Top Electronics Gifts For Men & Women

scanner radio antenna gift for myGeeks, your shopping secret is out. While loved ones assume your trips to the mall and hours of Web surfing are all to buy gifts, a poll by the Consumer Reports National Research Center reveals otherwise. A majority of the survey respondents who planned to brave electronics stores last year on Black Friday, the sale-crazed day after Thanksgiving, were actually looking to get gear for themselves.

New electronics products flood the market in the final weeks of the year, and this annual section rates more than 400 of them in a dozen categories.

Many of our Ratings include top-ranked models that raise the bar in their respective categories. But the values for many buyers are models that score almost as highly and cost less.

For example, the Ratings of 15- and 16-inch laptops (available to subscribers) are topped by an Apple MacBook Pro model that has a battery life of 8.5 hours, one of the longest we've ever measured. A Toshiba Satellite model ranked sixth, and a CR Best Buy, is heavier than the Apple, has an ample 7-hour battery life, and costs a lot less—roughly $1,300 less.

Click on the links at left for other news and advice to help you shop for electronics this holiday season—for anyone, yourself included.


Today's electronics deals, courtesy of The Consumerist:

* Amazon: Rightway 4.3" GPS Navigator - Dale Earnhardt Jr. Edition for $49.99 w/ Free Shipping
* JR.com: Audiovox 7" LCD Drop Down TV with Built-In DVD Player for $129 [w/ Coupon GEICO10] w/ Free Shipping
* OfficeMax: Compaq Presario CQ5300F AMD Sempron 140 2.7GHz Desktop Computer (2GB/500GB) $249.99
* Dell Small Business: Planar PX2710MW 27in Widescreen LCD Monitor (2ms, HDMI) $229.99 Free Shipping
* Newegg: Asus RT-N16 Gigabit 802.11n Wireless N Router w/ USB Storage, Printer & Media Server (DD-WRT) $77 Free Shipping

Entertainment

* PC Richard: Onkyo HT-RC260 7.2 Channel Home Theater Receiver for $300 with Free Shipping
* Dell: Xbox 360 Halo Reach Limited Edition Console w/ 250GB Hard Drive for $360 with Free Shipping
* GameFly: First month 1-game-at-a-time $5.95, 2 games $9.95 (was $8.95, $12.95)
* Dell: 160GB Slim Console $269.99 + free ship (next best $300)
* Restaurant.com: $25 Restaurant Gift Certificates for $2

According to the Consumer Reports’ 2010 Holiday Shopping Poll, consumers will be tightening our belts again this holiday season. With electronics tied with toys and gift cards (62 percent of respondents plan to buy gifts in each of those three categories) and were beat out only by Clothing (68 percent), though,it looks to be another holiday full of gadgety goodness.

So what will be the hot items in electronics this year? Most striking, video games are the most popular gift item within that category by far. 39 percent of all poll respondents plan to buy them, and over half of households with children younger than 12 intend to buy games as gifts.

Also showing up high on givers’ planned lists: video game accessories (18 percent of respondents plan to give these). That’s not too surprising, taking into account the upcoming—and much-anticipated—Microsoft Kinect and Sony Move motion-sensitive controllers.

E-book readers such as the Kindle and Nook have gained cachet among givers: 10 percent of Americans plan to give an e-reader, up 6 percentage points (4% to 10%) from last year.


And a whole 8 percent of respondents plan to give tablet computers—which, of course, was a non-existent category just a year ago. The actual number of tablets purchased this year may wind up being higher than that figure indicates, considering the plethora of lower-cost iPad competitors launching before the holidays.

MP3 players, video game systems, digital cameras, and digital photo frames all will be popular gifts this year as well, says our poll. All made slight gains in percentage from last year.

On 8 percent of holiday shoppers’ lists are laptops, cell phones, flat-panel TVs, and headphones. It’s a bit surprising TVs aren’t on many more lists than they were last year, despite slightly lower prices and 3D.

Smart phones come in just below at 7 percent, about the same as last year. Maybe that’s one type of gadget people prefer to buy for themselves.

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