Show

It's that season again... time to find the perfect tech gift for everyone on your wish list! While in past years The Tech Buyer's Guru has tried to cover every category, from video game consoles to light bulbs, this year we're going to do something a little different. We're just going to list a perfect dozen - our 12 favorite products of the year, period. These are the products we've tested extensively and decided were so good that we just couldn't let them go after reviewing them. Put another way, this is our "Best of the Year" list - we're not just throwing out gimmicky gear to see what sticks, these are the products we believe highlight the best in tech for 2017, which we've used every day, to this very day!

Note that while we list these products in order of price so you can focus in on gifts that fit your budget, they fall into two distinct categories: products for computer users and more general Consumer Electronics products that will appeal to the broader tech audience. We think the computer gear will make itself pretty obvious!

You can even check out The Tech Buyer's Guru showing off a lot of these great holiday gift items on NBC/KGW-8's Portland Today Show, as televised on December 13, 2017!

TV

 

Holiday 2017 Tech Buyer's Gift Guide

    Cable:

    SilverStone Reversible USB-A to Reversible Micro USB

    If there's one thing that everyone can use, it's a spare charging cable, and why not make it a great one, rather than the generic junk you'll pay way too much for at the supermarket checkout line? For around $10, you can get this awesome reversible cable from SilverStone, which plugs easily into both USB and micro-USB jacks regardless of orientation. Plus it looks really cool!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Need one of these for the iPhone owner in your life? SilverStone has you covered!

    Computer Motion Sensor:

    TrickleStar USB Motion Sensor

    Save a little energy and reduce the wear on your PC by equipping it with this handy little motion sensor. Plugging directly into a USB port on your monitor, or into a USB port on your PC or Mac using the included extension cord, it monitors motion around your PC to keep it on when you're present, and then put it to sleep when you walk away.TrickleStar TS1910 USB Motion Sensor Review

    The Guru's Tip:

    Learn more about this device in our full hands-on review!

    The Perfect Nightlight:

    Hatch Baby Rest

    We were privileged to be on hand for the initial reveal of this product at CES 2017, and given that we had one of the first review units in the world, we'd like to think that our positive impressions of the Hatch Baby Rest nightlight and sound machine helped get this product into consumers' hands. Offering a fully-customizable nightlight, plenty of soothing sounds, and unique smarthphone controls and scheduling options, this is a must-have product for any new parent! Read our full review here.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Although this is marketed as a baby product, we think anyone needing a sound machine to help them fall asleep, or a pleasing nightlight, would be happy to have it on their nightstand!

    The Ultimate Wireless Gaming Mouse:

    Logitech G703 Lightspeed

    Building off of the huge success it achieved with its G403 Wireless Gaming Mouse, which we reviewed here, Logitech has just introduced its G703, which carries over the excellent sensor and amazing lag-free wireless technology (re-branded as "Lightspeed" for 2017), but adds one very unique feature: the ability to charge on the fly, without even needing to plug in, let alone leave your hands!

    The Guru's Tip:

    For the ultimate desktop setup, you're definitely going to want Logitech's PowerPlay charging mat, which has just started shipping in limited quantities this season.

    The Budget Wireless PC Headset:

    Logitech G533 Wireless Gaming Headset

    Look, we know that headphones are a very personal thing, and while in the past we've recommended a whole range of options, this year we're just going with the award-winning set that we use every single day, hours on end, while working and playing: the G533 from Logitech. Released in early 2017 as a major improvement over the 2016's G933, the G533 is cheaper, more comfortable, and better sounding, and it lasts twice as long on a charge (16 hours by our estimation). Learn more in our full review.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Sure, wired headphones will probably sound better than the G533 at the same pricepoint, but we just will not give up the wireless freedom.

    1/18 Scale Remote Control Car:

    Dromida 1/18 Scale 4WD Touring Car

    If you've got a kid (or a kid-at-heart) on your gift list this year, you simply can't do better than to get them a Dromida 1/18-scale RC car or truck. We're profiling the 4WD Touring Car here, but also available from the same link are an offroad buggy, a desert truck, and a monster truck. All are equipped with efficient 370-size motors and a 1300MAh rechargeable battery, and include both a charger and a very capable transmitter. Want to learn more? Check out our full YouTube Video Review!

