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With the World Cup around the corner, host nation South Africa was always going to need an abundance of its iconic soccer accessory: the vuvuzela. Having not really heard much about it before, I figured it was a South American or Hispanic football accessory, and wasn't quite sure what it did. Foolishly, I let one of them into my home, keen on trying to get my family involved in the World Cup.
Coming in at just over 2 foot long, this garish looking horn has been available in all kinds of colours, with flags hanging off of it and the lot. Ours was a plain red one, and the moment we got it, I knew it was going to be trouble. Perhaps I should have done my research first and seen the nuisance it had potential for. Instead, it was an impulse purchase which cost around £5, and ended up not being used a great deal.
I'd suggest this accessory is probably best used if you're actually planning on going to a crowded environment, as its droning and piercing horn noise is very loud and somewhat out of place in our front room! The blaring noise it emits is enough to hurt your ears after a while, and after talking to a few people about it, I started to get a little worried about the potential lasting damage it could have. Some said it sets off tinnitus, others complaining of deafness for a while afterwards, and although I didn't personally experience this, having heard one up close, it's easy to see how this could be the case.
The sound reverberates quite loudly, and is almost like one of those blaring horns which you squeeze or push the button on to get the sound out. It's ultimately a fan horn, and the whole point is to support your team by blasting as obnoxious a noise as you can. Although I don't want to rabbit on too much about how annoying it was on the TV, it is at least worth noting that this was the case, and I suppose in a way it showed just how annoying it must be whenever I blow my own vuvuzela.
Medically, you do need to be careful and try not to be exposed to overly long amounts of vuvuzela sound due to the pressure emitted by the horn, but when these things are being blown throughout an entire football match, then there's not much escape if you're there. Luckily, we weren't, and although our horn was blown quite a bit, it was intermittent and only a few times, as we knew how annoying it would have been for our neighbours. I took it to a pub for one match, but was told they weren't allowing people to use them inside because of the noise.
So, as a conclusion, from a personal point of view, it was an impulse of £5 purchasing that I probably would have avoided were I given the chance to think about it again. Our use of it varied, but it was mostly when England was playing (didn't get used a great deal, then !!!!!!!). On the occasion I tried using it at a venue, it was refused, and when we did use it at home, it seemed almost pointless. My in-laws didn't much like it either. 'Awful racket' is a fair description of it, to be honest.
No doubt we'll find a decent use for it in the future, but for the moment, it's going to be firmly tucked away until the next time it's needed. We're hoping to go and watch a game of cricket at some point in the Summer, and there's a rugby World Cup coming up next year. Who knows? Either way, I'll strive to get my fiver's worth.
I have briefly read some of the other reviews of the Vuvuzela and I am a lot more positive about the novelty toy than others. A few months ago no one knew what a vuvuzela was, then people began to talk about the "swarm of bees" noise taking place at every football game in the South African world cup and we found out that a vuvuzela was a very long horn or trumpet.
Every man and his dog seemed to have one in South Africa, big ones, short ones, multi coloured ones. Yet the UK market jumped into it quite slowly and many of the big retailers could not meet the demand from the general public.
The horn itself is about 70-80cm in length (a standard horn is anyway) with a mouth piece that looks like a trumpet and a very narrow lonnngggg neck with a slightly larger opening at the end.
You cannot simply blow into the horn, you must purse your lips and let the vibrations make the noise for you. Not everyone can do this, in fact it is quite tricky to get the hang of so this could be a negative if you were to purchase one. It also takes an awful lot of puff to get one going and if blowing for a long time, a lot of our friends ended up dizzy and red in the face with very sore lips.
Next up is the noise factor. These are very very very loud for such a small and plastic instrument. They make a loud droning noise, exactly like a one-noted trumpet. I would say that they were quite dangerous to ear drums especially if you blew one down somebody's ear, which lets face it drunken football fans, small children or people acting the goal are likely to do. Whilst that sounds obvious, it is quite scary just how loud these things will sound when blown. I would therefore ensure children are supervised at all times.
As they are quite long they are a bit of a pain to find space for, the other alternative is of course to bin it!
The price on here shows that they are £7.99 in amazon. During the world cup they were about £2 in Sainsburys but I think amazon would now be the only place to stock them now that we are out of the world cup.
In my opinion these are good fun for their purpose but not really something I would buy for anyone as a present, least not a child as I think they could be quite dangerous. However they are intended for football matches and therefore I think they are a fun toy that shouldn't be taken seriously.
