Suggested settings - D4s - High School baseball

Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
8
New to the forum and have not shot outdoor sports since college (NIkon F3) I dont typically shoot baseball...Mostly Portrait, landscapes etc.

I'm fortunate in that I can borrow before i buy, a 70-200/2.8 and also have access to a 1.7 tele for that lens as well.

Would like to give shooting my sons baseball games this summer and would be interested in any tips, tricks or suggested settings for the D4s that you all might be willing to share.

Thanks for any advice that you might have.
 
Joined
May 3, 2009
Messages
207
Location
North Carolina
I used to shoot in Aperture priority, but now I shoot Manual with Auto-ISO turned on. I'll adjust the shutter speed down as it gets darker, and when it's still sunny, I'll crank the shutter speed up to freeze the baseball better.

I think like most folks, I use release priority for the shutter release, and I use Dynamic AF (21 points I think (9 points for football), but I don't have a D4s so I don't have the newer modes).

I don't do the back button focus thing like many do, but I'll prefocus on the player I think the ball might get hit to (usually shortstop or second baseman depending on pitcher and hitter) or on the second base bag in double play situations.

For hitters, I focus on him, and if he twitches, I fire, usually a 4-6 frame burst (I'm guessing because I honestly haven't counted).

For pitching dominated games, I'll get at least one burst from the side, and if he's having a really good game (I saw two no-hitters this year), I'll go behind home plate and try to get the ball just out of his hand.

Outfielders will be tougher with a 70-200 (the teleconverter will help).

And for foul balls... don't forget to duck.

Hope this helps at least a little.

Andy
 
Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
8
I used to shoot in Aperture priority, but now I shoot Manual with Auto-ISO turned on. I'll adjust the shutter speed down as it gets darker, and when it's still sunny, I'll crank the shutter speed up to freeze the baseball better.

I think like most folks, I use release priority for the shutter release, and I use Dynamic AF (21 points I think (9 points for football), but I don't have a D4s so I don't have the newer modes).

I don't do the back button focus thing like many do, but I'll prefocus on the player I think the ball might get hit to (usually shortstop or second baseman depending on pitcher and hitter) or on the second base bag in double play situations.

For hitters, I focus on him, and if he twitches, I fire, usually a 4-6 frame burst (I'm guessing because I honestly haven't counted).

For pitching dominated games, I'll get at least one burst from the side, and if he's having a really good game (I saw two no-hitters this year), I'll go behind home plate and try to get the ball just out of his hand.

Outfielders will be tougher with a 70-200 (the teleconverter will help).

And for foul balls... don't forget to duck.

Hope this helps at least a little.

Andy

Many thanks for the information - Appreciate it
 
Joined
May 11, 2006
Messages
41,615
Location
CHARLOTTE
Real Name
Randy
I used to shoot in Aperture priority, but now I shoot Manual with Auto-ISO turned on. I'll adjust the shutter speed down as it gets darker, and when it's still sunny, I'll crank the shutter speed up to freeze the baseball better.

I think like most folks, I use release priority for the shutter release, and I use Dynamic AF (21 points I think (9 points for football), but I don't have a D4s so I don't have the newer modes).

I don't do the back button focus thing like many do, but I'll prefocus on the player I think the ball might get hit to (usually shortstop or second baseman depending on pitcher and hitter) or on the second base bag in double play situations.

For hitters, I focus on him, and if he twitches, I fire, usually a 4-6 frame burst (I'm guessing because I honestly haven't counted).

For pitching dominated games, I'll get at least one burst from the side, and if he's having a really good game (I saw two no-hitters this year), I'll go behind home plate and try to get the ball just out of his hand.

Outfielders will be tougher with a 70-200 (the teleconverter will help).

And for foul balls... don't forget to duck.

Hope this helps at least a little.

Andy
How do you prefocus and not use AFON ?

I also shoot manual and usually auto iso and I only use AFON for prefocus and recompose but I turn the SB focus off
 
Joined
May 11, 2006
Messages
41,615
Location
CHARLOTTE
Real Name
Randy
New to the forum and have not shot outdoor sports since college (NIkon F3) I dont typically shoot baseball...Mostly Portrait, landscapes etc.

I'm fortunate in that I can borrow before i buy, a 70-200/2.8 and also have access to a 1.7 tele for that lens as well.

Would like to give shooting my sons baseball games this summer and would be interested in any tips, tricks or suggested settings for the D4s that you all might be willing to share.

