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Guide for first-time attendees at NAB Show

The ultimate NAB survival guide you never knew you needed.

Navigating your first NAB Show: A 6-step guide for success

Heading to your first NAB Show, the ultimate hangout for media, entertainment, and tech folks? How exciting! We want you to get the most out of this amazing event, so we've put together a short guide to help you gear up, find your way, and squeeze every last bit of goodness out of your time at the NAB Show. 🍋

NAB Show ready for takeoff

1. Preparation is key

Before you step onto the exhibition floor, conduct thorough research and create a plan. Familiarize yourself with the NAB Show schedule, exhibitor list, and floor plan. Identify key sessions, speakers, and vendors that align with your interests and professional goals. Make use of the official NAB Show app, providing real-time updates, schedules, and maps. Engage with fellow attendees through online forums and social media groups for insider tips and a chance to connect before the event begins.

Don't forget to register early to secure your spot and gain early access to essential information.
🎫 Here’s the best part: use our code NS4785 for a free pass!

💡 Our top tip:
There’s just SO much to see and do, so your day(s) will be packed. To make the most out of it, we recommend picking up your badge prior to the show starting. You can either pick it up in a hotel (2 days prior) or at the Convention Center (1 day prior).

NAB badge pickup
NAB badge pickup team

NAB Show badge pickup.

2. Put your networking skills to work

Prepare to immerse yourself in a dynamic environment filled with industry insights, cutting-edge technologies, and engaging discussions on the latest trends. NAB Show is not just an exhibition but a platform for extensive networking opportunities. Be ready to connect with professionals who share your passion and vision for the future of media and technology.

💡 Our top tip:
The networking opportunities aren't limited to the show floor. Because honestly, you’ll see people with NAB badges popping up everywhere. In the elevator in your hotel, on the monorail, in bars, just name it. So if you’ve already turned off your network switch, take off your badge. 😉 However, for those who can’t get enough of all the chatting, there are a bunch of networking events planned after show hours. You can find a list here, but keep in mind that the list will be completed closer to the show dates.

Pssst.. the coolest event is by far the B&H afterparty, which takes place on Tuesdays. However, it’s not easy to get in. Last year, we managed to get an ‘entrance bracelet’ by connecting with the people at the B&H booth, but unfortunately, we have yet to uncover THE hot tip to get in. If you figured it out, let us know… 👀

3. Navigating the exhibition

While on the show floor, prioritize visits to major industry players showcasing groundbreaking technologies. At Cheqroom, we’re primarily interested in the big AV/equipment players such as ARRI, Canon, Sony, Aputure, etc, which are located in the Central Hall. Check out the YouTube videos we’ve created together with them right here!

This year, we’ll try and explore some startup pavilions for a glimpse into emerging technologies and innovative ideas that could shape the industry's future.

💡 Our top tip:

You’ll want to skip leg day that week because the Las Vegas Convention Center is HUGE. Going from the West Hall to the existing North/Central Hall can take up to 25 minutes. Our top tip here is to take The Loop, which is an underground network of tunnels, with Tesla vehicles driving you from one station to another. Remember that 25 min walk? The same trip on the Loop takes approximately 2 minutes, with an average wait time of less than 15 seconds. Stations are located in the South, Central, and West Hall, and Riviera Station.

So the choice is yours, either you burn off those calories OR you hop in a Tesla. 😎

NAB tesla ride
NAB The Loop

Spare your legs, hop in a Tesla!

4. What you’ll see

The NAB Show focuses on the latest developments in the broadcasting and entertainment industry. While specific offerings may vary from year to year, here are some common elements you might find at the NAB Show:

  1. Exhibits: The show features a vast exhibit floor where companies showcase their latest products, services, and technologies related to broadcasting, filmmaking, content creation, and media production. This can include cameras, editing software, broadcasting equipment, virtual reality tools, streaming solutions, and more. Some examples of exhibitors are ARRI, SONY, Canon, Nikon/RED, B&H, etc.
  2. Conferences and sessions: NAB Show typically hosts a variety of conferences, sessions, and workshops covering a wide range of topics related to the media and entertainment industry. These may include discussions on technology trends, content creation strategies, regulatory issues, and business insights. Find all sessions here.
  3. Product demos: Many exhibitors offer live demonstrations of their products and services, allowing attendees to experience the latest technologies firsthand. This is a great opportunity to see how new equipment works and how it might benefit your specific needs. In 2023, we got to try out the 3D scan at SONY's booth! Testing out at Sony NAB show
  4. Networking opportunities: The NAB Show attracts professionals from various sectors of the media and entertainment industry. It provides an excellent opportunity to network with industry experts, professionals, and potential business partners.
  5. Showcases and awards: Some events within the NAB Show may feature showcases of innovative projects, film screenings, and awards ceremonies honoring outstanding achievements in broadcasting, technology, and content creation.
  6. Educational programs: The show often includes educational programs, training sessions, and workshops designed to enhance the skills and knowledge of attendees. These may cover technical aspects, industry trends, and best practices.

