NABShow 2014 Preparations


So, you’ve decided that you’re going to NABShow this year. Yep, it’s only February – and not even time for our February dmala meeting, but I’ve been thinking about NABShow since last April.  Now some of our dmala members are asking about it too.  If you’ve never considered it, now isn’t too early.
Here are a few tips for dmala members who are curious about the massive broadcast convention.  First, get your free Expo Pass,  sign up for conference talks or classes from (or check threads for free tickets for NAB2014 from our sponsors).

Going Solo? / Drive? / Attack Strategy? / Gear to Bring / After Dark Fun


I’ve never gone to Vegas by myself.  You might enjoy it.  However, NABShow is a fantastic place to meet with people from all over the world who are interested in the same geeky broadcast related stuff that you are.  You never have to be without designated driver!  Buddy system works well with your hotel accommodations too.  Most people enter their hotel room only for a minute before passing out,  and a quick morning shower.
That said, if you go with a friend, make sure you’ll be able to get to see what you each want – especially if your companion’s points of interest differ from yours.   Consider “parallel play”  Plus you can switch up driving if you…


Last year, a few of the crew decided to drive out rather than our usual flight pattern. We got a flat tire outside of a tiny town at dusk. We got lucky and managed to get a fix just before the place in town closed.
It’s a long drive. 4 HOURS.  I wouldn’t recommend it solo.  But that may be equivalent to your daily LA business commute time!

LAX to LAS is about $150 round trip. +$50 Burbank +$75 Ontario.  You’re not really going to save much time.  You’re putting in almost 2hr on the ground here, 1hr in the air, 1hr on the ground there.  If you’re going solo, fly.  If you can get people whose schedules line up, a car in ‘Vegas is convenient.



Plan your attack!
Get the NABShow App (check the year date).  If it’s your first year, you’re gonna miss a lot of information even if you plan.  Each night you may need to recalibrate your day’s recon mission.
Here’s the thing about NAB.  You may decide to see the ADOBE on Tuesday, and the AUTODESK booth on Wednesday.  What you need to know is that most of these companies have special schedules within the booth with presenters who capture your interest.

Find who will be presenting
You can’t just make your schedule on “COMPANY NAME” / “DAY”.  (One year, I bumped into a friend who said he stopped by the MAXON booth in the morning, and completely lost track of time until he got hungry at 2pm) *MAXON records their booth presentations! Hooray. (still, go see them)

Expect the detour
It’s true that you’ll get caught in conversation with company reps, demo artists, and fellow attendees.  PLAN FOR IT.

Keep the day simple
Prioritize your top 3 vendor sites per day.  Don’t forget that they’ll be busy too.  110,000 other people want to visit them as well.


Put on your comfy shoes (you’ll walk miles… just to get to the hotel front door)
Get your backpack items together:

  • phone chargers and batteries (turn off all services on the floor, no wifi or service)
  • windbreaker (stuffit jacket)
  • bottles of water ($4 on floor)
  • MRE. okay maybe not.  but a dry snack. (healthy bars?)
  • Don’t bother with heavy camera gear. (watch your favorite podcast coverage)

Considerations for  “around ‘Vegas” in general

      • WiFi in the hotel is about $15/day (how long are you going to be there anyway?) Get a WiFi card
      • Get cash.  There are a couple of regular banks near the strip, but you’ll want some cash on hand
      • Monorail? Walk? YellowCab-It?  Monorail takes you to many hotels along one side of the strip, but that doesn’t mean that it goes close to anything. *see comfy shoes.



If you’re a DMALA member, there are so many events to attend, it’s tough to decide where you’re going to spend your evenings.   There is only one event that I schedule all others around:

This event sells out pretty quickly (there are only about 400 tickets available)
But there are a bunch of other great events to attend with your clan.

  • KISS Golf for friends of local Independent Filmmakers of Inland Empire
  • SuperMeet (previously FinalCut User Supermeet)
  • Pinball Party (sponsored by MAXON & RedGiantSoftware, bring your bag of quarters!)
  • NABShow has an event or two planned for attendees during the week. (*weather permitting)
  • MANY different private invitation events.  *See your friends at the vendor’s booth for more information on what’s going on.
  • …more coming up of course

Uh… I’ve missed plenty, I’m sure.  It’s a big event, so planning starts now.
GOT A TIP?  Add it to the thread!

2 responses to “NABShow 2014 Preparations

  1. I’ll continue to update this as new schedules become available. I’ll also have free tickets for people who want to attend “just” the expo. (this can take the entire week to chew through alone!)

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.