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Best Christmas gifts: 2012 Christmas gift guide

The best tech gifts for your friends and family

Treat the gadget lovers in your life with this selection of 50 Christmas gifts to suit any budget.

 Whether you're looking to treat yourself this Christmas or want some inspiration when buying for others, we've rounded up enough tech kit to fill a dozen stockings.

While some people appreciate Amazon or iTunes vouchers (they're perfectly good presents), buy one of the 50 gifts listed in the following pages and they'll know you've put some thought into the decision.

We've covered a wide range of prices, and include a good few ideas at the lower end of the price spectrum for these cash-strapped times. If you can't afford a new laptop, why not opt for a present such as Belkin's CushDesk, which will make an existing laptop that much more comfortable to use.

However, if you've got a bit more cash to spend, there are plenty of options including laptops, tablets, digital cameras and gaming PCs. We've done most of the hard work for you: all you need do is choose the wrapping paper. (Click the images to view them at full size.)

Christmas gift guide 2012: index

1. Best Christmas gifts for under £25

2. Best Christmas gifts for under £50

3. Best Christmas gifts for £50-£99

4. Best Christmas gifts for £100-£199

5. Best Christmas gifts for £200-£499

6. Best Christmas gifts for £500 and over

1. Best Christmas gifts: under £25

SanDisk Cruzer Fit - £15

sandisk.co.uk

Everyone needs a USB flash drive, and they don't come any smaller than the Cruzer Fit. Even this 32GB version (the highest capacity in the range) is affordable, and it's small enough to be permanently left in a USB port. It's ideal for a laptop, tablet or even a car stereo, where you don't want a long drive sticking out. Alternatively, it's perfect for carrying everywhere with you – you can even hang it around your neck, thanks to a built-in lanyard loop. See all storage reviews.

Sandisk Cruzer Fit

Griffin Stylus - £12

griffintechnology.com

Smartphones and tablets are becoming ubiquitous, so chances are you know someone with at least one touchscreen device. Griffin's basic stylus is great for drawing, sketching or writing on capacitive screens, and it's an ideal gift for anyone obsessed with Draw Something, or keeping fingerprints from their screen. The integrated clip attaches to a pocket. There's no built-in pen, though, so if you want a dual-purpose stylus/pen, try the Incipio Inscribe Dual Ink.

griffin stylus

Gelaskins - £10

gelaskins.com

Personalising your gadgets is easy, thanks to the thousands of available cases for just about every model of smartphone, tablet and e-reader. Gelaskins add to your device scratch-protection and, since they're less than 1mm thick, you can still use a standard case. There's a huge range of designs, plus you can download matching wallpaper for your smartphone or tablet.

Gelaskins

Sony USB Portable Power Supply - £15

sony.co.uk

Just about all gadgets charge via a USB cable, so this battery pack is ideal for emergency top-ups. It's small enough to carry in a bag or pocket. All you need is a USB cable, and you can connect the Portable Power Supply to charge a smartphone, tablet or an e-reader on the move. The 2,000mAh battery can charge an iPhone to almost 100 percent.

Sony Battery

Belkin CushDesk - £20

belkin.co.uk

Using a laptop on your lap is convenient, but it might not be the best idea for your health. Some laptops become dangerously hot in use, and you can develop neck- or wrist strain from adopting an awkward typing position. The CushDesk goes a long way to solving both problems, with a cushioned base and a hard top on which to rest laptops with screens up to around 16in. It's available in a variety of colours.

Belkin CushDesk

E-volve Touchscreen Gloves - £13

theaccessoriescrowd.com

These one-size-fits-all gloves will keep your hands warm this winter, but won't prevent you using your smartphone or tablet's capacitive touchscreen. Thanks to conductive fibres woven into the fingertips, the E-volve gloves allow you to carry on playing Angry Birds without freezing off your digits.

TouchGlove

Targus Defcon CL - £25

targus.com/uk

Plenty of tech kit has a Kensington-style lock slot, yet most people don't take advantage of the added security it can provide. The Defcon CL has a combination lock, so there are no keys to lose – you just need to remember the code. Provided that the cable is looped around or through an immovable object that a thief can't simply steal, the Defcon CL is a good deterrent.

Targus DefCon

Xbox 360 Wireless gaming receiver - £20

amazon.co.uk

Ever wished you could use your Xbox wireless controller to play games on your PC or laptop? Well, now you can, thanks to this USB receiver. Simply plug it in and install the software, then press the connect button to link your controller with your PC. It works with other Xbox 360 wireless accessories, too, including the Racing Wheel, and has a 30ft range. The receiver supports up to four controllers (and headsets) for multiplayer games.

xBOX rECEIVER

Belkin Micro Car Charger - £15

amazon.co.uk

Most cars don't have a USB charging port, but you can add one by popping an adaptor into your vehicle's 12V socket. Belkin's Micro Car Charger provides 5V at 2.1A, so it will charge almost all USB devices. If you need a second USB port, try Scosche's Revolt C2, which costs around £20.

bELKIN mICRO Car Charger

Aquapac - £20

store.aquapac.net

AquapacElectronic gadgets don't play nicely with water, so it's worth protecting your gear if it's in danger of getting wet. Waterproof Aquapacs are available for phones, e-readers, cameras, tablets and MP3 players. Aquapacs allow you to answer your phone or interact with a touchscreen, and even take underwater photos with a standard camera.

Breffo Spiderpodium - £15

Breffo.com

This flexible stand can be bent into all sorts of shapes to hold in place your smartphone, camera or other small gadget. Its eight legs are sufficient for clinging on to both your device and another object. A larger version, the Spiderpodium Tablet, costs around £20 and is suitable for holding a tablet.

Breffo Spiderpodium

USB cup warmer - £9

firebox.com

It's the age-old problem: you've got far more USB ports on your PC than you have peripherals to plug in. What a waste. This USB cup warmer could be the perfect solution, also able to stop your coffee getting cold before you've had a chance to drink it. The gadget makes clever use of USB power to heat a small element to 40ºC, so your beverage should be drinkable even an hour after it was made.

USB cup warmer

Belkin 4-Port Flexible USB Hub - £18

belkin.co.uk

Laptops, especially netbooks and Ultrabooks, tend to be rather short on USB ports. To get more ports you need a hub. Belkin's Flexible hub has three USB 2.0 ports for connecting printers, mice, keyboards, USB disks and other peripherals. The fourth 'port' is a Micro-/Mini-USB connector, which lets you hook up a variety of smartphones and other gadgets. There's enough power to charge most smartphones, but not tablets.

Belkin 4-Port Flexible USB Hub

Sculpteo 3DP cases - £20

3dpcase.com

The best gifts are the ones you make yourself. You can create an iPhone case using the free 3DPCase app, which will be printed in 3D and shipped within a few days. There are several basic designs, which you can customise at will. The Free-Hand case, for example, profiles two faces in your photos and cuts them out of the case's rear.

Sculpteo 3DP cases

NEXT PAGE: best Christmas gifts for under £50 >>

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