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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ive read a few other threads that got me thinking. What are your biggest gripes about VS coverage of pro cycling. First a disclaimer: I thank god that VS exists, because NO cycling would be on if it were not for them. Also, I sense that VS does not strictly have much control over some of this as many are a feed from somewhere else.
That said:
Someone mentioned the Saab comercials! LOL I thought is was just me! But do you remember the year before with the Mitchum commercials! They both have been replaced by non-stop Hampton Inn commercials! What can you do?
More importantly, why is the production value so horrifyingly bad? Seriously, some things they can control. Why is it the only station in existence that cant get the volume right? Commercials on 10, phil 's voice on 4 (by the way it happens to a lesser extent in Hockey so its not just the cycling coverage). This hasnt been a problem in TV for 50 years. And another thing, do they even listen to the broadcast? Do they know that when they play that rockin music while Phil recaps the week (like for the Dauphine and TDS) that you cant here what the heck he is saying? How about many, many more interviews, the NFL and NHL do a great job and setting up the story and doing interviews afterward. In cycling, I dont even know that Robbie Mcewen or Friere ( as an example) were even at the race until I see the results somewhere else. Interview those guys afterward to break it down, thats fascinating stuff. The sprint finishes happen so fast that its nice to here one of them give an insiders view. There was a sprint finish at last years Tour that I still have on TIVO because its the one where Robbie crashes and as Phil is doing a play by play of the final 100 meters of the sprint, he about has an infarction when Robbie comes out of nowhere to win. They interviewed him later and it was pretty fascinating to here him tell it. They dont do enough of that. More stories! Heck, they mentioned Boonen's ouster as a quick aside. Cycling strikes me as ultimate reality TV, there is so much drama, even comedy, thats there for the taking. When Frank Shleck falls of a mountain, you better have a microphone in his grill after the race. Lastly, is there anything worse than a sprint finish with no helicopter, basically a big black blob coming right at the camera with no clue who is who. They need those little pointy arrows like nascar has to identify people in tight quarters. I guess its all money. Anything else?
 

· yup
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bigmig19 said:
Ive read a few other threads that got me thinking. What are your biggest gripes about VS coverage of pro cycling. First a disclaimer: I thank god that VS exists, because NO cycling would be on if it were not for them. Also, I sense that VS does not strictly have much control over some of this as many are a feed from somewhere else.
That said:
Someone mentioned the Saab comercials! LOL I thought is was just me! But do you remember the year before with the Mitchum commercials! They both have been replaced by non-stop Hampton Inn commercials! What can you do?
More importantly, why is the production value so horrifyingly bad? Seriously, some things they can control. Why is it the only station in existence that cant get the volume right? Commercials on 10, phil 's voice on 4 (by the way it happens to a lesser extent in Hockey so its not just the cycling coverage). This hasnt been a problem in TV for 50 years. And another thing, do they even listen to the broadcast? Do they know that when they play that rockin music while Phil recaps the week (like for the Dauphine and TDS) that you cant here what the heck he is saying? How about many, many more interviews, the NFL and NHL do a great job and setting up the story and doing interviews afterward. In cycling, I dont even know that Robbie Mcewen or Friere ( as an example) were even at the race until I see the results somewhere else. Interview those guys afterward to break it down, thats fascinating stuff. The sprint finishes happen so fast that its nice to here one of them give an insiders view. There was a sprint finish at last years Tour that I still have on TIVO because its the one where Robbie crashes and as Phil is doing a play by play of the final 100 meters of the sprint, he about has an infarction when Robbie comes out of nowhere to win. They interviewed him later and it was pretty fascinating to here him tell it. They dont do enough of that. More stories! Heck, they mentioned Boonen's ouster as a quick aside. Cycling strikes me as ultimate reality TV, there is so much drama, even comedy, thats there for the taking. When Frank Shleck falls of a mountain, you better have a microphone in his grill after the race. Lastly, is there anything worse than a sprint finish with no helicopter, basically a big black blob coming right at the camera with no clue who is who. They need those little pointy arrows like nascar has to identify people in tight quarters. I guess its all money. Anything else?
I haven't notice the volume problem until this year. It is very odd, sometimes when they come back from commercial the audio is fine, then the next time Phil and Paul are obscured behind the background noise of the other commentators in the commentators box, and the ambient noise from the race.
 

· pretty-n-pink
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I agree

I thought I was the only one that noticed the sound. I thought I was losing my hearing. Fortunately I had it TiVO'd and would replay Phil's comments back on a higher volume.

My biggest complaint was that man and woman last week. After the comm'l break, all the sudden there were women cyclists. I said they have women racing with men?:confused: They just didn't annouce they had cut to the women. I thought the production was poor as well as the announcers.
 

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I'm thankful VS covers the TDF, but I have one complaint. During critical climbs where the GC contenders are attacking and the overall is being decided, they often switch to shots of people who are suffering for minutes at a time. Keep the camera on the GC contenders the where critical action is taking place! It drives me crazy.
 

· la dolce vita
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zphogan said:
I'm thankful VS covers the TDF, but I have one complaint. During critical climbs where the GC contenders are attacking and the overall is being decided, they often switch to shots of people who are suffering for minutes at a time. Keep the camera on the GC contenders the where critical action is taking place! It drives me crazy.
The race is shot by French TV and VS has to take the feed.
Look at it as a cultural lesson. The French like the struggle, not the winner.
 

