NAB 2014 – Spectacular

My trip to NAB was spectacular. I am very glad I went.

Over the next few weeks I will be doing multiple posts about different aspects of my trip. This will include lessons learned (and rookie mistakes), things I saw, things I learned, and even general conference tips.

According to my FitBit I took 13,077 step, which equals 6.49 miles walked, and 20 flight of stairs climbed. I am very sore this morning, but it was all worth it.

A lot more to come soon.

NAB 2014 – What’s in My Bag

In My Bag

Tomorrow I fly to Las Vegas to spend the day at NAB. I am bringing my TYLT Energi+ backpack with me. I am not bringing a laptop on this trip because I probably wouldn’t have time to use it and I would rather have the room in case I end up bringing things back (c’mon good show specials!).

In the picture above I have split up what I am bringing into four columns so I can go over them.

Column One

Right at the top are my tickets and boarding passes. I did Early Bird Checkin on Southwest so I am in the “A” group for my flights.

Next is my passport and passport card. Though I will have my wallet and California Driver’s License with me, security seems to like passports better. I will keep my passport in my shirt pocket and the passport card in my backpack.

Next is my iPhone and iPhone earbuds. As mentioned in a previous post, i have the NAB Show app already loaded.

Underneath the earbuds is my Fitbit. Not sure if I will break any personal records running around the Las Vegas Convention Center like I did at San Diego Comic Con last year, but we’ll see.

Then I have my backup charger for my iPhone, iRig microphone, Olloclip and powerstrip.

Column Two

This includes my credentials. I also have a map showing where badge pickup is located, and notes on where to pickup the shuttle back to the airport.

Next is my Bistro ticket for lunch at the Convention Center and some granola bars to snack on.

Column Three

This starts off with two 3 X 5 cards. The first is my list of exhibitors I plan to see and their booth numbers. I also made note of anything specific I want to see.

The second 3 X 5 card has the specs of the laptops I am thinking of purchasing. I want to run the specs by someone at Adobe to make sure whichever one I get will be able to run After Effects.

Next are business cards. Not sure if I will need them, but good to have in case I meet any contacts or if there are giveaways.

Finally, my limited edition Simpsons Moleskine and Cross pen for taking notes.

Column Four

I am bringing a light jacket, but that may end up being left in the car. It will be warm in LA tomorrow and warmer in Las Vegas. I am also brining a spare shirt, an extra pair of socks (all that walking, you never know), brush, deodorant and floss picks.

Though I may not use it, I am bringing my Kindle Fire HD and earbuds. This is more for if I get stuck at the airport tomorrow night. I have the season finalé of The Walking Dead loaded (I know, I am behind) and two episodes of Archer. I also have about twenty books loaded.

TYLT Energi+ Backpack

This is the first trip I am taking with the TYLT backback.

TYLT Battery

It includes a battery pack. Charge cables can be run from the battery to various compartments in the backpack.

TYLT Cable Runs

The channels for the cable runs are reinforced and easy to pass through.

TYLT iPhone Charging

In the image above I have my iPhone charging in the top compartment. There is another compartment for tablets. I have a charge cable to that compartment if I need to charge my Kindle Fire.

After I pack tonight I will adjust the shoulder straps to make sure it is comfortable since I will be wearing the backpack all day tomorrow.

Ready to Go

I am ready for my flight and my day at NAB. Tonight I will charge the TYLT battery pack, my iPhone and Kindle Fire. I will also set my alarm early since I have a 7am flight.

I hope to tweet from NAB, but I hear coverage can be spotty at the Convention Center. I will also post here about my trip in the next few days.

NAB – Counting Down

NAB

My day trip to NAB is less than two weeks away. I have my credentials and my plane tickets. I also purchased a Bistro lunch ticket, which is for dining at the Las Vegas Convention Center. By purchasing the Bistro lunch ticket in advance I will avoid the general wait line, hopefully saving myself some time.

Since the post on my Preliminary Exhibitor List, I have added one: Autodesk. They make CGI software including 3ds Max and Maya. They also make the very cool drawing app SketchBook Pro, which I have on both my iPhone and Kindle Fire HD.

My updated Exhibitor List is:

Adobe – Lower South Hall 3910

This is my first stop after picking up my badge. As I mentioned above, I want to check on Adobe AfterEffects specs. I also want to see if there are any show specials, like maybe a discount on Creative Cloud. Not sure if there will be, but that would be awesome.

Telestream – Lower South Hall 3905

The Telestream booth is literally next to the Adobe booth, so this will be stop two.

