Midmarket: 10 Great Gadget Gifts That Won't Bust Your Budget
10 Great Gadget Gifts That Wont Bust Your Budget
by Nate Eddy
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Flip Video UltraHD Camcorder ($199.99)A sleek design, simple user interface, flip-out USB arm, built-in editing and sharing software, plus crisp, clear HD-quality video are the reasons to pick up this portable memory-saver. The built-in 8 GB memory allows 120 minutes of recording time, and included FlipShare software lets you save and organize videos, edit individual clips, make custom movies, e-mail your videos and upload them directly to YouTube, MySpace and AOL Video.
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Garmin N??vi 205W Portable GPS ($99.99)This navigation system features a 4.3-inch backlit color display and supports up to five million points of interest and allows you to save the coordinates of your favorite destinations for easy navigation and route planning. A "Where Am I?" feature helps you find nearby hospitals, police stations, gas stations, addresses and intersections. You can also mark the location of your car when the unit is taken from its holder so you always know where you are.
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Apple iPod touch 8GB ($199.99)The best reason to upgrade your MP3 player in some time, the touch acts like a mini iPhone-it does everything except make phone calls. The iPod's iconic style and user-friendliness adds a smooth touchscreen experience and Wi-Fi connectivity. Pricier versions with more storage are available if the 8GB, which holds up to 1,750 songs, isn't enough for the music fan in your life.
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Sony Reader Touch Edition ($299.99)Forget picking up Barnes & Noble's e-reader the Nook this Christmas, but there are other options out there. The Reader touch features a 6-inch screen, virtual keyboard and a battery life that supports up to 7,500 page turns. 512MB internal memory provides space for storing up to 350 eBooks and eBook Library software makes downloading books, transferring Adobe PDF and Microsoft Word documents and checking out other text documents user-friendly.
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Olympus Stylus 10.0-Megapixel Waterproof Digital Camera ($179.99)Waterproof up to 10 feet deep, this digital camera is perfect for the budding Jacques Cousteau in the family. Other features include face detection technology and image stabilization, as well as a 3x optical/5x digital zoom, 2.5-inch LCD screen and digital image stabilization, which minimizes shake and vibration distortion.
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Nintendo DSi ($169.99)The latest incarnation of Nintendo's portable gaming system offers a larger 3.25-inch LCD screen, a thinner, lighter design and "Nintendo DSiWare" software using Nintendo DSi Points to browse the Web. You can also listen to music with the built-in music player, featuring improved speaker volume and sound quality.
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HP Mini 311 Netbook ($399.99)While most netbooks out there are slow but serviceable, the Mini 311, with its Intel Atom processor, 1GB of memory, built-in Web camera and 11.6-inch widescreen display, stands apart from the others. At under an inch thin and weighing just 3.2 pounds, it's easy to transport, and features up to 319MB shared video memory for lush images.
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Roku HD XR Player ($129.99)Now featuring extended-range wireless, WiFi 802.11n, the Roku HD XR edition allows users to stream instant movies and shows directly to your TV--over 50,000 and counting, from Netflix, Amazon Video On Demand, and more, in HD quality. The HD-XR player, which is about the size of a jewelry box, also includes a USB port for future use.
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Apple Magic Mouse ($69)If you give a mouse as a gift, it's got to be a pretty slick slice of technology, because nothing says "Shopped at Staples" more than last year's wireless mouse. Thankfully, Apple truly improved the mouse this year with the world's first Multi-Touch mouse. Its polished surface allows you to click anywhere, scroll in any direction, and swipe through images, and a laser tracking engine and Bluetooth technology keep you on target. The Magic Mouse is functional and futuristic in the best way.
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I-Tech Virtual Keyboard ($169.99)By far the geekiest gadget on here is the James Bond-style Virtual Laser Keyboard (VKB), billed by the makers as a "revolutionary accessory" and "the only keyboard that operates in total darkness" for Blackberry devices, smartphones, PDAs, Macs and tablet PCs. It uses a laser beam to generate a full-size operating laser keyboard that connects to mobile devices. A direction technology based on an optical recognition mechanism enables the user to tap on the projected key images.