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  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth,TX
    Posts
    7

    Sporting Event Lens Advise

    I have jumped into the Digital SLR world with an a100.
    I am not a Professional Photographer but I have opportunity to shoot pictures at a national event drag race.

    I am looking at buying Don's favorite lens Tamron 18-250mm f/3.5-6.3 Di II Macro AF to use as an all round lense.

    I am kind of on a fast learning curve and kinda of lost.

    Any suggestion will be deeply appreciated.

    Thank you
    See ya'll at the Races
    -Toyse

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,554

    Talking At what point do you snap?

    I have to ask, for application purposes, at which point of the drag are you interested in pictures ...
    • At the starting line?
    • In the pits?
    • The actual drag?


    If you are going to follow the dragster down the line, you need a hyperspeed focus to keep up. Standard lenses third party will not provide the speed you may need. If you use the standard lensing, you will have to pre-focus on a spot where the dragster and your shutter are going to meet.

    Now, SONY has released a re-badged Minolta G-lens, the SAL-70200G, which is a 70-200mm f/2.8 screamer. This one fabulous lens, easily comparable to the Canon EF 70-200mm f/2.8L IS USM when matched to the SONY A100. (Yeah, I said it ... and I wish I had the coin to try it, myself.) Some photographers have reported back that the bokeh of this lens is outstanding and better than the Canon.

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    It has "rocket focus" via its Super Sonic WaveMotor, but this kind of fast focus does not come cheap. Hardly ... but then again, you'd be hard-pressed to find a better quality lens that compares to it. No other lens of this class, capable of mounting on the SONY will produce what this is capable of. This would be my choice ... but again, you need to have a deep pocket for this solution. But the buy-back ... manifique!

    Worse yet ... if you love 300mm at f/2.8, SONY also has an offering for that, too.

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    The cost would be like having 2 1/2 of the first lens. LOL. You need someone else's pockets for that puppy. Go ask the spouse for a fast 5 1/2 Grand!
    Last edited by DonSchap; 05-09-2007 at 07:38 PM.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth,TX
    Posts
    7
    Quote Originally Posted by DonSchap View Post
    I have to ask, for application purposes, at which point of the drag are you interested in pictures ...
    • At the starting line?
    • In the pits?
    • The actual drag?

    If you are going to follow the dragster down the line, you need a hyperspeed focus to keep up. Standard lenses third party will not provide the speed you may need. If you use the standard lensing, you will have to pre-focus on a spot where the dragster and your shutter are going to meet.

    Got ask the spouse for a fast 5 1/2 Grand!
    Got to Love your taste in Lenses
    I do not believe I can convince the spouse for the extra cash..

    I will get to shoot from the starting line, staging lanes and in thier pits.
    I will be shooting pictures of Pro Stock Cars only and will have to shoot from the stands on Sunday.
    There should be no night shots involved and should be action shots just as they leave the line.

    I have used the pre-focus method with my point and shoot with sucess before last year photos here
    But this time I will get to shoot photos with the big boys so I will be closer on the starting line.

    Thanks for the reply Don.
    Last edited by Toyse_Woody; 05-09-2007 at 06:36 PM.
    See ya'll at the Races
    -Toyse

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Posts
    6,590
    The Sony 70-200mm f2.8 is hardly a repackaged Minolta, since the Minolta lens was/is a 80-200mm f2.8 lens. So, it has seen some engineering for sure.

    If those lenses are a bit high in price, do not worry.

    The Sigma 70-200 f2.8 EX DG HSM Macro is very good, yet less than half the price. You may also come across that Sigma without the "Macro" badge, for a slightly lesser price. It has a same kind of motor as the Sony and Canon lenses of this kind, and it built well, and offers great image quality.

    So... for under $800 (check prices yourself), you get a LOT of lens in this Sigma, and it will be great for your intended uses.

    If you want to know more about certain lenses for your Sony A100, here is a nice website with experienced and less experienced Minolta users giving their opinions on the lenses they use:
    http://www.dyxum.com/lenses/detail.asp?IDLens=195

    The link brings you to the 70-200 f2.8 EX DG HSM, which gets rated very high.
    Don't tell Don about that website though....

    Another lens to consider is another Sigma, which is ridiculously sharp. The 100-300 f4 EX DG is great if you want more reach than 200mm.
    http://www.dyxum.com/lenses/detail.asp?IDLens=269

    Again, check prices yourself, in the area you live.
    If you live in the USA, check www.bhphotovideo.com .
    Last edited by coldrain; 05-10-2007 at 02:03 AM.
    Canon EOS 350D, Tamron SP AF 90mm F/2.8 macro, Sigma 18-50mm F2.8 DC EX, Canon EF 70-200mm f/4 L USM, Tokina AT-X124 Pro 12-24mm F4, Soligor 1.7x C/D4 DG Teleconvertor, Manfrotto 724B tripod, Canon Powershot S30

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2006
    Location
    Des Plaines, IL
    Posts
    9,554

    Red face Just so there is no mistake about what I mentioned ...

    Even when it "rains", it can blow the WRONG way.

    Here's a link (<- click here) examining the MINOLTA AF 70-200mm f/2.8 APO G (D) SSM long before she was rebadged by SONY. Whatever "redesign" or "engineering" that went into this fabulous lens was probably more along the lines of "How in the heck do we get all those MINOLTA-labels off the lenses without wrecking them."

    Minolta had a rockin' system ... SONY bought it ... lock, stock and barrel. A great business move ... but as far as re-engineering the product ... uh, no.
    Don Schap - BFA, Digital Photography
    A Photographer Is Forever
    Look, I did not create the optical laws of the Universe ... I simply learned to deal with them.
    Remember: It is usually the GLASS, not the camera (except for moving to Full Frame), that gives you the most improvement in your photography.

    flickr & Sdi

  6. #6
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth,TX
    Posts
    7
    Thank you coldrain and Don.
    See ya'll at the Races
    -Toyse

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth,TX
    Posts
    7
    Here is a sample photo from Saturday here
    Last edited by Toyse_Woody; 05-26-2007 at 05:27 PM.
    See ya'll at the Races
    -Toyse

  8. #8
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Fort Worth,TX
    Posts
    7
    Here are some action shots I shot from Top of the Grandstands using a Sony 75-300mm Lens

    Caution 10mb+ Unedited Files

    Photo 1

    Photo 2

    Photo 3
    Last edited by Toyse_Woody; 05-27-2007 at 08:37 PM.
    See ya'll at the Races
    -Toyse

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