I learned about Telestream from a great technology vlog I follow, Hak5 (part of Revision3). A year or so ago they did a “behind the scenes” on how they edit and upload their videos using Telestream’s Episode Pro. Episode Pro can put intros and outtros on videos automatically, has all sorts of workflow options, ability to auto upload to YouTube accounts and so on. Pricey and probably down the road for me (unless some amazing show special going on), but I definitely want to check it out.

NEW!! Autodesk – Lower South Hall 3319

As mentioned above, Autodesk makes some great software and apps. I just wish I could draw a little better, because SketchBook Pro is surprisingly powerful while intuitive to use. Very fun.

Grass Valley – Lower South Hall 206

This company does switchers, editors and convertors. Probably beyound what I will need, but I want to see what they have.

Canon – Central Hall 4325

After Adobe, Canon is probably the exhibitor I most want to see. The DSLR camera I am interested in is the new 70D. My plan is to check out the camera at the booth, and ask a rep some questions about it around what I am planning to use it for.

Manfrotto – Central Hall 6025

Manfrotto is located next to the Canon booth. They do tripods, monopods and other camera rigging. I have heard great things about them.

GoPro – Central Hall 6537

Though I am not planning on getting a GoPro anytime soon, I do like them. I know they had a show special last year.

VariZoom – Central Hall 8230

VariZoom also makes tripods, monopods and other camera rigging.

Teredek – Central Hall 8218

Teredek makes wireless video transcoders and transmitters. Very interesting stuff, but probably down the road for me. I will definitely stop by their booth, though, because I know their transmitters can tie into broadband solutions (like Sprint or Verizon). This can be used to live stream events. Very cool technology.

GlideCam – Central Hall 7916

GlideCam makes stabilization rigs for cameras, including ones for DSLRs. This is a piece of equipment I know I will need for my camera. Hopefully I will be able to try out some of the DSLR rigs while I am there.

B&H Camera – Central Hall 11022

B&H is the large camera store in New York City. They have a huge mail order/online business. They are an authorized dealing for most of the exhibitors I will be visiting. I am hoping, since they are retail sales, that they have some show specials going on.

NAB App

I also downloaded the myNAB mobile app to my iPhone. I really like the map function, which highlights the vendors I want to see in red or yellow.

NAB map

Next week I will do a “what’s in my bag” post, showing the things that I will be taking with me to NAB. I will be traveling light, since I will be there only for the day. I am also hoping that I will need the room because I ended up bringing back something cool, but we’ll see how that goes.

NAB – Preliminary Exhibitor List

It is less than two months until I go to Las Vegas for NAB. This is the trade show of the National Association of Broadcasters and takes up all of the Las Vegas Convention Center. As I mentioned in a previous post, I will be attending on Wednesday, April 9th only. Since my time will be tight, I am trying to plan it so I can see as much as I can.

Though I would love to see all of NAB, the driving factor of attending is to look at software, cameras, and equipment needed to make videos and short films. Many vendors exhibiting at NAB this year are ones I plan to buy from (though probably not at the show itself, unless they are running a show special).

This will allow me to get some hands-on, or at least eyes-on, with what I am planning to get. Plus, it will give me a change to speak with the companies about their products, discuss what I am planning to do, and get some guidance.

For example, my first stop will be the Adobe booth in the Lower South Hall. I want to talk with an Adobe rep about the computer I plan to get in a few months and confirm that it is the best configuration for running AfterEffects.

Based on priority, location (what exhibitor is in which hall), and time, I have come up with my preliminary list of exhibitors I will see at NAB:

Adobe – Lower South Hall 3910

This is my first stop after picking up my badge. As I mentioned above, I want to check on Adobe AfterEffects specs. I also want to see if there are any show specials, like maybe a discount on Creative Cloud. Not sure if there will be, but that would be awesome.

Telestream – Lower South Hall 3905

The Telestream booth is literally next to the Adobe booth, so this will be stop two.

I learned about Telestream from a great technology vlog I follow, Hak5 (part of Revision3). A year or so ago they did a “behind the scenes” on how they edit and upload their videos using Telestream’s Episode Pro. Episode Pro can put intros and outtros on videos automatically, has all sorts of workflow options, ability to auto upload to YouTube accounts and so on. Pricey and probably down the road for me (unless some amazing show special going on), but I definitely want to check it out.

Grass Valley – Lower South Hall 206

This company does switchers, editors and convertors. Probably beyound what I will need, but I want to see what they have.

Canon – Central Hall 4325

After Adobe, Canon is probably the exhibitor I most want to see. The DSLR camera I am interested in is the new 70D. My plan is to check out the camera at the booth, and ask a rep some questions about it around what I am planning to use it for.

