We’ve already made a few dozen Christmas suggestions for TVs, smartphones, headphones and soundbars, smart home devices, computer monitors and, of course, computers. But, heh, we aren’t called gadgetguy.com.au for nothing. So here are fifteen actual gadgets that have taken our fancy in recent months. We reckon you’re likely to find a touching gift for your loved one from amongst them.
Thorfire Q8 flashlight – $78.20
There’s nothing more gadgetty, and few things closer to the heart of the gadget lover, than a good flashlight. And this one is good. Good, plus remarkably good value.
That’s because your loved one will be able to choose how bright he or she wants it from moment to moment. It is easily adjustable from 600 to a blinding 5,000 lumens. You should toss in some rechargeable batteries so that the flashlight is ready to go as soon as the Christmas wrap is removed.
Samsung Thunderbolt 3 X5 external SSD – $629 to $2,199
Everyone with a computer needs an external disk drive. Whether it’s for backup or to carry media around for a notebook that might not have enough capacity on its own. If your loved one’s computer has Thunderbolt ports, then this would make the ideal gift.
Solid state means robust. And it means fast. Blindingly fast with a Thunderbolt connection. Our reviewer found read speeds of 2,800MB/s and write speeds of nearly 2,100MB/s. Wow!
Does your loved one have multiple devices? Perhaps an Android phone or two, plus an iPhone. Maybe even a tablet. Are there charge cables everywhere? How about helping them tidy up? The udoq charging dock does just that. It’s a neat rail into which slide several port adaptors: USB-C, Micro-B USB, Lightning, even 30-pin plugs for older Apple devices.
There the devices are, all lined up neatly, charging, ready to be grabbed. It comes in different lengths from 250mm to 700mm. Each module needs 5 volts of power applied. We found the best value to be a different brand of 10 port USB charger.
Sure, you can have your various versions of pod-piercer coffee machines, but this machine is for someone who wants their choice of high quality coffee, and automatic production on demand. The Jura S8 turns coffee beans, milk and water into just about perfect coffee.
Our review panel – plus various visitors to gadgetguy.com.au – were unanimous: coffee from the Jura S8 “it is as good as a bought one.” And that included espresso, latte, long black and more.
A little sensitivity might be called for here. One’s weight is always a touchy subject. But he or she will likely love you after realising how damned useful these scales are. He or she can step on each morning, and the weight will automatically be logged in the Fitbit app.
Before they know it, there’ll be a graph showing a gradually diminishing weight over time. Nothing like a bit of feedback to help one achieve a target.
Laser Alarm Clock V2 with Qi Wireless Charging – $129.95
Every modern bedside table needs two things: a clock radio and a phone charger. Does your loved one have both of those on theirs? Is their phone capable of wireless charging? If the answer to those questions is no and yes, then this device is the ideal Christmas present.
It combines the alarm clock radio (FM only) with a wireless charging pad. Instead of fiddling with cables, your loved one can just plonk their phone on top when they go to bed. And even play music from the phone, since this Laser device also supports Bluetooth.
Sharp R890E Microwave/Convection/Grill – $399 to $429
Cooking? Does he or she like doing it? Heck, even if they don’t, a microwave oven can help them avoid the worst of it. And if they do like cooking, then this Sharp unit improves on things by including a convention function and a grill element.
With 1,100 microwave watts, cooking is fast. The lower price above is for the white version, but we prefer the slightly more expensive stainless-steel model.
Just about the last thing you want is for your loved one to end up in the clink on the drive home this Christmas day. Worse, to have been involved in some driving disaster. So, just maybe, a safety device could be in order.
The Andatech AlcoSense breathalysers can perform that function. There are several models, each with their own benefits. But the core function of each is to tell you – or him or her – whether they can safely (and legally) drive.
Dare we suggest that this one might be more for her than for him? At least we know it’s not for we follicly challenged males here on the writing team. But both our loved ones love their Dyson Supersonic hair dryers. (This writer bought one – full price! – for his wife earlier this year.)
Somehow Dyson’s engineers have made a dryer that’s fast, yet gentle at the same time. The only weakness: the Australian version is 240 volts only, so it may not be suitable for overseas travel.
If it sucks or blows – and we’re not speaking metaphorically here – chances are Dyson makes a version of it. Here is a Dyson device that blows air. It blows air that’s room temperature, or hot, according to your needs. And it blows air that’s clean, thanks to its filters which remove 99.95% of allergens and pollutants.
But this heater/fan does more than that. It connects to your loved one’s Wi-Fi so that they can program it to come on when they prefer. They can even switch it on or off from anywhere in the world. That’s clever.
If your loved one has long hair, and that long hair needs shaping, then the Dyson Airwrap Styler could be just the thing they need. And, therefore, the perfect Christmas gift. Dyson has applied its unique study of hair engineering to make a device that styles hair, while avoiding any damage.
Remember, Dyson sucks as well. The latest and best of its handheld vacuums is the Dyson V10. It’s more powerful than the V8. It has a larger capacity. And its battery lasts longer. Dyson is so pleased with it the company doesn’t plan to do any more development of corded vacuum cleaners.
The “Absolute” model comes with fittings for just about every application. And that includes a wall mount that supplies power so that it’s always ready for use, just what you need after Christmas.
The whole point of a power bank is to charge up devices when their batteries run down. Which means that you don’t want its battery to run down. With 20,000mAh – or about eight iPhone’s worth of energy – your loved one is always going to have plenty of power for their devices.
Almost as importantly, this unit can do the clever fast charging thing
both ways. It can be fast charged, and it can fast charge phones.
You know, many of us still use landlines. Especially those of us who are a little older. With age comes challenges. For instance: can we read the numbers on the display or buttons? Can we remember which number belongs to which of our relatives? Think of us this Christmas!
This phone has all manner of assistance for us, such as power backup, 300 metre range and an extra loud ringer. Plus, it works with plenty of optional extras.
This particular writer is a little jealous. He’d rather like a BenQ WiT ScreenBar for Christmas himself. It’s an idea that’s both intelligent and obvious. Yet it’s taken BenQ to develop it. The light sits on top of your desktop computer monitor and directs its light down on your desk.
But it’s carefully controlled so it doesn’t stray onto the screen. That would reduce contrast and make the screen hard to read.