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  1. #1
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    I may sound like an old record, but it is my humble opinion that a solid and steady tripod is indispensable to sports photography, especially badminton photography. Even with a steady tripod all lenses must be no slower than f/2.8 for zooms and f/1.8 for primes. How can you take consistent badminton photography with slow zoom lenses of f/3.8 and slower hand-held? Hand-holding a slr is equivalent to losing two stops. Just try this : take a picture in a badminton hall at f/2.8 hand-held and take the same or a similar picture at the same f/2.8 with the camera on a solid and steady tripod using a cable release. Enlarge the two pictures 300 times and you can see the difference.
    You can see in soccer matches professional photographer using expensive and fast long telephoto lenses mounted on solid tripods. You can also see even more amateurs among the crowd using hand-held cameras. I am sure they don't produce comparable pictures. If so the amateurs among the crowd probably know something the professionals have never learned.

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    Administrator kwun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    I may sound like an old record, but it is my humble opinion that a solid and steady tripod is indispensable to sports photography, especially badminton photography. Even with a steady tripod all lenses must be no slower than f/2.8 for zooms and f/1.8 for primes. How can you take consistent badminton photography with slow zoom lenses of f/3.8 and slower hand-held? Hand-holding a slr is equivalent to losing two stops. Just try this : take a picture in a badminton hall at f/2.8 hand-held and take the same or a similar picture at the same f/2.8 with the camera on a solid and steady tripod using a cable release. Enlarge the two pictures 300 times and you can see the difference.
    You can see in soccer matches professional photographer using expensive and fast long telephoto lenses mounted on solid tripods. You can also see even more amateurs among the crowd using hand-held cameras. I am sure they don't produce comparable pictures. If so the amateurs among the crowd probably know something the professionals have never learned.
    try this, photo a badminton player who is moving very fast at f/2.8 and 1/60s shutter, with and without tripod. i can guarantee you that both pictures will come out so blur you won't be able to tell the difference.

    professional photographer using fast long lens on the soccer stadium are using monopods, btw, not tripods. the reason they used tripods is because those 400/2.8 lenses weighs upwards of 20lbs. have you tried handholding 20+lbs for 1.5 hours? the monopod is there for support.

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    tripod and cable release for a sports that is all over the court?

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    Administrator kwun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lurker
    tripod and cable release for a sports that is all over the court?
    yeah. agree. i have tried it. tripod, even monopod, totally does not work if you are close to the court. i brought a monopod to shoot a tournament last time and after 5 shots i took it off and it sat in my car ever since. unless one is shooting at long tele range (> 150mm), the monopod is too restrictive. tripod is even worse, there are too much moving around and even more restrictive.

    i suggest in the future, taneepak should borrow a DSLR and try out his suggestions before making them.

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    When on the move you have to compromise on the types of tripod, but the key is to get a steady one that is easy to move around. Tripods with a centre pole that you can raise or lower should never be used, because they cause vibrations. Some tripods are a pain and get in the way. I had always used a tripod when taking or video taping badminton matches. Yes, there is a difference taking badminton photos at 1/60 sec at f/2.8 with and without a tripod, especially with a telephoto.

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    Quote Originally Posted by kwun
    yeah. agree. i have tried it. tripod, even monopod, totally does not work if you are close to the court. i brought a monopod to shoot a tournament last time and after 5 shots i took it off and it sat in my car ever since. unless one is shooting at long tele range (> 150mm), the monopod is too restrictive. tripod is even worse, there are too much moving around and even more restrictive.

    i suggest in the future, taneepak should borrow a DSLR and try out his suggestions before making them.
    Hehe, Taneepak is Taneepak! It is an educational experience discussing with him on any topic.

    The information on the lighting was very good. Never linked the indoor photos results with flickering lights.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    How can you take consistent badminton photography with slow zoom lenses of f/3.8 and slower hand-held?
    Nope, I don't think anybody is suggesting that here.
    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    Hand-holding a slr is equivalent to losing two stops. Just try this : take a picture in a badminton hall at f/2.8 hand-held and take the same or a similar picture at the same f/2.8 with the camera on a solid and steady tripod using a cable release. Enlarge the two pictures 300 times and you can see the difference.
    .
    I agree, this is true. The picture of the badminton hall will be sharper. However, the subject will move. Heck, my children (age 2 & 4) move slower than a professional badminton player but taking candid photos of them can be a challenge for two main reasons.

    First at 1/60th of a second, movement of the subject causes blur of the subject and not the background.

    Second, by the time I set up a tripod, they've run off to the next room. Which rather defeats the purpose of trying to take a candid. Of course, taking a sharp candid shot of my living room (or a badminton hall) is rather nice but I'd rather try and get the children (or a badminton player) in it as well...


    hmm, now I think about it, my children do move faster compared to me playing badminton so indeed, 1/60th of a second might be a short enough duration of shutter speed to capture my movement.
    Last edited by Cheung; 01-21-2007 at 02:38 AM.