We all know what a Vuvuzlea looks like these days as its had such wide press so I am not going to drone on about its wonderfully stylish and plastic based appearance. Ours with its long horn was just a tuneless thing. Its easy to get a sound out of and offers very little else other than a headache. Ours wasn't a super stylish looking piece of kit and I don't think these should be classed as a childs toy due to safety issues.
The fact that we were given one of these toys as a gift, only adds insult to injury, as every single match I have had to sit through has been a massive Vuvuzela fest! We received one as a gift from an over enthusiastic friend after his footie trip to see the uk team play (the little horror).
The dreaded vuvuzela seems also to be known as lepatata or a cornetta in latin american countries (yep they have the dreaded things too!). Our tuneless wonder sounds as though it has all the grace and panache of a fog horn on full blast as far as I am concerned (we didn't enjoy it at all). They are all tuned to very boring B flat 3rd, or the B flat just below middle C to the more musically challenged, which to me includes the mad beggers who came up with the idea of these dreadful things.
Now recently in the UK these powerful ear wrenching horrors of the music world, were given away free in major supermarkets and by the big boys of the gutter press! Now, Why, does spring to mind as we as a nation have never before needed such fripperies and they seem to be more of an irritation than a pleasure.
The original Vuvuzela was created as a method of calling fellow villagers to attend important community gatherings, way before the use of mobiles and radio devices. For that reason there is every point to the Vuvuzela exsiting, as a useful tool to alert your fellows to a meeting or tell of impending danger etc.
I don't need a Vuvuzela to let everyone know dinner is ready and I can't see what other creative use it could have, so ours lurked in the cupboard till we could re-home it.
I know that in South Africa the Vuvuzela is considered to be a strong part of the national game, enjoyed by the masses and often accompanied by the banging of loud drums and happy smiling faces of the crowds watching the games. In this case the Vuvuzela is used as the equivalent of the chants and rhymes we hear and see in uk stadiums and there is no reason what so ever to deny the South African fans the use of what is a national footie pass time...Vuvuzeling in the loudest most raucous way they can.
Our Vuvuzela made a terrible racket and in fact can make sounds up to and around 108 decibels! I feel this made it a really unacceptable thing to be given to children as they always tend to blow anything noisy straight towards each others ears . Yet I have seen children out and about with these things with not a responsible parent in sight!
Some may like them more than we did and to this I say each to their own. But if we had been given a set of spoons and a washboard we could have made better music from them. The long and ungainly tube and wide front end of the ear crunching Vuvuzela devil, does allow for plenty of noise to spew forth, but it a noise that grates and doesn't soothe.
Our own Vuvuzela, sadly (NOT!) has now been liberated to another more Vuvuzela friendly home...Aaw.. (to spread the joy it brings) as it was getting on our nerves and was at risk of being shut unloved and unplayed, in a cupboard forever! As we do have much more tuneful music making equipment this gift would have been out of place and just had to go, to protect our poor innocent ears.
One or two blows on the horn were a bit of fun, more were down right irritating! One of its main features is that its easy to blow and make a noise with, not that you want to after a while unless you are a young child, in which case you didn't ought to play with one of these unsupervised. I do have to say that the kids near us have been blowing up a storm with these things with their supermarket freebies (think you had to collect newspaper tokens to get them) and its driven us mad! Confiscation would be kinder to us all.
The Vuvuzela may be appropriate in its place of origin, but it will certainly alter the beautiful game here in the uk, forever if we give it space and possibly damage our childrens hearing along the way! We ought to think long and hard about whether we want that.....or not?
Vuvzela gets a 1 star rating as I cannot rate it lower, its not a very safe toy for children, with or without its detachable flag and it makes a dreadful instrument, unless its one of torture!
Until a few months back nobody had even heard of a Vuvuzela. However a month ago when the world cup begain with the opening game all you could hear on the TV was a buzzing sound and at the time it still wasn't clear what this was. However, within days I would say every football fan in the world knew what this was. Love them or hate them, unfortunately it looks like this craze is hear to stay for a while. My friend bought me one of these off Amazon for around £8 and I've tried it a couple of times. One thing I will say is that I can't imagine being at a football match in this country and either sitting there blowing it for 90 minutes, or perhaps even worse having to sit next to someone for that long blowing one. I would think it would get very annoying.
