Last night the Volleyball bros were at it again. It’s like 90 degrees out in the middle of October and the water is 72 degrees so it’s been pretty amazing down at the beach.
I went down with the fam and brought along my Z6 to shoot the kids and some of the guys playing.
These are all shot with the Nikon Z6 with the 85mm f1.8 S. It’s all JPG just some crops here and there. Can’t edit photos right now so I’m falling back onto the straight out of camera JPGs which just usually look phenomenal with Nikon anyway. But I do mess with the WB shift and push things orange a bit.
My battery unfortunately was only half charged in the Z6, so I had to be pretty conservative on my bursts which made things difficult. Your timing has to be so perfect with Volleyball since the ball moves very quickly in and out of the frame with an 85mm. But the weather was great and the sunset was amazing which is always a plus so I thought I would share.
Everything was shot at f1.8 to keep the shutter as fast as possible. I stayed in the backside of the courts facing the sun. There has been a lot of haze so the sunset is very diffused and you can place it right in the background for some nice silhouette shots. Makes for some pretty cool looks with slight rim lighting and the orange sky.
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Great images! What kind of shutter speed were you at for the action shots? And what AF mode did you find most useful in this scenario?
My 85mm 1.8s just arrived 🙂
Anywhere from 1/4000 to 1/8000. Probably overkill but it’s cool when they hit the sand and it all just freezes in place. Didn’t happen in any of these shots this time.
Hi Alik! I chanced upon your website just today and I binged read a lot of your posts regarding the Z system and the Z lenses as I own a Z6 myself. Being surrounded by nothing but Canon and Sony users in my circle of friends I found it hard to try and convince them that the Z system was a great system to use but I am often met with ridicule about the supposedly slow eye AF speed or the sub-par specifications that they have. Obviously that made me think a lot about how I should proceed on with building my gear for the future. But after reading what you had to say about the system, which was a fresh breath of air compared to a good majority on the internet, I once again feel confidence in the system that I have invested in and I would like to express my gratitude for your objective views on the various systems that you have used and are using and for showing me that the Z system is no slouch and can grab amazing shots just like you have!!
I am currently waiting for the situation in my country to ease up so that events and photoshoots can happen with more less restrictions so I can jump on to purchasing the 85mm 1.8 myself.
Thanks, I’ve been trying to figure out what system to fully commit to for the next 10 years, having Sony and Canon also, recently I decided it will be Nikon, and still sticking with Fujifilm for fun. Kinda because I was with Canon my whole life then Sony for the last 8 years and now want to try Nikon, but Nikon cameras always had an unspoken quality, they also make some of the best lenses. I rent and use all the cameras for the memory card tests I do on this site so I get to use all the cameras and I’ve learned there is more to a camera to eye autofocus, a lot more. While the R6, R5, A7rIV, and A9II (all more expensive cameras than the Z6) might have better tracking autofocus and eye autofocus than the Nikon, eye autofocus is still very functional and the general autofocus, like with zone boxes (which I use for everything other than shooting with my kids) is excellent. So the big difference between the better autofocus on the R6 vs Z6 makes me say, “oh that’s neat.” But that’s about as far as it goes. Cool eye autofocus works at 100 feet away, is it useful? not really. Cool the R6 autofocus is “stickier” than the Z6. Is it increasing hit rate? Not really, it’s just a visual thing that plays on the rear screen. I will say tracking is much better on the R6, but I rarely use that. So I’m not defending Nikon being behind with autofocus, but where this are is still very functional and I don’t really worry about it or think about it.
The big thing that pulls me into Nikon is how quickly you can adjust between autofocus modes with the Fn1 and Fn2 buttons, you can fly between modes faster than any other brands to get better manual control over how the camera works, this to me is more important, because I don’t always want the eyes in focus and don’t want to have to hit a menu to change modes. I also like massive screen Nikon uses, and I don’t like the flippy screen Canon uses, and Sony screens are absolutely horrible. I also like the Nikon look a lot these days. They’re all great cameras, it’s just amazing that so many people dismiss Nikon because of eye autofocus, which is still about on par with the A7III. People are just easily pressured by the big influencers that are starving for content ideas, so they pit the brands against each other.