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02-16-2010, 05:21 PM   #1
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anyone shoot motorsport much?

g'day all. i currently shoot a bit of motorsport with my k20d. i'm shooting with a 18-250mm tamron atm. in short the 18-250 aint cutting it and i'd like more zoom. so can anyone recommend a good lens be it Tamron or anything else for this purpose? is anyone using a 150-500mm and if so can you give us some feedback.

for those looking for a real challenge if you feel like posting up a shot taken with a smaller zoom lens in comparison to a 150-500mm that would give me a fairly decent heads up

cheers

S.

02-16-2010, 05:33 PM   #2
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxtk421 Quote
g'day all. i currently shoot a bit of motorsport with my k20d. i'm shooting with a 18-250mm tamron atm. in short the 18-250 aint cutting it and i'd like more zoom.
S.
Hey, pentaxtk421.

I've only recently got my K-7, so I can't offer much help.

But I am curious what kind of motorsport you might be shooting. I'm hoping to get to a Rally America event sometime, and I'd be interested in knowing if anyone has done much shooting at rallies, whatever continent it might be on, and what they shoot with, and how. Anyone shooting primes, for instance?

I guess my hope is that since you're in Australia, you're talking about rally, too--though I'm sure there's other motorsport down under, too!
02-16-2010, 07:36 PM   #3
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I have the k-7 and the 150-500HSM sigma lens. I have used it for motorsport once, it was hillclimbing and i found it to be perfectly adequate.

I have also shot Soccer with it, but late afternoon when the sun starts going down you have to shoot high ISO. THe HSM is good, fast and quiet, i have since updated my 70-200 f2.8 to the HSM version and it is equally as good.

Other forum users will tell you that the 50-500 is a better lens but you sacrifice the HSM, i wanted HSM as i shoot a lot of sports.

What state are you in? Im in Aus too.
02-16-2010, 07:48 PM   #4
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I like to attend some racing meets & GPs. I'm also stuck with the Pentax version of the 18-250 and it is very soft @ 250mm. Out of hundreds of shots taken at the 2009 Phillip Island MotoGP I was only happy with a few shots from the DA18-250 and they are still quite soft.



Are you specifically after a zoom? If not, have you considered the DA* 300mm/f4? I guess it depends on your budget. I don't use the long end of my 18-250 much so i'll probably keep it for *average* racing photos.

02-16-2010, 09:49 PM   #5
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QuoteOriginally posted by grey goat Quote
Hey, pentaxtk421.

I've only recently got my K-7, so I can't offer much help.

But I am curious what kind of motorsport you might be shooting. I'm hoping to get to a Rally America event sometime, and I'd be interested in knowing if anyone has done much shooting at rallies, whatever continent it might be on, and what they shoot with, and how. Anyone shooting primes, for instance?

I guess my hope is that since you're in Australia, you're talking about rally, too--though I'm sure there's other motorsport down under, too!
how's it hangin grey goat, thanks for the reply. the types of event i usually try to get to, which isn't as often as i like are classic type car rallies which usually take place on public roads. whilst i thinks we do get maybe one or two rounds of the wrc i haven't touched that yet. now i'm not a pro, strictly an amateur, but the beauty of the classic car rallies is even if you don't have "acrreditation" if you do your homework (i.e. recon for good spots for pics) and you have the right gear (i certainly don't yet) you can come up with some good shots. i like to get to the targa events. the main obstacle with these is if you don't have someone who can drop you off to do your shoot and then pick you up at the end then you need a car to get to your position. if you have a car then you have to find somewhere safe to park it where is won't interfere with racing, this aint always easy given the distance btw parking spot (general landscape and terrain) and shooting spot. from the experience i have had if you find a suitable spot which aint likely to see you killed you will not be picked up by officials doing their sweep before the race (hence why i'm after a bigger zoom lens so i'm not in danger). i have spend at least one very early morning in a cow paddock in Tassie before the sad part was this was before my SLR and i was using a shite point and shoot digital.

the following links will give you an idea of the events i like to follow here in Aus, in particular catchfence will definitely give you a heads up about who uses what although i only know of one chap on the site who uses a pentax to shoot motorsport.

http://www.targa.org.au/index.html
www.classicadelaide.com.au/
www.targawest.com.au/
Catch Fence Photos - Motor Sport Photography Forums • Index page

cheers

S.
02-16-2010, 09:52 PM   #6
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QuoteOriginally posted by ossi Quote
I have the k-7 and the 150-500HSM sigma lens. I have used it for motorsport once, it was hillclimbing and i found it to be perfectly adequate.

