Great geeky gifts for grads

Consumer Reports

Nikon D7100

Nikon D7100

Know someone who's collecting a degree this year? All graduates deserve a reward for making it through school (and before they have to face the rather scary job market that awaits them). Here are some electronics suggestions that should put a smile on any grad's face.






MORE AT COnsumer Reports

A digital SLR and interchangeable lens.

For capturing important events (like, say, graduation), your favorite grad will want a really good camera. The Nikon D7100 (shown at right) is pricey at $1,400, but it has very good quality across the board, and its kit lens has a longer zoom than most: 18-105mm. And as a bonus, it can capture HD video too.



Wireless speakers
Wireless speakers

Headphones are great for private listening, but sometimes your grad may want to kick out the jams with friends. The Edifier iF335BT Bric, $100, delivers good sound in a highly portable package that's among the least expensive Bluetooth speakers we tested.

The speaker, which runs on six AA batteries, has an analog input for playing music from devices that lack Bluetooth, and the built-in microphone can be used for hands-free phone conversations when connected via Bluetooth.

(See also: 14 gifts NOT to buy grads)



Sennheiser CX-215

A set of headphones

The Roku 3 comes with its own purple earbuds, but our tester found them fairly poor-sounding compared to the ones he usually listens with.

A better—and quite affordable— headphones choice might be the Sennheiser CX-215 ($33).

These portable isolating ear-insert earphones deliver very good sound quality and come in five funky colors (blue, bronze, green, orange, and red), and the unusually contoured shells can be easily gripped to ensure a firm fit.



Roku 3

A streaming media player

A grad who's suddenly got a lot more leisure time will appreciate the Roku 3, $100. The streaming-media player offers more than 750 channels, a fast processor, and a new interface that's a joy to use. One unique new feature: a headphone jack is built right into the remote for private listening.

Note that if your grad is heavily invested in Apple's ecosystem and likes access to their iTunes (and iCloud) content, the Apple TV may be a better choice in streaming media players.


A tablet computer
A tablet computer

Finally, if your grad is using an older tablet—or, horrors, doesn't even have a tablet!—consider springing for a nice new one. The Apple iPad Mini, $330 for 16GB, is a great choice in smaller-screen tablets, with very good screen quality and long battery life.

And the new 16GB Samsung Galaxy Note 8, $400 (shown at left), got top marks in our most recent tests; it comes with a stylus, GPS, and memory card reader to expand its storage; but it runs around $70 more than the 16GB Mini.

Copyright © 2006-2013 Consumers Union of U.S., Inc. No reproduction, in whole or in part, without written permission.

Sorry you didn't like this comment. Please provide a reason below.

Are you sure?
Rating failed. Try again.
Request failed. Try again.
We will promote constructive and witty comments to the top, so everyone sees them!
Sorry, we can’t load comments right now. Try again.

    Recommended for You

    • Kim Jong Un’s Wife Makes First Public Appearance In Months

      Ri Sol-ju was last seen in public on March 28 this year and her absence had sparked rumors of pregnancy while some said she may have had a serious falling out with the North Korean leader.

      International Business Times
    • Dear Abby: As his mother, wife feud, he must take a side

      DEAR ABBY: I am a happily married man with one problem that doesn’t go away. I convinced my wife, “Ellen,” to move to Florida so we could be close to my family, but now she doesn’t trust them because of an altercation she had with my mother. Ellen says Mom made negative comments about her and lied about it. My intention was for everyone to come together as a family, but now I feel I must decide whether I can be a part of the family. If I do, my wife feels I am saying it’s OK for my family to hurt her. If I don’t, I’ll feel I’m missing out on spending time with them. Ellen no longer wants anything to do with my family and wants them to apologize. It has been a rough four years being trapped in

      Chicago Sun-Times q
    • Three Drunks on Train Harass Woman in Hijab, Commuters Do Nothing

      New York City police are seeking more information about men who harassed a young woman in a hijab on the subway this week. Yasmin Seweid, an 18-year-old business student, was verbally harassed by the men as she waited for a train on the platform, according to the New York Daily News. The three men were reportedly yelling “Trump” and called Seweid a terrorist as they followed her onto a 6 train in New York City’s east side.

      Yahoo Style
    • Inside the Alleged Abduction of California Mom Sherri Papini

      Keith Papini details what happened before his wife was found alive.

      ABC News q
    • 50 Cent on Kanye West’s Breakdown: ‘You Could See That Coming’

      While many found Kanye West‘s breakdown and hospitalization shocking, fellow rapper 50 Cent says he actually wasn’t too surprised. “That was interesting because I kind of felt like you could see that coming,” 50 Cent said on the topic during a Watch What Happens Live appearance, Thursday. 50 Cent, 41, appeared on the New York City-filmed Bravo talk show with actress Leah Remini.

      People
    • NYPD: Men yelled 'Donald Trump', tried to pull off victim's hijab on subway

      18-year-old Yasmine Seweid is recounting the ugly attack that happened on Thursday night. It was around 10 p.m. when the college student jumped on the 6 train to head home to New Hyde Park, when she noticed three young men in the car.

