All I Want For Christmas is $1,300 in Tech!

12/12/2012 Stephen Colbert 0 Comments

Christmas is getting here far faster than I realized.  It's crazy busy.  I have gotten a slightly better jump on my shopping this year, but I always end up out shopping on Christmas eve regardless of how far ahead of time I'm prepared.

There's a lot of phenomenal tech out this year, much of it for great bargain prices as well.  I've put together a list of my top 5 pieces of tech to gift.  Not all of it is brand new, but the list is mostly giftable items.  Something not outrageously priced (yes, all Apple items are off the list) and something the reciever will use frequently.  Some I own already, some I want, some I'm gifting to multiple people myself.

1. JAWBONE UP $129.99
The UP band was originally released around a year ago and very quickly pulled.  The tech was a brilliant concept and bold step forward in wearable technology, but just didn't stand up.  Physically, the band couldn't take the everyday wear and tear you should expect from any wearable and the associated app and features weren't quite up to snuff either.  Jawbone has since gone back to the drawing board and from all I can tell, has made a great product.  My hands on has been limited to the physical aspect and it looks an feels great.  Anything beyond that, I would leave to the excellent engadget review to cover.  Don't expect something out of Minority Report.  This is a very simple, yet straightforward concept.  It won't change your life, but it is a great suppliment.  Tracking daily activity, sleep patterns, mood, and diet.  It currently only supports an iOS app, but JAWBONE tells me they "expect the Android app to be available soon."  Take that for what it's worth, but JAWBONE has yet to let me down with any of their products.

2. JAWBONE JAMBOX $199.99 (or $299.99 for BIG JAMBOX)
 https://jawbone.com/jambox
I just said JAWBONE has never let me down, right?  The JAMBOX is just plain awesomeness.  It comes in two varieties.  The regular JAMBOX is phenomenal and super portable (especially with the Jam Chain, if you rock that way).  I bought the JAMBOX first and was beyond pleased.  I have to say, though, once I heard the difference with the BIG JAMBOX, I can't un-hear it.  The volume and fullness of the sound is unbelieveable.  I still use my regular JAMBOX in my room or around the house and for times when I simply need to boost the volume from my phone, but if I want to jam... The BIG JAMBOX is the only way.  Both support the live audio with 3D like sound and very much rival BOSE quality sound as well as have a great look and sturdy build quality. That extra hundred dollars to go big, though, while losing significantly in portability, gets you what I consider the best bluetooth product out there.

3. Google Nexus 7 $199.99 (16GB) or $249.99 (32GB)
 https://play.google.com/nexus
All the hype is about the iPad mini, but when it comes to price vs specs, this is the best tablet your money can buy on all counts, beating the iPad in nearly every catagory except maybe build quality (I know people that would debate this, but the fact of the matter is, Apple spent more money on making their product look good) and app store (for now).  The 7" form factor is the way to go with an Android tablet as it serves better for gaming, reading ebooks, web browsing, and etc.  The benefit of going bigger is almost exclusively screen realestate for netflix.  If your portable netflix viewing experience is that important, than maybe upgrade to the Nexus 10 for another $100, but the Nexus 7 will take care of 99% of your needs at the best price tag out there.

4. Samsung Chromebook $249.99
 https://play.google.com/nexus7
 Yes, another Google Play Store item.  What can I say, I'm a man of simple tastes.  Here's the thing about the Chromebook.  Who needs 90% of Windows of Mac laptop features?  You're just going to download chrome and use it to watch netflix, browse the web, email, and Facebook, right?  Perfect, Keep the price tag down.  With Google documents you even have what I would argue is a very sufficient word processor at your disposal.  No more spinning beach balls, hourglasses, blue screens, or 4 digit price tags.

5. Bose QuietComfort 15 $299.99
 http://www.bose.com/controller?url=/shop_online/headphones/noise_cancelling_headphones/quietcomfort_15/index.jsp&src=mc22350&mersourceid=mc22350&mr:referralID=a0526468-446a-11e2-8751-001b2166c2c0
 Probably the most pricy item (on a per ounce basis) on my list.  Honestly, I got my via a trade, but these were one of my all time favorite tech items until my brother snuck them into his bag before flying to France for 10 months.  The noise cancelling is great, the sound quality is great, they look great, they fold up in a nice travel kit.  They're awesome.  They're only headphones, so there's only so many ways I can say "they sound real good," but honestly... They sound real good.

Don't take my word for it though, this is the internet!  You have access to countless reviews and alternative product information.  I consider it one's duty to make informed purchases, so lease read up as much as you can before you buy anything like this.  I did and it led me to these items.  They all make great gifts, but you won't be disappointed to pick up for yourself instead!

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