Forgot Password
Pentax Camera Forums Home
 

Reply
Show Printable Version Search this Thread
02-16-2015, 06:43 AM   #1
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 9
Settings for best sports photography

I have been given a Pentax K-x together with a Tamron 70-200mm F2.8 lens. I am a relative newcomer to photography and want to specialise in football (soccer) shots. However those that I've previously taken are not really sharp. As a general rule of thumb I set the camera to ISO 6400 on AF and also use a monopod.


I am still getting to learn tyhe way around my camera and always shoot everything on AF. I would appreciate any advice on improving the quality and sharpness of my pics and advice on what settings to use during daylight anf under floodlights.

02-16-2015, 06:57 AM   #2
Pentaxian




Join Date: Sep 2013
Location: Phoenix, AZ
Photos: Albums
Posts: 660
Are they blurry or just not sharp? You could be missing the focus, but it could also be that your lens is sharper when stopped down a little bit. I'd stay away from an ISO that high, try to keep it at 1600 or below, and your shutter speed should be at least 1/100 or more to freeze thew action.
02-16-2015, 07:10 AM   #3
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
mattt's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Niagara
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,820
All newbies get caught with slow shutter speed. You only shared your ISO value, Tell us what mode/settings you are using. 1/100 is too slow for sports with a telephoto. 1/400 is bare minimum IMO. Many would argue whether SR. should be enabled using a Monopod. I shoot some sports now and again but do it handheld and enable SR. If you use a monopod you might try SR on and SR off to see what yields best results in your situation.

On my Kr I used to use Tv mode =1/400(+)
Auto ISO 100-6400
AF-C

If the camera struggles to get the required shutter speed I might EV bias -1 stop because I can push in post.
02-16-2015, 07:12 AM   #4
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 9
Original Poster
But if the camera is on AF doesn't it automatically set the shutter speed relevant to the subject being photographed? How does one override this if my assumption is correct? As you can see \I'm very much a beginner and am still in the process of learning how to handle my camera and what it can do.

---------- Post added 02-16-15 at 02:17 PM ----------

QuoteOriginally posted by mattt Quote
All newbies get caught with slow shutter speed. You only shared your ISO value, Tell us what mode/settings you are using. 1/100 is too slow for sports with a telephoto. 1/400 is bare minimum IMO. Many would argue whether SR. should be enabled using a Monopod. I shoot some sports now and again but do it handheld and enable SR. If you use a monopod you might try SR on and SR off to see what yields best results in your situation.

On my Kr I used to use Tv mode =1/400(+)
Auto ISO 100-6400
AF-C

If the camera struggles to get the required shutter speed I might EV bias -1 stop because I can push in post.
In a nutshell I set the camera on AF and shoot. Nothing more than that.

02-16-2015, 07:17 AM   #5
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
mattt's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Niagara
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 2,820
What is your mode dial set to?
02-16-2015, 07:27 AM   #6
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 9
Original Poster
You'll have to excuse my ignorance but what is 'mode dial'?

---------- Post added 02-16-15 at 02:37 PM ----------

It's set on Auto
02-16-2015, 08:06 AM   #7
klh
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
klh's Avatar

Join Date: May 2009
Location: Rochester, New York, USA
Posts: 768
I use the Tamron 70-200/2.8 for my sports shots, both indoor (swimming, gymnastics) and outdoor (soccer), and I'm pretty pleased with my results.

My most common setting and one I would recommend you start with is to use TAv mode, with T shutter speed) at 1/400, and A (aperture) at f/4.0 or f/5.6 if there is enough light. I let the S (sensitivity or ISO) float depending on the shot.

I also turn off shake reduction (since I'm usually panning), and use burst mode to get as many chances of getting the shot I want. I also only use back button focus so that I can decide when to focus the shot.

