THE Show Newport 2013 • TABlog

by Marc Mickelson | June 3, 2013

It took me a couple of days to figure out why there was a portrait of Richard Beers, the organizer of THE Show Newport (and the sister event in Las Vegas), in the lobby of the Hilton: He was in constant motion and nearly impossible to track down during the three days of his event.

Another THE Show Newport Beach is in the bag, and from where I sit it seems apparent that it has a brighter future now than it did four days ago. I've carped about other shows -- and the sheer number of shows on the calendar in general -- but this one embodies so much of what makes a consumer audio show worthwhile and successful, even if some of its particulars also make covering it a challenge.

First, the challenge. Because of when this show occurs, after both CES and High End in Munich, THE Show Newport Beach is not rife with product debuts, the grist of a show report. It also occurs when people's minds are not on sitting indoors listening to music. But the location in Southern California, with its crush of people, and side-by-side venues (with further room for expansion) give it the attendance and space necessary to thrive. Its laid-back vibe makes it a lot of fun to attend, even with the responsibility of having to cover it hanging over your head. There's an airport conveniently located literally across the street from both hotels; however, you would never know it, because the sound of planes taking off and landing is simply not present. And then there are the demo rooms themselves, which are a cut above the spaces in hotels where other audio shows take place. Good sound is common here, the dreaded "show sound" being the exception, not the rule.

Lucette Nicoll and Richard Beers are the faces of THE Show Newport Beach.

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