What focal length telephoto lens is best for taking soccer/rugby pictures?


corymalark

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Sep 2, 2012
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#1
Am using a 650D. Thinking of buying a telephoto lens. Would appreciate your views about the best lens for taking pictures from the stands (Mostly) and from the sidelines of football or rugby games.

Thank you in advance
 

rhino123

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Sep 1, 2006
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#2
Am using a 650D. Thinking of buying a telephoto lens. Would appreciate your views about the best lens for taking pictures from the stands (Mostly) and from the sidelines of football or rugby games.

Thank you in advance
1) EF 300mm f2.8L IS
2) EF 400mm f2.8L IS

and if you are close enough to the action,

3) EF 70-200mm f2.8L IS II
 

corymalark

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Sep 2, 2012
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#3
Hi Rhino
I checked the prices of the first two lens. They are really too rich. Maybe the third choice. But what about a f4 lens like the EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM. Will that work? I won't always be able to get onto the sidelines.
 

esoeij

Senior Member
Apr 12, 2009
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#4
TS, what's your budget? Ranging from low to high, you could consider:

1. EF-S 55-250mm IS
2. EF 70-300mm IS
3. EF 70-200mm F4 IS L
4. EF 70-300mm F4-5.6 IS L
5. EF 100-400mm F4-5.6 IS L
6. EF 70-200mm F2.8 IS L
 

esoeij

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Apr 12, 2009
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#5
Hi Rhino
I checked the prices of the first two lens. They are really too rich. Maybe the third choice. But what about a f4 lens like the EF70-300mm f/4-5.6L IS USM. Will that work? I won't always be able to get onto the sidelines.
That's a good choice to shoot outdoor sports.
 

corymalark

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Sep 2, 2012
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#6
TS, what's your budget? Ranging from low to high, you could consider:

1. EF-S 55-250mm IS
2. EF 70-300mm IS
3. EF 70-200mm F4 IS L
4. EF 70-300mm F4-5.6 IS L
5. EF 100-400mm F4-5.6 IS L
6. EF 70-200mm F2.8 IS L
The top side tolerance is about $2,000.
 

esoeij

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Apr 12, 2009
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#7
That means you can consider lenses 1 to 5. Lens 6 is possible if you are talking about a used Mk1 version.
 

corymalark

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Sep 2, 2012
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#8
Lens 6 has a shorter focal length, max 200mm but costs the most. Is it sufficient to capture a player's facial expressions halfway across the field.

Thanks much. Perhaps I should rent one and try
 

nedy77

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Jun 21, 2005
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#9
i vote for the EF 70-200mm F4 IS L, lightweight and sharp!
 

esoeij

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Apr 12, 2009
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#10
It costs the most because it's an F2.8 lens. If your priority is to capture a player's facial expression halfway across a field, which is pretty far away, get a lens with a longer reach. The 70-300mm L is my pick. The 100-400mm L is an older lens with 1st generation IS technology, heavier and bulkier than the 70-300mm L, but it has the longest reach. Renting to try is a good option too.
 

WBalance

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Jul 2, 2009
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#11
the EF 70-200mm F2.8 IS L will be a good option
 

diver-hloc

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#12
TS... when you Don't state what is your available budget and just ask which are the lenses good for the job... then you'll get 'ANSWER' like this... so do us all a favor. Tell us how much you are willing to spend... :bsmilie:

Btw... EF 100-400mm L while $$$... gets my vote.
 

Blur Shadow

Senior Member
Sep 17, 2005
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#13
rhino123 said:
1) EF 300mm f2.8L IS
2) EF 400mm f2.8L IS

and if you are close enough to the action,

3) EF 70-200mm f2.8L IS II
Haha! When asked for the best lens for the job, I thought of lens 1 and 2.

My next recommendation would have been the 200 f/2!

Haha!
 

TWmilkteaTW

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May 30, 2011
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#14
Depends how big is the field..how far u sitting at..and maybe what body you using as well..

:bsmilie:
 

rhino123

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#15
Yep. Best lens to do the job is the 300mm f2.8L and 400mm f2.8L. Otherwise the 70-200mm f2.8L is a very good lens too. However if that is still too expensive, can check out the Sigma 70-200mm f2.8 OS and/or Tamron 70-200mm f2.8 VC. Couple with a 1.4x TC, you can still shoot the action very well.

I would recommend the f4L version of the 70-200mm but when adding a 1.4x TC, it will be f5.6 and depending on the lighting available, it might not be enough. Thus if you are using a f2.8 lens, then it should not be a problem even with a 1.4x TC added on.

So TS, there is no need to look to original lenses, sometime third party lenses are also great and value for money.
 

Shizuma

Senior Member
Mar 19, 2012
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#17
best bang for buck

EF 70-210mm F3.5-4.5 USM .
 

daredevil123

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Oct 25, 2005
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#18
The top side tolerance is about $2,000.
No offence, but that budget is very low if you want good glass and reach for soccer/rugby matches. Most people will be sporting 300/2.8 with TC on hand. 400s and 500s.

A minimum setup would be 70-200/2.8L with 1.4 and 2x TC on hand.

And don't forget to leave some budget for a gimbal head and a good strong tripod too.
 

Last edited:
Sep 2, 2012
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#19
No offence, but that budget is very low if you want good glass and reach for soccer/rugby matches. Most people will be sporting 300/2.8 with TC on hand. 400s and 500s.

A minimum setup would be 70-200/2.8L with 1.4 and 2x TC on hand.

And don't forget to leave some budget for a gimbal head and a good strong tripod too.

No offence taken. I wanted to know what it takes, if budget were not an issue. Now I know. Does a TC affect the speed of the lens though?

Thanks all for your comments
 

SkyStrike

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Nov 29, 2010
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#20
No offence taken. I wanted to know what it takes, if budget were not an issue. Now I know. Does a TC affect the speed of the lens though?

Thanks all for your comments
In a way yes. If you are using a 2x TC, your "speed" of the lens is 2 stop slower. e.g. f2.8 lens will essentially become f5.6 in terms of light gathering speed. while a f5.6 will become f11.

(IIRC) If you stack the TCs, you will have to add the stop difference... 1.4x = 1 stop, 2x = 2 stop.. Stacked up = 3 stops slower. f2.8 will become f8.
 

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