· Growing Older, Not Up
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I get the volume issue with several channels. You'll notice the volume gets jacked around with certain commercials. They jack it to "eleven" to get your attention. There is a local furniture store that will never get my business because they feel the need to double the volume of the local news.

I had mentioned the saab commercials in another thread. They get annoying but I have noticed that most other cable networks either run adverts for other programs or have one main sponsor that gets most of the time. Even the NFL ran into this a couple of years ago when Chevy decided John Mellencamp needed to remind us that "this is our country" during every timeout.

VS. does a fair job. My biggest beef is when they show one stage of a race and its a TT.
 

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crumjack said:
I get the volume issue with several channels. You'll notice the volume gets jacked around with certain commercials. They jack it to "eleven" to get your attention. There is a local furniture store that will never get my business because they feel the need to double the volume of the local news.

I had mentioned the saab commercials in another thread. They get annoying but I have noticed that most other cable networks either run adverts for other programs or have one main sponsor that gets most of the time. Even the NFL ran into this a couple of years ago when Chevy decided John Mellencamp needed to remind us that "this is our country" during every timeout.

VS. does a fair job. My biggest beef is when they show one stage of a race and its a TT.
I don't care about loud commercials, the problem is the loud ambient noise during the broadcast, overwhelming Paul and Phil. Sure loud commercials are annoying, but this is a separate technical issue during the actual race.
 

· off the back
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crumjack said:
VS. does a fair job. My biggest beef is when they show one stage of a race and its a TT.
Mine is similar. When they cover the final stage of a major tour(like the Giro, or their Tour de Suisse and Dauphine coverage), they spen an haour and a half following that relatively boring final stage, and 15 minutes re-capping the six stages they had prior to it, which usually consists of shots of:

riders leaving the start line
ten seconds of action mid-race
the finishing sprint.

riveting.
 

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crumjack said:
I get the volume issue with several channels. You'll notice the volume gets jacked around with certain commercials. They jack it to "eleven" to get your attention. There is a local furniture store that will never get my business because they feel the need to double the volume of the local news.
hi

this is google'able.

from what i understand, the commercials are intentionally done in MONO so they BLAST out your speakers so you can't avoid hearing them when you walk to the kitchen.

the tv shows are not in mono, so you have to turn it up. (surround sound?)

i really hate it too.. happens on almost all cable channels.
 

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Enough butt kissing Versus. Put cycling on PPV, I'll gladly buy it.

With coverage only on Sundays, can they show more than 10 minutes of the previous action of a stage race? Many of these races are decided during the week, show us more of what happened and less of the ceremonial last stage.

Commercials every 5 minutes, crummy sound quality for years and my latest peeve-- that godawful nonsense in the corner of the screen. Do we really need the constant advertising for a NHL game or whatever crap show they want to push on us? It's an insult to anyone with a brain.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I couldnt disagree more about the commercial problem being on ALL channels. Commercials have always been a notch higher since I was born, but NOT 7 or 8 notches higher, that just a technical snafu. Sounds like everyone agrees that the 10 minute review of a weeks worth of stages is lame. By the way, theres a heck of lot more "ambient" noise in a stadium with 100k people, but they got the sound right 50 years ago. Maybe we should be complaining on the VS site, seems like everyone is somewhat on the same page on many issues. So far the Hampton inn commercials have been tolerable. Alas, someone at vs. used a (decidedly low tech version of) my idea. Did y'all see the little arrow pointing at Valverde as he came from the pack to win? A new drinking game- take a drink everytime paul says "Penultimate". Any others?
 

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my biggest beef so far this year is small. the horrible blue screen they have paul and phil in front of. its bad enough they are in a closet, but they use a pretty bad blusescreen with them.

i also dislike the hummer. i cant believe im gonna say this: i wish the trout were on this year.

i will say it looks like they have given robbie ventura and frankie andreu some coaching in the ways of broadcast jornalism. much improved over last year. also glad they are not black balling andreu for his statements abour LA, and ventura for coaching landis.
 

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bas said:
hi

this is google'able.

from what i understand, the commercials are intentionally done in MONO so they BLAST out your speakers so you can't avoid hearing them when you walk to the kitchen.

the tv shows are not in mono, so you have to turn it up. (surround sound?)

i really hate it too.. happens on almost all cable channels.
It has to do with compression and dynamic range. What they do is "squish" all the sound so everything is the same volume as the loudest peaks. A movie or show is not compressed like this, and while it may have some loud peaks that are as loud as the commercial in decibels, it is much quieter overall. Another way to describe it might be to say if a scale from 1 (quietest) to 100 (loudest) is used, a commercial is compressed where the quietest parts are brought up to 95, so everything is between 95-100. A movie or show will have a range of 20-100. (as a rough example).
Sadly it's a popular trend in modern music production as well, because if the song stands out a bit more you are more likely to notice it- sound quality and dynamics are not given as much importance.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Trout is better than Hummer, I agree. I, too wondered if Ventura's career was over just as it started after the floyd fiasco. I was also surprised by Frankie being back on the team, and even more surprised that he doesnt sound as much like a 6th grader giving a book report like he used to. Both of em' definitely improved. It's early yet, but it seems like the interviews have picked up a bit. I now know what Thor Hushovd sounds like. A perfect example of their poor production is I dont think they ever actually showed a finishing order yesterday (just a GC)! I rewinded and didnt see one. Can you imagine any race in any sport without a finish order. Where the heck is Mcewen? We want to know this stuff dont we?
 
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