T.H.E. Show: Deflated Expectations?
I was hardly the only press person who waited until the last day of CES to make the trek to the Flamingo Hotel to cover T.H.E. Show, the alternative, lower-priced-than-CES location for high-performance audio exhibitors. It was easy to spot my colleagues, because, at least on Friday, the last day of the show, there were so few industry professionals and audiophile attendees vying for exhibitors' attention. The hotel's 4th floor claimed 23 exhibit rooms, not all of which I had time to visit, and at least one or two of which were locked. But attendance was so light that the place felt dead.
Not only is the walk from the Venetian to the Flamingo depressing, with barkers flipping things in your face, casino loudspeakers blaring music, and any number of overly lubricated and underdressed loudmouths attempting to navigate the sidewalks in a semblance of a straight line, but the entrance to T.H.E. Show itself is confusing. At the Venetian, where almost everything is in the Tower, hotel signage points the way. In the Flamingo, the chintzy looking casino that greets you at the door offers no clue as to where T.H.E. Show can be found.