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: 11,454
Re: What to buy for shooting action that doesn't cost as much as a D4?

KennyXL wrote:

Here's an unorthodox option:

Nikon V1 + FT-1 adapter using the Sigma 85mm f/1.4. It gives you a 35mm equivalent focal length of 230mm. Yes, it's not nearly as good as any of the other options when it comes to low light situations due to it's poor handling of high ISO, BUT with an f/1.4 lens, that's 2 stops faster than an f/2.8 lens which will allow you to significantly lower the ISO to offset the noise. I'm also assuming that you'll be doing at lest minor post-processing which will allow you to get rid of much of the remaining noise especially if it'll only be seen online or in photos (i.e. no pixel-peeping). It shoots full-size 10mp photos at 10 frames per second. Furthermore, it's super-light. The whole combo probably weights less than the D3 by itself. Best part is the price:

Nikon V1: $200 new on craigslist.

FT-1: $150; probably less if you can find it used.

Sigma 85mm f/1.4: $600 used.

That's $900 and you'll fill the frame with the action. Yes, it's only 10mp, but the 2.7x crop factor will fill much of the frame so you'll have less cropping than you would with a 24mp full-frame camera. Another bonus: the Nikon V1 focuses much faster an just about any mirrorless system (with either good light or a fast lens) and some say it's on par with a DSLR.

Do you have an data on how this would actually perform, particularly for low light focus tracking?

Going for a much smaller sensor seems like it's unlikely to be the right direction, but I have always wondered how something like this actually performs?  It's less reach than I'm shooting with today as I have 35mm equivalent of 300-600.

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