
In reply to Distracted mom, Jan 31, 2012

Hi to get good shots in doors you will need a fast lens. The t3i/600d will take these shots but you will need to get a good lens.

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Thanasosdk
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Re: T3i indoor sports
In reply to Distracted mom, Jan 31, 2012

I have a 550d/t2i w.kit lens. Indoor gym is doable but need iso 12800.
Have much better succes with the 430exII and iso 1600.
But must admit better glass is needet.

Thomas

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John_A_G
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indoor soccer
In reply to Distracted mom, Jan 31, 2012

OK - I shoot a lot of sports indoors - volleyball, basketball, wrestling, swimming, gymnastics. I don't shoot indoor soccer. BUT, having been involved in a lot of sports forums for the last 5 years I've seen work from others who have. Without a doubt, indoor soccer seems to have some of the WORST lighting there is -assuming we're talking amateur / youth soccer here. You can count on ISO 6400 and f2.8. Personally, and I'm a Canon guy, I think the nikon d7000 is a better option than any of the canons below the 7d. That sony sensor really outperforms the canon sensors at those ISOs. The pentax and sony cameras with it aren't the best selections - pentax doesn't have the lenses or focus tracking to compete and sony mirrorless has the worst ISO performance of the lot.

You're in a tough spot, but I feel safe in the recommendation you'll need f2.8 and ISO 6400 for your shooting needs. You'll have to decide for yourself if the t3i has "good enough" ISO 6400 performance for you.

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Shorthand
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Re: indoor soccer
In reply to John_A_G, Jan 31, 2012

What older Canon do you have?

The cheapest path to your goal is probably to get a Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 for your current camera. That lens is 10 times faster (lets in 10 times as much light) as your kit lens does at 55mm.

Even then, you'll be working at ISO 3200 or ISO 6400.

The next cheapest step is to combine the purchase of a Nikon D7000 to D5100 with the appropriate Nikon 85mm f/1.8 lens - the D7000 & D5100 have about 1 stop better high ISO performance than the Canon sensors if I remember correctly.

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John_A_G
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Re: indoor soccer
In reply to Shorthand, Jan 31, 2012

Shorthand wrote:

What older Canon do you have?

The cheapest path to your goal is probably to get a Canon EF 85mm f/1.8 for your current camera.

The challenge with 85mm lens is you basically have about 25 feet of reach. That's just too short for indoor soccer. OK for basketball or volleyball but for soccer just too tough - and when the action is close it's too tight on an aps-c sensor camera.

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Shorthand
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Re: indoor soccer
In reply to John_A_G, Jan 31, 2012

Would a nifty fifty (or 50mm f/1.4) fit the bill? It would certainly be worth a try. You don't get every shot with the nifty fifty, but those you do get are pretty good.

If the operating focal length is really the key, then I think you're right - a Nikon D5100 (or Sony a580) with a Sigma or Tamron 17-50 f/2.8 would be the best solution. Plus, Nikon has the 35mm f/1.8 lens for $200.

I know there's netting, but at some point, you'd have to resort to the strobist technique:

http://strobist.blogspot.com/2007/02/on-assignment-speedlighting-college-gym.html

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John_A_G
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i think you missed my point
In reply to Shorthand, Jan 31, 2012

50mm is good for about 10-15 feet of reach. Fairly useless for indoor soccer if you want something better than snapshot quality. You really want to be able to make a 70-200 2.8 work. That's what makes the OPs situation so difficult.

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Shorthand
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Re: i think you missed my point
In reply to John_A_G, Jan 31, 2012

Then I think you're right, either you need a 2-body setup with a couple of fast primes (50mm & 100mm ?) or you need a D5100 or D7000 with a 70-200 f/2.8 (pick up a old non-VC version of course for this.) ... on a monopod.

Not a lot of price difference there.

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John_A_G
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Re: i think you missed my point
In reply to Shorthand, Jan 31, 2012

Shorthand wrote:

or you need a D5100 or D7000 with a 70-200 f/2.8 (pick up a old non-VC version of course for this.) ... on a monopod.

I would caution regarding the monopod advice. The OP should target 1/400 shutter speed. At those speeds and higher the advantage of shake reduction or monopod on image sharpness is negligible unless you have a physical issue which prevents you from hand-holding steady.

Monopods can be a hindrance because it changes your ability to pivot as you follow action. It can be necessary for larger, heavier lenses but I prefer to shoot without a monopod when using my 70-200 2.8 for sports. It's downside is more than it's upside for that lens when shooting sports. I use one for my 120-300 2.8 and I'll use it on the 70-200 if I'm shooting lower light/non action stuff where I'm not getting those fast shutter speeds.

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wave01
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Re: i think you missed my point
In reply to John_A_G, Feb 2, 2012

Hi IMHO the op asked if a t3i/600d would do the job and the it will do it with the right lens and that goes for a 7d or a nikon.

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John_A_G
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can I ask?
In reply to wave01, Feb 2, 2012

wave01 wrote:

Hi IMHO the op asked if a t3i/600d would do the job and the it will do it with the right lens and that goes for a 7d or a nikon.

What is your indoor sports shooting experience?

For indoor soccer, what is, in your opinion, the "right lens"?

How does the t3i compare at ISO 6400 to the d7000?

I'm very curious upon what you base your advice to the OP.

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Distracted mom
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Re: can I ask?
In reply to John_A_G, Feb 2, 2012

Thank you everyone. Your feedback has been helpful.

