Best Tech 2013: Coolest new gadgets we want this month
25th Apr 2013 | 14:15
October: Beats Mixr headphones
The latest incarnation of Dr Dre’s Beats headphones are built with DJs in mind. With input from corporate land’s go-to man, David Guetta, the Mixrs feature padded ear cups that flip through 180 degrees, allowing you to work the decks and soak up adulation from the crowd. Note: to achieve adulation avoid playing actual David Guetta tracks.
Price: £250, beatsbydre.com, Out Late 2011
October: HTC Titan, Radar, Rhyme, XE
Four handsets are better than one. It’s fair to say there were some late nights in the HTC offices this month, as it’s gone handset-releasing bonkers. First two new Windows Mango-packing phones landed – the Titan (4.7-inch screen, 9.9mm-thick bod) and the Radar (3.8-inch screen, aluminium unibody design) – with Twitter integration and beefed-up Bing search. But far from content, HTC also unveiled its Sensation update, the XE, the first Dr Dre Beats Audio smartphone, and the Rhyme, a “female-focused” blower.
Price: Titan £490, Radar £330, XE £500, Rhyme £390, HTC.com/uk, Out now
October: Loewe Connect 3D
Sure, you can snag a 3D TV for south of £500, but will it handle the third dimension with the panache of Loewe’s Connect 3D box? No. This active-3D 40-incher also includes a hard-disk recorder for stashing extra 2D and 3D content, a MediaNet function to let you at web TV, while its MediaHome grabs vids from your PC. See, everything.
Price: £2,290, Loewe-uk.com, Out now
This Swedish wristwatch has the makings of a minimalist design classic. Tap the screen to bring up the time, swipe horizontally to access stopwatch and alarm, then swipe vertically through the digits to alter settings. It even vibrates on your wrist instead of beeping for a suitably laid-back alert.
Price: £179, mutewatch.com, Out now
October: NuForce Icon iDo
This sleek, slimline DAC and headphone amp is designed for your precious iThings. It extracts audio digitally from Apple’s kit so there’s no loss of quality. It’s got line, digital and headphone outputs for attaching your audio output weapon of choice.
Price: £180, nuforce.com, Out now
October:Panasonic Lumix DMC-FZ150
With a 24x zoom, Panasonic’s latest top-end bridge camera produces superb close-ups. The wide-angle Leica lens offers reduced fl are and ghosting, making for extra sharp shots. Chuck in full-HD video recording, manual modes galore and easy Facebook sharing via the Lumix Image Uploader and you have the perfect solution to taking pictures of fleeing owls.
Price: £370, Panasonic.co.uk, Out October
October: Philips Fidelio Sound Ring DS3880W
Stream tracks from your PC or iDevice with AirPlay to this uniquely shaped new speaker, which pumps out sound via four high-definition drivers. As much about looks as it is about sound, it’s the most individual dock since B&W’s Zeppelin.
Price: £TBC, philips.co.uk, October
October: Razer Blade
Razer’s Blade sharpens your skills The Blade is a different breed of gaming laptop. As well as weighing just 3.1kg, it utilises the stunning LCD touchscreen and customisable keys from Razer’s Switchblade concept, which you’ll find sexing up the T3 Awards. Revolutionary controls aside, there’s also top-notch Nvidia GeForce graphics, Intel’s Core i7 processor, which runs at up to 3.5GHz in turbo mode, and 8GB of RAM.
Price: $2,800 (UK £TBC), razerzone.com, Out Late 2011
October: Silverback Starke Sub Zero
Silverback Starke Sub Zero Disk brakes and internal hub gears aside, bicycles aren’t usually over-endowed with tech, but the new Silverback Starke range is changing that. A dynamo creates the power as you pedal, and as well as powering the lights, it also lets you juice up your smartphone or PMP via USB while tootling to the office. The Sub Zero is the star, but Starke’s three other bikes all come with USB as standard.
Price: £TBC, silverback.com, Out late 2011
October: Sony SMP-N200 streamer
The Bravia Internet Video service serves up stacks of on-demand TV for Bravia owners. This set-top box is set to let everyone in on the action. Attach it to your network and feast.
Price: $99 (UK £TBC), Sony.co.uk, Out TBC
October: Toshiba Camileo Clip
As the demise of Flip showed, pocket camcorders have to evolve if they want to take on increasingly smart smartphones. Toshiba’s Camileo Clip has done just that. This dinky, weatherproof ’corder can be clipped to your clobber and records in full HD, with a 5x digital zoom, mini HDMI port and an SD slot for up to 64GB of storage.
Price: £TBC, toshiba.co.uk, Out December
October: Union Folding Cycle
Folding bikes may be practical, but let’s face it: lugging one around on public transport is a pain. That’s why this stunning concept from Taiwanese design students Weiche Wu and Minhan Lin is so appealing. Rather than collapsing into a metal frame that magnetically attracts fellow commuters’ ankles, it folds down into an appealing Apple-white covered shell. You then use the rear wheel to drag it around behind you, suitcase-esquely. Also looking far cooler than any folding bike we’ve clamped eyes on hitherto, it’s a concept that’s crying out “mass produce me, mister”.
October: Windows 8
Windows 8 fighting fit to take on iOS 5. The Big M’s long-awaited operating system has been rolled out to developers, ahead of its big fanfare of a public release next year. This is no casual reworking of its current desktop OS, Windows 7, either. Oh, no. Windows 8 is designed to work consistently well across desktops, tablets and smartphones, which means there’s now a touch-friendly interface based on the Xbox Live-esque Windows Phone 7. It’s shaping up to be a contender to Apple’s similarly multi-device iOS 5. About time, too.
Price: £TBC, msdn.microsoft.com, Out 2012
November: Nikon J1 and V1 hybrids
Listen up Olympus PEN and Sony NEX, there are two new interchangeable-lens snappers in town, and they’re the smallest and lightest in the world. Both the entry-level J1 and top-end V1 cram in an Expeed 3 sensor, which is capable of taking 20 shots in a single second. It even reels off images before you fully depress the shutter. Throw in tip-top lenses and you have serious snapping power.
Price: J1 £550, V1 £800, nikon.co.uk, Out now
November: Uniform Wares’ 150 wristwatch
Hold the flight to Switzerland! Design duo Patrick Bek and Oliver Fowles are creating some of the most stylish timepieces around right here in the English capital. The 150 has a Japanese movement – okay, it’s mostly British – and Uniform Ware’s thinnest clock face to date, at an ultra-discreet 6.05mm.
Price: £165, scp.co.uk, Out now
November: Pure One Elite Series II
Pure sure does like to knock out a radio stacked with features – this one includes 30 presets for digital stations and the chance to plug in your iPod or iPhone for starters. But it’s the Elite Series II’s “Listen Later” function that makes this affordable audio delight really worth stumping up for. It lets you save your favourite shows, no matter what the station, and play them back whenever you fancy. Best of all you can pause and bookmark programmes, returning to them whenever you want without missing a beat.
Price: £85, Pure.com, Out now
November: AQ Audio Smart speakers
Apple’s AirPlay has happily brought an end to the reign of plasticky docks, ushering in an age of sleek, streaming devices. AQ Audio’s Smart Speakers are the latest to rock Apple’s tech and are chock full of aural wonders. Each one pumps out a hefty 24W of power and they can even be used with batteries when you’re on the move, so no town will have to do without your “Smooth Grooves” mix.
