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The Portable Electronics and Gadget Gift Guide

Gift Ideas and Electronics Picks from Your Portable Electronics Guide


An updated gift guide with newer gadgets is now available. Check out the 2013-2014 Gadget Gift Guide.

It’s the thought that counts. At least that’s what they say.

But as someone who’s seen his fair share of not-so-enthusiastic reactions from gifts that I thought were sure things, the road to gift hell is paved with good intentions. The lesson? Don't ask me about purses. But I do have some knowledge when it comes to gadgets.

For folks looking at gadgets for potential gifts, here’s a list of portable electronic devices to consider. For gift ideas for the little ones, don’t forget to also check our guide of Top Portable Electronics for Kids.

Apple iPad

Photo © Apple

Many panned Apple for describing its iPad tablet as magical and revolutionary. But the “oversized iPod Touch” basically redefined the consumer tablet sector. Even as competitors start lining up their own competing tablets, the iPad remains at the top of the class — at least for now.

Amazon Kindle

Photo © Amazon

Amazon now sells more eBooks than it does actual books. And it owes it all to its Kindle eReader, which continues to have a stranglehold on the eBook reader market. In case you’re not feeling Amazon’s proprietary format for eBooks, however, make sure you check other offerings from Sony and Barnes & Noble in our Top eReader Roundup.

Sony DVP-FX930 Portable DVD Player

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

Disc-based media may seem like a dinosaur in today's file-based world. But there's still room for a portable DVD player in folks' list of gadgets. On that note, a nice display mixed with great battery life make the DVP-FX930 one of the best portable DVD players out on the market. Don't forget to check our list of Top Portable DVD players as well.

UPDATE: A new, improved model, the DVP-FX950, is now available.

Apple iPod

Image © Apple

There certainly are other good players out there. But the iPod line is the closest thing to a universally liked player among consumers. Even non-tech savvy folk will likely know — and appreciate — an iPod. The flagship is the iPhone-like iPod Touch which can surf the Web and play apps and video besides music. Cheaper options include the iPod Nano and Shuffle.

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MiCorder Digital MP3 Recorder

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

If you’re looking for an MP3 player that also records, here’s one that’s worth a look. With its ability to rip music or audio via any device with a headphone jack, the MiCorder allows you to convert music from casettes and vinyl — or even other MP3 players or your computer — into digital form.

Road Mice Wireless Mouse

This one’s for the dudes. And yes, that’s a wireless mouse that’s shaped like a car.

Speakal iBoo iPod Charging Dock and Speaker

Photo by Jason Hidalgo

This one’s for the ladies — or open-minded guys with a soft spot for Pac-Man. The iBoo is compatible with iPods both old and new and comes with a remote that lets you control your device when docked. Also comes in other styles, including a plant, soccer ball and pig.

Hercules XPS 2.140 Slim

Photo © Guillemot Corporation S.A.

For folks who want a more powerful alternative to the iBoo that’s affordable to boot, this Hercules set delivers a lot of bang for the buck. The included subwoofer especially adds a lot of thump for bass lovers.

Gorillapod Focus with Ballhead X

Professional and amateur photographers alike will love the extra versatility the heavy-duty Gorillapod Focus and Ballhead X provides. With the ability to support up to 11 pounds while wrapping around all sorts of objects, this makes a good addition to any shutterbug’s gear. Versions for smaller cameras and devices are available as well.

iSkin Silo Slim Laptop Carrier

Photo y Jason Hidalgo

Tired of the sea of black and grays that normally dot the laptop bag section of retail stores out there? Then you might want to give iSkin’s collection of laptop carriers a look.

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