    The Guru's Tip:

    Set up a mini competition course for your aspiring race car driver with this Duratrax orange racing cones!

    WiFi Security Camera:

    TP-Link Kasa Cam

    We've tested more security cameras than we care to remember, with many promising far more than they deliver, especially without a costly contract. Well, TP-Link came out swinging with its Kasa Cam, which is easy to use, full of useful features, and includes a generous free recording package. Learn more in our full review.

    The Guru's Tip:

    Note that the Kasa Cam costs about half as much as its competitors, despite including a recording package that most others will charge you a monthly fee for!

    Case:

    SilverStone Primera PM01C-RGB Matte Black

    We've reviewed a lot of computer cases over the years, and we have a closet-full of them just waiting for a new home. But there's one that truly impressed us from the very start, and which is being used to this day for the very PC we're typing on right now: the PM01C. An update to SilverStone's original PM01, the PM01C released in early 2017 added a tempered glass side panel, an awesome matte black paint job, and impressive integrated RGB lighting. Learn more in our full YouTube review!

    The Guru's Tip:

    The PM01 offers market-leading airflow, making it an exceptional choice for a high-performance air-cooled gaming PC.

    The Ultimate Voice Assistant:

    Amazon Echo Show

    While it may not look out of this world, the Echo Show really is the Smart Home product of the future, and easily gets the nod as our favorite product of the year. Offering the tremendous breadth of the Amazon Echo ecosystem, with its thousands of skills, plus awesome features like Amazon video, monitoring of home security cameras, and video calling, it's really indispensible. Read our full review here.

    The Guru's Tip:

    There's just one thing that rubbed us the wrong way about Amazon's release of the Echo Show - it heavily promoted the Google YouTube integration, only to have Google pull its approval of the YouTube app, in part due to the bitter rivalry between the companies in the Smart Home space. On the flipside, Amazon did offer video calling for free to everyone even if you don't own an Echo product, simply by downloading the Alexa App, so it's not all bad news!

    The Multi-User 802.11ac Router:

    TP-Link Archer AC5400

    We've had so many people come to us complaining about their internet provider's speed, only to find out that what was really holding them back was their decade-old router. In fact, if your router is more than three years old, it's probably time to replace it. And there's no better router on the market today than the the Archer AC5400, which offers extreme performance at a price far lower than its competitors. Learn more in our full review.

    The Guru's Tip:

    While this product isn't new for 2017, TP-Link added a huge new range of features with the "HomeCare" update it rolled out in August, including Smartphone integration, effectively making this a new product. Other manufacturers might have made this a new model with a higher price, but TP-Link offered the benefits to everyone for free!

    Connected Robotic Vacuum:

    Shark Ion Robot 750

    Building on its excellent reputation in the upright vacuum business, SharkNinja released its Robot 750 to challenge the major players in the robotic vacuum business, and clearly surpasses them in functionality. Not only does this model boast unbeatable performance, but it also has excellent Smart Home integration with Amazon's Echo, allowing to you launch and stop the device with just your voice. Learn all about the Ion Robot 750, and even see it in action, in our hands-on review!

    The Guru's Tip:

    We really view this as the perfect implementation of an Alexa-enabled device, as it provides feedback you couldn't get in any other way, including diagnostics on any issues your vacuum has encountered. It's like adding a voice to your vacuum!

    The Bargain 4K HDR Screen:

    Vizio M50-E1 50" HDR UHD Display (2017)

    If you're in the market for a new TV at a great price this holiday season, there's no better pick than Vizio's M50-E1. Offering a big 50" 4K screen with High Dynamic Range (including cutting-edge Dolby Vision), the picture on this screen easily matches those of ultra-high-end models from just a few years ago. Note that this is a "streaming-first" TV, which means it's not a TV at all, technically, as it doesn't have a tuner, but we feel that for most people, the tuner isn't going to be missed. Read our full review here.

    The Guru's Tip:

    At this point, we strongly recommend that anyone buying a new TV make sure they get one with HDR capabilities. From our point of view, HDR is far more important than 4K ever was!