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Old 06-27-10, 09:22 PM   #1
Bontrager
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Alternative coverage to Versus?

Where can I get (live?) coverage or torrents of Versus TdF shows or feeds? We have Comcast here and they only have Versus on their upper-tier programming (as opposed to a SD feed on regular cable).
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Old 06-27-10, 10:20 PM   #2
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You can pay $30 for the Versus tour tracker. It gives you full coverage of the tour in HD via the internet.
No need to record anything, you also get video on demand for anything you miss while at work ect...
I'm considering getting it even though I have Versus in SD.

Scott
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Old 06-28-10, 07:53 AM   #3
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You can pay $30 for the Versus tour tracker.
Scott
Thanks for the tip, Scott. I might go this route instead of adding cable for 1 month.

Too bad you have to pay $15 extra if you want to use the Vs. app on your iPhone

Here are the FAQ's for the Tour Tracker for others that may be interested.
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Old 06-28-10, 10:21 AM   #4
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http://cyclingtorrents.nl if you want to download torrents later. Just don't come on here complaining about spoilers before you get a chance to watch the stage.

You can also check cyclingfans.com and steephill.tv for live feeds. Those may be hit or miss, so if you're going to be watching online you might as well sign up for the VS coverage. That's what I'm going to do. I didn't have any problems with the VS feeds last year.
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Old 06-28-10, 09:43 PM   #5
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so if you're going to be watching online you might as well sign up for the VS coverage. That's what I'm going to do.
That's probably what I'll do. I have a 24" iMac in the bedroom which is our internet TV and I usually hook up a mac laptop to the HDMI connector on our living room HDTV for vodcasts and more internet TV. I'm gonna love watching live without any commercials.

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Old 06-29-10, 03:04 PM   #6
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I'm on vacation back east for two weeks starting the 1st. I'm getting the tour tracker. The good thing is that it's unlikely i'll pass by a bar or hear a passing conversation spoiling the results of the day.
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Old 06-30-10, 11:59 AM   #7
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I did the Versus Tour Tracker about a week into it last year and it rocked. I'm already signed up for this year. $29.99 very well spent!
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Old 07-03-10, 09:17 AM   #8
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I'm considering coughing up the $30 for the Versus Tour Tracker as I don't have a means of recording the stages, and I'm not sure I want to get up at 4/5am to watch it live.

Hopefully my DSL connection can handle the stream/download.

Anyone else care to share their experiences with the Versus Tour Tracker?
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Old 07-03-10, 09:40 AM   #9
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Is it possible to get onto the site without seeing spoilers? I just signed up and logged in, and there's a list of the current standings on today's prologue. I won't be able to watch live on weekdays, and I'd like to get the On Demand videos without ruining the suspense.
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Old 07-03-10, 10:02 AM   #10
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I want to know if it's possible to see it live on the versus tour tracker. Getting tired of thaqt 30 second commercial while the standings scroll on the side. This is what you get for your $29.95?

Hit the video tab and it says live video is offline. reload. click reload and nothing happens.

Wel l;looks like they're reading this because the streaming just started. But no commentary. Where's the lLggett? Seems like they jobbed the prolgue up last year too.

Last edited by muccapazza; 07-03-10 at 10:19 AM.
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Old 07-03-10, 10:15 AM   #11
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Does anyone know if the Versus Tracker On-Demand video continues to load if you hit "pause", like their sample video on the faq page?(http://tracker.versus.com/faq)
In other words, can I just hit pause and walk away for 10 minutes to make a nice big buffer, or is it a streaming only type of thing?

To buy the tracker for evening viewing I would need to smooth out the feed, but they don't have an autobahn plugin for linux, unfortunately.

Thanks much
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Old 07-03-10, 12:29 PM   #12
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I don't believe it buffers at all. If you connect an big tv to a computer the online feed can be very good, especially if you maximize the window.
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Old 07-03-10, 02:30 PM   #13
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Shucks, unfortunately, my internet connection isn't fast enough to keep up and stops every few seconds. So I was hoping to sort of trick it into buffering for me, since the autobahn solution isn't available.
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Old 07-04-10, 02:05 PM   #14
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tour tracker was working (mostly) yesterday and today until half way through the race (on demand) it just stopped working and now it crashes my the browsers. seems like every year i spend more time looking for streaming alternatives, or restarting the tour tracker or waiting for it to load than i do actually watching the tour...
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Old 07-05-10, 12:55 PM   #15
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My Wife Blew the money for the Versus Streams ...And I've a few seconds of yesterdays show - and - that's it.
I torrented last year and think it's the best solution.
so far ...VERSUS HAS NOT DELIVERED anything except irritation and frustration.
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Old 07-05-10, 03:10 PM   #16
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The last two years I took the route of searching out recordings after each stage and it worked out well enough.

This year I bit the bullet and signed up for the online VS. coverage and it's worked well for me so far, both the on demand and live stream over basic DSL. Skipping forward and backward has been a bit finicky but works with some patience followed by a "pause" and "play" cycle.