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    You have more like one child now ! Congrat . Busy dad.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    I may sound like an old record, but it is my humble opinion that a solid and steady tripod is indispensable to sports photography, especially badminton photography. Even with a steady tripod all lenses must be no slower than f/2.8 for zooms and f/1.8 for primes. How can you take consistent badminton photography with slow zoom lenses of f/3.8 and slower hand-held? Hand-holding a slr is equivalent to losing two stops. Just try this : take a picture in a badminton hall at f/2.8 hand-held and take the same or a similar picture at the same f/2.8 with the camera on a solid and steady tripod using a cable release. Enlarge the two pictures 300 times and you can see the difference.
    You can see in soccer matches professional photographer using expensive and fast long telephoto lenses mounted on solid tripods. You can also see even more amateurs among the crowd using hand-held cameras. I am sure they don't produce comparable pictures. If so the amateurs among the crowd probably know something the professionals have never learned.
    actually another option is a monopod. gives very good support up to 1/2 secs ( anyway for sports, dont think anyone will shoot at even 1/30, sure blur) yet it allows ver fast change of positoning of the camera. including panning shots.

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    Quote Originally Posted by surge
    actually another option is a monopod. gives very good support up to 1/2 secs ( anyway for sports, dont think anyone will shoot at even 1/30, sure blur) yet it allows ver fast change of positoning of the camera. including panning shots.
    To use a monpod correctly you have to "convert" it to a tripod. Your two legs-and they better be strong and not rock all over the place-plus the monopod form the triangle or 3-legged tripod. You can also pan with a good tripod and it pans more steadily.

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    Quote Originally Posted by storkbill
    Since I shoot for fun, I shoot RAW and figure out the white balance later. RAW also allows me to use noise reduction algorithms more effectively to reduce high ISO noise.

    But a reuters photographer who covered Singapore Open told me he used expodisc to set white balance, shot jpegs and uploaded them from the media desk to reuters.

    I wonder why so many people are talking about monopods and tripods. If you are using a plain old 70-200 f/2.8 or a nice lightweight 135mm, you can easily handhold it. If you are already using 200 f/1.8, you don't need to ask us for advice
    A tripod or monopod will produce sharper pictures, even with fast lenses. Also, if you know how to use the tilt and pan head of a tripod or monopod, you can learn how to take fast action with low shuttle speeds. The tilt is ideal for jump smashes and the pan is essential for that huge lunge from the back to the net. Some perfectionist and almost all sports photographers consider the tripod as one of the 3 essentials of a complete camera gear-the other two being the camera body and the lens.

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    Regular Member red00ecstrat's Avatar
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    As i said before. Everyone will has his/her own way or style to make images out of their cameras. And it's absolutely no need to push someone to follow any opinion in anyway.
    So, if you think it's helpful. Ok, just go ahead and give it a try. If not, then forget it.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    A tripod or monopod will produce sharper pictures, even with fast lenses.
    I guess for older people or people who unsteady hands, a tripod will provide sharper pics. Myself, I can easily handhold a 70-200 IS and get tack sharp images at 1/500, similarly, monopod with 200f/1.8 will get me sharp images at 1/1000.

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    Almost all advanced digital cameras are of the slr type, and this is the heart of the vibration problem. The mirror, the auto closing of the aperture, and the shuttle all generate vibrations. Most people do not know how to handhold a camera properly and very few understand the principle of employing opposing forces when holding a camera. This further compounds the problem.
    A tripod, if properly used, will enable you to use a smaller aperture by two stops, giving you increased depth of field for sharper pictures. It will enable you to pan and tilt smoothly that no hands can do. Taking action pictures with the subject in sharp focus and everything behind out of focus will be a breeze with a tripod's pan and tilt.

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    Quote Originally Posted by taneepak
    Almost all advanced digital cameras are of the slr type, and this is the heart of the vibration problem. The mirror, the auto closing of the aperture, and the shuttle all generate vibrations. Most people do not know how to handhold a camera properly and very few understand the principle of employing opposing forces when holding a camera. This further compounds the problem.
    A tripod, if properly used, will enable you to use a smaller aperture by two stops, giving you increased depth of field for sharper pictures. It will enable you to pan and tilt smoothly that no hands can do. Taking action pictures with the subject in sharp focus and everything behind out of focus will be a breeze with a tripod's pan and tilt.
    Your statement is very generalised.

    have you tried shooting badminton with such a setup and have images to show with? It is easy enough to talk theory but pratical is where one would see the results of the theory. My original question is about shooting badminton - high speed action on difficult lighting conditions. Very specific situation.


    Besides, your "A tripod, if properly used, will enable you to use a smaller aperture by two stops, giving you increased depth of field for sharper pictures." and "Taking action pictures with the subject in sharp focus and everything behind out of focus will be a breeze with a tripod's pan and tilt."
    sentences contradicts each other.

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    Quote Originally Posted by lurker

    Besides, your "A tripod, if properly used, will enable you to use a smaller aperture by two stops, giving you increased depth of field for sharper pictures." and "Taking action pictures with the subject in sharp focus and everything behind out of focus will be a breeze with a tripod's pan and tilt."
    sentences contradicts each other.
    Do they really? Well, let us hear what others have to say.

  17. #17
    Administrator kwun's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lurker
    have you tried shooting badminton with such a setup and have images to show with? It is easy enough to talk theory but pratical is where one would see the results of the theory. My original question is about shooting badminton - high speed action on difficult lighting conditions. Very specific situation.
    taneepak, i would answer lurker's question above if i were you...

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