What Happened to the Green Filters on the TV Cameras at Pebble Beach?

By |  June 29, 2010

When I watched the U.S. Open on television and saw Pebble Beach Golf Links — you know, the course a lot of people were saying looked lousy because the greens weren’t green — I thought of something United States Golf Association agronomist Pat Gross said at a meeting a few months ago.

Gross spoke at the American Society of Irrigation Consultants meeting in late April. He told attendees that new USGA President Jim Hyler wanted to bring a more environmental approach to golf. Included in Hyler’s approach to this thinking was to have NBC remove “green filters from TV cameras” during the U.S. Open.

Really? Is that one reason why Pebble’s greens looked brown?

Well, according to NBC’s Tom Roy, green filters used on TV cameras to make a course look greener is “a complete fabrication.”
“The colors that you see at home are the same as you’d see in person,” Roy said in an e-mail to me. “I’ve never been told to remove filters or adjust colors by any officials. The only manipulation we do is make the picture brighter when the sun sets.”

So where did this off-with-the-green-filter-thing come from?

— Larry Aylward

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