Keep in mind that the specific offerings at the NAB Show can vary from year to year, so it's advisable to check the official NAB Show website for the most up-to-date information on exhibitors, sessions, and events.

NAB Dana Dolly meetup
NAB foley

In 2023, we had a lovely chat with Dana from Dana Dolly and with award-winning & 4-time Emmy-nominated Foley artist Sanaa Kelley!

5. Practicalities

Let’s go over some of the general practicalities. 💡 Here are our top tips:

🚗 How to get there?

Consider using public transportation like the Las Vegas Monorail. This train stops at a number of stations (hotels) and offers an affordable and reliable ride to the LVCC. Or, use the typical ride-sharing services to avoid the hassles of parking.

NAB Show Las Vegas Monorail

Take the Monorail to go around Las Vegas.

👟 What to wear?
Dress. Appropriately. As we already mentioned, the venue is massive. Leave the flip-flops at home and go for the most comfortable ‘business casual outfit’ you have, with an emphasis on comfortable and casual. Wear comfy shoes and bring a sweater, as conference halls can often be cooler than expected. Top tip if you’re not used to the A/C blasting in your face the whole day!

🛏️ Where to stay?
Booking accommodations early is crucial, given the large influx of attendees. Consider what you find most important, especially if you're going all 4 days. Either you pick a really nice hotel that’s more expensive and further away from the venue or choose one in close proximity to the venue for convenience.

The Cheqroom team usually stays at the Westgate, as it’s right next to the LVCC. We have a booth at the show (find us in Central Hall, C8719), so we want to keep our travel time as short as possible. There’s always something you forgot in your hotel room, and at the end of a busy day, you’ll want to hop in the shower right away.

🌮 What to eat?
Within the venue, various food and beverage options are available. Full disclosure: We haven't ventured much outside Central Hall yet, so we can’t speak for the other halls. Anyways, right before entering Central Hall, there is a Starbucks and a bunch of food stalls, but you can also go outside onto the parking lot as you’ll find a couple of options there as well. Outside is where we usually go, as it allows you to really step away from the show and stand in the sun for a bit. Don’t forget that we’re coming from cold European countries, and sunshine is the only argument we need. ☀️

💡 Our top tip:
If you decide to get lunch outside, here are a couple of tips:

  • Bring sunglasses!! The light will literally blind you after roaming the dark show floor for hours.
  • The food trucks aren’t always the same. Sometimes you’ll find new trucks on different days.
  • Go early if you’re really craving something specific. Unfortunately, the popular trucks will run out of stock after a while.
NAB food outside courtyard
NAB food court outside

NAB Show outside food courtyard.

6. Our last NAB Show top tip

Manage your gear properly

Looking at (and perhaps buying) all that new gear is great, but managing it properly is key. Cheqroom can help you with that. With our equipment management software, you’ll have a clear overview of all your gear at all times.

Who is using which items for how long? When should it be returned? What items have been flagged as broken? Which camera keeps breaking down over and over? Find the answers to all these questions in Cheqroom. Here’s how it works.

Find us in Central Hall, C8719, we’re right next to B&H’s booth.

NAB show Cheqroom booth 2023

Why visiting the NAB Show is a must

People fly in from all over the world for the NAB Show. When you’re in the film business, it’s an absolute must. It offers great opportunities to learn, discover, and connect. See what’s new in film, what cool new gear has been released, and learn about the newest developments in AI and more.

By following this comprehensive guide, you'll be well-prepared to navigate the bustling environment, connect with industry leaders, and gain valuable insights that can shape your future in the dynamic world of media, entertainment, and technology.

After the event, continue building professional relationships by connecting with people you met on LinkedIn. Take the time to review your notes, reflect on insights gained, and integrate newfound knowledge into your professional endeavors. ✨

Get ready for an unforgettable experience at the NAB Show!

Can't get enough of the NAB Show? Here's a recap of 2023's Show.

Elke 4
Written by Elke Swinnen Mar 11, 2024

Elke Swinnen is Cheqroom’s video reporter and event queen. Most of the time, you’ll find her out in the world visiting Cheqroom customers and shows like NAB and IBC. She is passionate about sharing the latest gear updates, film industry insights, and top gear management tips and tricks. Her favorite pieces of gear are the ARRI ALEXA 35 and Aputure MC Pro. She’s also a Content and Social Media Marketer at Cheqroom.