I really think that VS. should make their 1 hr. highlight shows available to online subscribers. We'd all love to have 6 hours every evening to watch the day's stage, but the reality is that many of us don't. Thankfully the on demand allows you to skip forward to the last 40k of the race for the finishing fireworks, but then you miss anything good that happened in the previous 4-5 hours of the race.

I think it'll be worth it, and it's hard to quantify the value of being able to watch an event live or nearly so, so I'm happy with my decision so far.

-Jeremy
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Old 07-05-10, 07:57 PM   #17
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Seems like Versus is working on, or have already, fixing/fixed some of the issues.

Here is an email I got from them:

Dear Tour Tracker user,

First of all apologies for the problems over the last few days with the Tour
Tracker service. We know that many of you have experienced problems and have
contacted us through our support email or posted your feedback online. We've
responded to many of you, but while we've worked on fixing these problems we
know many of you have not yet received a response.

Due to the problems with the Autobahn plugin, after today's stage we removed the
video player and replaced it with one that does not require Autobahn. Initial
reaction is that this has fixed the streaming problems. This was also why the On
Demand video of todays stage was delayed.

Another issue (particularly for the prologue) has been the start time of the
coverage. We start the coverage when the International TV broadcast starts, some
days this includes the start, some days it does not - it depends on when the
host broadcaster in France decides to start the broadcast. The feed goes up on
the Tracker at the same time as anyone in the world gets a TV feed.

The daily schedule of broadcast times is now published on the FAQ page:
http://tracker.versus.com/faq

The other issue that many of you have commented on is the audio feed and the
lack of background noise. We're frustrated with this as well. We're working hard
on a resolution to this with the host broadcaster in France to correct the
problem.

We're cycling fans too and understand that the problems over the past few days
have been extremely frustrating, we appreciate your understanding and hope you
will enjoy the rest of the tour without any further streaming problems with the
service.

Regards,
The Tour Tracker Team.
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Old 07-05-10, 09:28 PM   #18
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the tv coverage seems a bit unpolished to me. They don't have as many cameras as id like, and during todays race a couple of them were either continually "janky" or covered with water. I know its a limitation of a constantly moving playing field, but i think they have to put in a little more work if they want to isolate all of the tour.

To the versus online subscribers, can you download video?
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Old 07-05-10, 10:05 PM   #19
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the tv coverage seems a bit unpolished to me. They don't have as many cameras as id like, and during todays race a couple of them were either continually "janky" or covered with water. I know its a limitation of a constantly moving playing field, but i think they have to put in a little more work if they want to isolate all of the tour.

To the versus online subscribers
, can you download video?
No, unless someone here has some additional trickery that I'm not aware of. There may be a way to capture it while it plays, but it's simply live and on-demand video, no d/l option.

-Jeremy
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Old 07-06-10, 09:45 AM   #20
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watch the tdf for free on eurosport. links here: http://www.steephill.tv/tour-de-france/#live
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Old 07-06-10, 01:04 PM   #21
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I watched the Versus stream today and it was pretty clear and smooth all the way through. I have a relatively slow (by today's standards) 1.5Mb DSL. They reportedly made some improvements to the stream last night, so it should be better now.

I tried some of the freebie feeds, but their video quality was much worse than Versus. I do like Sean Kelly's commentary on Eurosport better than Phil Ligget, though.
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Old 07-08-10, 08:16 AM   #22
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Sign the Petition!
Bring Back the Old VS theme Music!

http://www.petitiononline.com/VS2010/petition.html
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Old 07-10-10, 04:40 AM   #23
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watch the tdf for free on eurosport. links here: http://www.steephill.tv/tour-de-france/#live
Wow!! Thanks for posting this. It looks like I will be bringing my laptop into work and plugging in during the day.

Cheers,

Brian J.
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Old 07-12-10, 04:51 PM   #24
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Tour Tracker is meh!

So I got the tour tracker for $30.
Video is great on a 24" iMac at full screen sitting a few feet away. Unfortunately it cuts in and out sometimes to the point where I have to restart Safari and restart the video. I usually watch in the evening. Sometimes it gets real annoying to have to do this over and over. Sometimes it gets fixed if I just FFWD a minute ahead or back. Better than having to pay $$ for cable for the month.

I wish they would put all the other videos (interviews, etc) on the Tour Tracker feed. It's so annoying to watch the 20 second commercial in front of each and every video (interviews, additional content) on the main Vs. site that I simply don't even visit teh main site. You'd think it already knows that I'm logged in and have paid for the Tour Tracker so don't show me the god damn commercial over and over.
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Old 07-14-10, 09:48 AM   #25
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I've been watching Eurosport, but decided to get Tour Tracker so I could watch at night (I do have a job during the day!) There's one thing that really bugs me about Tour Tracker: There's no ambient sound. It's just Paul and Phil in a studio. You don't hear the background noises that bring the race to life: helicopter, crowd cheers, radio chatter from team cars...

Hey Versus, if you're reading this, please add some ambient sound. It can't be that complicated to do, even if Paul and Phil ARE in a studio. Sean Kelly and the other Eurosport guys are in a studio, too, but they have the ambient sound.
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