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Old 11-27-10, 08:10 PM   #1
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Post The Complete MakeUseOf 2010 Holiday Gift Guide

We've asked the MakeUseOf team to share some of their favourite gift ideas. And they happily complied. So if you were wondering what geeks wished for this holiday season, wonder no longer ' dive right in! This isn't one of our conventional posts where we list the old, boring money savers. This time, we've let our hair down (so to speak) and really went all out.

Happy shopping!


The MakeUseOf Editor-in-Chief is obsessed with the new iPod Touch 4G. Prices start at $229 for the 8GB model.


I'm pretty much entranced by the indestructibility of the ioSafe SoloPRO and wished I could get one for myself. Prices start at $249.99 for the 1TB model. By the way, we featured one on MakeUseOf before.

In home entertainment, the Netgear Roku has got me hooked. It streams online content like TV shows from Netflix or Amazon Video On Demand directly to a TV. Priced at $89.99, it's much cheaper than the D-Link Boxee Box. Get it from Best Buy, Radio Shack, Fry's and online at Newegg, Amazon and Buy.com.

Stylish yet maintaining functionality, the Flipside wallet 2X is unlike anything you've ever put in your pocket. It stores up to 7 cards and shields them from RFID theft. Get one for yourself at just $39.95 from their online store.

If you're looking to get a new digital camera and would like to get the best compact camera in its class, go for the Leica D-LUX 5 which was recently released at Photokina. It's going for $799 from B & H and is much cheaper than its predecessor. It sports a 10.1MP sensor, 24-90mm (Equivalent) 3.8x zoom F/2.0 Leica lens, 3‚?≥ LCD display and can record 720p HD video.

If that's a little too rich for your blood, get the Panasonic Lumix LX5 instead. It's essentially the same camera, just branded differently. To distinguish itself, it uses Panasonic's in-house firmware. The LX5 will set you back $413.03 from Amazon.

In the audio category, you'll want the Etymotic ER4P for the best sound accuracy in a non-customised in-ear monitor. They'll cost you $299 from Amazon.

We'll be taking a close look at these later on in December with a review but you could try on the Sleek SA1 with the wireless bundle from Sleek Audio. It sounds great and costs only $169.99 for the bundle. Or you could just get the SA1 earphones for $79.99


Jorge recommends the √ľber-versatile and super-portable iPod Shuffle 4G. Prices start at $49 for the 2GB model but you can easily find it for $46 with free shipping at Target.


Justin suggests pre-ordering the Back To The Future Game from Telltale Games ' the same guys who made the Strong Bad game (which he loves) and the Wallace and Gromit game (which is also on his Christmas list). It's only $24.95 and you get a free copy of Puzzle Agent ($9.95) with every pre-order!

Justin also loves the Boxee Box. He thinks that it's the best media centre around. It allows you to stream TV shows from Hulu, watch your movies, view your photos and listen to your music ' on your television. Although it retails at $219.99 directly from D-Link, you can easily get one at $199 from Amazon.

On a more serious note, Justin finds the Kobo Reader with its sexy quilted back panel and Wi-Fi support very enticing. It comes loaded with 100 free ebooks to help you get started. It's also the lightest eReader around, weight only 221 grams. Prices start at $149 CAD.


Tina has got several great gift ideas that are fun and affordable.

These cute App Magnets resemble iPhone app icons. For the iPhone-obsessed and Apple geek, they're actually pretty coveted trophies.

Looking for a new wallet but really don't want to get one in a traditional design? At just $15, you can mix it up with a Mighty Wallet. Using the same material that's used to make express mail envelopes, these wallets are super durable. With over 70 designs available, your wallet is going to be one of a kind.

Fancy a geeky t-shirt that you can show off? Interactive T-shirts from ThinkGeek are made by geeks for geeks. Prices start at $4.99 for sale items and shoot up until $39.99.

More eReader goodness, Tina recommends the Sony Reader Touch Edition PRS 650 as a great alternative.
Pricing starts at $199.00 and it's available from Abt, Micro Center and Newegg.


To spice up gaming, Tim recommends getting the Kinect for Xbox 360 that allows you to use your body as the controller. Available from major online retailers for just $149.99.


For busy students, Simon suggests getting the Livescribe Smartpen which records everything you hear and write, and allows you to replay your notes instantly. The 2GB Pulse Smartpen is available from the Livescribe store for $99.95, limited-time offer.

A survival tool that every outdoorsy person should have at the ready, the Leatherman Skeletool is an amazingly light multitool sheds weight by featuring only the essentials: a premium stainless steel blade, pliers, a universal bit driver, and a carabiner/bottle opener.


Jeffry also recommends getting the iPod Touch 4G. In addition to that, he thinks the iPad is worth a mention. It's a fantastic touchscreen device that can be used for a lot of purposes and has a huge, ever-growing App Store to boot. Prices start at $499 for the 16GB Wi-Fi only model.

For music enthusiasts, Jeffry recommends the Yahama Silent Guitar, which is available from Amazon at $559.99.


Bakari reckons that instead of the Netgear Roku or D-Link Boxee box, the AppleTV makes the perfect gift. Available from the Apple Store at just $99, this little black box allows you to stream your entire iTunes library, rent TV shows and movies from the iTunes Store and watch Netflix or YouTube on your home television.


