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Author Topic: Race Photos  (Read 3284 times)
yokahama55
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« on: September 25, 2005, 09:05:46 AM »
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I'm an amateur photographer, and have been using a Nikon N70 for years, getting decent results for race car photography.  I'm ready to buy a digital camera, and want to stay with Nikon to use my current lenses.  In comparing the D70 and D50, the only difference that bothers me is the 1/8000th setting vs. the 1/4000th setting.  I can't tell that much difference between the two in my N70, but wanted to see if anyone had an opinion on this subject before I choose one camera over the other.
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Steve Ely
Steven M Anthony
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« Reply #1 on: September 25, 2005, 12:23:40 PM »
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I don't have an opinion per se, but more of an observation.

A car traveling 100 miles per hour goes almost half an inch in 1/4000 sec. It goes about about a quarter inch in 1/8000 sec.

Seems like 1/8000 could come in handy!
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Steve

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howard smith
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« Reply #2 on: September 25, 2005, 12:33:04 PM »
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I can't argue with Anthony but also keep in mind it isn't just how far the car travals, but the direction relative to the camera and the distance to the car.  It may not be as bad as one might think.
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Jonathan Wienke
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« Reply #3 on: September 25, 2005, 12:49:14 PM »
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A car traveling 100 miles per hour goes almost half an inch in 1/4000 sec. It goes about about a quarter inch in 1/8000 sec.
In practical terms this is irrelevant, as most well-executed race shots use much lower shutter speeds anyway (combined with panning) to give a controlled amount of motion blur to convey a sense of speed and motion. Unless the car is upside-down in mid-air, completely freezing the motion makes it looked like it is parked.
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Steven M Anthony
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« Reply #4 on: September 25, 2005, 02:40:16 PM »
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In practical terms this is irrelevant, as most well-executed race shots use much lower shutter speeds anyway (combined with panning) to give a controlled amount of motion blur to convey a sense of speed and motion. Unless the car is upside-down in mid-air, completely freezing the motion makes it looked like it is parked.
Physics is never irrelevant, even in practical terms!

Are you familiar with mercedes' flying cars at the 1999 LeMans 24 hour? 3 times one of their cars "flew" off the track, upside-down, in mid-air at about 240 MPH!

But I get your point--it is a small difference.
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Steve

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howard smith
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« Reply #5 on: September 25, 2005, 03:18:05 PM »
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"Physics is never irrelevant, even in practical terms!"

A bold, impractical and irrelevant claim.
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Andrew Larkin
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« Reply #6 on: September 25, 2005, 05:20:16 PM »
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I have taken maybe 8000 images at car races over the last three years.  I have rarely used a shutter speed more than about 1/2000.  Over the past few races I have been consciously developing my technique to use panning/slow speed shutter - as low as 1/30, but usually around 1/100.  Mastering this technique gives a far better photograph and separates you from those who just point-n-shoot at 1/4000.

The physics discussion is not especially relevant as the more interesting angles tend to be from front-on where the apparent motion is much slower and the actual motion is towards the camera.  What is far more important than shutter speed in this situation is autofocus tracking with the lens you want to use.

If you do take a side-on shot with a very high shutter speed, then you can be hard pressed to tell if the car isn't just parked there (unless you manage to capture something with it such as a jet of flame from the exhaust).

Andrew
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paulbk
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« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2005, 05:34:06 PM »
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Jonathan is right. I shoot at Lime Rock all the time. Spot on focus without motion blur on the car looks dead. Hand held panning, Canon 70-200 L, f11 & 1/180 sec., Forth of July.. The car is doing about 120 mph., I'm right at the fence.



More here: stonewallphotography
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paul b. kramarchyk
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Steven M Anthony
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« Reply #8 on: September 26, 2005, 09:07:21 AM »
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I guess given a general desire to use an f-stop in the 5.6ish or higher range, it would be difficult to find conditions that let one shoot at more that 1/2000 - 1/4000.

Beyond that, most of the interesting action in a race comes in the corners where speeds are usually sub-100MPH.

BTW: My comment about physics never being irrelevant was a reference to the fact that our existence is tied to the laws of physics--but I guess that's more a topic for a philosophy board than a photography board...
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Steve

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dwdallam
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« Reply #9 on: September 28, 2005, 12:58:28 AM »
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I guess given a general desire to use an f-stop in the 5.6ish or higher range, it would be difficult to find conditions that let one shoot at more that 1/2000 - 1/4000.

Beyond that, most of the interesting action in a race comes in the corners where speeds are usually sub-100MPH.

BTW:  My comment about physics never being irrelevant was a reference to the fact that our existence is tied to the laws of physics--but I guess that's more a topic for a philosophy board than a photography board...  Smiley
Degree in philosophy here, and I know what you meant
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