O Christmas tree, O Christmas tree! How are thy leaves so verdant! Christmas is only two weeks away, though the holidays’ discounts in consumer electronics have already commenced. Hence it dawned on us that it’s the right time to list our favorite gizmos of 2013.
Google Nexus 5
Unveiled just a month ago, LG and Google’s new piece of art features the latest gen quad-core Snapdragon 800 chip, enhanced 8MPix camera over its predecessor, new hardware and the best Android experience the user can get; stock Android 4.4 KitKat out of the box.
For you design enthusiasts, we got the best looking phone currently in the market, and it’s the HTC One. The Taiwanese corporation flagship device packs an aluminum unibody design that feels premium in the hand, alongside with a 4 Ultrapixel camera and a handful of high end specs.
HTC Desire 500
I am sure many of you are looking for a phone that retails for around $250 that simultaneously houses a great deal of specs. In September, we reviewed HTC’s latest addition to the Desire lineup, the Desire 500 that houses a quad-core processor, 4.3-inch display, 8MPix camera and stellar design.
Nokia Lumia 925
In case you are bored of iOS and Android, another option is Windows Phone. And, since you are not sure if you are going to be easily adjusted to this environment or not, the best handset to opt for is the Lumia 925. It features LTE, a gorgeous 4.5-inch display, great hardware and absolutely stunning camera. Moreover, it’s powered by the latest version of Windows Phone, WP8.
Apple iPad Air
The iPad Air, or the fifth-gen iPad as referred to by anyone, constitutes Apple’s hidden card for the 2014 season in the 10-inch tablet industry. The name speaks for itself, the device is ridiculously lightweight – it weighs 1 pound, 469g — 43% smaller bezels and 20% thinner than the iPad 2 – now measures just 7.5mm.
The new iPad sports the company’s latest gen chip, the A7 alongside with the M7 motion co-processor. The primary sensor on the back has remained stagnant, shooting at 5-megapixels and recording full HD video, as for the secondary Facetime HD camera on the front includes “larger pixels” and a backside-illuminated sensor for better image quality. Furthermore, the 32.4 Wh battery can run the juice for 10 hours.
Microsoft Surface 2
Moving on to Microsoft’s device, the Surface 2, the device is covered by magnesium dressed in dark titanium with a built-in 2-stage kickstand, and houses a full HD 10.6-inch multitouch display with a pixel density of 208ppi. The Surface has been bumped up with one of the best chips in the tablet market, the quad-core Nvidia Tegra 4 T40 clocked at 1.7GHz in conjunction with a 72-core ULP GeForce GPU and 2GB of memory. Storage wise the customer has to opt between 32 and 64 gigs, upgradable via microSD up to 64GB more.
The Surface is 200 grams heavier than Apple’s badboy and slightly thicker. Camera wise the Surface packs a 2592х1936 5MPix sensor on the back that comes along with full HD video and LED flash, and a 3.5MPix camera on the front shooting full HD video as well.
Nokia Lumia 2520
Finally, the Lumia 2520. The Surface’s ally from the same Windows RT camp with one mission to accomplish; dethrone the iPad.
Based on Nokia, the tablet has been in the works for the last two years and has been dominating the cyber rumor mills primarily since summer. Its specs and design leaks were pretty accurate, like the above ones. Fundamentally, the device is a sized up Lumia smartphone, at least on the front. The hardware of the 2520 is dominated by the product line’s the signature colored unibody polycarbonate shell with glossy and matte finishes. The front panel exhibits the tablet’s 10.1-inch full HD IPS display with a 218ppi, covered by corning Gorilla glass 2. It comes with a built-in keyboard as well.
Apple iPad Mini 2
Moving on to the 7-inch tablet form factor, our number one suggestion has to be the new iPad Mini. The second iteration of the lineup exhibits an integrated 7.9-inch Retina display resolving at 2048×1536, weighs solely 0.79 grams, A7 chip with motion co-processor, impeccable battery life and a 5MP iSight camera with full HD video.
Google Nexus 7 2013
Anti-Apple? Google has you covered. The spec sheet might not be as prominent as the Mini’s, though it is much lighter – 290 g – and delivers the unique Android experience the user finds on the Nexus 5, in a larger display. The display resolution has sharpened up to 1200 x 1920, though it still is mediocre, compared to the Air’s small sibling.
I built my custom PC just two months ago. I was looking for a cheap yet cutting-edge monitor to spend endless time, writing, Photoshopping, gaming and watching Netflix. The Asus VE228HR is a 22-inch LCD monitor, with a resolution of 1920×1080 and LED technology built in. It might not be IPS, though viewing angles are still great.
For the $150 price tag, it shines. It’s made by shiny plastic, which can get scratched easily – heads up – though, the overall design is rather brilliant. You can also optimize the height the viewing angle, depending the height of your chair. The monitor also includes an HDMI import. Finally, I can rock some Halo in my room.
Dell S2740L 927M9
For you people who are lucky enough to have a higher budget and desire a TV-sized computer monitor, Dell offers you a prodigious product. The S2740L is a 27-inch Full HD LED-lit monitor with sharp viewing angles duly to the built-in IPS technology, and an edge-to-edge glass high quality screen. The built is a combination of premium plastic and aluminum. You can find it on Amazon, brand new, for $280.
13-inch Retina MacBook Pro
Best overall laptop for 2013, LaptopMag editor’s choice. Indeed it is. The 13-inch MacBook is portable, features one of the sharpest displays in the market, and has a 2.5 GHz dual Intel Core i5 chip, 500GB HDD or 128GB SSD, 4GB of memory, Intel HD 4000 or Intel Iris underneath the hood.
The base line model will set you back $1,199. The recently announced one retails for $1,200.
The MacBook Pro might be an excellent machine, though if you use your computer for hardcore gaming then that’s not the laptop you should opt for. We all know that Alienware is a front-running name when it comes to laptop gaming. Their latest masterpiece, the Alienware 17 is here to prove our point. The A-17 houses the eight-core Intel Core i7-4800MQ clocked at 2.7GHz, alongside with 16GB of RAM (upgradable to 32gigs), 256GB of SSD and 750GB HDD, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 780M and a 17-inch display resolving at 1920 x 1080. You can find the Alienware 17 for $1,400 on Amazon, or $1,500 on Alienware’s official online store.
We wonder what gadgets you guys are planning to pick up this Holiday season. Do you have any other suggestions for this list? Feel free to let us know in the comment section below.