Price: £200, aqaudio.com, Out now
November: Motorola Atrix 2
Motorola’s been laying low since it followed its pioneering, T3 Hot 100-topping smartphone-cum-media hub-cum-laptop the Atrix with the disappointing Xoom tablet. But now it’s stepping back into the spotlight, with a 4.3-inch screened Atrix 2 in the works – with a lighter 10.1-inch Lapdock 100 in tow (above) – and a new RAZR – Moto’s most popular phone of all time – with a dual-core processor and eight-meg camera.
Price: £475 SIM-free, Motorola.com, Droid Razr Out Now, Atrix 2 TBC
November: Samsung Galaxy S Wi-Fi
Apple’s jack-of-all-trades iPod Touch finally has a worthy rival to its long-unchallenged PMP crown, and it goes by the familiar name of the Samsung Galaxy S Wi-Fi. Yes, it’s Samsung vs Apple yet again. The S runs Android 2.3, so as well as playing MP3s it’ll take all the Market games, apps and ebooks you can chuck at it. It’s also, as is the norm with Samsung, larger than Apple’s machine, with either a 3.65- or 5-inch screen, and 8GB or 16GB of storage. Let’s see how long it takes for this to end up in court.
Price: 3.65-inch £149/£169 (8GB/16GB), 5-inch £199/£219 (8GB/16GB), samsung.com/uk, Out now
November: Xbox 360 external hard drive
If, like us, you’re obsessed with your Xbox 360’s Live Arcade downloads, or stashing hefty movie files locally, this 320GB external hard drive will make your year. The capacious add-on is built for the newer slimline Xboxes and you get a free download of Lego Star Wars 3 included. If you prefer streaming content, Xbox has also confirmed Lovefilm, BBC iPlayer, 4OD and Demand Five on the console in time for Christmas.
320GB Hard drive £80, Apps Free, Xbox.com, Out now
November: McIntosh MC275 amplifier
This stunningly retro vacuum tube amp may be a bit on the deep-wallets side, but what price can you put on a hi-fi classic? Originally built in 1961, this 50th anniversary version of the McIntosh MC275 has two 75W outputs and will give any sound system a massive boost, not to mention turning heads with its unique design. There are goldplated binding posts for clean and clear sound and you can plug in any speakers you happen to have kicking around. We’d suggest something a little better than the ones that came with your creaking, old mini system. It just wouldn’t look right…
Price: £4,100, mcintoshlabs.com, Out now
November: Facebook iPad app
After tales of developers quitting over delays and the Friendly app stealing its tablet thunder, Zuckerberg has finally hauled Facebook’s arse on to the iPad. The results are mixed. Chat has been jettisoned entirely and the new, uniform iOS design isn’t at all iPhone-friendly. But then it wouldn’t be new Facebook without a good moan, would it?
Free, Facebook.com, Out now on iPad
December: Light Light Lamp
This is the home gadget equivalent of witchcraft. A levitating top section floats above the matt black base of this table lamp, with electromagnets used to keep the two halves apart. A run of LEDs around the base act as the 300- lux light source and a dimmer lets you adjust the intensity of the glow. Amaze and confound friends and household pets by swiping your hand through the gap. They’ll quickly come to the only logical conclusion: you’re a witch and must be burnt or drowned.
Price: €980, Light-Light.com
December: Loewe Cinema set
Combining several tasty slices of hot, buttered Loewe home entertainment kit, the Cinema Set is a must for serious film buffs and audiophiles. It comprises a Loewe MediaVision 3D Blu-ray player with built-in iPod dock (pictured), a set of satellite speakers, compact 180W subwoofer and an Assist multi-control remote. Separately, they’re some of the nation’s finest home cinema gadgets; together they form the ultimate setup, available in 250 colours.
Price: £1,600, Loewe-uk.com
December: Panasonic DMC-3D1 compact
Most compact cameras are happy with adding a bigger zoom, but not the Panasonic DMC 3D1; it’s added a whole extra dimension. The thinnest 3D camera in the world, it takes 12-megapixel 2D shots and eight-meg 3D ones, with 1920x1080 3D video recording to boot.
Price: £TBC, Panasonic.co.uk, out now
December: OnLive iPad and Android app
We loved OnLive for bringing cloud gaming to our TVs, and now we get to play Arkham City on an iPad 2. Running over Wi-Fi with a bandwidth requirement of 2-3 mbps, you’ll be able to play most of the 200-strong OnLive catalogue on your Apple or Android tablet. The new Blueooth universal controller also adds a console-feel to proceedings.
Price: Android and iPad app is free to download, Universal OnLive Controller will be £39.99
December: Lomography’s Lomokino handycam
Digital refuseniks, this one’s for you: the first “camcorder” to be produced by analogue fetishist Lomography, the retro fanatic behind the Diana camera. It’s an endearingly boxy, 35mm film camera that shoots at a less than Avatar-esque four frames per second and requires you to turn the film using a hand crank. So, whereas Lomography’s cameras recall the hazy, groovy 70s, this bids to return coffee shop-dwelling hipsters to the age of the silent movie. Chaplin is the new Gervais, after all.
Price: £65, Lomography.com
December:Asus Zenbook UX21E
Just 9mm thick at the back, slinking to a barely there 3mm at the front, the Zenbook contains Intel’s Core i5 processor, hearty speakers and an 11.6-inch screen. It’s a mouthwatering, tablet-thrashing, MacBook Air-bothering prospect.
Price: £849, Asus.com
December: Porsche Design’s P’9981
This collaboration between Porsche and BlackBerry would be near the top of most looters’ wish lists. It melds a luxury aesthetic – the chassis is drilled out of a single slab of aluminium with a black leather back – with proper functionality. The P’9981 has a 2.8-inch touchscreen and runs on a 1.2GHz processor, with a bespoke Porsche Design interface and a premium BBM PIN, to help you locate other P’9981 owners amidst the unwashed masses.
Price: £1,250 porsche-design.com
December: Leica V Lux 3
A compact camera primed for aspiring travel photographers, the Lux 3 hosts a super-telephoto zoom lens for scenic shots and a 12.1 megapixel CMOS sensor for premium image quality. High speed continuous shooting (12 frames per second at full resolution) means it's a quick shooter, while full HD video recording in AVCHD format is ideal for churning out great footage and converting it so everyone can enjoy your slick work .
Price: £690, out January 2012
December: Nokia N9
MeeGo for Christmas? Nokia is finally launching its first smartphone to run on the Linux-based OS sporting an 3.9-inch AMOLED multitouch display, 8-megapixel rear-mounted camera with Carl Zeiss lens, 720p HD video recording capabilities and a beefy 64GB of onboard storage. It also comes in a festive white shade which makes it an ideal Xmas gift.
Price: £510, europe.nokia.com
December: Football Manager Handheld 2012
Whether your team failed to secure European football after Christmas or you yearn for more than the usual festive fixture pile-up at this time of the year, FM is back for iOS devices letting you call the shots from the dugout. With more teams and the excellent new Challenge mode, your love for the beautiful game has now become a 24/7 affair.
World’s poshest phone purveyor Vertu has taken a break from international jetsetting to unveil its first touchscreen mobile. Wrought from fine metals and leather, handwashed with poor children’s tears, it’s got a 3.5-inch AMOLED display, A-GPS, 3G and Wi-Fi, and runs cutting-edge OS Symbian. Bespoke, lavishly handcrafted services include Select, which finds high-class things in any locale, Concierge, which gets you access to them, and a Berry Bros “pocket sommelier”, if you please.