Thanks for any advice that you might have.
I would not use the tc because i shoot sports at 2.8
 
Joined
Jul 25, 2017
Messages
946
Location
Pittsburgh, PA
Real Name
Ian
Thats one of the reasons i was looking at the TC
I would shoot the lens bare whenever possible, but you're going to be better off using the TC for additional reach vs. cropping the crap out of your image.

If you were to crop the native 16MP file to achieve the same reach as the 1.7, you'd be left with a 5.5MP image vs a 16MP image by using the TC. When you need the extra reach, use the TC. Take it off when the shooting distance allows it.
 
Joined
Feb 1, 2005
Messages
1,729
Location
Tennessee
Some basic camera setting. Use back button auto focus, AF-C, Dynamic Area and start with 21-point. For me I like the Focus Tracking with Lock On (a3) set to 1 fast/short. I will shoot in manual mode, with auto-ISO.

Coming into summertime, so I will guess most of the game will be played when the lighting is good. A fast shutter speed is key. I don't mind the ISO going up so I have a min of 1/1000 sec. With that said, what age is your son, tee ball or little league the min can drop to around 1/640 - 1/800 sec and you will be fine. High school age or above the 1/1000 is my min and I really want to see it at 1/2000 sec or more. Keep it at f/2.8 or f/4.8 with the 1.7tc.

You can cover a lot of the infield with the 70-200 and with the 1.7tc you get 340mm. But plays in the outfield just might be best to watch.

If you have to shoot through a fence, remember the closer you get the front of the lens to the fence the better it will be. Keep the aperture open all the way, and the longer end of the zoom. Try to center the lens so the center is shooting through the biggest opening in the chainlink.

Before you even bring the camera up to your eye, look at the background. It often becomes to easy to forget the background when looking through the viewfinder at your subject. Ugly backgrounds destroy sports photo and you might not even realize it until your home and downloaded your pictures. No one wants to see trashcans, cars in parking lots, or shanties build by the field. Sometime you're going to be stuck with them, but do your best to find a clean background. Even at f/2.8 depending on where your subject is you will end up with more background in focus than you want.

For the first inning I start off behind home plate and get shots of the starting pitchers for both teams. I shoot for the paper so I cover action from both teams, and you are always safe with a pitcher shot in the bag. Watch the pitcher warm up, so you know their high point in the windup. After the first inning I will move down the 1st base or 3rd baseline depending on the angle of the sun.
 
Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
8
Some basic camera setting. Use back button auto focus, AF-C, Dynamic Area and start with 21-point. For me I like the Focus Tracking with Lock On (a3) set to 1 fast/short. I will shoot in manual mode, with auto-ISO.

Coming into summertime, so I will guess most of the game will be played when the lighting is good. A fast shutter speed is key. I don't mind the ISO going up so I have a min of 1/1000 sec. With that said, what age is your son, tee ball or little league the min can drop to around 1/640 - 1/800 sec and you will be fine. High school age or above the 1/1000 is my min and I really want to see it at 1/2000 sec or more. Keep it at f/2.8 or f/4.8 with the 1.7tc.

You can cover a lot of the infield with the 70-200 and with the 1.7tc you get 340mm. But plays in the outfield just might be best to watch.

If you have to shoot through a fence, remember the closer you get the front of the lens to the fence the better it will be. Keep the aperture open all the way, and the longer end of the zoom. Try to center the lens so the center is shooting through the biggest opening in the chainlink.

Before you even bring the camera up to your eye, look at the background. It often becomes to easy to forget the background when looking through the viewfinder at your subject. Ugly backgrounds destroy sports photo and you might not even realize it until your home and downloaded your pictures. No one wants to see trashcans, cars in parking lots, or shanties build by the field. Sometime you're going to be stuck with them, but do your best to find a clean background. Even at f/2.8 depending on where your subject is you will end up with more background in focus than you want.

For the first inning I start off behind home plate and get shots of the starting pitchers for both teams. I shoot for the paper so I cover action from both teams, and you are always safe with a pitcher shot in the bag. Watch the pitcher warm up, so you know their high point in the windup. After the first inning I will move down the 1st base or 3rd baseline depending on the angle of the sun.

Many thanks for that info. Great stuff on the chain link fence.
 
Joined
May 16, 2019
Messages
8
Here are a few from my first outting...

Feedback appreciated
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