Need help to improve sports photography

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Equisuz New Member • Posts: 23
Need help to improve sports photography

So I recently upgraded my camera from a Nikon D5200 to a Nikon D500 shooting with a Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 and sometimes a 1.4tc for extra reach. My photos are definitely getting better but I'm struggling to get good exposure under the lights at night and sadly even during the day. Aside from generally being too dark and too noisy still, I feel like they are soft instead of sharp and the colors are off and not rich. Looking for advice to learn more.

Photo straight out of the camera shooting under the lights.

Under the lights at night I shot in M with a shutter speed of 1/500, no teleconverter so I could be wide open at f2.8 and I am using auto ISO. It stayed below 6400 ISO with these settings and in most cases at or below 3200.

Photo straight out of the camera cloudy daytime with 1.4tc

I took this photo the next day and had the tc on so I could get up closer. It was a cloudy day, I shot in M with a shutter speed of 1/1000, 1.4 teleconverter for the extra reach and I closed the aperture down to keep auto ISO at 100 or 120. Aperture ended up being f5.6 or so. I thought I was being super smart by setting the shutter speed I wanted to stop the action (1/1000) and then adjusting the aperture to keep my ISO around 100 or 120. When I got home expecting perfect shots instead I found all of the photos were too dark and again not as sharp or rich colors as I'd want. Open to all advice.

Equisuz #MareishMedia

Nikon D500 Nikon D5200 Sigma 1.4x EX DG Tele Converter Sigma 70-200mm F2.8 EX DG OS HSM
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