Manfrotto – Central Hall 6025

Manfrotto is located next to the Canon booth. They do tripods, monopods and other camera rigging. I have heard great things about them.

GoPro – Central Hall 6537

Though I am not planning on getting a GoPro anytime soon, I do like them. I know they had a show special last year.

VariZoom – Central Hall 8230

VariZoom also makes tripods, monopods and other camera rigging.

Teredek – Central Hall 8218

Teredek makes wireless video transcoders and transmitters. Very interesting stuff, but probably down the road for me. I will definitely stop by their booth, though, because I know their transmitters can tie into broadband solutions (like Sprint or Verizon). This can be used to live stream events. Very cool technology.

GlideCam – Central Hall 7916

GlideCam makes stabilization rigs for cameras, including ones for DSLRs. This is a piece of equipment I know I will need for my camera. Hopefully I will be able to try out some of the DSLR rigs while I am there.

B&H Camera – Central Hall 11022

B&H is the large camera store in New York City. They have a huge mail order/online business. They are an authorized dealing for most of the exhibitors I will be visiting. I am hoping, since they are retail sales, that they have some show specials going on.

This list will probably change between now and NAB. I tried to keep it focused on my goal of making videos and short films. I also tried to keep it limited enough so if I want to spend some extended time at certain booths I can.

I am really looking forward to NAB. I think it will be a lot of fun.

NAB 2014: Registration and Preliminary Prep

This is the first in an occasional series on my trip to the National Association of Broadcasters Show in Las Vegas, aka NAB. The show runs April 5 – 10, with exhibits April 7 – 10. I will be attending Wednesday, April 9th.

I decided to attend NAB this year for three reasons:

1. I have never been. I have friends who have attended in the past, and they said they got a lot out of it.

2. Film/Video making is something I plan to get more involved in this year. NAB fills all of the Las Vegas Convention center, which is huge. The definition of “broadcasting” has changed in recent years to include online. There is a significant presence of exhibitors whose focus is online, video streaming, and so on.

3. I was able to get a free exhibit hall pass. Also, I live in LA, so Vegas is close. I can go just for the day. My round trip airfare from Burbank, with the early bird check in option, was about $151. I arrive early (around 8am) and leave late (around 8:30pm).

As of this writing, I believe free exhibit hall passes are still available with the promo code PA02 if you are interested.

The fact that I could go just for the day was probably the biggest factor for me. If I couldn’t get to Vegas until the afternoon I would have passed. I want a full day to run around the exhibit hall, though I know I will only see a very small percentage of what wil be there.

Now that I am set to go, I am beginning my preliminary prep for the trip. This includes:

Decide Which Exhibitors to See

Since I am only there for one day I know I cannot see everything, and probably not all the exhibitors I really want to see. I am starting by making a list of all exhibitors I want to see, then I will prioritize them.

At the moment, the absolute must-see exhibitor is Adobe. I am planning on buying a new computer later this year (more about that in future posts), and it must be able to run Adobe AfterEffects (for my film/video making). I want to speak with an Adobe rep about specs and get their recommendation.

Then I will prioritize based on location and importance. Adobe is in South Lower Hall, but it appears that the other primary exhibitors I want to see are in Central Hall. I will list and then map my exhibitor visits so I do not end up doubling back and wasting time.

Decide (and List) What I Need to Bring With Me

There are the obvious things like plane tickets/boarding passes, show ticket/badge, wallet/ID, and money, but my plan is to post and shoot some video while I am there. So I want to make sure I bring the things to do that with me. Plus, I want to make sure I can followup on what I see. My preliminary list (which I am doing in Evernote) is:

  • iPhone (for video, posting to Facebook and Twitter, Evernote access)
  • HD Video Camera (more video)
  • Laptop backpack, but not the laptop (to bring back anything I might pickup at the show in)
  • Moleskine Notebook (Evernote edition)
  • iPhone external charger (so I am not battling for outlets)
  • Various charge cables
  • This list will grow as the show gets closer. I will do a “What’s in My Bag” video before I leave.

    Check on Show Specials

    Similar to CES and other shows, some NAB exhibitors do show specials. This is usually a product they sell at a really good discount. Sometimes it is done right in the both. I know last year GoPro emailed discounts for one of their cameras to attendees who visited their booth.

    This prep will be ongoing up to the show itself, and I will post updates. I will also post the exhibitors I will see and why. Definitely more to come on NAB.

    If you are going to be at NAB on April 9th let me know. I will try to say hi.