AVS Forum banner

Status
Not open for further replies.
1 - 12 of 12 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,512 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Now, take this all with a grain of salt.


HEE '02 was terrible. It could've been called "Home Audio Entertainment" - too many of the booths were cables, loudspeakers and sacd. Now, I know it's the "home entertainment expo," which includes all kinds of topics, but I didn't think that it meant %90 high end audio stuffed into small, stuffy (and mostly smokey smelling) rooms.


I'm pretty disapointed. Even the Krell/Faroudja setup seems like not too much effort went into it.


Anyone else, or is it just me?


-Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
I had a great time at the HE Show. But then I'm into 2-channel audio as much as home theater. Got to see a batch of different front projectors in action (Faroudja, Runco, Sim2, InFocus, Plus Piano, Sony), more plasma screens than I cared to count, and the new dlp-rear-projection units from Samsung (very cool). Heard incredible surround-sound demos by Sony (SACD teamed with Manley monoblocks and Eggelston Andras all around...holy cow!), Von Scweikert, Krell, Linn, Naim, Gallo, and many more. Awesome 2-ch systems from companies too numerous to mention.


The rooms were not as crowded as last year. The folks manning the exhibits were helpful and friendly. Got to hear systems costing amounts I will probably never be able to justify spending in this lifetime (and loved it).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,512 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I'd agree that if you were a 2 channel enthusiast (which I am as well), it was a great show. SACD had a very prominent presence, which I'm glad to see/hear.


Missing, which I would've liked to see, were larger Sony displays. Hitatchi, Toshiba and Pioneer were missing as well. Home theater systems were relatively sparse, except for smaller 2 speaker booths.


Runco had a single plasma that I saw, right outside the Krell/Faroudja room. It looked fantastic. I wanted to see more.


The Sony room was lacking - we actually went over to the Sony store on 5th (or is it Lex.) and saw many more products there. I didn't see any DVD megachangers. Even the Infocus demo had a rather small "wow" factor - small screen, relatively poor sound IMHO.


There was a plain dirth of CRT projectors. Again, I don't expect it to be all front projection oriented, but there was soooo little to see.


In effect, there was very little there that made me go "wow" besides some of the loudspeaker demos (ahhhh! Vandersteens!). My girlfriend, who has become an avid home theater enthusiast (not from the technical side, but from the enjoyment side - no tweaking from her :) ) was not impressed at all.


Am I just expecting the wrong things from this expo? Is there another expo which tailors more towards home theater/video/etc?


-Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
159 Posts
I'm sure the massive annual Consumer Electronics Show would have more video demos. This show skews toward the high-end and audiophile since it is sponsored by Stereophile (Primedia). For the most part, the crowd being catered to would not be interested in dvd megachangers. On the projector front, I would have expected to see CRT's too, but it looks like the industry is moving away from CRT toward DLP.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
I actually liked the show. I think it had a good mix of everything. The Sony SACD demo was very good and Sanibel Sound had a good DVD-A demo with their speakers and a Meridian player. Sharp, Philips, Zenith, Samsung and others had a nice full range of display devices and there was lots of more audiophile stuff from some of the up and coming brands as well. I also liked the variety of tweaks from cables to power conditioners that one would not ordinarily see in one place. The one thing I would think that could be improved would be some type of agreed standard of material for many things, both music and video, that would be used to demo. Every company had their own material which made it feel like the marketing was overemphasized vs. doing the demo of the equipment. I don't want to hear someone's philosophy on why something sounds better, I have my own opinions. I want to be able to hear what they have done and be able to reach my own conclusions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,763 Posts
YubYub, you've gotta be kidding, no offense intended here, but maybe you might rethink that statement. I mean some of those rooms must have had $300,000 worth of gear for us to enjoy. I think a recap might be in order.There were 4 floors of rooms, and those floors were not small. Those on the concourse and second floor were elegant and enormous. Sure the 4th and 7th floors had smaller rooms, but that enabled me to rapidly hear a lot of gear by quickly hopping from room to room. Most of the reps were polite, in good humor and as helpful as possible. The logistics behind a company getting accomodations, paying employees, shipping and setting up gear are considerable. Both the Krell rep and the Faroudja rep took time to answer every question I had. I agree that it would be nice to see the video aspect of next years show be given more prominance, but almost every DLP projector available was there for us to study which helped me to gain some much needed perspective. Yes there were many high end audio rooms, but by and large they were all very nicely put together and after all, the high end stereo customer who is used to paying for quality is one of the most sought after markets for video companies. If demand increases, prices will come down. Samsung rented the Ziegfeld for a night and gave away free tickets to an all digital presentation of the new Star Wars movie, as well as T-shirts, popcorn, candy,and soda. A good time was had by all. The editors of Stereophile, SGHT, Home Theater made themselves available to answer at length any questions anyone had, which was a blast. Did you attend any of those discussions? There was free entertainment, Bucky Pizzarelli for free is way cool. If I was one of the participants in that exposition I would have taken some pride in having made a first class presentation here in NYC, first city of the world !!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,512 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I mean no offense here, so take this with a grain of salt.

