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03-23-2012, 10:46 AM   #1

Settings for K10D

I will be taking hockey action photos in an arena -- what settings should I be using on Manual? Auto does not work plus the fact I will be shotting through glass.

03-23-2012, 12:15 PM   #2
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Erm, what lens are you using? Why does 'auto' not work? And the K10D doesn't have an Auto setting... It has 'Program' and 'Green' mode, both of which should work fine unless you have an old manual lens.

If you are shooting inside you should probably set your ISO to 400 or 800 and use your fastest aperture in Aperture Priority mode (Av on the dial). If you didn't understand any of that you probably need to do some reading about exposure or get a different camera. Hope that helps!
03-24-2012, 07:01 AM   #3
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Since you are in an indoor rink or arena, I would determine the exposure ahead of time (hand-held incident light meter would be best with readings taken at the ice, though metering with the camera off your hand or a 18% gray card will also work) and shoot in M mode. The light will not be changing, so no sense letting the camera be fooled by bright ice. Set the ISO at 800 using a shutter speed of 1/500s or higher. With any luck there will be enough light to allow for moderate lens aperture (say f/5.6) to give you some latitude for focusing. Don't bother with the on-board flash. Its range is inadequate.

In regards to focus, AF is a crap-shoot since the action is fast and the K10D is not. Manual focus (pre-focus for anticipated action and wait) may be your best option as well.

I know it sounds strange to be recommending shooting in M mode with a modern camera, but you would be surprised how many pros do just that for difficult, but consistent, lighting situations (stage presentations, birds in flight, arena sport and such).


Last edited by stevebrot; 03-24-2012 at 07:12 AM.
03-24-2012, 07:01 AM   #4
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Hockey is one of the fastest games there is. You need fast shutter speeds much of the time, at least 1/250 minimum or even faster if you have a longer lens. Use the fastest shutter speed you can and still get the right exposure. Meter off the players, not the ice or the opposite bleachers. If you're using an AF lens, the Pentax TAv mode works well in those situations. With a manual lens, you will have to set the exposure yourself but that's not too difficult. There can often be reflections and the only way to correct that is to move. My prefererence for hockey games is the nosebleed seats and a telephoto. The lighting isn't going to change all that much indoors. Choose an aperture that that gives you pretty good DOF and shoot away. That is going to vary depending on the length of the lens. Shooting through the glass, which is thick plexiglass and if its old may be very cloudy, always proves difficult. Set the ISO to 800 or 1600. There will be some noise. If you're shooting JPEG's, set your white balance. RAW is always better and you have much more room to adjust your shots in PP. Take some test shots before the game gets going and get the camera tweaked so your shots look right. Take lots of shots. With fast action sports and indoor lighting, there will be a lot of deletes with any camera.

03-24-2012, 02:06 PM   #5
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You got some good suggesting above me.
I too recommend shooting in manual and try not to get too elevated in your shots. That is, try to get as much on the same level as the players. This will help you get a little more light reflected off the ice onto the players and less pictures of the light on the ice surface. If you know some of the players, don't be afraid to ask if you can stand on the bench for less obstructed views. Pucks dont fly out at the benches as much as you may fear. But just stand at one end or the other so you dont get in the way of line changes and such.
You will most likely have to go to iso 1600, which really is not all that noisey with the K10. But of course depending on the lighting of your rink, you'll be lucky if your shutter speed will be higher than 1/125th. And depending on your lens, you might have to just go one stop down on the aperture to allow as much light as you can but still have some relative sharpness.
Move around a little. If your shots have a somewhat wide angle of view, you don't want the same background in all your shots.
If you are going to shoot in a Program mode, add a +.3 or +.7, less than one full stop, on the exposure compensation, shoot a few tests and check.
I have gotten not bad results shooting with an old Tamron 100-300, a DA 55-300, a SMC F-100-300 and a DA* 50-135. Those were probably all set at f8, iso1600 and between 1/90 and 1/125, (maybe a little slow in some instances) so pan carefully and maybe use a monopod.
Finally, get some great shots of the goalie. He deserves it.

Last edited by Nowhere Matt; 03-24-2012 at 02:20 PM.
03-24-2012, 09:08 PM   #6
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The K10D is not very good at high-ISO shots. I seldom go over 400 with my K10D.

As someone else said, hockey is a fast-moving sport. In addition, most indoor arenas have relatively poor light for photography. Unless you have some expensive, fast lenses (2.8 or faster), you're going to be stuck with slow shutter speeds. Flash, even if it were allowed, would be absolutely useless, because you will be too far away from the action.

One trick I have learned with my K10D is that, shooting in RAW mode, I can underexpose by at least two stops and recover that in post processing. That means that, if the meter tells me to shoot at 1/60 second, I can get away with 1/250 or 1/400 and still get pretty good results. You can't do that with in-camera JPEG.
03-25-2012, 06:18 AM   #7
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QuoteOriginally posted by noblepa Quote
One trick I have learned with my K10D is that, shooting in RAW mode, I can underexpose by at least two stops and recover that in post processing. That means that, if the meter tells me to shoot at 1/60 second, I can get away with 1/250 or 1/400 and still get pretty good results. You can't do that with in-camera JPEG.
I have done that shooting lacrosse with a K10D and DA55~300, where the action is at times just as fast as hockey. Even outdoors cloudy day light can be similar to a well-lit hockey rink. I set Ev Comp to -1 ISO100 or 200. The big difference is I set the aperture for decent DoF (f/8 to f/10) and pre-focus. You might not have enough light for that high an aperture so pre-focusing will be more important. When shooting, aim at the chest or belt line, not the stick or puck and you will capture the entire body, stick and puck. Otherwise you will cut off the skates or the head.


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