Samsung Wave III
Bringing Bada back to the fore, or at least reminding people it exists, the third Wave once again pairs premium design with a substantial offering of high-end specs: here, a four-inch Super AMOLED display leads the way, with a 1.4GHz processor inside. Whilst Bada is still not as well supported as iOS or Android, it does boast more than 7,000 apps and is, we’re assured, “big in the far east”.
Berg Little Printer
It may appear to have a cartoon of Hitler after a shave on the front, but we reckon this web-connected micro printer is rather cute. Configured via your phone and the cloud, it scours the web looking for cool stuff, giving receipt-like printouts of the day’s headlines, voucher deals and more. Nike and The Guardian are among the launch partners.
Price: £TBC (Due: Early 2012)
Link: Berg London
Loewe Air Speaker
Apple’s AirPlay functionality is great when it works, and purveyor of AV swank Loewe will surely make the most of it with its fi rst AirPlay speaker. Two subwoofers assist with the pumping of 80 watts of audio, and a range of interchangeable colour and metallic inserts mean you can match the device to your decor. Line-in and USB connectors mean you can also pair it with devices crafted outside of Cupertino, should you be so inclined.
People People Wi-Fi Invisible speaker
Whilst T3 demands high-end audiophile sound as standard, we’re also gluttons for peer-impressing interior design – particularly if it’s devoid of wires and opacity. Doing away with the monotony of black plastic and brushed aluminium, People People’s see-through body gives a unique take on the home speaker and, when fi xed to the wall and paired with a small wireless adaptor, removes the need for unsightly and obtrusive cables as well. It gives a new meaning to the term “transparent” sound – you can have that joke on us; tell it to an audiophile and they’ll fall about laughing, guaranteed.
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Link: People People
Skullcandy Mix Master Mike headphones
A hip hop icon currently flexing his turntablist skills on XFM, Beastie Boy Mix Master Mike lent his expertise to the folks at Skullkandy for these DJ-friendly headphones. Sporting big 50mm drivers, ambidextrous audio inputs, and dual cue control to make mixing easier, all is housed in a body made from a combination of stainless steel, aluminium, polycarbonate and ABS.
Out: January 2nd 2012
Providing a premium audio home for your Samsung Galaxy S2 or iPhone 4S, the DA-E750 dual dock blends stylish looks with enough cutting-edge amplifier tech to liberate your smartphone-bound tunes. Adorned in a dark red wood finish, there’s support for AirPlay, Bluetooth and Samsung’s own AllShare tech with 100W of sound and a multitude of inputs that should earn it pride of place in your humble abode.
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Taking a drastically different approach to the conventional mouse, the Cube swaps buttons for swipes and and is small enough to fit inside your shirt pocket. Logitech claims Flow Scroll software will deliver scrolling similar to a touchscreen phone, while a unifying receiver allows you to sync the Cube with up to six devices from up to 25 metres. When it's low on juice it will illuminate alerting you to charge it up via the USB.
SMK-Link wireless keyboard
A mini, gamepad-style controller that's actually an office in disguise., the SMK-Link lets you hook up your full-fat computer to your big screen and work from the sofa. Laid-back productivity to out-power any tablet.
Lenovo X1 hybrid
Bringing the best elements of the X1, the Hybrid is another ultra-slim, ultra light laptop hoping to give the MacBook Air a run for its money. The new Instant Media Mode which is powered by its own dual-core processor and custom Linux operating system boosts the battery life to up to 10 hours allowing users to watch video, listen to music and look at photos without having a severe impact on battery life. If you do run out of juice, the Rapid Power Charge will get you back up to 80% in just thirty minutes.
Price: $1,599 (UK price: TBC)
Due: June 2012
Currently consuming the commutes and lunch breaks of many in the T3 office, Temple Run is a shining example of what is great about the world of mobile gaming. Your quest is to escape from an ancient temple with treasure in hand as you swipe and slide your way through booby traps and over cliffs. Levels are randomized making the reaction-style adventure game endlessly playable while Game Center support means you can brag about your high scores. Think Pitfall but on your iPhone.
Get it now: Download Temple Run now
Bang & Olufsen Beolit 12
Aiming to bring “contemporary design to the digital generation” – bet they can’t wait – Bang & Olufsen is releasing this hamper-esque portable speaker. Part of the new Play line, the Beolit 12 sports Wi-Fi and has the rapidly-becoming-obligatory Apple AirPlay on board, with a simple aluminium and plastic design that’s more B&Q than traditional B&O. Expect 120 watts of sound via a brace of two-inch tweeters and a four inch subwoofer, eight hours of battery life per charge, and a considerable dent in your wallet.
Price: £599 (Launch date: February)
Link: Bang & Olufsen
Fujifilm X-Pro 1
Going from concept to reality, this is the interchangeable lens follow up to Fuji’s mega-swank X100, X10 and XS-1. Built to take on the Micro Four Thirds and other hybrid systems of this world, it uses a new X-Trans CMOS sensor, which rearranges the way colours are detected, giving better quality images. You also get 1080p video recording, a hybrid optical/ electronic viewfinder and, at launch, the choice of a trio of high quality lenses – a Leica M mount will also be available.
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Klipsch G-17 Air Airplay speakers
It looks like a close relative of Microsoft’s Kinect, but this wall mountable AirPlay speaker system is strictly about liberating music from your iOS devices. With glossy piano black looks, the G-17 works over Wi-Fi and hosts two 20W RMS woofers and a pair of 10W aluminium tweeters to deliver crisp, clear sound. If you don't want to mirror your music, you can hook it up via USB instead to enjoy your iTunes library.
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Your dark days of struggling through dull PowerPoint presentations could soon be over, courtesy of Microvision’s PicoP Gen 2 HD laser display engine and PicoMagic apps. In conjunction, they allow you to project 3D presentations or, if you want to get even more “future”, an interactive touchscreen display on the nearest available wall space. It’s also primed for gamers who want to get closer to the action. Wall-sized Whale Trail anyone?
Price: £TBC (Launch date: Out late 2012)
Mobee Magic Feet
Keeping your achingly stylish Apple wireless keyboard, Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse fully charged, the complimentary and equally sexy Mobee Magic Feet inductive charging station props up your peripherals, with six hours of side-by-side battery boosting keeping you in full working order for up to ten days. It also adds four USB ports to your PC-hating armoury while sitting sleekly on your desk 24/7.
Price: £123 (Launch date: Out now)
Razer Project Fiona
Concept addict Razer hopes it has found a gap in the gaming market: a proposed tablet with what looks like two PlayStation Move controllers welded to it. The 10.1-inch, 720p tea traya- like runs Windows 8 and uses a Core i7 processor but it’s the two nunchuk pads that intrigue. Could the simplicity of touchscreen control and the precision of dual sticks revive PC gaming as a commercial force?
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Samsung Series 9 Notebook
When is an ultrabook not an ultrabook? When Samsung says so. The Series 5 toes the official ultrabook line, but this Core i5-powered Series 9 overhaul goes by the title of The World’s Thinnest Laptop, with the 13- inch model just 12.9mm at its thickest point and 1.13kg. It boots up in a nippy 9.8 seconds, has a ten-hour battery life and on the top model, squeezes a 15-inch screen into a 14- inch body. Just don’t call it an ultrabook…
Price: $1,400 (UK prices TBC) (Launch date: Out March)
Sharp Aquos Board
Not content with flooding homes with über-colourful Quattron TVs, Sharp turns its attention to high-powered executive presentations, retail and the classroom with a massive new range of touchscreen displays. Available in 60-, 70- and 80- inch models the Aquos Board runs on Windows 7 and has Microsoft Office support. Dual touch capabilities means if you’re called up to answer a question, you can get it wrong via stylus as well as your hand.