Quote:
YubYub, you've gotta be kidding, no offense intended here, but maybe you might rethink that statement. I mean some of those rooms must have had $300,000 worth of gear for us to enjoy.
1) Expensive doesn't mean great. I heard better sound from the Vandersteen 2ce's than I did from Krell's setup.

2) I'd say %90 of which was high end audio. Last I checked, high end audio is not %90 of home entertainment.

Quote:
There were 4 floors of rooms, and those floors were not small. Those on the concourse and second floor were elegant and enormous. Sure the 4th and 7th floors had smaller rooms, but that enabled me to rapidly hear a lot of gear by quickly hopping from room to room. Most of the reps were polite, in good humor and as helpful as possible. The logistics behind a company getting accomodations, paying employees, shipping and setting up gear are considerable.
Absolutely - the reps were very helpful, and everyone was generally in good humor. No complaints there at all.


In terms of the rooms, they were crowded and most smelled of smoke and had bad acoustics. That's not really conducive to concentrating on listening (or watching). I've attended a few expos at the same very hotel (as an exhibitor) which were much more open and much more organized. Again, I don't want to knock anybody here - I'm sure considerable effort went into it - but I wasn't very happy with the results at all.
Quote:
I agree that it would be nice to see the video aspect of next years show be given more prominance, but almost every DLP projector available was there for us to study which helped me to gain some much needed perspective.
I didn't see a number of larger contenders. The AE100, no matter what you might think of it, should've been there. Where was NEC? Sony? No CRT projectors? Even notable RPTV producers such as Toshiba and Pioneer were absent.
Quote:
Yes there were many high end audio rooms, but by and large they were all very nicely put together and after all, the high end stereo customer who is used to paying for quality is one of the most sought after markets for video companies. If demand increases, prices will come down.
Again, no complaints about high end audio - I enjoy it as much as anybody else on this forum. BUT - I expected a mix of home entertainment, not home high end audio. And again, the price is never an issue; if it's too much for you to afford, it gives you something to dream about and work towards.
Quote:
Samsung rented the Ziegfeld for a night and gave away free tickets to an all digital presentation of the new Star Wars movie, as well as T-shirts, popcorn, candy,and soda. A good time was had by all. The editors of Stereophile, SGHT, Home Theater made themselves available to answer at length any questions anyone had, which was a blast. Did you attend any of those discussions?
Yep, that was pretty cool of them. Unfortuntely, I didn't get tickets. I didn't attend any of the discussions, as I personally usually don't enjoy them at all.
Quote:
was free entertainment, Bucky Pizzarelli for free is way cool. If I was one of the participants in that exposition I would have taken some pride in having made a first class presentation here in NYC, first city of the world !!
IDK. It looked hastily assembled. Take, for example, the Krell/Faroudja exhibit. Now, if I were Krell, I'd want to make sure the acoustics of the room are reasonable. They weren't. That room was as live with echo as my head :D


As for NYC being first rate, it is - we went over to the Sony superstore, and saw all the products which weren't being displayed at the HEE. We saw megachangers (both DVD and CD), plasmas, CRT displays, the Cineza projector (blech, but it is there), LCD screens, the "newest" minidisc units, loudspeakers, SACD, etc... An excellent mix.