I have to admit it does look quite cheap and the one that was bought for me has the England flag attached to it although I think you can get them with other countries flags attached too depending on your preference. As for the product itself the horn is about two foot long and is made of a sort of plastic type material which adds to the cheap look and feel of the instrument. It is quite light which I guess is what you would expect from something so cheap. If it was sturdy and a proper instrument then it would be heavier I would have thought like a trumpet. So add to that the fact that it makes a racquet then need I say more! I have to confess I think that this will sit in my loft gathering dust for a while.
I for one hope that these don't get integrated into football matches here as apart from the fact that they are badly made I find them annoying and the noise that comes out for them is going to really irritate you before long. I guess it's a novelty item and if you want to buy one as a stocking filler for someone or Christmas present they are are cheap, but also very lightweight and look like they could break easily enough.
The vuvuzela is that loud, abrasive, non-stop noise you've been hearing throughout every single world cup game in South Africa 2010. It's made of plastic, and around 2 ft in length. In order to operate it, you must blow down the thin, narrow end to produce a loud, monotone sound out the other end.
It's primarily use is to celebrate the 2010 Fifa World Cup, which recently ended. Football fans across the globe travelled to South Africa to sound the vuvuzela in support of their teams. It's not dissimilar to beating drums and cheering - it spurs the teams on and creates an amazing atmosphere. It's literally a global phenomenon, and is growing in popularity.
If you'd like to know exactly what it sounds like (assuming you haven't been watching the football), YouTube have placed a little football icon at the bottom of each video and (when clicked) puts a Vuvuzela sound overlay to whatever you're watching.
Love them or hate them - I very much doubt they're going anywhere. You can find them in some toy stores for a few quid and other places online, although I have found them cheaper in store. Now that the World Cup has ended, I haven't heard any being sounded. However, I'm sure during the 2014 world cup (in Brazil) they will be back with a vengeance.
Why, oh why do these seem so popular? OK, to be fair, I wanted one at the start of this World Cup.... but now I want to go on a mission to break every single one of them in the world!
Right, so the principle is simple; blow into the horn to produce a loud noise. Well, I say blow, it's more of a case of forcing your breathe through pursed lip. Like if you were blowing a 'raspberry'. The noise is pretty loud actually. And annoying. The noise is like a trumpter being played with no notes, or without any effort being put into making a tune. You see, the noise produced is like an alarm call.... like when you watch a film and enemy knights are approaching the castle, and someone sounds the alarm horn... and then get an arrow through the neck.... yeah, you get the picture!
But these little bits of plastic terror are over used. When you watch a football match, the crowd cheers at goals, oooo's at fouls and ahhhh's at skillful play. With the vuvuzela, you miss all of this. It is as though all the atmosphere and all the tension is drained from the ground by a swarm of angry mosquitos!
Although, when I first got one (I know, hypocrite!), I found I was like a little kid. I just had to make the loudest noise possible. But I soon got bored. You can't even get a tune out of it. Try playing the great escape on a vuvuzela! It's not possible!
These seem to have become the fashionable thing to have for any respectable football fan. Hopefully though, they will be banned when the domestic season goes! They are the scourge of all the enjoyment involved with watching football. The don't just Blow out noise, they SUCK out the atmosphere. They are ruining the fun of the World Cup.
Seriously, I urge you, do not be tempted into the world of the vuvuzela blowing nuisences! It's a world of misery, annoyance and torture!
I had a vuvuzella bought for me by my mates as a bit of banter. I was the only person saying we should respect the admittedly quite recent (last 15-20 years) tradition in South African football and let people blow horns all they want. I certainly wouldn't like being told I wasn't allowed to sing at a match in case it upset some foreigners!
Now the horn doesn't look like it cost them an arm and a leg, and I doubt it did. It is about two feet long and the flag hangs down by about the same amount. The horn itself is made of plastic so isn't overly delicate, but I get the impression it could crack if it is thrown around.
When I watched a news report on these horns, it stated that there was a technique to playing them - that you didn't just blow, and it was more akin to the pursed lips approach you need to use a trumpet. Well, either they were wrong, or this isn't a traditionally built vuvuzella, because everyone seemed able to just pick this thing up and blow into it to create that oh-so-annoying buzzing noise.
I don't know how much use you will get out of it after the world cup, and I can see them being incredibly unwelcome at league grounds over here, but it does bring the South African spirit to your living room.
Oh god, the Vuvuzela. Up until a few weeks ago I had absolutely no idea what a Vuvuzela was (it sounds like a creepy 50s B movie female supervillain who might star alongside Vampira) but now, still locked as we are in world cup fever, it seems impossible to get away from the things. They must be importing them over to here by the tankerload from China of whevever they are mass produced.