Price: £TBC (Launch date: TBC)
Sony Xperia S
…And the new Walkman isn’t the only Sony “refocusing”. Having expunged Ericsson from Sony Ericsson, the first Sony-branded smartphone has been unveiled. Powered by a meaty, dualcore 1.5GHz Qualcomm chip, the Xperia S has a 4.3-inch Bravia screen, a 12 megapixel/1080p cam and access to the Sony Entertainment Network’s music and movies. It runs Android 2.3, upgrading in due course to Android 4.0, we’re assured…
Price: £TBC (Launch date: Out March)
Sony Z100 Walkman
Sony is reinventing its iconic, if slightly shop-soiled, Walkman brand with a little help from Android 2.3. This 4.3-inch iPod Touch rival is powered by a 1GHz Tegra 2, while Wi-Fi and DLNA allow you to throw content on to your TV à la Apple’s AirPlay and there’s also HDMI. Sound quality and access to Sony Entertainment Network should be its secret weapons.
Price: £161 (8GB), £180 (16GB), £213 (32GB) (Launch date: out Spring)
Sky Go for Android
iOS users have been enjoying the on-the-move access of Sky Sports, Sky News and Sky Movies for some time and now lo and behold it's finally coming to Android. Set to be compatible with Google-powered tablets and smartphones like the Samsung Galaxy S2 and a range of HTC handsets, the Android roll out will also take the opportunity to introduce Sky Atlantic, Sky 1, Sky Living and Sky Arts to the Sky Go service, so you'll have no excuse catching up on the Wire or Cougar Town...
Price: Free (Launch date: February)
Proper noise-cancelling ’phones – not the ones that just stuff silicone in your ears – require power, so the K495 NC offers just that, delivered by USB charging. The chunky head ornaments can blare tunes for 40 hours on one charge and sound quality is top-notch. Want some incomprehensible stats? There’s a 50mW output and a frequency range of 20Hz-20kHz. You’re welcome.
Price: £350, AKG.com, Out now
The team behind the Level 10 GT PC case, Thermaltake and BMW DesignworksUSA, is back in the game, with the Level 10 M taking a similarly slick, industrial-design approach to create a mouse that could almost be sentient. Aimed at hardcore gamers and those who have an insatiable need to pimp their desk, this is the T1000 of computer mice, with its ominous, red-glowing heart protected by a distinctly Terminator-ish exoskeleton. Spec details are thin on the ground but will hopefully include laser tracking, a suitably high DPI count and the ability to kill with its mechanical thumbs.
Price: £TBC, thermaltake.com, Out TBC
The 3.0 is, totes obvs, the third vanity child of the Prada/LG civil partnership. It combines a 4.3-inch NOVA AMOLED display with a thickness of just 8.5mm and a unique Android Gingerbread skin designed by the Italian fashion label. The 3.0 is also on course to get a bite of Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, meaning that it not only looks chic, it’s also on the bleeding edge of OS fashion. At this price, it’s also by far the cheapest way to always wear Prada.
Price: £430, Phones4U.co.uk , Out now
Picture your dream house. Inside there’s a cinema, a pool and, no doubt, a purpose-built gaming room. Enter stage right the Emperor 200, the centrepiece of said imaginary room in aforementioned fantasy abode. Adjustable seating, touchscreen controls, surround sound and three 28-inch screens will have you flinching as the bullets fly past you – each tailored to your exact dream spec, naturally. Then you wake up and reach for your wallet…
Price: £28,560, mwelab.com, Out now
Helping exercise fiends (including a few in the T3 office) monitor every mile put in at the gym or down the park, the next evolutionary step in Nike+ world makes the fitness tracking even more comprehensive. Placing four pressure sensors in your trainers which work in conjunction with an accelerometer, you will now be able to track live information like height jumped, foot speed which means every squat jump or rope sip can now be accurately added to your workout total. The new system will be rolled out first for Nike’s Lunar TR1+ trainers range..
Price: Free, Nike, TBC
Bringing audio warmth to your home cinema surroundings in a subtle and stylish way, B&W has added the MT-60D to its Mini sound system range. The premium sound performance is delivered courtesy of a M-1 loudspeaker and an accompanying PV1D subwoofer which retains the compact shape as previous models, adding an OLED display, EQ options and touch buttons to let you fine-tune all the way into the opening scene.
Price: £1,945, B&W, Out now
Mixing style and substance in equal measures, the K-01 is the first digital camera to be designed by Marc Newson (G-Star, Jaeger-LeCoultre) that is also brandishes the world’s thinnest fixed focal lens. Boasting a 16-Megapixel CMOS sensor, there’s a HDR (High Dynamic Range) setting on the mode dial to take images at three levels of exposure and the brand new Prime engine lets you select one of 81 focal points giving you an almost unrivalled number of options when shooting. Throw in a 3-inch screen and oversized buttons fashioned out of machined aluminium and you got yourself one stylish snapper.
Price: £629.99 (£679.99 with 40mm lens), Pentax.co.uk, End of March
A truly original take on the iPad 2 stand, the Magnus rather ingeniously uses super-powerful magnets to give the illusion that the tablet is attached to the base by magic, or perhaps glue. Hewn from a single block of aluminium, and hand-finished to look like a tab extension rather than an accessory, it even works through protective casings. Two hands are recommended for wrenching it from the mount, mind.
Price: $50, tenondesign.com, Out now
This Android-compatible super-goggle from Smith Optics and Recon Instruments contains a micro-optics display (MOD) and a heads-up display (HUD) – so that’s a MOD HUD, we guess. This puts real-time altitude, speed and location info right in your line of sight, with incoming weather-related unpleasantness and the position of particularly avoidable acquaintances just two things it can keep you abreast of.
Price: £TBC, smithoptics.eu, Out TBC
The first Galaxy Tab is still the second best-selling tablet behind the iPad, so while Samsung now has every possible screen size covered, expectations are still high for its second seven-incher. The Tab 2 isn’t fazed, packing Ice Cream Sandwich, a 1GHz dualcore processor, 1024x600 touchscreen, three-megapixel cam, 1GB RAM and either 8, 16 or 32GB of storage. Those are fighting specs, sir.
Price: £TBC, samsung.com/uk, Out TBC
Durable, foldable and flexible, the Capital is the “Last line of resistance against the… overpowering sights, sounds and rapidly changing environments of the city.” So that’s nice. The bulky yet clinical design, reinforced fibreglass housing and in-line three buttons and mic for play, pause, scrolling and answering calls makes this an enviable headset.
Price: £75, AIAIAI.DK, Out May
Careful scratching the vinyl on this turntable as it’s perched upon a solid round of Ash. Each Chipmunk is handmade and entirely original, with Music Hall audio parts ensuring your LP of The Carpenter’s Greatest Hits sounds pristine.