The big thing is practice, and don't get discouraged.
02-16-2015, 08:39 AM   #8
Veteran Member
sterretje's Avatar

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Roodepoort, South Africa
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 3,534
QuoteOriginally posted by mangoman67 Quote
You'll have to excuse my ignorance but what is 'mode dial'?
I think you must start downloading and reading the manual from Operation Manuals Download : Support & Service | RICOH IMAGING

On top of your camera is a dial with letters like Av, Tv, P etc. That's the mode dial.

Your camera does not have a TAv mode, so ignore that.


Last edited by sterretje; 02-16-2015 at 08:44 AM.
02-16-2015, 08:46 AM   #9
Inactive Account




Join Date: Aug 2012
Posts: 9
Original Poster
QuoteOriginally posted by klh Quote
I use the Tamron 70-200/2.8 for my sports shots, both indoor (swimming, gymnastics) and outdoor (soccer), and I'm pretty pleased with my results.

My most common setting and one I would recommend you start with is to use TAv mode, with T shutter speed) at 1/400, and A (aperture) at f/4.0 or f/5.6 if there is enough light. I let the S (sensitivity or ISO) float depending on the shot.

I also turn off shake reduction (since I'm usually panning), and use burst mode to get as many chances of getting the shot I want. I also only use back button focus so that I can decide when to focus the shot.

The big thing is practice, and don't get discouraged.
I'm lost!
02-16-2015, 08:52 AM   #10
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
dadipentak's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Baltimore, Maryland
Photos: Gallery
Posts: 10,480
QuoteOriginally posted by mangoman67 Quote
if the camera is on AF doesn't it automatically set the shutter speed relevant to the subject being photographed?
No, it doesn't. I rarely advise referencing the manual but in this case I have to. Don't read it (as in cover to cover--that will drive you to tears) but do look for the general descriptions of the various functions. Also find a friend who can give some useful advice (and don't forget to buy him/her lunch. ;~)
02-16-2015, 08:57 AM   #11
Veteran Member
Docrwm's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Somewhere in the Southern US
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 11,275
My experience is that at 6400 shots that are perfectly in focus on the K-x look "fuzzy" because of the grain issues to those not used to SLRs.

Also if you are this new to dSLRs I'd recommend the K-x/K-r ebook you can find here:
https://www.pentaxforums.com/forums/24-photographic-equipment-sale/285949-sal...tax-dslrs.html

It's loads better than just the manual IMHO.
02-16-2015, 10:06 AM   #12
klh
Site Supporter
Site Supporter
klh's Avatar

Join Date: May 2009
Location: Rochester, New York, USA
Posts: 768
QuoteOriginally posted by sterretje Quote
Your camera does not have a TAv mode, so ignore that.
My mistake. Sorry.
02-16-2015, 10:17 AM   #13
Pentaxian
Just1MoreDave's Avatar

Join Date: Feb 2007
Location: Aurora, CO
Photos: Gallery | Albums
Posts: 4,879
The K-x has a Moving Object mode, with a leaning runner symbol on it, on the mode dial. That should be better than the straight Auto mode because the camera now knows your subject moves. The manual isn't clear on what the camera does in Moving Object mode, except that it does these two things:

AF-C - that means the camera is continuously trying to focus. The camera normally likes to lock focus first, then allow the shutter to fire. AF-C keeps trying to focus and does not keep the shutter from firing while it's focusing. page 115.
Drive Mode - the camera is normally set to shoot once per shutter button press, but it has two settings for taking photos as long as you hold down the button. One setting is as fast as it'll shoot, 4.7 frames per second. After a few seconds the camera will fill up its buffer and slow down until all the shots are written to the SD card. The other setting is only 2 frames per second but the camera should be able to write all the photos to the card without filling the buffer. page 136.

Probably that mode uses Auto-5 for its autofocus points, page 117 of the manual. That means the camera will use a line of AF points centered horizontally in the frame. It probably uses Auto-ISO, page 90. These are both default settings from the factory. if you got a used camera, check to see if they are still set to defaults. Default Auto-ISO only goes up to 1600 and that might be too low. If you are shooting at night you'll need to raise that to 6400.

