Christmas Gifts for the Poor, Middle-Class & Rich.

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Christmas time is here again and maybe you’re looking for some Apple related gifts for family or friends that are on your list… I’ll make some suggestions below that start cheap and move to expensive… I’m going to add to that at the end with some stocking stuffers that aren’t necessarily computer related, but recommended and within a reasonable price range…

How Much Are You Thinking of Spending?

jBuds

1-Year MobileMe Subscription ($99) • If someone on your list has a relatively current Mac and they don’t yet have MobileMe (formerly Mac.com)… trust me when I say that for $99, you want to be the one to turn them on to it. The service really starts to seem like the steal of the century if the user has at least (2) devices… an iPhone and an iMac for example. MobileMe is in essence a remote server space termed ‘the cloud’. The most current versions of your Contacts, Calendars, Email, etc. are continuously synced to MobileMe and then beamed back down to your other devices. MobileMe also allows you 20gb of remote storage space in the cloud… very cool for backing up those important files… and you’re able to check any of your information stored in the cloud from any computer with a web browser at me.com… Also, easily create public slideshows of your pictures within your space

1TB Lacie

LaCie 1TB d2 Quadra Hard Drive ($280) • Now if this little buddy is within your price range, this is a great gift if you ask me. It’s like giving a painter a blank canvas. If your recipient is into video, this reliable drive represents room for 55 hours of digital video (720/480)… how about audio? Forget mp3’s… with this platter you’ve got room for over 170 hours of lossless audio. ProTools anyone? But perhaps the best use for a drive like this would be for configuring Time Machine on a Mac running Leopard. Many people have it but don’t use it… how much easier would they sleep with a complete incremental back-up? This sturdy little drive from LaCie (I own the 500gb model) connects via FireWire 800/400 as well as USB 2.0… 32mb cache, plug and play and driverless on Mac OSX, daisy-chainable. Stackable, rackmountable or stand it upright… compatible with Mac OS X v10.2.8 or later; or Windows Vista/2000/XP or later. PowerPC G3, G4, or G5 or Intel Core processor; Intel Pentium II 512MHz-compatible.

The Tower of 8-Core Power ($12,700 – as configured) • This one here is more like a gift that you would buy for yourself… driving this machine is like driving the world’s finest automobile, so it might also fill the role of a mid-life crisis pacifier… and seeing as we’re going for broke, might as well configure this leopard to fly like the wind…

Mac Pro

(2) 3.2GHz Quad-Core chips, 16GB of RAM, (2) 500GB & (1) 1TB hard drive in 3 of the 4 available hard drive bays. An NVIDIA GeForce 8880 GT video card driving (2) 30″ Apple Cinema Displays. (2) 16x Super Drives (they’ll burn anything). And just to make sure it’s all protected, we’ll throw in an AppleCare Protection Plan for good measure.

Grand total comes to a staggering $12,696… but shipping is FREE, so get your order in now to beat the holiday rush… Seriously though, this is the fastest personal computer on Earth… Perhaps you were just the beneficiary of a “bailout” windfall that’s burning a hole in your pocket… or your eccentric Uncle Fester willed you a meager sum, in roughly this amount, for a life-long commitment to tending his prized rose bushes… one way or another we (I) need to figure out how to get one of these speed merchants yesterday!

Stocking Stuffers Under $25

jBuds

JBuds J2 Earbuds ($25) > The big question here is whether or not the recipient will like how these feel in their ears… the JBuds come with (3) different silicone cushions that go a long way in making the fit… Personally, I don’t like the headphones that come with Apple iPods, but I do like these JBuds… For their $25 price tag, these little guys sound good… I’m guessing not as good as the $250 set from Bose (for the audiophile), but who wants to drop that much coin on a pair of disposable earphones? I abuse mine so badly, this under $30 price point is the only way I go… and they come in your choice of 12 different colors. Also featured is a cord that’s four and a half feet long and so far I’m finding the mini-jack connector always holds tight with no drop-outs (definitely a problem over time with every other brand I’ve tried). JBuds are compatible with just about every device you could think of from iPhone and iPods to portable gaming units (PSP, Nintendo DS) to other mp3 players (Sansa, Zune, Sony)… pretty much any device with a minijack headphone connection.

Heart On

Eagles of Death Metal – Heart On ($14) > This platter was my Halloween present to myself this year and I’ve had to have listened to it a couple dozen times over the last month… the only bummer is that it didn’t come out at the start of the Summer… this is a great Summer album… Anyway, don’t be confused… This fusion of Josh Homme (Queens of the Stone Age) and Jesse Hughes isn’t death metal and they sound nothing like the Eagles… I saw it described well in its iTunes review; “they sound like an 80’s punk band dipped in 70’s Rolling Stones raunch (which isn’t a bad thing…)” I love this record… Standout tracks WannaBe in L.A. and High Voltage is Iggy Pop jammin’ in the Ramones garage and Devo stops by…

So that’s what I’ve got for this holiday season… if you’d like to leave some suggestions of your own… please click the Comments link just below and tap ’em in…

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