Price: £565, Audiowood.com, Out now
This compact runaround will be the first car to hit the UK with Ford’s SYNC in-car tech. Offering Bluetooth pairing and voice activation from smartphones – it understands nine languages – plus audio player connectivity and live emergency assistance, SYNC will then be rolled out to the rest of the Ford convoy – Fiesta, Focus, Cougar and Transit. Hopefully they won’t all be brown. For more futuristic car tech, head to p26.
Price: From £13,995, Ford.co.uk, Out September
The original, 5.3-inch Note caused much debate: was it a giant smartphone or a dwarf tablet? Sharing the limelight with the many Galaxy Tabs, Samsung’s second Note has a more substantial, 10.1-inch screen. The S-Pen stylus and proprietary S-Note software allow for creative doodling, but now on a bigger scale, and a 1.4GHz dualcore keeps things zipping along nicely.
Price: £TBC, Samsung.com/uk, Out 2012
Modern takes on classic novel sleeves, from Dracula to War of the Worlds. You may be reading Andy McNab, but at least your e-reader will look high brow. If this doesn't take your fancy, you can check out our round-up of the best Kindle cases to cart around your Amazon eReader.
Price: £15, weloveodd.com, Out now
The move to quadcore processors isn’t limited to smartphones; it makes even more sense in tablets. Another Chinese dragon, ZTE is lining up a 10.1-inch Android tab with a 1.5GHz quadcore, 1GB of RAM and 16GB of storage. A five-meg camera brings up the rear and the Android Army has a powerful new, Ice Cream Sandwich-running ally.
Price: £TBC, ZTE.co.uk, Out 2012
New iPad? Check. Still yearning for the option to type out your emails on your Apple tablet? Well this Bluetooth keyboard case should be in your sights. With four modes of use (Laptop, Movie, Tablet and Carry), the Crux360 with a clamshell design holds your new iPad in place with a ‘window cover’ to protect the rear of the tablet with one touch Bluetooth buttons for a nice and speedy setup.
Price: $150, CruxCase.com, Out May 12
The brainstorming note-taking essential has now added speech-to-text translation to its Android app and widget which should make recording and transcribing interviews a pain-free process from your smartphone. Minor updates to customizable buttons and layouts still makes this a app you need in your life.
Price: Free, Evernote.com, Out now
Klipsch has opted against going down the hip hop artist route instead enrolling Lou 'Take a Walk on the Wild Side' Reed to help ship a few more pairs of its impressive X10i earphones. Boasting the same noise isolation technology as the original X10i 'phones and a 3-button remote for switching between calls and your music, Reed claims that these are 'Serious headphones for the serious listener.'
Price: £299.99, Klipsch, Out now
Feed your 80s electronic nostalgia with the virtual analogue drum synthesizer that won't take up a sizeable chunk of your living room space. The Swedish manufacturer let’s you tinker with futuristic percussion sounds and has four inputs that mean you can hook it up with other drum kits to widen the range of places to slap your ‘sticks.
Price: £369, Nord, Out now
The Japanese TV king rejoined the European smartphone market last month with the unveiling of the original Panasonic Eluga, an OLED-toting smartphone with a name like a cut-price vodka brand. However, it’s the Eluga’s dressed-up sibling that’s caught our eye. A mighty beast of a handset, it boasts a 1.5GHz Qualcomm S4 dualcore processor, Android Ice Cream Sandwich OS and an eight-meg camera. The 8GB of storage is disappointing, but the five-inch 720p HD LCD screen is the kind of finery you’d expect from telly royalty.
Price: £478, Panasonic.co.uk, Out late April
The more budget-friendly member of the Transformer family, the 300T is powered by a NVIDIA Tegra 3 quad-core processor like the Transformer Prime and comes with a 10.1-inch IPS screen with 1280x800 resolution. If you like taking tablet snaps, there’s a 8-megapixel rear-facing camera and a 1.2-megapixel front-facing camera to take care of video calls. It comes with the now customary QWERTY keyboard dock which packs USB and SD card support. Expect up to 15 hours of tablet time before the 300T needs charging up again.
Price: £399 I Out early May I Asus.com
Looking for a DSLR that’s a cut above? The Canon 5D hosts a 22.3-meg, full-frame CMOS sensor alongside a DIGIC 5+ imaging processor. Capable of shooting six stills per second, it’s also a top-notch video camera, with 1080p footage recorded at up to 30fps. At £3K, the 5D is one for serious photographers who are seriously loaded. After something a little more affordable?
Globe-Trotter, maker of “heritage luggage”, if you please, teams up with Fujifilm on this limited edition case for the similarly plush X-Pro 1 camera. Only 12 have been handmade on original Victorian machinery at the Globe-Trotter factory in Broxbourne, Hertfordshire, and each has lavishly hand-tooled compartments to house the X-Pro 1 plus its fl ash, filter and three lenses. This is another Harrods exclusive, so you can pick one up when you get your 152-inch telly…
Price: £5,695 for camera and case I Out now
Been looking for a computer that’s like an iMac but more powerful, brutish and Windows- or Linuxbased? HP’s Z1 all-in-one offers a range of specs, with quadcore Intel processors, up to 2TB of storage, a Blu-ray drive and an entirely bonkers maximum 32GB of RAM. The beauty is that, unlike the iMac, you can snap open that 27-inch, 2560x1440- pixel screen and gain easy access to all the innards, upgrading as your requirements and technology advance. A smidgeon of technical know-how is advisable, and it’s butt ugly compared to an Apple machine, but for the tech savvy, this is the ultimate future-proof all-in-one PC.
Price: From £1,381
Joining the growing legion of AirPlay pimps is gadget peripheral “playa” Logitech with this gently curved UE speaker. As always, it offers easy streaming over Wi-Fi from Apple devices running iOS 4.2 onwards, no pairing required, and Macs and PCs running iTunes 10.1 and up. The free Logitech UE Air app makes setup simple – just dock and follow the instructions – and the piano black, curvy looks both make it lounge-worthy and deliver a decent sound stage. A slide-out iDock sits front and centre for charging and more conventional playback.
This gargantuan, 152-inch 3D telly is now on sale at Harrods at a very Harrods price. The AV behemoth features the same on-screen real estate as nine 50-inch TVs, with the 4K2K display boasting a 4096x2160 resolution that’s four times sharper than current hi-def. Naturally it finds full-HD 3D output a walk in the park, but it weighs more than 500kg so maybe reinforce your floorboards first.
Price: £600,000 I Out now
Plug these into your DJ source of choice and you have the ultimate all-in-one remix station. The RMX-1000 can be used with mixers, CDJs and laptops, with umpteen control parameters modified using the Remixbox software included. Pioneer plans to make settings available to download from such DJing household names as Chuckie, Kutski, Doorly and James Zabiela. So that’s nice.
Out May I www.pioneer.eu
The biggest cycling event of the year is still a couple of months away, but you get on the saddle with Polar’s limited edition RCX5 training computer that sports the same yellow and black colours as the iconic winning jersey. Also suitable for running, the RCX5 can adjust heart rate zones to tailor each training session, enable you to run against a target race pace and slap on the GPS unit to track route details and upload to the Polar website to see if you are making good progress on that long road to fitness.
