However, NBC makes up for it somewhat with technological innovation. While CBS has SwingVision and ABC has X-Mo, these are really just super slo-mo cameras. NBC will do the generic slo-mo every once in awhile, but they also experiment with new camera angles and viewpoints. Remember when NBC affixed a miniature camera on the bill of Tiger's Nike cap at the Williams World Challenge several years ago and called it the "Eye of the Tiger"? It was the first time someone not named Tiger could see the game's best swing from a first-person perspective.
Then in 2002, NBC introduced the Matrix-inspired, wraparound-angle camera effect called "Swing View." The technology utilizes more than 30 cameras to capture golf swings in motion from different angles. Johnny Miller used the technology quite effectively to slo-mo a golf swing, stop it, and then swing the camera around to another angle to break down a player's swing. While it was a little rough around the edges, it was another great innovation.
At last year's U.S. Open, NBC debuted the Bunker-Cam, a microscopic camera embedded in the lip of the front bunker that can pan and tilt by remote control. It's kinda cool, but no real value.
NBC was supposed to introduce another innovation to golf coverage at last weekend's Players Championship. Called the "Cable Cam", it features a camera on a cable that is capable of moving up to 60 mph as it tracks the shots on the par-3 17th. I watched most of NBC's coverage, but I didn't notice any shots from the Cable Cam. I assume the weather prevented NBC from using it, a real shame.
I applaud NBC for taking technology to golf coverage. My only complaint is that they don't use this stuff often enough and on a consistent basis. Maybe one day, golfers will play tournaments wearing "Eye of the Tiger" cameras. If that ever happens, you can be certain to see it on NBC first.