Art and Photography

Are super telephoto zooms usable indoors?

  • Last Updated:
  • Jan 4th, 2018 9:17 am
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
10071 posts
3859 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
moneybags wrote:
Dec 28th, 2017 1:28 pm
Good suggestion. I'm not sure why it never occurred to me to give these lenses and in-person test. Although all the camera shops I'm familiar with have pretty bright lighting. Would still love to hear from others who've gone through the same thing. What lenses did you guys end up with for these situations?
Just ask if there is an office or storage area where they can open the door to and you shoot into it.
Deal Guru
Jan 27, 2006
10071 posts
3859 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
moneybags wrote:
Dec 28th, 2017 1:29 pm
Ah, now introducing flashes to the equation! Photography is such a rabbit hole...
Flashes are typically banned from many of the events so you are better off seeing if you can find a non-flash solution first.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Oct 5, 2005
549 posts
154 upvotes
NewsyL wrote:
Dec 28th, 2017 2:20 am
Yes, you can use them indoors but........

I did just that with my Sigma 50-500 EX DG APO f4-f6.3 (non-IS old version) on my Sony A77 body. That body has IS in the body. It was at my daughters' high school graduation and we were in a large dark amphitheater about 120-150 feet back from the stage (36 rows + 20 feet to stage. I can't really recall how the stage was lit - I think there was a spotlight at the back and some lights above the front of the stage. Some of the guys here can probably tell from the shadows. The A77 is quite noisy at higher ISO's, definitely not as refined as the later A77 Mk2. All the same I got the shot I wanted though it freaked out a little kid in front of me when my optical cannon was extended and the shutter started clacking away. I also used a monopod. It's no where near as crisp as what I can get outdoors in sunlight, has all kinds of colour aberrations from the high ISO, is a little soft with the high ISO and a has a bit of motion blur, but I have the memory shot.

Image

ISO 12800 (used some noise reduction software)
420mm
f6.3
1/100 sec < yes, it is 1/100th

.
Much thanks for sharing your experience. You're use case is exactly what I have in mind. Is this a crop? Can definitely see the lens and cam struggling in this light. After everything you've experienced, are you "satisfied" with the lens? Or are you looking to change it up?
yo!
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2006
7456 posts
1382 upvotes
Agree, you don't want to be THAT parent, and the school hired photographer wouldn't be happy about getting his metering messed up.

Plus, the distance OP is talking about, the average flash may do little.
craftsman wrote:
Dec 28th, 2017 1:55 pm
Flashes are typically banned from many of the events so you are better off seeing if you can find a non-flash solution first.
The Devil made me buy it - RFD. :twisted:
Newbie
Dec 20, 2008
14 posts
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Gym lighting sucks, even when they are on. My daughter is in choir and plays rep and high school volleyball. I shoot with a 24-70mm f2.8L Version 1, or a Tamron 70-200mm f/2.8 Di VC USD on a 6d MK2 (previously on a 70D). This covers most of my needs but sometimes I'll use my nifty 50. Here are some game shots from 35 feet, and from a choir loft 130ft I'm guessing.
Get to events early and bring a friend or spouse, it lets you move for a different perspective. Provide free photos to schools and teams and they will often find you space in the future.
Last edited by Diaperman on Dec 29th, 2017 10:13 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Deal Addict
Feb 16, 2006
3757 posts
931 upvotes
Vancouver
moneybags wrote:
Dec 28th, 2017 2:29 pm
Much thanks for sharing your experience. You're use case is exactly what I have in mind. Is this a crop? Can definitely see the lens and cam struggling in this light. After everything you've experienced, are you "satisfied" with the lens? Or are you looking to change it up?
Yes, it is a crop but not much - this is almost the same scale as the original. I square cropped it to take out some people on both sides. It has been resized smaller from the original.

Hell no I'm not interested in changing up the lens. I already had the lens for many years with about 80K of shots on it. I'm very pleased with it for what I've used it for and I have zero $$ these days to invest in anything better. I'd buy an updated body first before another lens.

I used the lens because I had it and could use it and knew in advance I was not going to get a top quality shot. I just wanted some personal memento's of the event. There was no hired photographer taking shots at this event from the best location so I'm glad I brought my soccer/wildlife/airshow lens and tried it.

I've often considered acquiring a 70-200 f2.8 but I just don't see where I'd use one outside of this one event and I wouldn't put down $1600 for one event. It's not long enough for most of what I shoot and I don't think it would have been long enough for this event. It might be too long for most indoor gymnasium sports.

.
[OP]
Sr. Member
Oct 5, 2005
549 posts
154 upvotes
Alright, gents. Took all your input and did more research. Made my decision and pulled the trigger. Decided not to go with the 3rd party lenses. Instead, picked up a Canon f/2.8 L II plus Canon extender. Ultimately, this should get a 400 mm that's at least on par with the Sigma/Tamron.

Cons
  • Total cost is more
  • Lost a little reach (400mm vs 600mm). Well, according to tests, folks are saying the 600mm on Sigma/Tamron lenses is more like 560mm anyways...
  • Overlap with my existing lenses (eg 135 F2 L)

Pros
  • Flexibility of shooting with the faster 2.8 when 200mm is enough
  • Comfort of having Canon quality and compatibility
Really appreciate the experience and insight from everyone.

edit: Canon 70-200 F/2.8L II IS USM
Last edited by moneybags on Jan 3rd, 2018 4:48 pm, edited 1 time in total.
yo!
Deal Fanatic
Aug 29, 2006
7456 posts
1382 upvotes
^Hey, that is awesome, congrats. Is a bit more but heck, but next time you upgrade, you don't have to buy new glass, too. ;)

Let us know how you like it when you have time to test and show us photos, please. ;)
The Devil made me buy it - RFD. :twisted:
Deal Addict
Jan 19, 2008
1702 posts
228 upvotes
moneybags wrote:
Jan 3rd, 2018 4:48 pm
Alright, gents. Took all your input and did more research. Made my decision and pulled the trigger. Decided not to go with the 3rd party lenses. Instead, picked up a Canon f/2.8 L II plus Canon extender. Ultimately, this should get a 400 mm that's at least on par with the Sigma/Tamron.

Cons
  • Total cost is more
  • Lost a little reach (400mm vs 600mm). Well, according to tests, folks are saying the 600mm on Sigma/Tamron lenses is more like 560mm anyways...
  • Overlap with my existing lenses (eg 135 F2 L)

Pros
  • Flexibility of shooting with the faster 2.8 when 200mm is enough
  • Comfort of having Canon quality and compatibility
Really appreciate the experience and insight from everyone.

edit: Canon 70-200 F/2.8L II IS USM
superb lens! u'll also stand out in the crowd with the white lens! :D
Wedding & Child Photographer ~ happily photographing

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