Sunday, November 14, 2021

2021 Annual Holiday Gadget Gift Guide

Halloween is over.  And while the next official holiday is Thanksgiving, we see stores bringing out the Christmas items.  So that must mean that it is time for our annual Holiday Gadget Gift Guide.  Our gift guide is a collection of different items that would make for great gift for a loved one.  It’s been an odd year thanks to COVID, and the supply problems that came because of it, such as components or shipping.  Yet we still managed to review some great items, many of them would make for a great gift.

As with previous years Holiday Gadget Gift Guide, we have tried to provide a good range of gift ideas.  Some items are on the cheaper side, and some are also on expensive side.  So no matter your budget, we have gift ideas for you.  And thanks to the pandemic and so many people staying indoors, we have also tried to include several items for the home, such as home theater, home audio, and security.

A lot of the items have already been reviewed, and some reviews are yet to come.  Below is a list of the items included in our gift guide, along with a description and photo of the item.  For items that have already been reviewed, a link to the full review will be included next to the description.  For items that have yet to be reviewed, the date the item is scheduled to be reviewed will be included after the description.  That way you will know when to check back for the review.  Happy shopping!

If you’ve been staying at home and doing a lot of binge watching, you may have noticed that you could use a better home theater set-up.  And your loved one could be in the same situation.  You don’t need to have a full-blown surround sound system to improve the sound of your TV.  Sound bars have come a long way, and are more economical.  With an MSRP of $229, the Creative Stage 360 2.1 Soundbar with Dolby Atmos could be the perfect gift.  It even has a separate subwoofer.  Check out the full review here:

I don’t know anyone who does not like music.  And most of us like to also take our music with us, and enjoy it on the go.  One of the best ways to do this is with a nice pair of headphones.  And not only is a good pair of wireless headphones much more convenient (no wires), they also have come a long way in providing high quality sound.  And if your loved one not only has an ear for high quality sound, but is also a bit of a connoisseur, the Focal Listen could be the perfect gift for them.  Check out the full review here:


While we like to listen to our music on the go, we can’t forget our own home.  And whether or not you have or will take advantage of using a smart home, some speakers can do both.  One brand known for providing great sound is Harman/Kardon.  And they have a series of speakers that not only provide great sound, but will also connect up to your smart home and provide that additional functionality.  It’s their Citation Series, and it starts with their Citation 100.  With an MSRP of $349, they are a good value.  Check out their review here:


It’s nice to enjoy our music with our friends, while we are on the go.  But you may not want something big to carry around with you.  JBL has a great assortment of wireless speakers designed to go with you.  One of their smallest is the JBL Clip 4.  While it may be small, it is definitely not small on sound.  And it’s even IP67 waterproof!  With an MSRP of only $79.95, it could be the perfect gift for a loved one.  Check out its review here:


With COVID finally getting under control, for the most part, many of us are headed outdoors.  Maybe it’s time to take out the boat or side by side ATV, and have some fun. If you want to take your tunes with you there, Kenwood has some great products for you.  Their KFC-1673MRWL is a 6.5 inch 2-way speaker system that is designed for the outdoor elements, being part of their marine series.  But they will also work in a side by side ATV.  With an MSRP of $199, you may know just the right person these are good for.  Check out their review here:


Speakers need a source, and if you are enjoying the outdoors in your boat or side by side ATV, you may need a receiver for it.  Kenwood has you covered there as well.  Their KMR-D772BT is a Marine Bluetooth CD Receiver, that would also fit right in on a boat or side by side ATV.  Part of their marine series, it is design for the outdoors.  And thanks to Bluetooth, your friends can even pair with it and share their music as well.  With an MSRP of only $229, you may know the perfect person who could use this as well.  Check out its review here:


It’s not all about music though.  Sometimes about enjoying the scenery, or security.  Fortunately for your motorcycle or ATV you can have both, thanks to the new Kenwood STZ-RF200WD.  It is a dual camera system that is also part of their marine/outdoor series.  It doesn’t have the cable length to work with a boat, but it will work with your motorcycle.  And with the extension cable it will work with your ATV.  It’s a dual camera system that records what’s going on in-front as well as behind you.  The review is scheduled to be published the week ending 12-26-21.  Check back then for it.


Stock car audio systems have come a long way.  While some even come with a separate subwoofer, not all do.  The added depth does add a good deal to the sound quality.  After all, there could be music that you are missing in your tunes because your stock speakers do not play deep enough.  Massive Audio could have just the thing for a loved one, with their BAS6.  It is a loaded subwoofer system with built-in amplifier.  It is a small 6.5 inch subwoofer designed to add that bass that you may be missing from your factory sound system.   With an MSRP of only $314.99, it may be just what you are looking for.  Check out its review here:


Unfortunately, because of the pandemic, like many of you, I have been doing a lot of binge watching.  Both streaming and movies.  And for movies I still prefer using the actual disc.  You don’t need to worry about any hiccups because of your internet connection.  And if you have a great surround sound system, you get the full uncompressed Dolby Atmos soundtrack, or DTS-X if that’s your preference.  Many have already made the jump to 4K.  But if your loved one either has not, or is looking for an upgrade, the Panasonic BP-UB9000 could be the perfect gift.  It’s not for everyone, as it has a steep price tag of $999.  But if you have the means, it is built like a tank!  Check out its review here:


Like the Panasonic BP-UB9000, not all products are in everyone’s budget.  But if you are wanting to take your home theater system to a whole new level, especially if you are building a dedicated theater room, there are products out there for you.  RBH Sound is one company you can turn to, to get awesome products that you could be looking for.  Their in-wall speakers perform just as well as a standard bookshelf or tower speaker, as does their in-wall and in-floor/in-ceiling subwoofers.  Their in-floor/in-ceiling SI-1212 Signature series subwoofer, is a subwoofer with dual 12-inch drivers that hides between the joists of your floor or ceiling. And it sounds killer, playing all the way down to 20hz!  Check out its review here:

Next we have a special product from Sony.  What do you give someone who you may think has everything?  They may even have a theater room with a 4K projector.  But….is the projector really 4K.  Most projectors that claim to be 4K, really aren’t.  They use a 1080 chip and pixel shifting technology to display a 4K image, but it isn’t TRUE 4K.  Sony however does have a projector series that uses 4K panels to display a true 4K image.  We will be reviewing their VPL-VW325ES Native 4K Projector.  But with an MSRP of $5,500, it isn’t for everyone.   The review is scheduled for the week ending 12/19/21, so check back then for the review.

If you watch the news at all, you may have realized that times have changed.  It’s not Mayberry anymore.  Security could be a real concern for you.  Spyclops, a brand under the Metra Home umbrella, provides great security products.  They have a new 4K security camera system that will now record 4K in color, even using night vision!  It’s the SPY-MNBLT3WIP8 4K mini bullet style IP camera, and SPY-NVR8POE1T 8-channel NVR with 1TB HDD.  Now your loved one can have the security, knowing that if anything happens they have it recorded on the NVR.  The review is scheduled to be completed the week ending 12/5/21, so check back then for the review.

We know there are a lot of options when it comes to holiday gifts for your loved ones.  Not everyone has the same budget, so we have tried to review and include a good range of gift ideas for you.  All of these are quality items that would provide a lot of good use.  We hope we were able to provide you some good ideas for your shopping.  Thanks for reading.  And from our family to yours, Happy Holidays!

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