And mass-produced they are indeed. A friend of mine bought one of these things and showed me it at length (and indeed encouraged, no, insisted, that I have a go) and it struck me as a cheaply made and nasty little thing churned out to meet a commercial window. I later had one bought for me, allowing me to study it more closely. The horn itself is about 2 feet long and made of rather thick and cheap looking plastic, (with a sheen to make it look metallic) and though it doesnt weigh much, which is great for holding it aloft and playing it to attract passing ships or signal your support for england or whatever, but on the downside it clearly isnt very strong and can easily break when dropped if youre not careful. Yes, its thick, but being made of plastic its also pretty brittle.
The flag that comes attached to it is of the quality you would expect really, being very thin and filmsy but also being admittedly very colourful and bright. The horn is very loud, and doesnt require massive lungpower to make a satisfyingly loud sound, but all in all this is the sort of product you would expect to pick up in a pound shop, and whilst good fun most certainly isnt worth the scandalous £10 or so that amazon are selling it for- they must be absolutely raking it in. Oh, and it does get pretty damn annyoying pretty quickly too. Buy it cheaper, much cheaper, elsewhere, or if you cant find it any cheaper, then only buy it if youre a massive football nut/England fan and dont mind wasting your money in the name of "the beautiful game".
With the start of the World Cup a couple of weeks ago there was of course all the talk about who were the favourites for the Cup but there was also something else making a lot of noise and that was of course the Vuvuzela's which have been used in the stadium by fans and just about anywhere there are people watching Football in South Africa and all around the world. When I first heard these in the World Cup I was not at all sure what they were called. were they booboozela's??? or mobozela's?? no we misheard and they are actually Vuvuzela's. So what are these instruments which have been as much a talking point as the action on the pitch in South Africa 2010. I was given one by a friend to use during the England games. Here is my review on my thoughts.
The Vuvuzela is a plastic blowing horn which is used by fans typically in South Africa but they were first used in Mexico in the 1970's at Football Stadiums. It became very popular in South Africa in the 90's and has gone from strength to strength in the country. Anyone who has watched a World Cup game in the current Tournament will have no doubt heard the loud noise coming from these horns and no doubt read and heard the debate on these instruments. It's clear that they are used by fans as a way to create a buzzing atmosphere for the game. The Vuvuzela can get up to 120db from one metre which is the point of pain for the ear.
As an instrument the Vuvuzela obviously does not have the range of sound of say a Guitar instead giving out a loud horn sound with little difficulty. I mainly used mine for the match itself but I have heard several people using it in the couple of hours before the games. Simply blow into the horn and it gives the trademark sound which has been a mainstay of this World Cup. The one I have is from Amazon and was £9.95 which comes with a small England Flag. You can find it cheaper though without the flag for around £6.
I'm sure you have heard about the controversy of the vuvuzela. There are worries that the Vuvuzela causes permanent noise-induced hearing loss and if you have been watching the coverage of the World Cup you will have heard some of the players complaining about the constant noise and not being able to communicate with team mates because of the noise. And it's probably fair to say that this has been such an issue that The column inches of the Vuvuzela have probably been up there with the World Cup Ball Adidas Jabulani which has caused a lot of controversy due to the way it apparently moves in the air due to it's lightness and the actual Tournament itself.
When I first heard the debate that these were causing at the World Cup I decided to wait a week or two to develop my opinion and give them a balanced chance. I feel that while they are a great atmophere creating tool they should be used much less frequently and more appropriately. One thing I have in my argument against the Vuvuzela is the atmosphere in the TD Garden in Boston and Staples Center in Los Angeles for the NBA Finals games 1-7 There were no Vuvuzela's around but the atmosphere was amazing even watching on TV. The crowd were crazy and were cheering appropriately when the Celtics made big plays. I just don't feel we can say the same with the Vuvuzela and it's use during the World Cup as it has been a constant noise throughout, regardless of how a game is being played.
So in summing up on this issue, I have no real problem with the Vuvuzela itself, Let's be honest fan participation is Something that can really boost a Tournament but is this the right way to do it? I don't think so. I won't be using a Vuvuzela after the World Cup and hope for the day when it is used in the appropriate way in line with what I mentioned about the NBA Finals which featured superb support from the majority of the fans. We all want Fans to be passionate but Vuvuzela's certainly don't seem to be the ultimate answer. I doubt I will be using my Vuvuzela unless England get to the Semi Finals.