I have also shot Soccer with it, but late afternoon when the sun starts going down you have to shoot high ISO. THe HSM is good, fast and quiet, i have since updated my 70-200 f2.8 to the HSM version and it is equally as good.

Other forum users will tell you that the 50-500 is a better lens but you sacrifice the HSM, i wanted HSM as i shoot a lot of sports.

What state are you in? Im in Aus too.
thanks for that info Ossi. to be honest i wasn't even sure a sigma 150-500mm would fit on a pentax it's just that the 150-500mm is the biggest i could find without having to rent my arse on the streets. my humble home is in the state of victoria under a small collection of twigs and sticks.

S.
02-16-2010, 10:02 PM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by fractal Quote
I like to attend some racing meets & GPs. I'm also stuck with the Pentax version of the 18-250 and it is very soft @ 250mm. Out of hundreds of shots taken at the 2009 Phillip Island MotoGP I was only happy with a few shots from the DA18-250 and they are still quite soft.



Are you specifically after a zoom? If not, have you considered the DA* 300mm/f4? I guess it depends on your budget. I don't use the long end of my 18-250 much so i'll probably keep it for *average* racing photos.
to be honest Carl you're not speaking with someone who knows all the ins and outs of photography, i'm a bit of a hack so when you ask am i specifically after a zoom i'm wondering a zoom lens in comparison to what exactly? a manaul focus lens, please forgive very simple thought processes. so maybe a good question for me to ask is what is a DA* 300mm/f4? i do know what you mean tho with the 18-250mm not hitting the mark. kinda sux after driving up and down a rally stage trying to find the ideal and safe spot only to have the majority of your images not quite filling up the bulk of your frame.

thanks

S.
02-16-2010, 11:33 PM   #8
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Ok S, i'll first say, that at a rally, the action is going to be much closer. If you want to shoot this kind of thing then your options are different. Shooting MotoGP & F1 you need a very long lens. Upwards of 300mm.

The DA* 300mm/f4 has a fixed focal length. This is what we call a prime, as opposed to zoom which you can change the focal length of. The 'F4' is the speed, and you could consider F4 quite slow, but obviously not as slow as the 18-250s F6.3.. This means with the barrel extended @ 250mm you are at F6.3 which is way too slow for racing and to capture anything close to sharp. The prime lens can most definitely put you in an awkward situation where you want to zoom out, (or zoom in for that matter), and use a smaller focal length. But, you choose a prime for speed and image quality.

For Targa type events, I would assume you are quite close to the action. A DA* 60-250mm/f4 would probably be also good, but it really depends on what you want to spend. There are some FA lenses for sports that are fast but they will near be impossible to find and upwards of US$2500.

The FA* 300mm F2.8 is the closest thing to Nikons 300mm f/2.8 VR. Both very expensive though. But, you get what you pay for.

02-17-2010, 03:34 AM   #9
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There's a decent topic on the AV. Forums that I bookmarked a while back -

Had a bash at a Motorsport Photography Guide... - AVForums.com

with some good explanations and examples of motorsport photography.

Last edited by Lloydy; 02-17-2010 at 03:35 AM. Reason: sp
02-17-2010, 03:50 AM   #10
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Or you could try a motorsport where you can get up close to the action, as much as you can call off road trials "action" because we go very slowly!