Price: £374.50 I Out now I www.polaruk.co.uk
Found-footage films are all over the cinema like a rash, from the interesting Chronicle to the catastrophic The Devil Inside. Now you can milk that cash cow yourself with the Handycam GW55VE. We mean, how hard can it be? This mid-price, full-HD camcorder can film anywhere, being waterproof to five metres, dust resistant and able to survive drops of up to 1.5 metres. Sony’s Exmor R CMOS Sensor means it’ll also do the business in less than ideal lighting conditions such as overcast family barbecues, caves or exorcisms in badly lit basements, without too much noise creeping in. Hey – there’s a mister Spielberg on the phone for you, fella…
Price: £550 I Out May Iwww.sony.co.uk
Gallic synthbotherer Jean Michel Jarre’s audio company generally turns out tree-sized devices of exquisitely poor taste, all festooned with glass and metal. This scaled down one, however, is rather handsome in a sci-fi way, and comes in a choice of black, white or bamboo fi nishes. It connects via an iConnector or 3.5mm socket for other players.
The gaming PC maker’s to carry around willy-nilly. new Intel Ivy Bridge-based laptop has an otherworldly spec list, capable of running even the most demanding games. Under the anodised aluminium shell you get a 2.20GHz Intel Core i7 processor, a 1.5GB GDDR5 graphics card, an 18.4-inch full-HD 1080p screen and a 750GB hard drive, or 256GB solid state storage for an extra £300. That’s a lot of firepower.
Those mesmerising shots of space that bring about “the Brian Cox gush” on Wonders of theUniverse don’t just happen by themselves. They require hours of patience and a camera of the quality of Canon’s EOS 60Da. Designed for astro-snaps specifi cally, its 18-megapixel, APS-C CMOS has an ISO range that runs to 12,800, letting in enough light for you to capture the stars. Just head out of the city – light pollution will mess your view in urban areas – whop it on a tripod in one of its time-lapse shooting modes and leave the 60Da to do its thing, while you emote in a slightly camp, northern accent over a crescendo of stirring music.
The Xolo has a sleek frame, Google’s Android 2.3 Gingerbread OS – an Ice Cream Sandwich update is promised – plus a 1.6GHz processor, a four-inch, 1024x600 touchscreen and an eightmegapixel/1080p camera. Yet it’s remarkable in one respect: the X900 is one of the fi rst mobiles to use an Intel CPU, with the silicon king’s Hyper Threading tech hopefully providing better multitasking than the low price suggests.
Having recently revived its iconic Razr line, Motorola has set about solving one of the biggest bugbears of modern smartphones: crappy battery life. The Razr Maxx’s 3,300mAh battery gives it 17 hours 40 minutes of talk time. This is at the cost of a slight girth boost, but at 8.99mm deep it’s hardly obese. The 4.3-inch Super AMOLED, eight-meg camera and 1.2GHz dualcore processor of the standard Razr are all present.
It’s claimed these high-end in-ears boast audio quality that’s up there with full-size headphones, using 7mm Extra Wide Band drivers to give a more lifelike sound and greater range. Crafted from scratch-resistant ceramic they come with an arsenal of different sized silicon tips. No details on pricing yet, but we suspect it’ll also be “up there with full-size headphones”…
Serving up wireless streaming from your iOS or Android device, the cuboDock Bluetooth dock is a two-way, four driver speaker system housed in a cabinet that helps give out an extra bassy sound. With Apple’s 30-pin connector up front and a remote to control your iPod or iPhone, this slick audio home is available in a natural bamboo or walnut real wood veneer.
The satnav maestros aim to make getting from A to B easier courtesy of the larger 6-inch surroundings on its latest navigation device. As well as the increase in button and menu space, the Start 60 which can be dual mounted, comes with a lifetime’s worth of free daily map changes as well as popular features like TomTom Map Share and Parking assist.
If rummaging around Spotify trying to create playlists is tiresome, WE7’s new look app does mobile streaming a little differently. Boasting 10 million tracks, you can create personalized radio stations and then share them over Facebook and Twitter. There’s an offline listening mode as well so you needn’t worry about devouring your data plan.
Like Apple’s Mac Mini but with Windows, the ZBOX Nano XS is a pocket powerhouse. Just 106x106x37mm in size, the AD11 Plus shoehorns in a 1.6Hz AMD dualcore processor, 2GB of DDR3 memory, an AMD Radeon HD 6320 GPU and a 64GB SSD for speedier, more reliable access to your games and apps. There’s also USB 3, eSATA and N Wi-Fi connectivity, and it can lock on to a monitor’s wall mount, keeping everything “tidy”, as the Welsh say.
Bringing all the quality you’d expect from such wallet-rupturingly pricey speakers, the XLFs are designed to produce a true-to-life representation of live music. These titans stand 1.78m tall and contain two woofers, two mid-range speakers, a tweeter and a “super tweeter”. We tested it out and, let us tell you, Shaddap You Face by Joe Dolce has never sounded better.
A wireless subwoofer that’s evidently been designed to resemble a shocked emoticon, the Sub links up with other Sonos products, including the Play:3 powered speaker, has one-button configuration and can be controlled from your PC, Mac or Android or iOS mobile device. Much like T3’s Rob Temple it works equally well standing up or lying down, even under a sofa, with dual speakers pounding the funk into your solar plexus.
Get your motor running, head out on the highway, looking for adventure… and maybe a plug socket. Yes, you can forget ugly, semi-electric push bikes and dumpy city cars; the Empulse R has futuristic motorbike looks and a top speed of 100mph, which, last time we checked, is higher than the UK speed limit. It’ll do 100 miles on a single charge, eclipsing most electric cars, and musters up an 80 per cent battery charge from just two hours connected to the grid. Brammo’s beast is a must-have for all eco-conscious easy riders, even if the name does remind us of a certain heroin-addled Grange Hill character…
After the black-and-white success of The Artist (see p44), here’s the world’s first digital camera with a dedicated, full-frame, black and white sensor for true monochrome photography. The removal of the need for colour processing means the Monochrom’s 18-meg sensor summons up incredibly sharp images. You also get top B&W image-processing software Silver Efex Pro free, plus Adobe Photoshop Lightroom 4.
Festival season got you feeling juice deprived? This battery backup carries enough oomph to charge an iPhone three times over, and can even fuel more power-hungry devices like iPads. The ruggedised frame is designed to survive even the most hedonistic of weekends, laughing in the face of dirt, sand and unexpected submersions in Portaloos. With dual-USB ports it can even charge two gadgets at once. Share the love or be spectacularly antisocial? Choice is yours
This convivial golfing companion provides you with a magnified and stat-laden view of the course, showing distances up to 915m. Nikon’s Target Priority Switch system allows you to change focus between ball and pin, while distances are slope-adjusted for greater accuracy, aiding club selection. Unfortunately, it won’t actually hit the ball for you, and while the 1000 AS is branded with the London 2012 Olympics logo, golf won’t actually be an Olympic sport again until 2016.
Bid adieu to screen-tapping, postcode misspelling, in-car navigation misery with TomTom’s Via 130, whose speak-and-go features allow you to issue up to 1,000 commands vocally. The 4.3-inch display offers crisp visuals and the Bluetooth facilitates hands-free calls. Sandy Balls is in the New Forest, if you were wondering.
This latest Android tablet packs the requisite quadcore processor, this time a Nvidia Tegra 3. However, Toshiba claims to have snuck a fifth engine into the processor, taking care of mundane tasks and extending the battery life to up to ten hours. Despite this extra oomph the sturdy aluminium shell is relatively thin and light. It comes with Ice Cream Sandwich out of the box and a 10.1-inch, 1280x800 LED backlit display, toughened with Gorilla Glass. It’s also significantly cheaper than an iPad, which is, strangely, quite novel still.
