Sportvelo Training Camp 2010

Sportvelo Training Camp

Dan Smith's Sportvelo training camp is my usual warmup for the season -- with the camera, not the bike, though I did have an embarrassingly out-of-shape ride with them on their final day. I shoot a lot less in the winter, so the training camp is a good chance to start finding my flow again.

This camp was especially "rough" as I got a brand new Canon 7D. This was literally the first time I took it out shooting. The control system is very different from the 40D, and I definitely had some issues early in the day finding the right controls to move through. That said, the new control system for the 7D is much better, even if I still don't know what half the buttons do yet. The on/off and scrollwheel lock are no longer the same button, and both have been redesigned to not be so easily "bumped" while the camera rests against your body.

The biggest improvement is the new AF system. There are a lot more AF points to select from, which also means more sensors to precisely track a moving rider. I found the focus to be much more snappy and responsive, even in my rustiness and unfamiliarity with the camera. Another nice touch shows up when you go to review the photos: the camera draws boxes where the AF points focused, which means that you can tell more easily whether or not your shot is going to be in focus or not. For cycling this is important: there's a big difference between the AF hitting a rider's face and hitting a rider's shoulder, and this shows you when you missed.

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