That's taken with my K10 and the kit 18-55 lens by someone I just handed the camera to. I know that because that's me driving!
02-17-2010, 09:07 PM   #11
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QuoteOriginally posted by pentaxtk421 Quote
how's it hangin grey goat, thanks for the reply. the types of event i usually try to get to, which isn't as often as i like are classic type car rallies which usually take place on public roads. whilst i thinks we do get maybe one or two rounds of the wrc i haven't touched that yet. now i'm not a pro, strictly an amateur, but the beauty of the classic car rallies is even if you don't have "acrreditation" if you do your homework (i.e. recon for good spots for pics) and you have the right gear (i certainly don't yet) you can come up with some good shots. i like to get to the targa events. the main obstacle with these is if you don't have someone who can drop you off to do your shoot and then pick you up at the end then you need a car to get to your position. if you have a car then you have to find somewhere safe to park it where is won't interfere with racing, this aint always easy given the distance btw parking spot (general landscape and terrain) and shooting spot. from the experience i have had if you find a suitable spot which aint likely to see you killed you will not be picked up by officials doing their sweep before the race (hence why i'm after a bigger zoom lens so i'm not in danger). i have spend at least one very early morning in a cow paddock in Tassie before the sad part was this was before my SLR and i was using a shite point and shoot digital.
Classic rallies are very cool, pentaxk421. I've never been to one, but I've read about them, and seen photos.

Your cow paddock story reminds me of Marcus Gronholm's near-encounter with a cow during a 2007 WRC rally--Rally Germany, I think. He missed the cow, but was distracted enough he quit listening to the pace notes, and hit a stone wall or such. Finished, but dropped one place because of it.

It doesn't seem you'd need something super long. Seems to me a zoom topping off at the 200-300 range would work. Someone suggested a 300/4, which would be a sweet lens. (I'd sure love to have one.) Primes--telephoto and otherwise--are great, but a good zoom would give you more flexibility in a sport like rally, classic or otherwise, where you wouldn't always be a set distance from the action.

Hope to see some shots from you and your K-7 soon!
02-17-2010, 09:11 PM   #12
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QuoteOriginally posted by Lloydy Quote
Or you could try a motorsport where you can get up close to the action, as much as you can call off road trials "action" because we go very slowly!

That's taken with my K10 and the kit 18-55 lens by someone I just handed the camera to. I know that because that's me driving!
Lloydy, I had a friend long ago who used to do motorcycle trials, and that sport always intrigued me. But I was completely oblivious to other-vehicle trials until your post.

Good thing that spectator knew enough to use your K10D--and use it pretty well, I'd say!
02-17-2010, 09:47 PM   #13
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I like to go down to the Phillip Island historics... posted a couple of pics from one day a little while ago. There's a couple of spots at PI that you can get close enough to fill the frame with about 200mm (I've only got a DA 50-200!) and on non V8Supercar days, you can wander/drive around easily.
02-18-2010, 01:58 AM   #14
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I've been doing some motorsport stuff professionally for the last few months. I've used Nikon gear. To be honest with you, motorsport is not what Pentax is aimed at. It's still possible, but it simply doesn't have the lens range, auto-focus speed, continuous shooting and focus tracking abilities of top the Nikon (or Canon) stuff. The 300mm f/2.8 Nikon and Canon's are really top grade optics and lightening-fast AF. Now if you don't have or want to pay the thousands for that stuff:

Depending on how close you can get to the track or whatever, I found a 70-200 useful. Mostly when doing track shooting(which wasn't what I was really hired for) it was a 300mm f/2.8, sometimes with x1.4 tc. (I've seen 600mm f/4 Canon used too). But it's still possible with other gear.

Your (decent optics) options would include:
Pentax 60-250 f/4
Pentax 300mm f/4
Pentax 200mm f/2.8
Tamron/Sigma 70-200 f/2.8
Sigma 100-300 f/4
02-18-2010, 02:37 AM   #15
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QuoteOriginally posted by CWyatt Quote
The 300mm f/2.8 Nikon and Canon's are really top grade optics and lightening-fast AF.
I'm sure the FA300/2.8 also has great optics.
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