Price: £329 (16GB) £379 (32GB)
When you give business presentations, are they marred by the audience yelling things like, “I can’t see it, it’s too light in here,” “Why isn’t this in full HD?” and “Get out of my bathroom, I’m trying to use the toilet”? This 1080p ViewSonic projector offers 3,000 lumens of brightness, so is viewable in “virtually any setting”, a 4,000:1 contrast ratio and a battery of digital imagebuffing technologies for under a grand. There’s also a full cast of connectivity options including dual HDMIs.
This WD hard drive range sports a high-speed Thunderbolt port for copying files in a fl ash to and from compatible devices – Apple Macs of recent vintage, primarily. It works with Apple Time Machine, naturally, and can be Raid1 configured for double the protection and all-day freshness. Speeds go up to 10Gbps – 20x the speed of USB 2 and double the pace of USB 3 – and 4GB and 6GB versions are available. Pretty damn pro, in short.
Jumping on the streaming music bandwagon, B&O unveiled its digital receiver earlier this month that will liberate the music from your tablet, smartphone, Mac, PC or media server and send it to a pair of B&O compatible speakers. The Apple AirPlay and DLNA-certified device comes in an Apple-esque white design and can control volume and mute functions from the device itself, while additional Playmakers can be added to the setup. Granted you will have to invest in some pretty pricey B&O speakers though...
Available in B&O Stores
They may slightly resemble a oneslice sandwich toaster, but that makes for good noise insulation and with tasty, 40mm drivers and Bluetooth, Harman Kardon’s first ever headphones are hi-tech and sound the business. An in-line mic and control buttons make them smartphone friendly, while the rechargeable battery keeps you bumping in a wireless stylee for up to 12 hours – you can plug in a cable after that.
Beneath the hood of this chunky fella lurks an Intel Core i7 processor. Combined with a 1.5GB Nvidia GeForce GTX 670M graphics chip and 16GB worth of zippy DDR3 memory, it makes this a corking gaming laptop for relatively few pennies. Running Windows 7 Home Premium, it’s home to a 17.3-inch and 1080p screen, with a 750GB hard drive and eight-speed DVD rewriter providing ample storage options. Well, that’s the basic spec – as you’d expect with a game jockey’s PC, you can customise to your heart’s content and your wallet’s consternation, till you have something powerful enough to squash a PS3 like a grape.
Price: From £1,050
Scrapping the wood veneer of past SoundSpheres, Philips opts for a futurist, metallic finish on its latest 2x25W iDock. The unique design and advanced audio processing offer up a performance that is, says Philips, “as the artist intended” –impressive for something that resembles a pair of bongos with eyes on stalks.
The DS6600 comes with matching remote, or you can use the Fidelio app to control playback and add web radio and alarm clock functionality. A 3.5mm input lets non-Apple devices join the party.
Price: From £400
This ten-meg snapper serves up 2x3-inch prints in under a minute using ZINK ink-less tech. Gosh, who ever dreamt that Polaroid would one day make a camera that produced photos instantly? However, with a three-inch LCD display, built-in flash and onscreen cropping, it’s a thoroughly modern take on the tech that made the brand’s name. For the hyper-coloured, classic Polaroid “look”, you’ll have to stick to Hipstamatic, but you can at least add borders to your snaps, while the prints have a self-adhesive backing “for extra fun”; we think you can be the judge of that.
Price: £130 for cam and 10 zink sheets, replacement sheets £15 for 100
More than just another smartphone smock, Pong’s iPhone offering touts a built-in antenna to bolster your handset’s reception. It also promises to boost battery life as phones burn more power when they have a very weak signal and are constantly searching for a connection. Paranoiacs will be pleased to know the Pong also houses an electromagnetic field that reduces your exposure to radiation, keeping you safe from government mind control and cancer. Possibly.
The bedside tablet-friendly Sensia gets a touchscreen makeover and now comes with support for Pure Stream which means you can wirelessly stream music and radio over Wi-Fi from Android and iOS smartphones and tablets. The 5.7-inch colour touchscreen 200D displays weather reports as well as Twitter and Facebook updates and alongside the usual its usual DAB+ goodness displays live artwork for stations. Expect 30 watts of sound from the full-range speakers with an input for iPod/MP3 player support, but best of all you can now record live internet and digital radio via USB in a kind of modern version of recording the Top 40 on tape.
Price: From £249.99
Styled with asymmetrical elegance, this 27- inch HD power-user’s monitor with 5,000: 1 contrast ratio and a 178-degree viewing angle connects to more than just your PC; 1080p video can be relayed from your smartphone and tablet through the Mobile HD Link (MHL). An HD TV tuner means it works as a smart telly, too, with Samsung’s celebrated apps enhancing your viewing pleasure, while Intel’s wireless display tech reduces the horror of potential cable-trip hazardousness.
Sony has the iPod Touch in its sights with this Android MP3 player offering that comes with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich which means access to Google Play and all its app goodness. Measuring in at 8.9cm, the F800 sports a 3.5-inch multi-touchscreen and runs on a NVIDIA dualcore processor which means it should handle gaming as well. The typically crisp sound is delivered courtesy of the S-Master MX Digital Amplifier and Clear Audio technologies on board, while Music Unlimited support means you get access to Sony’s catalogue of digital tunes and the ability to transfer playlists to take on your travels.
Google TV finally hits the UK, with this Sony box packing the Big G’s Android Honeycomb OS, Chrome browser and a range of tailored apps. As a result, you can browse the web and access all the video delights it has to offer, although as it’s Google, clearly YouTube is a high priority. A cheap way to bring smart TV features to an older telly, the crowning glory of this is the touchpad remote, which flips over to reveal a full QWERTY keyboard. Or you can just use your smartphone.
Moving on to France in our Eurovision Tech Contest, this tab follows the saintly path of the Google Nexus 7 – reviewed on p101 – serving up a decent spec for not much dosh. Running Android Ice Cream Sandwich, it’s fronted by a 9.7-inch, 1024x768-pixel screen with – zutalors! – in-plane switching for wider viewing angles. A 1GHz processor and 1GB of RAM means it doesn’t get left behind by pricier rivals, while at 11.4mm deep and 618g in weight it’s by no means portly. The 16GB of storage matches the £200 Nexus 7 but unlike that device there’s a microSD port – ooh la la! – for adding more movies, music and apps.
With HD and 3D well established to the point of being old hat, it’s time to sell up and move out to 4K ultra-HD: let Sony be your guide. Its latest super-projector is aimed at small cinemas and the homes of the one per cent, and boasts a staggering 4096x2160p resolution, 5,000:1 contrast ratio and 15,000-lumen brightness. There’s also 4TB of internal storage for downloaded movies and a brace of HDMI ports. Now all you need is something to watch on it…
AirPlay, Android and Windows streaming compatible, the Cocoon comes in black and white and can run for five hours on a single battery charge. Delivering 100W of stellar sound, the dock hosts USB and ethernet inputs on the back means it'll support most audio file formats, while there’s also internet radio on board. A built in carry handle means you can cart your tunes down to the nearest park or relocate it to the back garden.
Travelling gamer? Ditch that headset that looks like two dustbins strapped to your head and get this swivel-cupped fella, which folds down to a compact form for storage or taking round to a mate’s. With 50mm neodymium drivers you’ll have no audio complaints, with plenty of bass and crisp separation so you can hear if someone’s creeping up behind you. Volume controls for each ear, in-line controls and an integrated mic with mute switch also feature.
