What to buy for shooting action that doesn't cost as much as a D4?

Started Nov 14, 2013 | Discussions thread
OP jfriend00 Forum Pro • Posts: 12,170
Re: What to buy for shooting action that doesn't cost as much as a D4?

Micheal Hall wrote:

I've been considering this same thing lately myself.

I'd go with a D800, a vertical grip and bounce between shooting in FX/DX mode. You're already used to DX and you still get 15.4MP when you're there. And you have the 51 point AF system that is in the D4.

I shoot both Nikon and Canon and love my D3s, but the lenses I have for that is for indoor sports and I lack what I need for shooting soccer. On the other hand, I have a number Canon 1D mkIIIs I could be using and they perform excellently at 10fps. But at only 10.1MP they just aren't quite what I need in terms of resolution for the lenses I have. So this Fall I've been shooting soccer, waterpolo, tennis and cross country with my Canon 1Ds mkIII and a 200mm 1.8 + 1.4TC. It gives me a 280mm 2.5 at 21MP (or 16.7MP at 364mm at 1.3x crop factor - the same as the 1DmkIV).

The only thing I give up is frame rate - it's only 3fps but I've been walking away with 300 - 400+ keepers after the games (waterpolo and soccer). But sports is more about timing than sequences, I've always felt.

The 21MP resolution allows me to crop in a bit more and I've been printing some sample images here in the studio as 12x18s and they are holding up excellently. I've felt the lack of raw fps a couple of times, but have overall been very happy with it.

I would think that it might be worth renting a D800 and grip and giving it a go. Another plus point is that you can quickly switch from DX to FX without having to change cameras making your lenses a bit more versatile at the expense of frame rate. Not only that, but now you have an incredible high resolution, full frame body for other uses.

Just a few thoughts - I'm leaning in this direction myself.

I have rented a D800 for soccer and found it was not a good fit for how I shoot for a number of reasons.  I don't care to sidetrack this thread with that argument all over again so I won't go into my reasons, but I have given it a try and shot three games with it and it is not what I want.

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