Are new CSC or fixed lens cameras good enough

Discussion in 'Sports' started by robert_roaldi|1, Jun 12, 2014.

  1. Forgetting about water and dust protection for the moment, is there a feeling that cameras like the Nikon V2/V3, or the new Fuji FZ1000 are good enough for lots of action photography. I shoot bicycle races and car rallies for fun, and when it rains I stay home because there's no income at stake, and I am getting tired of the weight of an Oly E-3 + 50-200/f2.8, especially when the web is the final destination for the images (99.99% of the time).

    Looking at the specs of the V3, maintaining focus at pretty fast fps rates, and the seeming ability of the FZ1000 to focus very rapildy, I am starting to wonder if these models aren't more suitable for many purposes.
  2. I've been using the Nikon V1 for a couple of years and am impressed enough with it for action photography that I'd consider a V2 and 30-110 VR zoom if I intended to shoot more casual sports photography. The overall performance is comparable to my old Nikon D2H for daylight photography - that camera is still fast by any standards.
    For school or amateur sports, especially outdoors in daylight it's a great little system. The system only lacks f/2.8 zooms. An f/2.8 midrange zoom would be ideal for indoor school and amateur sports like basketball and volleyball. For outdoor daylight sports the 30-110 variable aperture zoom is probably good enough. The only drawback would be the deep DOF, so you won't be able to isolate subjects against a blurred background in most cases.
    Regarding a few quirks of the V1 (I haven't tried the V2 or V3) - check these features before buying a V2 or V3:
    • Subject tracking focus is very capable, but poorly implemented. It's awkward to activate, and really needs to be assigned to a button under the thumb or next to the shutter release button.
    • While the framerates in electronic shutter mode are very fast, buffering causes the LCD/EVF to black out after every burst. So you'll be waiting several seconds after each burst. However there are a couple of tricks to get back to shooting.
    A few tips:
    • Tap the shutter release button halfway after multi-shot bursts. This will restore the view while the camera continues buffering in the background.
    • Try a faster card. Nikon 1 System cameras have reasonably fast and deep buffers, but something faster than a Class 10 card might help.
    • While the EVF is terrific, it's often easier to track motion using the rear LCD. With some practice it's possible to frame relatively well while using peripheral vision with both eyes open to pan with action or recompose to pick up new activity out of frame.
    Ask some folks who've used the Nikon FT-1 lens adapter with their fast DX and full frame telephoto and zoom Nikkors whether the AF is quick enough for the types of activities you'd like to photograph. There are some limitations - single AF sensor, no multi or tracking AF. But it may be good enough for panning with bicycle and vehicle racing, since panning AF isn't too demanding.

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