Price: £TBC (US $50)
Need a pair of headphones that can put up with rain, sweat, bumps and scrapes? Klipsch does a much-loved line in earbuds, and it’s now turned one of that line into unkillable super-buds, not unlike Jason Bourne out of TheBourne Identity. As a result you get no-compromise audio, but also a rugged finish, with an oversized three-button remote usable by gloved fingers and rubber mouldings to protect from knocks and drops. They also feature an iPhone-compatible, in-line mic for hands-free chit-chat, a range of colour options and the ability to turn just about any household item into a deadly weapon.
Many, many fine things have come from Switzerland: 80s industrial rock band The Young Gods and Grùyere cheese being two that we can think of off the top of our heads. Lenco is from the land of the alpenhorn, and it’s produced this brushed aluminium iPhone dock, CD player and FM radio, which blasts out 65W of audio in a 2.1 configuration, with Absolute 3D Sound conjuring up chunky audio despite the unit’s small size.
Now that you all Olympic inspired, the GPS-powered fitness tracking wristwear now comes in a brightly hued shade and gold design. New looks aside, it’s still one of the simplest ways to keep an eye on how many miles you have packed in as well as monitoring speed and distance with a USB connector to upload and charge on your MAC or PC. Now go forth and collect those Nike Fuel points…
BSkyB is taking on LoveFilm and Netflix with its most democratic film service yet. For £15 a month Now TV gives you all that Sky Movies has to offer without the need for a full subscription, or you can pay per view, with films from 99p to £3.49. There are 600+ movies over 11 channels, all available for viewing on PC, Mac and Android mobiles, with iOS devices to follow. Sporting events are promised by the year’s end.
Price: Subscription £15 per month
Tailored to fit with 32- to 42-inch TVs, this 790mm-long soundbar adds audio oomph, but little in the way of bulk, with six 40mm drivers and a pair of 19mm aluminium dome tweeters, dishing out 64W of sonic violence. As well as twin phono and 3.5mm connections it comes with its own bracket for easy wall mounting.
A premium semi-compact camera with social networking nous, the 12-meg EX2F has a wide-angle, f/1.4 lens that’ll produce the goods in challenging lighting, video recording in 30fps, 1080p full HD fashion and an HDMI connector for viewing results of same. Best of all, Wi-Fi lets you beam your snaps straight up to Facebook, Flickr et al without you having to fumble about with SD cards like some sort of Cro-Magnon.
Entirely unrelated to the fine German automobile, the brightly hued speaker dock has room for an iPad and an iPhone to cover standard mobile calls and video chats all answered by the sleek handset. Pairing by Bluetooth, non-iPhone owners can also make calls four built-in speakers to take care of impromptu conference calls.
These days, if you want to carry on using your blower’s nifty features on the commute home as well as on the way to work, you’re going to need a lunchtime top-up. Alternatively, Energie’s Chargegenie uses “gel pack” tech to double the battery life of your Android, BlackBerry or WP7 phone, suckering on the back like the exact opposite of a parasite.
Say hello to our little friend: the lightest laptop in the world. This carbon fibre ultrabook is 975g – less weighty than the clodhopping bulk of the 1.08kg MacBook Air 11-inch, with a glass touchpad adding further fl air. A 16:9, 1366x768 (the same res as the Air), LED-backlit screen and “hi-fi ” speakers make it multimedia-friendly; an i5 or i7 processor, 128GB SSD, 4GB of RAM and USB 3.0 keep it lively.
Price: From £999
The J1 compact system cam from Nikon was, and is, a fine snapper. Now its successor is here, packing a 10.1-meg sensor, EXPEED 3 image processing and full-HD video – all exactly like the first one/1. Smart Photo Selector takes 20 high-res images at speed and selects the five best ones – just like on the first one/1 – and the dimensions are also pretty much identical. What is new is that the screen resolution has doubled to 921,000 pixels – which is great – and the mode dial lets you have at some new creative modes – which is nice. With the J1 now available at a bargain £280, this might be one to leave off purchasing for a few months, but it is a class act.
Fancy a pair of floating speakers? This set of digital speakers with serious minimalist Scandinavian chic is made from acrylic glass and is thinner than your average LED TV. With a combined 160 watts of power and Patented Actisonic® and Actiline® digital audio technology, expect crisp, clear sound and smooth bass in equal measures. The accompanying hub and RF touch remote will let you connect other devices, so all that is left to do is find some free wall space.
Not got a spare £200,000 to buy a Ferrari with? This virtual equivalent – a direct, exact copy of the wheel in a 458 – not only fills that aching void in your life, it also boasts the most macho name this side of the Razer Deathstalker Ultimate. Just whack your racing video game of choice into your Xbox 360 and let loose your racing fantasies, complete with adjustable height and racing pedals. Our favourite title to play with it? Ageing Lothario In Monte Carlo With Much Younger “Girlfriend” 6, of course!
Inspired by Instagram loving social media addicts, the newest addition to Polaroid’s instant camera range comes with an integrated inkless ZINK technology allowing users to print snaps instantly. With a 10-megapixel image sensor and the capability to produce full colour 2 x 3-inch prints in under a minute, pictures can be viewed on a 3.0-inch display and video recording capabilities complete the retro style snapper with a modern twist.
This, the second Sensia web radio, stands out from the audio throng by resembling a colourful egg with a 5.7-inch colour touchscreen on the front. Coming in burnt orange, lime green and mango, with 30W of music power, it combines Pure’s DAB know-how with web radio and wireless streaming from your PC, Mac, iOS or Android via G Wi-Fi. You can also record live radio to USB, and access apps including Facebook and Twitter. Is this the future of radio and/or eggs?
PC gaming hardware holds no truck with the rest of the tech world’s drive towards subtlety in design, nor in product names. The Razer Deathstalker Ultimate gaming keyboard – working titles: Murder Bastard 3000 and The QWERTY of DOOM – lines up a 4.05-inch touchscreen alongside ten dynamic display keys whose function and appearance can be changed depending on the game. Anti-ghosting technology further helps with those twitch kills.
Sony Readers used to be as synonymous with e-readers as Walkmans were with music players. Oh well. The faded giant’s latest slimline offering features a high-contrast, six-inch, “e-ink pearl”, anti-glare screen and will let you read away to your heart’s content for two months per charge. Wi-Fi gives you access to web services, including The Reader Store, which offers up dollops of literature from as little as 20p. It’s an ideal alternative to the Amazon Paperwhite as we wait to see if it lands on these shores.
No, we haven’t forgotten to change the text from a 2006 page template: Sony has designed a new PlayStation 3 console – and it’s 20 per cent smaller and 25 per cent lighter than the already reduced PS3 Slim. Coming in a casual 12GB fl ash storage version or a 500GB hard drived hardcore edition, discs are now loaded from the top, in an 80s Bang & Olufsen CD player stylee, with a new look PS Store, too.
Price: £185 (12GB) And £250 (500GB)
500GB version out now, 12GB Out October 12
With Sonos in its sights, the portable speaker can be used on its own or with more of the devices to stream music over Wi-Fi and Bluetooth around the house. Packed with four tweeters, a subwoofer to deliver the bass and promising 360 degree sound, simply download the iOS or Android Pure Connect app to liberate music stored on the device or scan through internet radio stations and anything packed onto your PC and Mac. An optional rechargeable battery with around 10 hours of playtime means its primed for outdoor action too.