MP3 players and speakers
MP3 players: Apple iPod Touch (2012)
Bing Shopping: Apple iPod Touch (2012)
The big kahuna of the MP3 player world, this fifth generation of Apple’s venerable iPod Touch line packs a lot into its slender chassis – state-of-the art 1080p video recording, zippy processor, a fantastic screen, and even the included earpods get higher marks this time. An impressive 700,000 available iOS apps will keep you busy for a while.
MP3 players: Apple iPod Nano (2012)
Bing Shopping: Apple iPod Nano (2012)
At half the price of the new iPod Touch, this latest generation of iPod Nano offers a bigger touchscreen than earlier versions, awesome battery life, Wi-Fi streaming capability, plus a pedometer and fitness app so you can modernize your exercise. Video playback and 16 GB of storage round out the seventh generation Nano.
MP3 players: Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2
Bing Shopping: Samsung Galaxy Player 4.2
For all of you Android power users out there, this is the MP3 player to nab. Reviewers liken the Samsung Galaxy Player to a smartphone without the phone, and its ability to run more than 200,000 Android apps, a slimline design, front and rear cameras and Bluetooth capability bear this out.
MP3 players: SanDisk Sansa Clip Zip
Bing Shopping: SanDisk Sansa Clip Zip
Reviewers tout this tiny tune machine as superior to the similarly bargain-priced iPod Shuffle. SanDisk’s Sansa Clip Zip weighs less than an ounce yet provides FM radio, voice recording, an external card slot and a dedicated audiobook function. With its sturdy back clip, it’s an ideal MP3 player for the gym.
MP3 players: Sony W-Series Walkman
Bing Shopping: Sony W-Series Walkman
The Walkman has come a long way from its portable cassette player roots, and now offers an all-in-one design where the MP3 player is built into the earbuds. Perfect for intensive workouts (running, for example), the Wearable Walkman comes with three sizes of eartips for a more personalized fit.
Speakers: Bose Soundlink Wireless Mobile Speaker
Bing Shopping: Bose Soundlink Wireless Mobile Speaker
Bose has a great rep for big sound in small spaces, and their new portable Bluetooth speaker continues the kudo fest. With no distortion at loud volumes, a sturdy design, and at less than 10 inches wide and a little over an inch thick, CNet deems this pint-sized powerhouse “the best portable Bluetooth speaker on the market.”
Speakers: Audyssey Audio Dock Air
Bing Shopping: Audyssey Audio Dock Air
For some, AirPlay is the ideal way to wirelessly access your tunes and other audio entertainment. Compatible with the suite of iOS devices (iPhone, iPad, iPod) and some computers, the Audyssey Audio Dock Air will make (as PCMag puts it) “bass fiends” very happy. Its streamlined appearance also melds well with the Apple universe.
Speakers: Beats Pill
Bing Shopping: Beats Pill
Brand-spanking new, the Pill from Beats by Dr. Dre is a supercool Bluetooth speaker that not only pumps out great sound (via four separate internal speakers), but holds seven hours of charge and turns into a telephone conferencing center via its internal mic. Choose from red, white and black.
Speakers: iHome iHM61
Bing Shopping: iHome iHM61
A neat gift idea at an even neater price (about $25), this palm-sized, collapsible speaker puts on a multicolored light show that blinks in time with the music. The audio quality here is way better than expected, with bass tones especially deep and rich. It’s not wireless, but at this price who’s going to kvetch?
Speakers: Belkin Bluetooth Music Receiver
Bing Shopping: Belkin Bluetooth Music Receiver
Don’t mothball your old stereo setup just yet – Belkin adds some cutting-edge tech to update it for our wire-free future. Awesomely clever and affordable, this sleek little box is a $25 dongle that transforms any stereo or device with an audio input (or even a set of powered speakers) into a Bluetooth-capable music player.