Baseball

Joined
Jun 21, 2008
Messages
104
Location
pa
hello I have a Nikon d40 and the kit lense and a 55-250 vr lense and would like to take decent pictures of my 11 year son playing baseball. I'm kinda thinking I want to get the d3300 but I don't have a lot of money to invest. Any suggestions of how to get decent pictures? Thanks in advance
 
Joined
Jan 17, 2009
Messages
658
Location
Cape Coral, Florida, USA
A lot depends on what access you have.

I assume at that age you are shooting in daylight only, that's a good thing. I'm not familiar with that lens (did you mean 55-200?) but my guess is that it's F4 +/- to F5.6. F5.6 is fine for day baseball except ... are you shooting through a fence? Chain link and F5.6 is likely not to work well, you would need to experiment and see.

A d3300 is better than a D40, but it is not a game changer really especially with that lens. The biggest thing you get is a lot more resolution and higher ISO. The former may help if you need to crop, but with the kit lens don't expect magic, it's too soft. Something like a 70-200/2.8 (or even F4) would help a lot but is pretty pricy.

Honestly I would go experiment a bit first. If you can get good and close along the side lines, not through the fence, you might be surprised with what you have. If not, see what problem you need to solve. It might be:

- Reach, if you need more than 200mm - you might consider something like a 70-300, but reach is expensive. Find a way to get closer if you can.

- Faster lens, either because you need to shoot through chain link and it shows up too much, or because you are playing at night. This is an expensive problem to solve (70-200/2.8 is the simple solution for both but Nikon's is $2100).

- Better quality overall - sadly I suspect you need both camera and lens. What you have is well paired, but a high resolution camera really needs a sharper lens to do well.

- Night under bad lighting - hire someone with pro gear. Sadly.

Then decide what kind of budget you are up for. However, shooting a few games will give you a much better feel based on where you can shoot from, lighting, etc.

And... especially in youth baseball, you may find a lot of opportunities with the current gear that doesn't involve action shots during games -- get them in warmup, you can probably stand right behind the pitcher, at least in practice occasionally. Baseball fields are kind of large (even at that age), and unless they let you on it during play, it is hard with that kind of equipment to get up close and personal action shots, like batting or base plays. But there are innumerable opportunities to get good baseball oriented shots in huddles, dugouts, etc. if you work with the team. Even in photography of professional sports, it's surprising how these kind of non-play-action shots are more appealing.
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2009
Messages
638
Location
NE OH
I would start off shooting what you have and see if you like the results. With that equipment, make sure you are shooting in good light - night/evening games might be rough depending on the field/shadows and how quickly you're losing light. I'm also presuming you'll have a season of time to get good shots so if game 1 you find your equipment lacking, you can then pursue replacements and try again.

As Ferguson mentioned, where you can shoot from relative to the field will matter especially at F5.6. On the right field, you won't have to shoot through the fence and then you'll be fine - hopefully there's an opening in the fence you can shoot through. If the field is fully fenced and you can't shoot over the top, you might have problems. F2.8 removes the fence fairly well, but that's not a cheap solution unfortunately...
 
Joined
Jun 21, 2008
Messages
104
Location
pa
Thank you for the responses. I have gotten pictures before but haven't ventured off the auto setting so I will see what happens
 
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