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My D4 at the Velodrome


Farmington Hills, US
4127 posts

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gpoole Platinum Member Fellow Ribbon awarded for his excellent and frequent contributions and sharing his in-depth knowledge and experience with the community in the Nikonians spirit. Awarded for his very generous support to the Fundrasing Campaing 2014 Writer Ribbon awarded for his article contributions for the Articles library and the eZine Nikonian since 14th Feb 2004
Mon 28-May-12 02:37 AM | edited Mon 28-May-12 03:10 AM by gpoole

I took my D4 out for it's first serious test today. I went to the Velodrome to photograph time trials. I tried tracking the riders from the beginning of the last turn through the finish line of the steeply banked 200m track. I used an 80-200/2.8 AF-S Nikkor. I took almost all the images in the 135-200mm range. I used AF-C in both D21 and D51 focus modes at 10 fps. Focus tracking with lock on was set to 5 seconds with the hope if my focus point moved off the rider to the background I wouldn't lose focus on the rider.

At the beginning of my sequences the bike and rider were head on and filled about 20% of the height of a portrait frame. By the end of the sequence I had a side view of the rider and the rider's upper body almost filled the frame. I tried to track the rider's face, but was not very successful. Sometimes the rider's was looking down and his or her face was hidden by their helmet. I often ended up with parts of their clothing or bicycle in focus instead of their face. I didn't notice a different success rate between D21 and D51 modes. I guess I need to work harder on getting my initial focus point right.

Edited to add: I took a total of 946 images and used 22% of my battery capacity. This extrapolates to 4300 image capacity.

To read the rest of the story and see the images go to this post in the Sports Forum.

Gary in SE Michigan, USA.
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