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  1. #1
    Beginner wanna be rookie
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
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    Georgia
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    5

    Nikon D80 beginner, need tips.

    I just got my first dslr. Nikon D80, 18-135 lens, took several pictures at gym meet this weekend. My pictures are fair overall, however, my action shots are not clear. The camera was on sport mode. And every thing seemed in focus, except those I was trying to shoot while my subject was in motion. What can I do to get a better picture without the blur, say in the wave of her arms or her legs in the middle of a flip?

  2. #2
    Check out our D300 Pro Review! deckcadet's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
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    Gainesville, Florida, USA
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    1,189

    Re: Nikon D80 beginner, need tips.

    Do you have a basic understanding of the fundamentals of exposure?

    Basically, the 18-135mm is a great overall lens but its main issues is that as a consumer grade superzoom, it has a small maximum aperture especially at the long end. This means your shutter speed might be more than twice as slow as it would be near the wider end of the lens.

    Additionally, the lighting in gyms is absolutely awful. Even at professional arenas, the lighting requires a high ISO setting and a wide aperture to successfully shoot, or access to house strobes. This makes it tough for those of us shooting in gyms with poor lighting, as with sports the limbs often move extremely fast, requiring a very high shutter speed to stop motion outside of the core.

    To shoot in a gym, therefore, you would want to keep your shutter speed high and your ISO high as well.

    You might want to consider another lens if you intend to do this more often, as the 18-135 is really only well suited for sports if the venue is outdoors and well lit. Depending on how close you want to get, the Nikon 50mm f/1.8 and 85mm f/1.8 lenses are inexpensive fast-aperture choices, with maximum apertures about three f/stops faster than your 18-135 at equivalent focal lengths. That means that if you're getting, say, 1/60 second f/5.6 ISO 1600 with the 18-135mm at 85mm, you could, with the 85/1.8, shoot at 1/125s f/4.0 ISO 1600, or 1/250s f/2.8 ISO 1600, or if you needed to, as high as 1/640s f/1.8 ISO 1600, though for sharpness and depth of field reasons you might want to keep it between f/2 and f/2.8 unless you are still having trouble stopping motion.
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  3. #3
    project forum co-moderator Frog's Avatar
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    Sep 2006
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    wa state
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    Re: Nikon D80 beginner, need tips.

    Not espespecially an answer to your question but do you know about this site

    http://www.nikondigitutor.com/index_eng.html

    Nice little tutorial on the camera. I use it frequently when I don't want to try to read the small print in the manual.
    Keep Shooting!

    CHECK OUT THE PHOTO PROJECT FORUM
    http://forums.photographyreview.com/...splay.php?f=34

    Please refrain from editing my photos without asking.

  4. #4
    Member
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    146

    Re: Nikon D80 beginner, need tips.

    Yep - not the camera. Just gotta understand more about what's going on. ;) Low shutter speeds because of abysmal light conditions no doubt. You should try cranking the "film speed" way up, but be aware it will increase the noise levels. That or get a lens with a wider maximum aperture to let more light in.

  5. #5
    Beginner wanna be rookie
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Georgia
    Posts
    5

    Re: Nikon D80 beginner, need tips.

    Thanks, I will try that at practice Tuesday and see how we do with increasing the shutter speed. I will wait til I learn a little more before I go to another lens.

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