Tuesday, August 07, 2012
The London 2012 Commentary Radio
UPDATE: Having now taken the commentary radio to a bunch of events, thought I'd post a wee update to say that it's actually turned out to be a bit disappointing. At several events, the "commentary" consists only of what you can hear being announced over the PA anyway. So not really commentary at all. Only a couple of events have had actual commentary which other spectators wouldn't be able to hear, during the match. So far, the breakdown looks like this...
PROPER COMMENTARY: Badminton, Table tennis (and even the table tennis commentary abruptly finished midway into the session on Sunday)
NO COMMENTARY: Water polo, archery, volleyball, beach volley
Suddenly, that tenner doesn't seem quite so worthwhile, even with all the events I'm seeing. Really don't understand why they've bothered to have the technology in place (you can hear PA announcements at all venues) but not got a commentator.
If you're going to more than a couple of London 2012 events, then this clever commentary radio thing is probably worth a go. Head to one of the programme seller booths and, for £10, you get a wee radio which clips onto your ear and gives you access to commentary during the event.
That was particularly worthwhile at the table tennis where you got constant, informed commentary (albeit from a commentator with an extremely unfortunate habit of referring to the Japanese competitor as "the Jap", to the obvious discomfort of those around me with an earpiece). At the archery, though, the commentary in the earpiece actually just mirrored the announcements coming over the PA, which made is rather less useful.
Still, it should be really handy at the Olympic Stadium, as it can be quite tricky to follow all the various track and field things which happen concurrently. And, once the Games are over, you can press a couple of buttons and it works as an FM radio.