You want a large memory card for these settings.

You might be able to do better than the Moving Object mode by directly changing some settings yourself. Set AF-C and high-speed drive first.

Tv mode has nothing to do with television, it stands for Time value. The e-dial sets your shutter speed directly, and the camera tries to match it. The speeds you can use depend on how fast your subject moves across the frame. Partly that's up to the players, partly that's how much you zoom in. At 70mm the players have more frame to cross. You can change that by following the action, called panning. If your panning speed matches the action speed perfectly, your shutter speed can be lower because the players aren't moving within your frame. That allows the camera to choose lens and ISO settings that are better for image quality. So it helps to practice panning a little. Don't try it on every shot because it's hard to do. It helps to predict the player's path a little too. If you are not panning, start with the suggested 1/400 shutter speed. Shooting a player standing relatively still, you can go slower, maybe as low as 1/50 if you are really steady. Panning might work as low as 1/25, but I prefer 1/100.

I assume you are taking JPEGs which is probably better. At night/indoors, the light level and white balance won't change much so you can take test shots in advance and get the exposure right. To adjust that in Tv mode, see page 107 in the manual. You can also set a custom white balance, page 182 in the manual, or use a preset that matches the lighting. The camera will be slightly quicker because it won't have to choose a white balance for every shot.
02-16-2015, 10:44 AM   #14
New Member




Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Knaresborough, UK
Photos: Albums
Posts: 10
I've covered a few soccer matches and the first thing is that it is really difficult to get shots in focus because the players are running all over the place so it is easy for the camera's autofocus (AF) to pick the wrong thing. I set the AF to just use the single centre focus point and try to keep it on the player I am interested in. Even then I consider myself to be doing well to get 50% of keepers. I set the lens aperture to f/2.8 or f/4 because this makes the action you are focused on stand out from the background. I use a shutter speed of 1/750s to freeze the action and eliminate shutter speed. This combination should avoid using high ISO sensitivity as long as you are shooting in daylight.

The key here is to keep practising. Once you're getting more photos in focus then the next thing is try to get your timing right to get the peak of the action.

I've tried to attach one of my images taken at f/2.8 and 1/800s under weak floodlights that required ISO 6400 but it was really gloomy.

Roy
Attached Images
 
Reply

Bookmarks
  • Submit Thread to Facebook Facebook
  • Submit Thread to Twitter Twitter
  • Submit Thread to Digg Digg
Tags - Make this thread easier to find by adding keywords to it!
advice, af, camera, camera settings, iso, monopod, pentax help, pentax k-x, photography, post, settings, shutter, sports, sr, troubleshooting
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Best AF settings for available light performance photography rekrabm Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 6 03-19-2015 02:57 AM
K-m focus settings for landscape and sports Rusky40 Troubleshooting and Beginner Help 2 04-16-2014 02:02 AM
best setting- indoor sports photography t.manning Pentax K-30 & K-50 30 03-11-2014 08:00 PM
Newbie w/ K-30 - Best settings for wildlife, outdoor photography Polioliolio Pentax K-30 & K-50 6 05-02-2013 05:21 PM
best settings for K20D street photography? illdefined Pentax DSLR Discussion 2 01-25-2009 11:20 PM



All times are GMT -7. The time now is 09:52 AM. | See also: NikonForums.com, CanonForums.com part of our network of photo forums!
  • Red (Default)
  • Green
  • Gray
  • Dark
  • Dark Yellow
  • Dark Blue
  • Old Red
  • Old Green
  • Old Gray
  • Dial-Up Style
Hello! It's great to see you back on the forum! Have you considered joining the community?
register
Creating a FREE ACCOUNT takes under a minute, removes ads, and lets you post! [Dismiss]
Top