I recently read a column on a popular audio enthusiast website where the writer was lambasting the High Performance Audio area at the Venetian Towers at CES this year. It got me thinking about friends from the specialty audio world who have at times complained about CES to me.
You’ve all heard it. Vegas is packed to the max and there are lines everywhere. Hotel and air is expensive. There’s all kinds of tech there that has nothing to do with the audio business or the specialty/integrator channel. And audio is not the primary focus of CES, as it is at audio-only shows such as Rocky Mountain Audio Fest, nor does it target the specialty class of trade, as we see at CEDIA.
Is the columnist right? Is the world’s largest trade show no longer a practical venue for the specialty audio world? And am I a fool for making a significant investment in staffing, mindshare and cold, hard cash in my company’s CES presence every year?