Golfer Strikes and Shatters the Lens on an $80,000 Camera at the British Open

Last month we shared a couple videos showing how it’s a bad idea to ask professional golfers to aim at your camera — there’s a good chance you’ll end up with shattered glass and a pricey camera repair bill.

Unfortunately, the same thing can sometimes happen even if you don’t intentionally put your camera in harms way. ESPN found that out at the British Open today after a golfer accidentally smashed one of its $80,000 high definition cameras.

The video above shows what happened after Danish professional golfer Thomas Bjorn tried to hack a ball out of the rough. After capturing the swing and the ball sailing into the air, the camera suddenly shakes and becomes hazy. The ball had shattered the lens:


Photographs of the shattered camera gear were soon shared through Twitter:

ESPN’s Mike Tirico later commented on the air that the camera was worth a whopping $80,000 — no word on whether the damage was limited to a filter or lens.

(via CBSSports)

P.S. It’s not just golf balls — we’ve previous seen the same thing happen with shattered bats at baseball games.

  • Amadeusz Leonardo Juskowiak

    Looks like its only filter is shattered – the video focal length or focus did NOT changed, you can see only broken filter. Moreless $150 for a filter and $20 to remove it.

    This is why we like filters.

  • Steve Oakley

    really just a busted UV filter. looks like a canon 33:1 zoom which ain’t $80K, and not the camera. please get your copy right

  • Michael Zhang

    Thanks Steve. We did write in the post that we don’t know the extent of the damage. It does appear that it was simply some glass at the front that was damaged.

    CNN’s headline link: “Golf shot breaks $80K camera” :)

  • Banan Tarr

    At least you aren’t stooping to their level. Keep up the good work.

  • duh

    then why post something that’s not confirmed? just a non story here

  • JGillis

    If you watch the ESPN video they explicitly say the camera costs $80,000. What more do you want, an itemized receipt?

  • llbr22

    These are broadcast lenses, so $80k just for the lens is realistic, while the camera can be upwards of $100k+ (in the ESPN world)… typical lens used for pro golf maybe this: ; list price $85k; or $71k at B&H :-)

  • Zos Xavius

    That was my thought. Nothing in the video would be in focus if the lens suddenly had a smashed front element.

  • pgb0517

    I agree. There’s been a lot of sniping at PetaPixel lately. I don’t know the owner of this site, but I do know that I enjoy it, it’s a great, informative and entertaining site, and if you don’t like something posted here, the rest of us would enjoy it more if you just kept your nitpicking to yourself.

  • Benzo

    Agreed, but those filters are $600-$1000. You can’t go pick them up at camera store. They are special order only and very expensive… Not trying to be pedantic but thought you would appreciate the real word on pricing. (I own gear like this so I am intimately aware of the costs.)

  • Rodger Walter Obley

    Did he have to play it from where it landed?

  • Joe Gunawan

    Just like the other poster said, NOT a Canon 33:1 zoom, but a Fujinon 13.5mm-570mm HD Broadcast zoom lens woth $71K at B&H:

  • AngelGreg

    Camera 101: ALWAYS use a filter to protect your lens. If ESPN didn’t, then they are stupid.

  • Ian Jackson

    Hey angelgreg, a filter wouldn’t stop a golf ball traveling 100 mph from hitting the lens. So it looks like your wrong… ouch

  • Adam Knapp

    What the hell are they made of, unicorn poop? How much do these differ from the hoyas and tiffens that us mere mortals use?

  • Joe Gunawan
  • faloc

    not really true… u can get B+W filters in East Asia for A LOT less!

  • faloc

    they both lack German precision and quality metals… that’s why most use B+W, because of their outstanding quality. Also the new ones now have a nano coating on them.

  • Raul

    It’s instances like this for which insurance was invented. The bill will go to them. Besides, I’m sure they have a spare or two…

  • Dan Clarke

    VIdeo has been removed from YouTube :(