Some gadgets are born to greatness, so the saying goes, some have greatness thrust upon them... and some are just so cool and exciting and lustworthy that 'great' doesn't do them justice and you have to buy them like Right Now.
All of the gadgets, apps, films, services and whatnot in this list fall into the latter category. They're all awesome, and they're what we'd be spending our money on if we hadn't already wasted it on PokéCoins.
Over the following pages you'll find 100 of them, covering the full gamut of gadget life from smartphones to streamers, TVs to turntables and internet-connected smart door locks to um, bee hives. Read it and weep (for your wallet).
100. Critter and Guitari Organelle
Like a Raspberry Pi for budding musicians, the Organelle lets you load up your choice of ‘patches’ to turn it into a sampler, synth or effects processor. Splendid fun to play with, even if you’re tone deaf.
99. Dell XPS 13
You need a thin and light laptop, you buy a MacBook Air, right? Hold yer horses: the Dell XPS 13 might just be the ultimate ultraportable. Not just because it’s thin enough to pop through a letterbox, and weighs less than your lunch, but because of a blindingly beautiful QHD+ screen.
98. Philips Hue
Simple switches are so last century – become a master of the bulbs with Hue, Philips’ system of smart lights. Wake up to natural light when you like, set daily colour schedules and tinker with levels from your smartphone to find the perfect ambience for your every mood.
97. Amazon Fire TV 4K
So you’ve just bought a spangly new 4K TV and you’re itching to step up to UHD. Amazon’s Fire TV box is one of the best ways to do it. It was a kick-ass streamer before, but now it’ll actually use all those extra pixels. Oh, and it’s packing Netflix in 4K too.
96. Netatmo Welcome
A security camera with face recognition tech, this aluminium sentry will tell you whose heads are in the house – friend or foe – and alert you if it detects the latter. With a wide-angle view and night vision smarts, not much gets past this domestic ’bot.
95. McIntosh RS100
Fancy hijacking the Wi-Fi in style? Connect the arrestingly retro RS100 and start flinging your favourites wirelessly (and losslessly) to a Play-Fi-enabled unit, or hook 16 of them up to a single network for a house-wide party – with independent controls.
The Glowforge is a home laser cutting machine that can slice through the likes of wood, acrylic and leather, or engrave glass and ceramics, to let you create anything from personalised wallets to MacBook key caps. And the best bit? It’s only got one button: ‘Print’.
93. Apple Magsafe to Magsafe 2 Converter
New MacBook, old charger? Pick up one of these neat converters, clad in Apple’s classic aluminium, and charge like nothing’s changed – and save yourself the strife of buying a new power block.
92. Gibson Neat Widget
Planning to record a podcast aboard the Starship Enterprise? This is the microphone for you. Available in three colourful, retro-futuristic designs, the Widget records in 96kHz/24-bit quality and plays nice with both Macs and PCs. The only danger is that you might be too busy cooing over its looks to have anything to say into it.
91. Samsung UE55KS7000
Fancy a slice of top-end telly? Samsung’s KS7000 is about as brilliant as they come, squeezing 4K Ultra HD resolution, eye-popping HDR smarts and all the gear required for a UHD Premium sticker – meaning it’s very bright, and very colourful – into a sleek frame that’s just 44mm thick.
90. Mass Effect Andromeda
Of all the games released on the last generation of consoles, none quite had the emotional impact of Mass Effect. Developer Bioware was able to craft a game that allowed you to create your own captain, send him or her off into space, then play out a whole series where every decision you made had a tangible impact. So it’s fair to say we’re quite excited about Andromeda, which takes place in a brand new galaxy, features a new main character called Ryder, and sees the return of the Mako buggy from the first game.
89. Pixlr Express
Looking for a lightweight photo editor to handle the essentials? Pixlr Express can crop, resize and edit snaps with neat efficiency, offering enough effects to keep even experienced tweakers Insta-happy. And the best news? It won’t cost you a penny.
88. Bluesmart Black
Equipped with a location tracker, a battery pack to boost your gear as you roll and a phone-controlled lock, this PU-clad case is cleverer than it looks. It even has digital scales built in, so you can calculate the cost of your haul from your palm.
87. Fitbit Alta
Fitbit is back with the Alta, a simple wristband that pitches day-and-night tracking to the everyman. It might lack heart data and waterproofing, but accurate automatic sleep tracking and motivating movement reminders might just convince the uncertain to kit up.
86. SoundMagic E10C
Bin those bundled buds: there’s no excuse for having bad sound when you can slap down RM220 for the excellent E10Cs. SoundMagic has made the inline remote on these in-ears work with everything, and they sound unbelievable for the cash.
Playing panacea to media hoard disorder, this app puts all your digital content – from films and photos to music and movies – at your fingertips wherever you are. The Media Server software scans and sorts stuff before making it available to share with any app-equipped device.
84. Fujifilm X-Pro2
Most gadgets end up compromising somewhere down the line. Not so the Fujifilm X-Pro2, which manages to tick every box on the most discerning camera geek’s wish list. Along with its achingly hip retro rangefinder style, it has all manner of clever features, such as dual optical and electronic viewfinders and dual SD card slots. And, most importantly, it takes superb 24MP photos resplendent with Fuji’s never-bettered colours and custom filters.
Live out all your Moon landing fantasies with this Kickstarter-funded globe, the most accurate model of our cheesy neighbour to date. it’s a 1:20million-scale replica complete with the very same craters and ridges, rendered in 3D, that Armstrong and his crew explored in 1969.
The original lossless audio format has enjoyed a resurrection in recent years, with more and more vinyl records being sold. So there’s never been a better time to buy a turntable. Here are four of the tastiest…
82. Pro-Ject VT-E
Try turning your regular turntable on its side and you’ll soon find out that the records fall off. So it’s a good job Pro-Ject turned this concept into a real, shut-up-and-take-our-money product. If it sounds half as good as Pro-Ject’s other decks, we’ll take two.
81. Sony PS-HX500
Like an electric penny farthing or a Wi-Fi quill, Sony’s PS-HX500 is a fine example of old meets new. Plug it into a PC via USB and convert your vinyl into hi-res audio files. Then you just need something else compatible to play them on.
80. GPinto On
With a valve preamp and power source (take your pick from 100, 250 or 500 Watts) built in, all you need to do with GPinto’s On is add a set of speakers. There’s aptX Bluetooth onboard too, so you can feed tunes from your phone through it.
79. Atmo Sfera
No platter? No problem! Atmo’s Kickstarted Sfera spins your records in mid-air, with Bluetooth and a phono preamp built in to the base. Why no platter? Because without one there’s nothing for those sound-spoiling vibrations to flow through.