Dave's really in the giving mood and suggest that the best gift is to allow your recipients to shop for themselves. Hand them a a couple of iTunes or Amazon gift cards and let them go nuts.

Have a couple of friends who are avid gamers? Buy them a game instead with Steam's easy-to-use online buy and gift system.

The iPod Touch, iPad and AppleTV have all been mentioned but what about the Samsung Galaxy Tab? Dave hasn't forgotten about it! This Android-powered tablet is making headlines everywhere. Even the President of Russia tweeted about it.

Get one from Amazon for just $599.99.

If cords tangle up your life, try this wireless headphones on for size. Dave recommends the Sennheiser RS120 926 MHz Wireless RF Headphones with Charging Cradle for just $49.99 from Newegg.

And if you're constantly running out of juice, why not harness the power of the sun with PowerMonkey Portable Solar Charger. Compatible with all PDAs, mobile phones, iPods, PSP and Nintendo DS; this mobile charge is a little pricey at $105 from Amazon.


If you're a road warrior and enjoy the occasional good read, Steve disagrees with both Justin and Tina, and recommends the Amazon Kindle. Perhaps it's because the Kindle can last for a month between recharges. The Wi-Fi model is available at just $139. Pay $50 more and get the 3G+Wi-Fi model.

As an accompaniment to the Kindle, Steve suggests the new iPod Nano. Get the 8GB model at just $149.

When you're finally back at home, Steve thinks you should switch on the Sonos S5 wireless speaker system and stream music from your iTunes library, online or play internet radio. And control the entire system from your iPhone. Available from Amazon at $385.

Road warriors should always recuperate with a good night's sleep and wake up when the time is right. WakeMate is a really cool device that analyses your sleeping habits and wakes you up at the optimal time in your sleep cycle. Get better sleep at just $49.99.


Nancy loves her iPhone and adores the CandyShell Flip for iPhone 4. Now, you don't even need to remove the case to dock the iPhone! Get it from Speck at just $34.95.

Any self-respecting geek would have used (or at least dreamt of) a Moleskine at some point. How about coupling a Moleskine and iPhone/iPad together? That's some major geekery. Get the Moleskine Folio Digital Tablet Cover for Apple iPad from Amazon at just $64.99 and the Moleskine Folio Digital Smartphone Cover for $34.65 also from Amazon.

If you love Pac-Man, check out the Pacman Heat Changing Mugs. Shipping commences on December 1st 2010 but you're able to pre-order now for £5.99

And just as you thought Nancy couldn't get any geekier, she surprises us with this gift idea: the Mini Robot Vacuum for your desktop. Your own personal desktop vacuum! It'll cost you $20 from fred flare.


As our very own in-house technophile, Matt has a few good gift ideas up his sleeves.

For $599, get the ultimate, best in class LCD monitor ' the Dell Ultrasharp U2410 24‚?≥ IPS monitor. No geek will dare argue this.

If you've got the best monitor, you just got to have the best performing gaming mouse. The $24.99 Logitech MX518 Optical Gaming Mouse is worth every penny and more.

Do you play most of your games in the dark? What else is new? Well then, you'll probably want to spend $59.84 on the Saitek PK24 Eclipse III Wired Keyboard. Better not miss those frags.

If your gaming takes you late into the night, plug in these $149 Shure SRH-840 audiophile cans and carry on gaming. And if you do happen to get everything Matt suggests, you'll end up with some sweet gear that will make other gamers green with envy.


In the midst this geek frenzy, Jessica manages to hold her cool and recommends the very sensible Sansa Fuze Video MP3 player from SanDisk. Prices start at $49.95 for the 2GB model up to a moderate $79.28 for the 8GB model.


If you've got loads of gadgets like Angela, you'll appreciate the Grassy Lawn Charging Station. It uses your existing charging cables but hides them under the realistically artificial grass. Get it from ThinkGeek and it'll set you back $24.99.

Want to surprise a very special male geek and just happen to have $195 of spare change lying around? Then you could probably get these Flash Drive Cufflinks. They're 2GB each, a total of 4GB a pair and they'll set you back ' yeap, you guessed it ' $195!

If you're a geeky father and would like to impart some of that innate geekiness to your children, check out this book by Ken Denmead: Geek Dad: Awesomely Geeky Projects and Activities for Dads and Kids to Share. Available from Amazon at $11.56.

It may sound risky but is absolutely safe. Fifty Dangerous Things (You Should Let Your Children Do) is about interesting and challenging tasks that families should engage in. Get it now at $25.95 from Amazon.

And for LOTR fans, what better gift could you ask for than the leather-bound Lord Of The Rings (50th Anniversary Edition) book set? Get it today at $56.05.


In every way, our newest writer James Bruce agrees with Tim and thinks that the Xbox 360 console with Kinect bundle will make the best gift this holiday season. Prices start at $364.99 for the 4GB model and $539.49 for the 250GB model.

That's it! We hope you enjoyed this list of great, geeky gift ideas! Anything to add? What's your ultimate gift this holiday season? Tell us all about it in the comments.

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