January 4th, 2011
4.30 in the morning and after only 1 hour and a half sleeping, it is already time to go. This time we do not take the train to the airport. In Holland taking the train with heavy luggage, just forget it! There are no dedicated spaces for the luggage, and if you leave them out of your reach you might go on your trip with no luggage anymore. So we decided to take the car to Schiphol airport.
It is 5.35 AM and we leave ‘s-Hertogenbosch. Herman drives, Richard will drive back home. The dog is also with us. Herman as usual is amazed that even so early most people drive at the allowed speed (120 km/h) and so he also has no choice than to follow the rules. We arrive at the airport at 7 AM, bye-bye to Richard and to Zhuhai (the dog) and we head to British Airways counter. First we have a flight to London Gatwick and then a direct flight to Las Vegas with Virgin Atlantic.
Stress… British Airways has delay. The crew decides to make us sit at the very front of the plane so that we will be able to get off as first. Finally, it is okay, flight goes quicker than planned and with 15 mm delay we arrive at Gatwick. Now we have to go through the customs, claim the luggage since they could not be booked directly from Amsterdam to Las Vegas for security reasons… Okay, no choice. Let’s run. We have the luggage and now the shuttle to Gatwick South terminal. Then everything starts to get smoothly and goes all right, Virgin staff is very courteous and takes every steps to have us on time on the flight. We get priority check-in and even get the seats we had asked for. While checking in, we meet Ken Kessler who tells us that the British government is now richer since the flying tax is raised up and education is only now for rich families… Well it comes a time that the citizens will have to pay for everything the government cannot offer anymore. Is the real crisis now starting…?
The flight with Virgin Atlantic is great as long as we can remember. The advantage of having slept only 1 hour 1/2 the night before is that now we are out of conscious in the seat and can rest. Just sleeping in a different kind of bed.
While we are getting our luggage, Ken Kessler comes to introduce us Paul Miller and Herman and Paul make a quick agreement that after the CES a Kiseki Blue N.O.S. will be sent to Paul for testing and photography. Ken writes the review on the cartridge for HiFi News, ToneAudio and AudioPhile Sound. More for the fun than for the promotion of the sales, since there are only 100 pieces available worldwide. While the sales activities have not really started yet, 50 pieces have already been sold. Too bad, we have only 100 pieces…
Las Vegas, 2 pm local time, 12 degrees celsius, blue sky and no snow. We are fit and ready for it. It is really better flying that way than with KLM with a mandatory stop and that makes you arrive at 11 pm at night, really tired. Streets are not yet busy, and the taxi takes only a few minutes to bring us to the hotel. Kevin (PrimaLuna US distributor) has already pre-booked the rooms, so within 30 mm we are ready with the check-in. Time for margaritas and mexican chips. While awaiting for Kevin’s arrival -he is driving from LA, we go for a short sleep. 2 hours later, he rings us up. We brush our teeth and now we are ready for the real job.
We go to the show rooms. Kevin’s team has already started to prepare it. We have two rooms opposite of each other. We miss the big room we had last year, it could be booked this year. It is still a big mess, but we can already see what is going to happen there. We are going to play with the Sonus Faber Elipsa and Vienna The Kiss. And, for the first time, a DiaLogue PREMIUM Integrated Amplifier is there, yes in REAL. Nice thing with 6 little proud tubes located in front of the EL34 power tubes. Great beautiful metal work. Nice. By the way, we are located next to FuruTech showroom, maybe possibilities for the BeneLux market, who knows! 🙂
The guys from Kevin are stopping with their work and are going to try to improve their salaries at the Casino. We go to floor 35 to Dan d’Agostino room, his family is just arrived and it is nice to see them again. His room is located next to Magico. Nice. We help him with a few huge crates and decide to meet tomorrow. Direction (again) the Mexican restaurant for a salade and tacos. No margaritas anymore. Dominique goes to bed while Kevin and Herman decide to stroll around in case they need something (who says women always go shopping). Herman finds a nice jacket, 4000 USD; well they have found they did need anything..ha,ha,ha! Well it is already 3 pm in Holland, so it is time to go to sleep.
This morning, with great pleasure, Herman sees more than 100 emails coming in on his laptop… so it is time to work again. Dominique goes to help the guys with the showroom preparation.
Talk to you tomorrow, with more show news… the real work is now starting!!!
Well, well, well. That’s what we call a real mess. Good to see this, the more we can appreciate the final results as like always Kevin and his guys come up with one of the most beautiful rooms of The Venetian. Thank you guys! I vote for you! Ciao, Herman
Great description of the preparation of a hifi fair.
I used to share the same kind of work when I was involved with fashion shoes,for the
Las Vegas Shoe Fair.
I’m waiting for the following news,which I hope successfully for Primaluna gear.
All the best.
Hi José, Thanks for your comment. Great to hear you were involved in fashion shoes. My half-brother-in-law (I know it could not be more difficult) is a most famous shoe designer and he creats beautiful shoes. Maybe you know his name: Jan Jansen, the most common name you can think of (something like John Johnson in US), but his shoes are spectacular. Have a look here: http://www.janjansenshoes.com. Next to that, he is the most gentle man you can think of! Best regards, Herman van den Dungen
Yes,the name Jan Jensen is familiar to me,but I’m retired from shoe’s business since 6 years ago. I have worked in the past, with some dutch nice guys shoe stylists who made his production in my factory in Portugal. This was 10-20 years ago.
Now…I’m retired and my business is to heard some nice music,
through Primaluna gear…the world is very small…and I can’t get myself free of the dutch guys…I’m jocking.
I have looked the site of Jan Jensen and the shoes are beatifull,very fashion but not extreme,that means very attractive for a large market segment,ladies from 16-40.
All the best for you and Primaluna and I’m waiting for your suggestion of best tubes combination for Dialogue One and Prologue Eight…ah,ah,ah. I have the vintage Rogers LS3/5a.
Do you remember?
Hi José, I had a most interesting discussion tonight with our Turkish distributor about powertubes. He swears that the Tungsol KT120 tubes are fabulous and the best. These new tubes are plug compatible with KT88 and 6550 tubes and it is said that they may be used in any application that uses KT88 or 6550 tubes. Once I return from Vegas I will investigate if the powertransformers of all PrimaLuna can handle these powertubes. According to Adnan the ProLogue Two turns out to become wonderful with these tubes, so guess what we can exect when used in DiaLogue amps … Best regards, Herman
I hope you have a fantastic show…and profitable business to enable you to continue to invest in the so much beloved Primaluna products.
For me this gear is the Macintosh of 21 century.
All the best.
I think it is difficult to give us a bigger compliment than this and you can be assured that we will do everything we can to keep it that way and if possible to further improve.
Very funny is that about 5 years ago in the beginning years of PrimaLuna we were exhibiting in Las Vegas in Alexis Park during CES and we got a visit of a complete group of McIntosh managers, the managing director included. We were showing our products bottom up with bottomplate removed so visitors could really inspect the way the construction and hard wiring was made. Dominique was standing next to them and the managing director was praising her about our products by saying: “Well, Madame, you are showing indeed very, very nice products here! Congratulations from all of us!” We were of course very proud, as proud as now with your compliment.
Thanks and best regards,