The pros in disc golf traveled a long way to get to Santa Cruz, California for the Master’s Cup this year. It was a trip of almost 5,900 miles,Β 9,467 kilometers for the metric crowd, from Konopiste that they made. Going so far to play great courses takes a toll on them without a doubt. For them to have these tournaments to play, it takes a lot of time and effort from the folks behind the scenes.

Some Cheese Sir….

I normally don’t pay much attention to comment on Youtube videos. Mainly for two reasons. One, keyboard warriors jump out to criticize and complain about any and everything you can think of that could possibly offend, patronize, or just plain irritate somebody. Two is that I tend to want to fire back at anybody who wants to post stupid stuff like that when they’re watching the free coverage, and doing that would make me look foolish. So, I don’t engage normally.

I did, however, respond to one comment. The first round of the Master’s Cup was a feature card that consisted of the Am weekend champ and the previous year’s champ. So that left 2 spots left. One was Josh Anthon, who is returning to active play after serving time in prison, and the other was Manabu Kajiyama, a great player from Japan. In the second half of the round one coverage, somebody commented about them not filming Paul McBeth’s card. They stated that it was like going to a big time sports game and watching it on the TVs in the lobby areas. To me, that was a moronic comment about something the film crew had no control over. Jamie Thomas had said that he was working with CCDG to film the tournament. I follow all the major film crews and media personnel, and never saw anything about filming multiple cards at Master’s Cup.

My response was just to quit whining about McBeth’s round not being filmed and that there’s not room for everybody’s favorite player to be on a first round feature card. The traditional card for the first round was filmed, and it was a nice piece of coverage to watch. Being a relative newcomer to disc golf, I had no idea of the talents that Josh Anthon had, so I was glad to see him on video for the first good look. Manabu Kajiyama is a great player in his own right and I enjoyed seeing him again on camera. The Am weekend champ, Thomas Tomaselli, showed off some pretty good skills as well.

Looking through the comments, it was full of things like “Where’s Sexton?,” “We love Ian,” “I hate Avery,” and others of a similar nature. Viewing the videos with commentary has become a “standard” that we like to hear with all the disc golf videos that are published. I may not like somebody’s commentary, but that’s beside the point when we don’t have to pay* to view the videos. Nate Sexton and Jeremy Koling both created Patreon accounts to help fund their efforts to bring more videos with a Pro’s perspective. That’s great and all, but nobody is going to have the time to do commentary for all the videos that are put out. We have to just deal with what we’re given. And at this point in time, we’re getting great videos with multi-camera coverage, drone hole previews, some awesome graphics, and commentary from those who have been in and around the game for years now.

Youtube Or Bust

Listening to the DGAM podcast and others, I have heard about the history of disc golf videos. Just ten (10) years ago, everybody was waiting for Clash DVDs to come out. And from the interview that Final Round Radio did with Billy Crump, I know it took at least a couple of months for a DVD of any tournament to be released. It wasn’t until March of 2008 that Youtube supported 480p video, and DVD resolution is 720×480. 720p video support was added in July of 2009 and 1080p in November.

I’ve been watching a lot of Youtubers lately. The range is all over the place. From Casey Neistat, Linus Tech Tips, JayzTwoCents, Bitwit, Peter McKinnon, Roman Atwood, Think Media TV, and others. Some, like Neistat, have been doing videos on Youtube for 7 years or more. That’s like the dinosaur age in terms of Youtube videos. Being a techie, I love seeing what they use to make their videos with. For the most part, anybody who does a Vlog uses a photography camera that also records video. For example, popular cameras include the Canon 80D, Panasonic GH5, Sony a6500, Sony Alpha a7R II, and so on. Some of them are using higher end video cameras to produce extremely high-resolution videos. These include the Sony FS5, Sony FS7, and RED cameras that cost ridiculous amounts of $$$.

 

Now take a look at what the crews from Jomez, CCDG, and SpinTV are using. From my Jomez interview, they are using two Panasonic AG-DVX200 camcorders and a Sony PXW-FS7. CCDG has two Sony PXW-X70 camcorders, and some Panasonic camcorders. Jamie Thomas of SpinTV has a new Sony PXW-FS5 for 2017 and was pumped about it.

