Microsoft's been hyping up Kinect for over a year now, and the motion sensing Xbox peripheral has finally arrived. Our verdict? We love it, and it feels like the future. If you know anyone with an Xbox 360 console who doesn't have Kinect, then we'd recommend putting this one on your gift list. The Kinect sensor costs $149.99, and includes Kinect Adventures, a disc full of mini-games that let you try out a bunch of Kinect's features. You can also do video chat with other Kinect users and Windows Live users as well, and you get voice control over your Xbox 360. Seriously, this is the video game accessory to have this holiday season--especially during your holiday parties with friends and family around.
Aside from the sensor itself, here are a few Kinect games that we think are worth picking up as well:
Read More | Kinect
As evidenced by the fact that we saw holiday decorations up at a major retailer the other day, it seems that It's that time of year again where we dig deep and give you our daily recommendations on what you should get your loved ones in our 2010 Holiday Gift Guide. This year, we're kicking it off with the Sonos S5. If you're unfamiliar with Sonos, it's basically the best way to get music from just about any location (your computer, your iPhone, the web, the cloud, etc.) to play in any room in your house. It's super intuitive, and even years after using Sonos, the technology still blows us away. The Sonos S5 is a wireless all-in-one music system that lets you jump right into the Sonos experience. If you have an iOS or Android device, you can download the Sonos remote control app, and you can also control the system with a computer using the Sonos Desktop Controller. Here are some other Sonos products that go nicely with the Sonos S5, which itself you can get for $399 from Sonos:
Oh, and if free shipping is something you appreciate, just enter the code FREESHIPSONOS during checkout!
If you have someone if your life that is constantly on their mobile phone, chances are they’d highly benefit from a Bluetooth headset, and the Aliph Jawbone Prime is the best for the job. You get best-in-class call quality and a cool design (rare for Bluetooth headsets.) Just like previous Jawbones, it’s constructed of medical-grade plastic and has no visible buttons. The Jawbone Prime also brings it when it comes to noise cancellation, including wind noise reduction. Finally, it supports multipoint technology, which means this bad boy can be paired to several devices at one time, which is super convenient. The Jawbone Prime sells for $129, but Amazon has them for $92.74.
Read More | Jawbone Prime
Casio rocks it this year with the Exilim Zoom EX-Z280 digital camera, and we like it enough that we are recommending it in this years gift guide. It sports a dedicated Easy Mode, making it easy enough for pretty much anyone who enjoys pressing buttons to operate, while still maintaining the advanced features for more experienced pros, including ones that you don’t typically find on budget-priced digital cameras. One such feature is mechanical (instead of digital) image stabilization, giving you nice clear shots while you stumble around during a holiday party after one-too-many eggnogs, as well as a 4x optical zoom lens. In addition, it shoots video in 720p, so it can even take the place of your Flip-style camcorder. You can grab one now for $173 on Amazon.
Read More | Casio Exilim
We wanted to find a nice mid-range HDTV we could recommend this year, and we think the LG 47LH50 is it.This is LG’s 47-inch, widget-powered television, and it brings the heat with a 1080p display, and 5.1 surround sound output. Why would you want to output sound from the display? Well, thanks to the Yahoo! widget support, you get things like Netflix, YouTube, and a bunch of other embedded media playback services, including the Vudu streaming movie service. Just connect the LG 47LH50 to your home network, and the content is right at your fingertips. The part, though, is the price. These typically sell for about $1500, but Amazon is selling it for $1,139.
Read More | LG 47LH50 HDV
The Western Digital WD TV HD Media Player allows you to attach any external hard drive or USB flash drive to the device, which lets you watch videos, listen to music, or even create your own slideshows from your photos, right on your television. The WD TV HD Media Player can accept up to two external drives at once, and supports Dolby Digital and DTS 5.1 sound, making it ideal to play movies stored on those devices in glorious 1080p. They typically sell for $129, but Amazon has them for $99.
Read More | Western Digital WD TV HD Media Player
So peep this - the iMM153 alarm clock from iLuv features a bed shaker alarm that works in conjunction with an iPod, FM radio, or generic buzzer. It pretty much guarantees that the owner, no matter how deep they are into their slumber, will be woken up by the noise and vibration combo. The iLuv iMM153 is available in black, white, pink, and blue, and is compatible with iPod classic, mini, nano, and touch. The things retail for $59, but Amazon has them for $46.
Read More | iLuv iMM153
If you’ve got any Mac users in your life who haven’t upgraded to OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard, we think it’s time you give them the nudge this holiday season. Snow Leopard is faster, leaner, and more intuitive. It’s also simple to install, and even hits the user back with some freed up hard drive space. The best part, though, is the price. Snow Leopard is just $24.99 at Amazon. Here’s the price breakdown:
- Snow Leopard Upgrade: $24.99 (14% off)
- Snow Leopard 5-User Family Pack: $43.99 (10% off)
- Snow Leopard Mac Box Set: $149.99 (11% off)
- Snow Leopard Mac Box Set Family Pack: $199.99 (13% off)
This Sony Alpha A330 DSLR camera is lightweight, and pleasing to the eye what with it’s copper-and-black finish. This one hits 10 megapixels, and sits nicely in the space between uber-cameras for the pros and the dead-simple point and shoots. The Sony Alpha A330 boasts a 2.7-inch pullout LCD display that is posable (great for working with difficult angles,) and the image stabilization and autofocus are there to help with getting the perfect shot. Even cooler? You can get short tutorials of the different settings and effects right on the screen itself. A camera that teaches you, so you can learn as you go. The Sony Alpha A300 with 18-55mm lens sells for $599, but Amazon has it for just $549, a nice $50 discount.
We must say, one device we were excited about this year was the Zune HD, and as evidenced in our Zune HD review, Microsoft came through with a superb device with a fantastic service behind it to match. In fact, we’ve said it many time that, in our opinion, for someone that truly loves music, Zune is the best deal around. Coupled with the $15 per month Zune Pass (which isn’t a requirement,) you get a top-notch portable media player with an OLED screen, HD Radio, and web browser with the advantage of being able to listen to pretty much any song you can think of at a moments notice.
The Zune HD retails for $289 for the 32GB model, and $219 for the 16GB model - however, Amazon’s got a great sale on the Zune HD that’ll put the 32GB model into your hands for $269 ($21 off,) while the 16GB model will run you $189 ($30 off.)
Read More | Zune on Amazon
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