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01-16-2009, 12:23 PM   #1
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Fastest AF for sports?

From what I read in the forum, K-mount lenses always seem to get dissed on AF speed. I'm trying to capture my boys playing soccer using my GX-10. Do any of you shoot sports and have one or more lenses that you use that aren't disappointed by the AF speed?

01-16-2009, 03:09 PM   #2
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Pentax cameras do seem to have slower AF speed than some cameras from Canon or Nikon, but should be fast enough to capture sports photos like soccer. Besides, there were a lot great sports photos before the first AF camera was made, even a pro sports photographer w/ a high end C/N camera will still use manual focus when their cameras aren't fast enough to capture the action.
01-16-2009, 06:55 PM   #3
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QuoteOriginally posted by frank Quote
Pentax cameras do seem to have slower AF speed than some cameras from Canon or Nikon, but should be fast enough to capture sports photos like soccer. Besides, there were a lot great sports photos before the first AF camera was made, even a pro sports photographer w/ a high end C/N camera will still use manual focus when their cameras aren't fast enough to capture the action.
The only caveat ther eis that they used BIG FAT viewfinders that wer ebright and had great markings to aid focus.

To answer the question, maybe try the HSM Sigma 70-200 .. pretty much ideal if you have the seasheels to barter.
01-16-2009, 10:51 PM   #4
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You can shoot sports

You can shoot sports fine with your Pentax. just anticipate the action, pan with it and when you get focus lock shoot. This takes some practice but they do work, faster a/f and 6 fps or better would be nice but with some practice you will do fine.

Check out some of my kids sports shots, let me know if i can be of any help.

01-16-2009, 11:00 PM   #5
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I know you ask specifically about soccer shooting here, but the following thread, though dealing with shooting motocross, has lots of excellent advice by many of the fine posters at this forum.

Nearly all the advice in this lengthy thread can apply to shooting soccer as well. Best of luck.

https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/pentax-dslr-discussion/35763-shooting-motorcycle-races.html

Last edited by Jewelltrail; 01-18-2009 at 11:04 PM.
01-17-2009, 07:20 AM   #6
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You should have no problems shooting your kids soccer games. The AF is is much faster than your kids can run around. What can happen is that the AF can constantly try to refocus as the distance between you and the action changes. Use the focus lock. It does take a little practice so take a lot of shots. I shoot a lot of pictures at sporting events that my kids and now grandkids participate in and AF pretty much behaves the same no matter what brand camera is used. I talk to a lot of other parents shooting at these events and probably every brand and model DSLR shows up. I have heard several Canon Rebel users complain they want to change cameras because the AF sucks. I doubt there is a problem with their camera.
01-17-2009, 09:02 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by sluggo913 Quote
You can shoot sports fine with your Pentax. just anticipate the action, pan with it and when you get focus lock shoot. This takes some practice but they do work....
+1 on this one. I recently took my new 18-250 Tamron lens to a Viking's game and was able to capture the action after a little practice.
01-17-2009, 09:39 AM   #8
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Of course you can use Pentax to shoot sports. Many of us do it all the time. That being said, Nikon and Canon do focus faster and this is an area Pentax needs to improve on in future cameras.

Tom G

01-17-2009, 10:32 AM   #9
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I've got 3 kids on different teams in different leagues so I take lots of sport shots . Up until recently have been doing so with manual focus film which teaches you to anticipate action through the viewfinder and use deep DOF. This picture is from my very first outing with auto focus/digital. Don' t know if the other guys AF is faster but I LIKE what my Pentax did here and it was easy! Have learned a few tricks since to make it even better. You can play with camera set up and YOU may need to learn/practice sport shooting but the auto focus on these cameras does just fine! Another thing to take into consideration for sports photography is the durabillity of the camera and I truely believe that Pentax wins that catagory hands down!
This was shot with a FA 80-320 which has a mediocre reputation but I like it.

Last edited by seacapt; 01-22-2009 at 12:28 PM.
01-18-2009, 01:51 AM   #10
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Here are some action shots I did recently with a K100D, Pentax 80-320 and Tamron 18-250. I assigned AF to the OK button and set AF to continuos focusing. Got more keepers than I thought. I think it is a good idea to shoot a little wider and do exact framing later on with cropping. Otherwise, things you want to have in the frame may move out of it before you can take the shot.

Try to avoid subjects coming towards you or running away from you directly. In other words, in terms of giving the AF a chance, the sideline is a better place to be than the goal line, unless you prefocus or subjects don't move towards you / away from you.
01-18-2009, 04:23 AM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by Class A Quote

Try to avoid subjects coming towards you or running away from you directly. In other words, in terms of giving the AF a chance, the sideline is a better place to be than the goal line, unless you prefocus or subjects don't move towards you / away from you.
subject towards to the camera is no major problems,
as soon as I see the car in the topcorner and yes thay are going realy fast, I let the af-c do the work and after 2 seconds is all over and I get my equipment sprayad gravel ice just love it
Af-c 6pic
http://files2.bredband.net/cpuser_arnihl/ooooo.pdf
bigger pic
http://files2.bredband.net/cpuser_arnihl/_K209999.jpg

http://files2.bredband.net/cpuser_arnihl/_K209914.jpg
01-18-2009, 06:02 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by ibbe Quote
subject towards to the camera is no major problems
I've heard people say that even their child running towards them was too quick for the AF? Perhaps the distance helps? Or your lens front-focuses by 15m, compensating the AF lag. You must be something right, because your images are seriously sharp. If this is just AF performance, I don't know where Pentax got its "not fit for sports" reputation from? Nice shots, anyhow!
01-18-2009, 10:25 PM   #13
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QuoteOriginally posted by toddaton Quote
From what I read in the forum, K-mount lenses always seem to get dissed on AF speed. I'm trying to capture my boys playing soccer using my GX-10. Do any of you shoot sports and have one or more lenses that you use that aren't disappointed by the AF speed?
Todd, plenty of a good advice in all resposes. Your Tamron 28-75/2.8 will do a very good job when shooting inside (ISO800), But sometimes you'll find it to short. When being close to field (runnnig on side) I also use FA50-1.4 nad crop. While taking pictures outside with a good light I used 50-200 Ptx kit lens with good results and AF C. Good luck, in games too !

Andy
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