What a beautiful sight. #SpinTV just got an upgrade for 2017! πŸ“ΉπŸ“Ή #Sony #FS5 #gearporn

A post shared by Jamie Thomas (@spinjt) on

So taking a look at all of these cameras and their capabilities, our disc golf media is perfectly set up to record, edit, and publish all of these amazing videos on Youtube. And it doesn’t come cheap! Sony FS5 = $5800 for body only. CCDG’s Sony X70s are just over 2 grand a pop. The Sony FS7 Jomez has is over $8,000 for body only. Jomez’s Panasonics are $4,200 each. That’s only in the cameras themselves. Add in batteries, mics, monopods, shoulder mounts, tripods, cables, and all the other little accessories, and the equipment bill just piles and piles.

That’s what gets me riled up somewhat when I see posts about why didn’t you film this person or that person when they shot this score or that score. And the cost of the equipment that just Jomez, CCDG, and SpinTV have is minuscule when you compare it to what is used to film the “major” sports that we all still like to watch. I am starting out with a dinky $300 camcorder and other budget gear just so that tournaments and players in my area get more exposure online. It not only helps them out with their sponsors but the sport, in general. I’ll have 1080p60 video out of my camera, with some good audio because of the external mic. It’s a start.

I get why folks want to see the top player in disc golf all the time. It’s the same reason the Giants’ stadium in San Francisco was full to the brim when Barry Bonds was near breaking the home run record. We want to see the best. Bonds didn’t hit a homer in every game. Sure, he hit 73 in one season, but that was still just over 1 dinger every two games. McBeth had an amazing run in 2015, winning nearly every event he played in. Like any record breaking season in any sport, the most important milestones aren’t topped every year, which makes those times when they are all the more special. What it doesn’t do is make the rest of the times you watch a sporting event any less important. There are still amazing shots, unexpected comebacks, utter domination, and unfortunate collapses that we witness year in and year out. Enjoy them all, and be sure to thank those the provide you with the ability to see those things play themselves out at every tournament that is put online to be viewed.

Sad News

There had been rumors floating around the club about losing my favorite course, Veteran’s Original. They had many variations, including there being a redesign, no course at all, changing just a few holes, and others. This was all due to a pine beetle infestation on the course. There are a lot of big pines on the course mixed in with hardwoods.

The TDGA club President was notified this week by the city that the course would have to be closed immediately. The Arborist said the portion of the course that traversed the top of the ridge was unsafe due to the risk of the trees falling. Baskets are being pulled this week, with no projected date for a return. There’s the potential for it not ever going back in since the city has plans to upgrade/expand/renovate the playground area that is beside where hole 1 now sits.

This hurts my lunchtime disc golf dramatically. I normally play Vets OG at lunch when I want to get some holes in. I could play holes 1-2 and 13-18 easily in 30 minutes. It looped perfectly. 18 finished just above the pad for hole 1. That will be no more for the time being. I don’t know what I’m going to do. The other two courses that are nearby aren’t as good options to play at lunch. Thunderchief goes around a couple of fishing ponds, and Music Bend stays skeeter heaven during the warm months. Tha Bend is the better of the two for some quick holes at lunch, so maybe a Thermacell purchase is forthcoming.

 

Notes…

I will be filming the 3rd round and final 9 of the Southern Nationals Pro Championships this coming Sunday.

My apologies for not making a new post until now. My schedule has been full of ball games and my wife has been at a doctor’s office or hospital way too often the last 3 weeks trying to figure out why my daughter has been sick. Turns out it’s most likely her gall bladder, which is being removed on the 26th.

I will also be filming a tournament on July 1st in Horn Lake, MS. The Patriot Open is the name, a PDGA C-tier.

None of the links above that point to B&H Photo Video are affiliate links. I bought my camera from them, and I really like their website for browsing what’s on the market in the camera gear world.

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