Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

Summary: What good is it to have the world's most seasoned line-up of product and IT experts if they can’t help you pick out holiday presents? With that in mind, we tapped our crack crew to help us help you find the year’s best tech gift ideas.

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TOPICS: Hardware
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  • Ken Hess, Virtually Speaking: My Acer Aspire One is my favorite computer, by a wide margin. Its small size and significant capacity is sufficient to run Windows XP/Vista/7 or Linux without performance issues. I've done everything with this netbook: podcasting, recording, Skyping, and writing. I even run a QEMU virtual machine (Debian 5) on it. And, because it can boot from a USB thumbdrive, the "One" makes a very handy BackTrack Linux security testing unit. New models cost approximately $300. My model (ZG5) can be found on ebay for less than $100. I recommend purchasing an extended life battery pack (~$30), but be aware that it adds extra weight and size to your netbook. I think the additional 4-6 hours of battery life is worth it.

    See: Acer
    Price: Varies
    Gift Pick by: Ken Hess, Virtually Speaking

    Back to ZDNet's Holiday Tech Gift Guide
  • Matthew Miller, Smartphones and Cell Phones: Apple iPhone 4S: This holiday season how would you like to enjoy talking to your phone rather than talking through your phone? With the Apple iPhone 4S you can interact with Siri and discover a taste of the future of mobile phone interaction. The iPhone 4S has the highest resolution display in a smartphone, is extremely fast with its dual core processor and can replace your point and shoot with the responsive high quality 8 megapixel camera.

    See: Apple
    Price: Varies
    Gift Pick by: Matthew Miller, Smartphones and Cell Phones

    Back to ZDNet's Holiday Tech Gift Guide
  • Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Hardware 2.0: When a PC doesn’t start, or a component isn’t behaving itself correctly, my first port of call is to test the Power Supply Unit. The Coolmax PS-228 PSU tester has saved me literally hundreds, if not thousands, of hours of diagnostic time that would otherwise have been spent tearing my hair out. Not only does the Coolmax PS-228 allow me to test the motherboard supply (20 and 24 pin) but it also all lets me test 4-pin Molex supply, 6/8 pin PCIe supply, 4/8 pin CPU supply, 15-pin SATA supply and finally floppy disk supply -- handy when you’re working on an ancient system!

    See: Coolmax
    Price: $20
    Gift Pick by: Adrian Kingsley-Hughes, Hardware 2.0

    Back to ZDNet's Holiday Tech Gift Guide

Topic: Hardware

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11 comments
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  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    I love Razer products, but the Switchblade UI is a mistake. Sure it's shiny and nice to show off to folks, but when doing, you know, gaming, it's horrible. It acts as a touchpad, but nobody would use one for gaming. It has an LCD for information, but you can't spare to look at your keyboard while gaming. It has specially programmable hotkeys, but you can't reach them because your hand should most definitely be on a mouse.
    Aerowind
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    Too expensive thin laptops for Windows. You have to outsmart Apple, not catching up.
    Netteligent
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    No more netbook, please. Apple iPAD and tablets are much more fun and productive.
    Netteligent
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    WARNING: Avoid the Acer Aspire One! My workplace ordered over 100 of these and the quality control issues are rampant! Bad hard drives, shoddy keyboards, and even a few with bad displays (dead pixels/lines/color-issues). Couple that with Acer's WORST-in-the-industry customer support and I can't figure out why anyone would recommend these. Pick a different netbook! Try the Dell Mini, or get a tablet.
    wr230746
  • iPod? Really?!

    Come on... I own an iPhone 4 and an iPad2, so I can ask this question. Why, for $199, would you recommend the iPod as a means for escaping data charges? For that price, you are tethered to a wifi connection for data... why not get a Kindle for the same price and a much larger screen is you don't mind having to rely on wifi for your data connection? The iPod's screen is just too small to be a tablet competitor. The iPhone has the same small screen, but that's much more acceptable on a TRULY mobile device such as a smartphone... especially since the retina display makes viewing things on the smaller screen much more enjoyable than its counterparts of the same dimensions.
    vancevep
  • woaw...

    Dude, I'm jelaous if you can afford spending 1200 dollar on a Christmas gift. Really.
    patibulo
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    I disagree with your posting on the BB9900. My droid pro has a great keyboard and a much bigger screen.
    bmtman
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    Glad I'm not on your gift list, you are a cheap bugger.
    Wman
  • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

    The pic on your Coolmax PS-228 PSU tester is of a LAN tester - very useful for testing ethernet cables, but not PSUs!
    robjthom
  • Meh...Here's REAL INNOVATION, folks....

    ...the Orange OPC, the musician's computer...suck on this, Apple.

    http://www.orangeopc.com/
    Feldwebel Wolfenstool
    • RE: Holiday Gift Guide 2011: Our 20 favorite tech gifts

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