Again, I was expecting home entertainment, not high end audio. You have to admit, it was mostly high end audio. If that's your thing, then the expo must have been fantastic. But I was expecting a good mix, which it wasn't.


-Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,763 Posts
YY. I agree with many of your suggestions. It would be even more fun if there was a bevy of home entertainment products as well as all the high end gear. I mentioned $300,000 as in how often do you get to demo something worth that much, (like a racing car). Of course $$$ doesn't always = quality, but sometimes you do get what you pay for and I was glad to see some very high end gear, if only as a benchmark. Whew! That Plus Piano made me want to dump my 6 month old Toshiba 42H80 HDTV for that little box the size of a hardcover book!

Don't forget that the manufacturers are responsible for their presentations and not Stereophile. But Stereophile does set the tone of the show and this year was just right. If the show continues to be a success maybe it will grow and grow, so that we can see almost everything we would like. It takes months and sometimes years to tune a room or a theater, so I think that all things considered almost every company did OK, and some were excellent, considering they are jet lagged and trying to demo in a HOTEL ROOM. At dealerships they have a bit more time for tweaking. All festivals and expositions have that "hastily assembled" feeling. It's just comes with the territory. What is exciting is when some company unexpectedly exceeds expectations and knocks your socks off. Try to look on the bright side, it's more fun. I'll mention the lack of more "Home Entertainment" stuff to some of my friends in the business for you, as I think you have a valid critisicm there. Can't wait till next year's show, hope to see you there.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,512 Posts
Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Martin,


Thanks for your comments, and for understanding where I'm coming from. I definitely appreciate it.


If we do meet next year, it'll probably be in front of the CRT projectors, or the Vandersteen (couldn't ya tell?) rooms :D


Anywhoo, thanks.


-Jon
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
809 Posts
I think it is natural that cos. want to show-off their top of the line stuff and try to create excitement so it was geared that way. There would be nothing wrong to send E-Mails to the exhibitors thanking them and asking for what you think might be an improvement. Linn, for example which makes $40k per year Komri speakers that has one built in amp and require at least one more were showing off their small 5110s ($295/pr.) and their less expensive speakers along with the Classik and the Classic Movie. They did not show any of their expensive home audio. The Classik is basically a 75W receiver with a sleep timer, multi-room capability and a CD player built in in a small box about the size of a medium telephone book for $1,495. The movie version has 5 amps, is the same size and plays DVDs of any region and is $2,995. I have seen them many times, it is 1st class quality. Linn from what I understand is allowing non-Linn dealers to sell these products in an effort to reach more people. Sony had all their stuff, Yamaha was there too, etc. Some of the exhibits were area dealers rather than the manufacturers and they naturally want to sell big systems to support the expenses. The 6th and 7th floors in regular hotel rooms were hard to judge with the noise from so many things around.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
212 Posts
Well, I had a good time, though I personally could have done with a bit less high end audio, more affordable HT gear, and some convergence products.


My show write up has now been posted on Secrets of Home Theater and High Fidelity at http://www.hometheaterhifi.com/volum...greengart.html


-avi
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
675 Posts
I work a few short blocks from the hotel hosting the event. I went over at lunchtime, figuring that I could spend the rest of the afternoon at the show.


I like 2-channel about as much as 5+ channel. High end is fine with me. Maybe I wasn't in the right frame of mind, but I just couldn't get into it. I left after about an hour. The rooms were, I thought, uncomfortable and didn't sound very good.
 
1 - 12 of 12 Posts
Status
Not open for further replies.
Top