Informal T.H.E. Show Report - Day I

Beautiful day here in 'Vegas -probably 60 degrees with nary a cloud. Plenty of C.E.S. foot traffic but car traffic nothing like New Years last week.
Parking non-existent at St. Tropez so drove to San Remo and found a space across from registration building. Caught (very frequent) shuttle back to St. Tropez (about a mile away).

T.H.E Show FREE to public including FREE lunch (beverages extra)!
The St. Tropez is a small (by 'Vegas standards) hotel/motel built around a swimming pool and grassy event area (where Bar-B-Q and eating tables set up). I didn't see any gaming facilities.

Plenty of exhibitors (escaping high-priced C.E.S. venues) including: Audio Research (met the famous "Leonard"!), Cain & Cain (awesome horn hybrids), Harbeth (first time I've heard -first rate sound...), that Laser turntable guy (classic Japanese gentleman), Gilmore audio (those new speakers that look like surfboards -no, the Hotty babe wasn't there...) and many, many others.

Of particular interest was the Almarro M50A 3-way speaker deluxe. Great sound and cabinetry that Norm Thomas would be proud of. Price not insane either.

Finished St. Tropez and headed back to San Remo.

Heard fantastic towers (similar to Pipe Dreams) in the Edge room. Design used paper cone woofers and multiple planar tweeters.

The highlight of T.H.E Show was the Halcro suite.
Guarding the front gate was T.H.E MOST beautiful woman seen in a half-year of Sundays! Totally Stepford quality brunette (apologies to my feminist sister).
As the stereo room was "in use", I sauntered down the hall to -Surprise! The multi-channel room!
Yes friends, poor old unemployed Ken had UNLIMITED ACCESS to five (count 'em) Halcro mono-blocks, two Wilson MAXes and three Wilson WATCHES (I think the surrounds were WATCHES). Talk about tall cotton!
Did I mention when I walked into the room I was greeted by T.H.E. most striking blonde? Who offered me stuff like "free water"? (right now I've got the widest Al Bundy grin...).

The guy running the show (either David Pope or Philip O'Hanlon -had an English accent) was SO NICE! He is obviously a rabid music lover (Jazzbo) who played disk-after-disk (vinyl, CD and SACD) -Satch&Ella, Ray Charles (in the stereo room on JMLab Nova Utopias) and some multi-channel gospel choral that was out-of-sight.

I'm tellin' ya, he treated ol' Ken like a long-lost rich relative. Thank you!

I've got to make it back there this weekend...
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I wasn't impressed with the Halco demo but do agree the ladies are primo. Go back to the San Remo and cross the street, you missed a few incredible rooms. The Von Schweikert (sp?) will be running a demo daily @ 5:00 that should be fascinating. Live musician doing this thing and recorded through a mixing board then replayed thorugh a Von Schweikert/Oracle system. I'll be there at 5:00 tonight (Friday).

How were the Gilmores?????

I am also wondering about the Gilmore speakers, I had read that they were going to play live music through them? also, any new digital amps being showed off?

Nice report! Thanks for sharing.

I wonder who the lucky kak is that got my room at the San Remo I canceled on wednesday. Too much work for me to make it there, and your report on the female eye candy has got me lilac with envy!

Your update is a nice consolation though. Have a great time!
I think I boo-booed saying the Halco rep had an English accent. -I'm pretty sure it was Irish -Sorry!

Also, I meant the great Norm Abram (Norm Thompson?).

Jeffloistarca: I thought the stereo room (Halcro/JMLab) better than the multi-channel room (Halcro/Wilson). Something in the multi-channel system was sounding thin and wirey -can't say what.
I did see the other San Remo rooms. Got to hear the V.Y.G.E.R turntable briefly -someone bumped it and it was out-of-level resulting it skips. The system it was playing through was magnificent -Ayon amps and Mastersound (ceramic) speakers.

Dolphin/Sogood51: The Gilmores sounded sort of average. Not bad but not great. They weren't playing very loud, as I recall, and they were playing some kind of light jazz.
I'd like to hear them cranked.
I tried to find those new Jeff Rowland digital mini mono's but the person attending the (multi vendor) JR room couldn't find them (maybe next visit).

The Reference 3A room was using some very small monos (which could have been digital) to drive the Corian version of their monitors. I'd hoped to hear them with tubes.

Huff speakers had some beautifuly vaneered mini-mons with matching subwoofer.
They also had (on the lawn outside) "The Floating Bed". The FB looked sort of like an eight foot round trampoline suspended (nylon line) from a ten foot metal tripod. You can use this setup in your back yard or
break it down (into four pieces) and truck it to the woods
and hang it from a tree (good bear protection).
I thought it could be useful suspended from a ceiling (a foot or so) for sound dampening.
The rep qouted a price of $3000 ($4000?) for the whole rig

I just have to say that these are THE BEST times to be a music lover! There are SO MANY great sounding components and music formats. I just wish I could buy them all!


Kudos on a fine job Ken, as well as everyone else!

Nice to see that things are off to a good start. This seems to be an excellent show, from the list of exhibitors. You guys are so lucky to be in Vegas with such accomodating "room guides".

Have fun!!!