Geek Gift Guide

Gadgets and gifts that look good under the tree

Feature by Alex Cole | 30 Nov 2009

Geeks may have changed their image over the past decade, but one thing that hasn’t changed is their love for gadgets. They can be the best people to shop for, or the worst, depending on how closely you follow their tastes. Here’s a quick guide to keep them from using a gift receipt.

Flip Mino HD (£119.99) There are plenty of larger HD camcorders for shooting family video, and plenty of tiny ones for drunken YouTube clips, but up until recently there hasn’t been a toy to do both. The Mino HD has a solid pedigree behind it, shoots in 720p HD, has an hour of built-in memory, and makes computer transfers idiot proof. Looks very slick in black.

Shure se110 (£54.34) Most people hear only jacked-up bass and tinny treble through their earbuds, but if you absolutely must use tiny headphones, it’s worth investing in a solid pair that makes your music sound like it was meant to. This pair hits the sweet spot in price vs. performance. Also check out the Ultimate Ears 3.

Canon PowerShot S90 (£379.00) Point-and-shoot cameras are flooding the market these days (and the front counter of every Curry’s), but this one is a standout. 10 megapixels and host of granular control options give you almost as much flexibility as the beefier G11, but its tiny size and auto functions will help when you just want to fire off a few shots.

Dell Mini 10v (£229.00+) It’s small, it’s a workhorse, and it’s oh-so-hackable. Netbooks make great travel laptops, notetakers and coffee-shop companions, and this one, thanks to an upcoming Flash update, will even handle most video ably. If your giftee is into voiding warranties, this is the right toy.

Freeloader Pro Solar Charger (£53.95) They aren’t perfect, and they won’t solve the energy crisis just yet, but now you can shove a solar panel into your pocket and charge your gadgets anywhere you like. Not that Scotland sees much sun, but this is the perfect charger for holidays, where they probably have a lot more.

Spotify or Dropbox account (£9.99 and £9.99 per month) These days, most of your data doesn’t live on your hard drive – you can get it all from the cloud, wherever you are. Pick up a Spotify account for a tenner a month and get access to a massive playlist on demand, or grab the Dropbox account to get 100GB of online storage for your crucial files and forget about your USB drives. Both have iPhone and Andriod apps, so you get all that juicy data on the road as well.