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Holiday Gift Guide 2012: Technology


Kindle FireTechnology is inescapable these days. From cell phones to iPods, it can be tough to know what is the right tool for the right job. At Fanboy Comics, when we need help telling our USBs from our BNCs, we turn to our personal techies, Sam Rhodes and Ellen Tremiti, for the lowdown on all of the latest gadgets. Here’s what they recommend, if you want to impress the techno-geek in your life this holiday season. ~Jason Enright

Kindle Fire
Recommended by Ellen Tremiti


The recently released 7-inch Kindle Fire features a color display with web browsing through Amazon Silk. This tablet competes with the iPad but beats it on price. The 7-inch HD Kindle fire is $199 versus the iPad’s $499 price tag. The 7-inch HD Kindle Fire comes with dolby audio, duel-band duel antenna wi-fi, and an option of 16GB or 32GB (for 32GB, the price bumps to $249).

There are more Kindle Fires available, but they come with a steeper price tag:
Kindle Fire HD 8.9 inch: $299; same features, for 32GB $369.00
Kindle Fire HD 8.9 4G LTE Wireless: $499; same features, plus 4G LTE, standard 32GB with optional 64GB for $599.

The Kindle Fire is still a great option to store and rent thousands of books while also featuring compatibility with movies, TV shows, HBOgo, magazines, audio books, and popular apps. Amazon Prime costumers can stream movies directly to their Kindle Fire. In addition, the Kindle Fire has free Skype video calling ability with its front facing camera. All versions are available at

Kingston USBKingston Data Travel SE9

Recommended by Sam Rhodes

The Kingston Data Traveler SE9 is the portable hard drive you’ve been looking for.  It’s tiny, fitting innocuously on a ring of keys, and comes in either 8GB or 16GB capacity. (My 16GB is less bulky than my car key.) The slick, capless design is what first drew me to it.  It looks like a cute, little metallic stick, as wide as a USB port and maybe twice as long, with a sturdy, built-in ring opposite the business end.  It’s durable, too.  I wouldn’t recommend testing this, but I recently dropped my keys, hard drive and all, in a puddle, and after letting it dry out for a day, it is working perfectly.  The Kingston Data Traveler SE9 is elegant, works on almost any computer, and is available at Frys for $13.  Buy it, put it on your key ring, and forget it.  Seriously, what are you waiting for?!

iPod NanoiPod nano Touch
Recommended by Ellen Tremiti

The new iPod nano features a larger 2.5 inch display versus the previous nano Touch. It has Bluetooth capabilities and comes with 16GB of space. You can store photos and watch videos on this updated nano. It comes in multiple colors, so this gift is customizable for any loved one this holiday season.

The sleek iPod also has built-in fitness features, perhaps my favorite feature, so you can use it as a pedometer or use it to keep track of your jogs. It can update you on your pace and distance while you exercise. You can also sync your workouts directly to Nike+.

The iPod nano Touch is available in stores and from Apple’s website for $149.00 with free shipping.

Snowball ImageBlue Snowball USB Microphone

Recommended by Sam Rhodes

If you want to podcast, you want a Blue Snowball USB microphone.  It’s got everything you need in one simple, inexpensive package.  Unlike many microphones in its price range, the Snowball comes with a detachable swivel mount stand, which is extremely valuable. The stand isn’t perfect, the knuckles are always loosening when you handle it, but that’s only a slight hassle and won’t affect your audio.  It’s also got a built-in pop guard to tame those plosives, which should be sufficient for most podcasts, but if you’re neurotic like me, you can always spend the extra $12 to get an external one too (which mounts easily to the Snowball stand!). The microphone has three recording settings, making it ideal whether you want to record several people around a table or one intimate conversation. It comes in different materials and colors, but I recommend just getting the basic white one to get the most bang for your buck. They’re simple, professional, and look like some robot from Star Wars. What’s not to love?!  





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