Top 10 Booths of CES 2008

intel.jpgWandering around the CES show floor, you have to laugh when the elaborate multi-million dollar structures designed to convince you of a company's credibility are called "booths." Of all we saw here this week, step through the most exquisite, best-designed and overall most awe-inspiring of them all in this top ten gallery of the Best Booths of CES. And yeah, we called them booths, but some might even be elevated to gadget status.

1. Intel's booth (pictured above), our favourite, spins lappies into a double helix that kicked our asses all the way into the middle of next week.

blu-ray.jpg2. A Disney pirate ship, sitting there on top of the Blu-ray booth? Yep, it was built to promote the Pirates of the Caribbean movies, and we even snuck into its insides, which was being used as a break room for bored booth babes. Its realism, created by the same artisans, set designers and carpenters who make Disney World so appealing, was accurate right down to the seagull guano.

lg.jpg3. LG stacks TVs a mile high, showing us even more effectively than last year that life is indeed good.

belkin_booth.jpg4. Belkin's booth looked like it came straight out of Dwell magazine. A booth? No, it was a place that we would have preferred to sleep in, way more than our shitty hotel rooms by a long shot.

philips.jpg5. The Nordic cool of the Philips booth appealed to our aesthetic sensibility, and its thick cushy carpet made sense. Its booth and the occupants therein were all easy on the eyes.

sanyoeneloop.jpg6. These oversized Eneloop batteries, jutting out of the show floor like so many electric phalluses, made us laugh while making us dig the product even more.

samsung.jpg7. The giant Samsung booth dominated the show floor, roadblocking the area and offering no exit from its back side. That sucked, but we still liked the power of the thing, and we're biased because the front showed off our fave TV of the entire show, the 82-inch ultra high definition TV, a 2K masterpiece that's the world's largest of its type.

sharp.jpg8. As far as waterfalls of TVs go, Sharp does 'em best, filling the air with its beauteous Aquos displays. Pretty.

sony.jpg9. Sony's booth felt inviting and relaxing, and there was a separate area for the Sony Pictures division where you could just relax and watch some TV for a while. Naw, we didn't hang out there much, but we always knew it was there.

gibson.jpg10. Gibson had a huge party tent set up in the parking lot, touting its fab new robotic guitars and such. But the kicker was the big-name bands they had playing every night. For example, here's George Thorogood & the Destroyers. There were also beaucoups celebs hanging around. Overall, it was a no-bullshit approach that was much appreciated.

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