I am upgrading from a Rebel Xsi. In taking pictures last weekend, my friend was using one of her Canon's which had an ISO up to 6400. The difference in quality and clarity was amazing - which is what kicked off my search.

While mine were somewhat blurry using the following settings - 1/60 1600 f4.5, on automatic hers better using the automatic basic setting.

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John_A_G
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follow-up
In reply to Distracted mom, Feb 2, 2012

Distracted mom wrote:

In taking pictures last weekend, my friend was using one of her Canon's which had an ISO up to 6400. The difference in quality and clarity was amazing - which is what kicked off my search.

While mine were somewhat blurry using the following settings - 1/60 1600 f4.5, on automatic hers better using the automatic basic setting.

Let me ask some follow-up questions:

When you say her results were better were you just looking at the lcd on her camera or were you looking at the photos on computer or in print (whichever final version you have your photos in)?

Can you ask your friend what camera model and lens she was using?

Quality is a very subjective thing. I would also caution that if you print 8x10s then making quality judgements off the lcd of a camera might not be a good idea.

In the end, if you're happy with the quality produced by your friend's kit you know duplicating that kit can produce same level of quality.

BUT,if your friend was not only using a camera with better high ISO but also an f2.8 lens you cannot assume a new body will give same results.

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wave01
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Re: can I ask?
In reply to John_A_G, Feb 2, 2012

John_A_G wrote:

wave01 wrote:

Hi IMHO the op asked if a t3i/600d would do the job and the it will do it with the right lens and that goes for a 7d or a nikon.

What is your indoor sports shooting experience?

For indoor soccer, what is, in your opinion, the "right lens"?

How does the t3i compare at ISO 6400 to the d7000?

I'm very curious upon what you base your advice to the OP.

I am just trying to help but in answer

I would look at either a canon 70-200 f2.8l or sigmas 120-300f2.8 or 70-200f2.8 all very expensive glass

next I had a look on this sites reviews and compared the d7000 at iso 6400 to the t2i/550d and its not that bad.

I base my opinion on my own experience, a 7d would be better but you have to take in price and peoples budget the nikon and 7d cost a lot more and i am not bashing nikon they make very good cameras. Hope this clears thing up

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John_A_G
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Re: can I ask?
In reply to wave01, Feb 2, 2012

wave01 wrote:

I am just trying to help but in answer

I would look at either a canon 70-200 f2.8l or sigmas 120-300f2.8 or 70-200f2.8 all very expensive glass

What sports have you shot with any of these lenses?

next I had a look on this sites reviews and compared the d7000 at iso 6400 to the t2i/550d and its not that bad.

I don't know every comparison seems to favor the Nikon. Even D5100 appears better.

I base my opinion on my own experience,

Again, let me ask - what low light sports do you shoot? You're making recommendations on what gear to use to shoot indoor soccer. It's not a question of general experience but RELEVANT experience. You could have shot landscapes for 40 years but if you don't shoot low light sports or something very similar your experience isn't relevant to the OPs needs. So, what relevant experience do you have?

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ProfessorBug
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Re: T3i indoor sports
In reply to Distracted mom, Feb 3, 2012

Hi, I took some indoor sports shots a couple of months ago with my 550D. I didn't want to use flash to avoid distractions, so I had to make do with the fairly miserable ambient light. The pictures seem to make it look brighter than it was! Lenses were nifty 50, canon 18-55 kit lens and 55-250 kit lens. I'm certainly no expert, so you could probably do better than this if you were up to it

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lapage
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No easy way
In reply to Distracted mom, Feb 3, 2012

Indoor soccer is tough. Out of pure frustration, I've been rethinking my set up as well - T1i w/Sigma 50mm 1.4. The 50mm is to short so most of my pictures are cropped which only brings more attention to the noise. But, the next best thing I have is EF 70-200 f4 or EF 200mm f2.8. The zoom is too slow and the prime is too long.

Ideally, I would like to upgrade to 7D and pair it with 85mm. That way, I can push the ISO up to 3200 or so, and shoot at around f2. Below are a couple of shot from two separate gyms - one with some natural light, the other with none. Both pics have about 50% cropped out.

1/400, f2, ISO 800 - w/some natural light....I am typically happy with these results

1/200, f2, ISO 800 - no natural light.....very few keepers and those that I do, I am not thrilled with

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wave01
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Re: No easy way
In reply to lapage, Feb 3, 2012

to distracted mom I am not getting into which camera is better I have already said that they will all do the job. what you asked was will a t3i be ok and from the pictures shown you can judge yourself. if it was me I would look at a t2i/550d its a bit cheaper and so leave you extra cash for a lens. good luck

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BAK
BAK
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Let the athletes come to you
In reply to Distracted mom, Feb 3, 2012

Indoor soccer is really hard because of usually lousy light, and pretty fast motion.

Without getting silly about expenses, a T3i is as good as you can get, and had the advantage of a tilty screen, which us very useful for little movies with the camera held steady.

The lens is the biggest problem, and a "faster" lens, which means one with a larger aperture and a smaller number -- (f2.8 is faster than f5.6, with a bigger aperture, meaning more light comes in the lens, which in turn means you can shoot in lower light, or at faster shutter speeds, or some combo of the two.)

So when you buy your new camera, buying a faster lens is a good idea.

That's a budget issue, but the 50mm f1.8 Canon lens is faster than any zoom, and much faster than the kit lens that frequently comes with the camera. It costs around $100 depending on where you are)

The lens does not zoom, so it means you set up somewhere, and then wait for the kids to run close enough to you to photograph.

BAK

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