The main go-to tech gifts this holiday season? Low-priced tablets and HDTVs. But for those with a more adventurous bent (and a lot more money to spend), there are a few other options.
Like Sony's new 84-inch 4K TV. What's 4K? It's four times higher resolution than today's state of the art in mainstream TVs, the 1080p set. It's so high resolution that there's not a lot of content out there that takes full advantage of the screen.
That's why Sony is loaning out servers packed with ten 4K movies — titles like "Spider-Man," "Total Recall" and "The Karate Kid" — to everyone who buys the new TV. It will all set you back just $24,999.
What good is an amazing TV if you're never home to watch it? The perfect accompanying gift to that TV? A robot that goes to work for you.
The QB Avatar is a $10,000 virtual presence robot produced in Silicon Valley by Anybots. It's like a rolling webcam that you can activate and control through a PC, allowing you to have conversations with people on the other side. It reminded me of a Segway scooter with personality.
If you want to go for somewhat more affordable luxury, there are gadgets like the BeoPlay A9 from Bang & Olufsen. It's a speaker that looks a bit like a satellite dish or a decorative plate — and it sounds pretty fantastic (though to my ear the mids were a little muddy compared to B&O's less attractive, multi-piece speaker sets). If you've got $2,699 to burn on that special audiophile.
On the other end of the luxury spectrum are the diamond encrusted gadgets. For example: the iPad Supreme Edition from U.K.'s Stewart Hughes is just a run-of-the-mill iPad, but, you know, encrusted with diamonds. That will cost you a mere $8 million ... or if it makes you feel better, 5 million British Pounds.