Welcome to MacNN's 2013 Holiday Gift Guide. Below you'll find a collection of our favorite and most promising products of the year, along with quick links to in-depth reviews and price-saving links for all.
For the fitness oriented, we'd recommend Nike's second-generation FuelBand fitness tracker. This wrist-mounted device packs an accelerometer that measures activity throughout the day, and it pairs with an iOS device in order to log that activity in the Nike+ app. With an iPhone 5s, the motion tracking is activated throughout the day without having to even do anything. It's also got an array of color options, as well as LEDs on the face that display goals and progress. Without a doubt, it's one of the best fitness options on the market.
That MacBook Air already came with an SSD, but everybody needs a bit more space nowadays. We loved OWC's aftermarket SSD for the Air when we checked it out, and at 240GB it doubles the space available on the baseline MacBook Air. Pick this up, and there's no need to juggle those music and photo collections.
The Air is fine, unless, of course, one is more disposed toward portability, in which case go with the Retina iPad mini. It's got just about the same level of performance as the iPad Air, but in a smaller package. It's an iPad that can fit in a pocket, with a screen that you can't look away from.
Sticking with OWC, we'd recommend picking up the Value Line Slim Blu-Ray Drive for when it comes time to watch those Blu-Ray discs that were under the Christmas tree. Powerable by AC and USB, this super-slim drive is perfect for on-the-go video consumption.
If you know someone that wants to use the iPad mini for actual productivity, you can't go wrong picking up Logitech's Keyboard Folio for the diminutive tablet. We were blown away by how well the case functions as a touch-typing device, and it doesn't add too much in terms of bulk. Snatch up this case and watch the productivity shoot through the roof.
We're fans of quality, and Id-Infinite's personalized leather cases for MacBooks, iPhones, and iPads scream quality. We fell in love with the premium-quality leather, and we're certain the covers we designed on Id-Infinite's site will last us for quite some time to come. These cases are the sort of thing that, while low-key, become one's favorite gift. Next to the device they're protecting, of course.
This is for the Apple completist: the person who has every iPod and iPhone since the originals. Jonathan Zufi, drawing on years of collecting and searching, puts together more than 650 images of 35 years of Apple creations in a tome that should complete any completist's coffee table. Plus, it's all quite pretty, to boot.
A nice set of headphones on the holidays can be the icing on the cake for a tech gift cornucopia, which is neither a cake nor a thing that gets icing, but that's neither here nor there. It's hard for headphones to get much nicer than V-Moda's Crossfade M100s, which we gave a full 5-star review earlier this year. These babies pump out serious sound, with crisp output throughout the audible range. They're perfect for popping into one's iPad Air or mini and getting lost in some tunes or games.
Of course, there may be other times when it's better to let those tunes just fill up the room. That's when it's best to go with Korus' V400 Wireless Speaker System. The V400 has a huge frequency response range, and it fits in an 11 x 6 x 5.5-inch package. It connects to devices via USB, Apple 30-pin, as well as wirelessly, meaning there are tons of options for audio input. One can also string multiple Korus speakers together to make one big system, which really boosts the room-filling effect of this diminutive audio gem.