Setting recommendations for youth basketball

Good morning. I am using Nikon's D850 to shoot my son's youth basketball league. They play indoors, with very high ceilings and iridescent lighting. The gym uses normal lights, and generally the lighting is very open inside the gym. However, I am struggling to find the right settings to catch my son in an action shot without having everything in focus. I've gone up on my ISO to 1600, opened my aperature wide, and then came back narrow, changed white balance settings numerous times, changed metering modes (back to matrix now), and experimented with different focus settings. I am shooting in RAW, and have the extra vertical grip along with the Nikon EN-EL18b battery, so still can't figure out why my shots are not focusing when in action. I've tried to shoot around 1/1000 in shutter priority, every photo is still out of focus - primarily the basketball itself while in air. I'll post an image to demonstrate the challenges I'm having. I will gladly take any recommendations from anyone in these forums to have better results. Thanks for reading, and thank you in advance for any feedback!!

Comments

  • BVSBVS Posts: 322Member
    What lens(es) are you using?
    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • BVSBVS Posts: 322Member
    Also, I'm not sure if 1/1000s is fast enough or not. Some of the pros at the Olympics appear to be shooting 1/2000s or more:

    blog.iamnikon.com/en_GB/category/pyeongchang-2018/
    D7100, 85 1.8G, 50 1.8G, 35 1.8G DX, Tokina 12-28 F4, 18-140, 55-200 VR DX
  • HankBHankB Posts: 128Member
    edited February 16
    This looks like a good summary, though I haven't shot in a gym myself:
    https://improvephotography.com/30194/20-tips-photographing-youth-basketball/

    Point #6 "Shoot with a crop sensor" is interesting, the theory being that using a correspondingly shorter lens will increase depth of field. With the D850's pixel density, you can set the camera to crop, or you can crop in post. Effectively, you will have a D500.

    Point #5 "Shoot with a prime", an 85mm, is small, light, very fast f1.8, sharp, and inexpensive. If you are really close, you can go to 50mm like he recommends, or just shoot full frame.
    Post edited by HankB on
  • retreadretread Posts: 453Member
    edited February 18
    Those points sound good. I have the best luck in manual mode setting the shutter speed and aperture and letting the ISO float. 1/500th seems to be a bit slow I have better luck at 1/000th f2.8 most of the time. I shoot high school and some prep school. I use a D7200 and a D500 with 24-70G and a 70-200VRII. Auto white balance and correct it in post if necessary. Most shots are ISO 3200 plus or minus one stop and a few out side that range. Grain is not a problem If I hit focus. A well focused shot is much better even if it does show a little grain. I move the focus point to fit the shot If I have time (not always the case). I shoot raw usually 12 bit lossless compression. I am not sure 14 bit has an advantage at higher ISO. Seldom hit a buffer with the D7200 an I have to do it deliberately with the D500.
    Post edited by retread on
  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 284Member
    I cheat and use an Elinchrome Quadra with the action high speed head bounced off the ceiling. 275 w/s of power gave me a flash duration of about 1/3000. Shutter speed of 1/250 and F8 ISO of 800 on my D800E and off to the race..

    I couldn’t get the stop action with the necessary DOF using the available lighting. Nobody said a word about the flash.

    Denver Shooter
  • SDunnSDunn Posts: 14Member

    I cheat and use an Elinchrome Quadra with the action high speed head bounced off the ceiling. 275 w/s of power gave me a flash duration of about 1/3000. Shutter speed of 1/250 and F8 ISO of 800 on my D800E and off to the race..

    I couldn’t get the stop action with the necessary DOF using the available lighting. Nobody said a word about the flash.

    Denver Shooter

    Do you have any pics of your setup? Are you stationary or mobile? Camped out behind the hoop or in the stands?
  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 284Member
    I camp out behind the hoop. I like the jump shots where they players are off the court floor suspended in mid air. I usually use the Nikon 24mm to 70 mm F/2.8. Flash is on manfroto lightweight stand to the right of the hoop facing straight up and against the wall. I stand on the same side as the flash.

    Denver Shooter
  • WestEndFotoWestEndFoto Posts: 2,591Member
    Do you have any thoughts on how the Elinchrome compares to the Profoto setup DenverShooter?
  • DenverShooterDenverShooter Posts: 284Member
    The Elinchrome gear is 2 stops (I.E. under half the price) less expensive. The Profoto gear is amazing and if you need that feature set its pricing makes sense.

    That begin said I have been more than happy with my Elinchrome Quadra which I have had for 4 years and my Elinchrome Digital 2400 RX system.

    Denver Shooter
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