LIV Golf aims to take the sound of golf on a truly long journey

The start-up association puts the voice close to the core of its broadcast identity

The LIV Golf landing page makes an announcement regarding the league’s new intent for the finest professional sport: “Golf, but out loud.” That same feeling, also in all matches, was on display throughout during the first LIV Golf Championship, which took place from 9-11 June on the field at the Centurion Club outside London. It was accompanied by a lot of loud pop, like Katy Perry’s “fireworks,” pumped into the course by a big PA system, and it was all followed by noteworthy concerts that were probably louder.

The inaugural LIV Golf Championship was held this month at the Centurion Club outside London.

LIV Golf – which plans to invest billions of dollars through the Public Investment Fund in Saudi Arabia over the next few years, and names such as Dustin Johnson and Phil Mickelson have lined up multi-year contracts in large sums – is apparently planning to change some other aspects about golf on TV. and streaming media.

(Although actual TV will have to wait. The event has only been streamed on platforms like YouTube and on the LIV Golf website.)

The Centurion Club’s first championship went right for a golf podcast audio preference, with nine of the 18-hole golf courses installed with the Q5X Golf Hole microphone and the Q5X’s PlayerMics installed on up to six players, according to Q5X. The microphones were operated by Orlando-based Professional Wireless Systems. NEP was the event’s primary production partner.

Professional Wireless Systems have managed all the microphones deployed at the Centurion Club.

“We are expanding the way we first used it [the mics]in 2015 on Fox Sports, which broadcasts the PGA Championship matches. Jim Van Winkle, Managing Director, PWS, which has been contracted to provide wireless Golf Hole Microphone audio services for all eight LIV Golf tournaments, five of which will take place in the United States, including at Pumpkin Ridge Course in Portland, Oregon, from June 30 to July 2. “[LIV Golf] He approached us and asked us to post them there for their events.”

The Q5X Golf Hole microphone was used in nine holes for the first LIV Golf Championship.

This is the first international use of the Golf Hole microphone, which has an operating frequency range of 520-600MHz.

according to Q5X CEO Paul JohnsonThe Canada-based company refurbished PWS’s 36 Golf Hole Microphones at its store in London, Ontario. Nine microphones were used simultaneously for the tournament, allowing the other microphones to be charged overnight. The units used for the LIV event in London are the same as those originally provided for Fox Sports’ broadcast of the USGA Championship, the US Open, the first radio use of the microphone array. When the event moved to NBC Sports in 2020, Q5X PlayerMics was used on golfers and caddies, but Golf Hole Microphones were not published.

“It hasn’t been used since 2019, the last time Fox Sports competed at the US Open,” Johnson says. “We refurbished the units, replaced the batteries, checked the waterproofing of the antennas and all connections, and then put them back for shipment overseas. The biggest concern was the lithium polymer batteries, to make sure they were fully rechargeable and completely waterproof.”

Golf Hole Microphones picked up a variety of sounds, from golfer/caddy conversations to natural sounds on the course.

He adds that the Golf Hole microphone has withstood water challenges. Besides regular immersion while watering golf courses, the holes were flooded during rain at the 2019 US Open.

There were hardly any bumps on the road to the initial sound signature for the new league. Minor one: The half flagpole provided by LIV Golf does not fit into the standard sized hole in the Golf Hole microphone. Fortunately, the stadium had other suitable masts.

For the first LIV Golf Championship, the sound on the track included pop music pumped through a large PA system.

He notes that “frequency management wasn’t an issue at all there” Casey GachuAn RF, audio, and audio mixer technician is on site for a PWS event. “We had no issues with any of the transmitters or receivers in the towers surrounding the track. Our in-cup transmitter antenna system paired with custom Q5X transmitters delivers clean sound from the cups throughout the tournament.”

Golf Hole microphones have managed to amass a wealth of golf sounds, from tactical discussions between golfers and sacks to the kinds of nat sounds rarely heard at golf shows, such as golfers footsteps approaching the cup on the green and hitting the ball. bottom of the cup.

“We are able to get sound that conventional microphones, such as shotguns and parabolas, cannot reach,” Gchachu says. “This is clearly where LIV Golf wants to take golf sound. Sound will be a big part of it in the future. We want to expand it further, using Q5X technology and PWS expertise.”

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