      WABC – NY
    • Muslim teen verbally attacked on NYC subway

      NEW YORK -- New York City police are looking for three men who taunted a Muslim woman aboard a subway train, yelling “Donald Trump” and calling her a terrorist.  Yasmin Seweid, 18, was still shaken by the traumatic train ride, CBS New York reports.  Around 10 p.m. Thursday, she got on the 6 train at East 23rd Street and Park Avenue after leaving a school event at Baruch College. “I heard them talk, but I had my headphones in, I wasn’t really listening, I had a long day. And they came closer and I distinctly heard them saying, ‘Donald Trump,’” she said. Seweid said she was then verbally attacked by the three drunk, white men. “They were surrounding me from behind and they were like, ‘Oh look,

      CBS News q
    • Grandmother Finds the Mummified Body of Her Missing Grandson in the Attic 2-Years After He Was Reported Missing | B. Scott

      21-year-old Dyquain Rogers was reported missing on November 1st, 2014. On Wednesday, a mummified body believed to be the young man’s was found in the attic of his grandmother’s home. Investigators believe he committed suicide. via NY Daily News: Relatives of Dyquain Rogers are demanding a complete autopsy after the coroner said the death was likely a suicide, according to GoErie.com. “I don’t believe any of this stuff,” aunt Erica Jeffries-Jordan told the news website. “I want answers.” Rogers was last seen in the same house where he was found, which is also where he lived, Erie County Coroner Lyell Cook told the news website. Rogers was reported missing on Nov. 4, 2014. The body was in the Erie

      B. Scott | lovebscott.com q
    • Hollywood Reacts With Disgust At ‘Last Tango” Rape Scene Revelations

      Actors and other public figures are responding with outrage at recently surfaced news that Last Tango In Paris director Bernardo Bertolucci, in a three year old video that only came to light this week, confirmed what co-star Maria Schneider has long said about the film’s most controversial moment: the brutal rape scene was shot without her full consent. The scene in question featured Brando’s character raping Schneider’s character using a stick of butter as lubricant. It…

      Deadline
    • Jennifer Lawrence's Latest Red Carpet Looks Are Out of This World (6 photos)

      Based on the trailer for Jennifer Lawrence and Chris Pratt’s new movie Passengers , the space movie is going to be very sad and very sexy. At each promotional stop though, the actress is making people happy by letting down her new hair extensions and wearing some hot ensembles. And while the promotional tour only recently kicked off, Lawrence has already pulled off a number of diverse and stunning looks. From tight-fitting midi skirts to cool skirt suits, the actress hits the mark every time. Check out some of her best looks so far. Follow us on Facebook , Instagram , and Pinterest for nonstop inspiration delivered fresh to your feed, every day.

      Yahoo Style
    • Trump targets another company, draws Sanders' criticism

      By Doina Chiacu WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President-elect Donald Trump drew a rebuke from former Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders on Saturday, after turning his attention to another Indiana company planning a move to Mexico. "Rexnord of Indiana is moving to Mexico and rather viciously firing all of its 300 workers. Rexnord Corp , an industrial supplier based in Milwaukee, announced plans in October to move a bearing plant, and its 300 jobs, from Indianapolis to Mexico, employees told the Indianapolis Star at the time.

      Reuters
    • Social Security: 1 Terrible Reason to File for Benefits at 67 -- The Motley Fool

      Sure, you'll get higher benefits. But what will you lose by working longer?

      The Motley Fool q
    • Watch: Huge Ford Raptor Jump Gone Wrong

      We’ll never know what possesses a person to jump such a beautiful (and expensive) truck knowing that the outcome probably isn’t going to be good.  This Ford Raptor jump had almost no chance of turning out well.  I guess a big crowd and a shot at a few minutes of fame is enough for some people… check out the carnage below.

      Off-Road.com Blog q
    • This dog waits for his human to get off the school bus everyday even though she’s been away at college for months — just more proof that dogs are too good for us

      Carly Dunn left for college months ago – but her dog still hasn’t stopped waiting for her to get off the school bus…

      Hello Giggles
    • Woman Who Ate ‘Carbs All Day Every Day’ Drops 100 Lbs. After Eliminating Bread from Her Diet

      Kristina Guice had always been “the fat kid in school,” she says, so when the Tucson, Arizona, native got accepted to graduate school across the country in Long Island, New York, she decided this was her opportunity to make a change. Guice, 25, had recently lost a close friend — who had also been her weight loss inspiration — and got accepted to graduate school just two weeks later.

      People
    • Colombia Plane Crash Survivor Cried Out for Crew

      He says he survived by curling up in the fetal position.

      ABC News q
    • Adam Jones didn't like Orioles farewell gift to David Ortiz

      Orioles’ star Adam Jones presents David Ortiz with a dugout phone, which Ortiz smashed during a game in 2013. The David Ortiz farewell tour was filled with many memorable moments. Prior to his final game at Camden Yards, on Sept. 21, the Orioles rolled out the red carpet, showed highlights of Ortiz mashing home runs against the mutual rival New York Yankees, and then presented him with the actual visitor’s dugout phone he once destroyed during an in-game meltdown.

      Big League Stew
    • 'Justice League': 6 Spoilers From the New Trailer

      We may be a ways off from the release of the 'Justice League' movie, but DC amped up the anticipation by releasing a bunch of new footage at Comic-Con.

      The Cheat Sheet q
    • Sears is on the brink of catastrophe as stores closures loom and top execs flee the company

      Things aren't looking good for Sears. The company is shutting down dozens of Kmart stores this...

      Business Insider
    • Mexico on Carrier deal: 'Trump is telling the truth' about saving US jobs

      A Mexican official tells CNBC that "nobody" there believed Trump's campaign rhetoric, but they believe him now.

      CNBC