Christmas Giveaway: Enter Now!

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Skip the fluff and hit up the entry form now!

The Fluff

Thanks to this wonderful bunch of companies, I have a metric shitload of stuff to give away on Christmas eve. All you have to do is bung your details in the entry form.

For additional (optional) opportunities to select your prize, you’ll want to do one or more of the following :

Point: none of the above are compulsory, but there will be at least one prize reserved for members of each group – but you must use the entry form as well. The majority of prizes are available simply for people entered via the form.

If you have any ideas how I’m going to verify identities during the live draw, feel free to let me know. I think maybe emailing the person after they are drawn and waiting for a reply?

The Prizes

More news! TomTom have joined the fun and thrown in a TomTom Start GPS valued at $299.

Here’s the prize list as at midday, 14th December. It may grow some more:

The Conditions

  • One entry per person.
  • Entries only valid using the entry form on this page.
  • Entries limited to New Zealand residents only (sorry guys, the postage will kill me).
  • The items are brand new, but may have been opened and reviewed for this website and TVNZ.
  • Entries close Thursday 24th December 2009 at 7:00pm (NZ time).
  • Winners will be contacted by email.
  • Winners will be re-drawn if there is no reply by one month after competition closing time.

Merry Christmas To You

Full entry details are now live over here!

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I love you guys. This site is a hobby and a labour of love, but it’s made so much better by the fact that all three of you read it frequently.

I’ve been thinking about how to thank you for sticking with me over the past few years, and I’ve come up with a plan. It goes a little something like this:

  1. On Monday (14th December 2009), there will be an entry form on this site.
  2. You enter the competition to win one of a bunch of different prizes. Some are below, others to be revealed later.
  3. The draw will happen on Christmas eve, live on Ustream.
  4. If you’re watching the live draw and get selected, you get to pick your prize!
  5. There’ll be a couple of prizes dedicated to live viewers.

How does that sound?

Get involved and tell me in the comments below which prizes you think should be dedicated to the live draw, and which should go in the general pot.

As a taster, the current (and growing) prize pile includes:

Of course I have to thank the lovely consumer products people that enable me to do this stuff:

vodafone-logo-vbig Orcon LogoMicrosoft logo Xbox360Logo iwantthat logo
Finally, if you’re a tech company have something you want to add to the prize pool, feel free to get in touch. There’s plenty of space up there for a logo.

Christmas Gadget Gifts: Radio Control

As promised, here’s the second in my series of 2009 Christmas present primers.

Who doesn’t like radio controlled gadgets? With a controller in hand, you can become a racing driver, a helicopter pilot, or even a submariner; all in the comfort of your own lounge.

Below I’ve listed a few of my favourite RC gadgets from 2009, right across the range. Feel free to post questions or comments if you’re stuck on the Christmas present front.

RC Car Gifts

Losi Micro-T Stadium Truck

1/36 Micro-T Stadium Truck RTR - Losi

Why? Become a dirt racing legend in your own kitchen with this cute-but-serious tiny truck. Made by the same guys that make serious world-beating RC race cars, the Micro-T includes independent suspension and a differential in a palm-sized race car.

Set up some jumps in the hallway and go crazy!

RRP: $175
Stockists: Online or in person from RC Bandit
Kyosho DRT Nitro Truck

DRT 4WD Desert Truck - Kyosho

Why? If you have an RC nut in the family who hasn’t driven an off-road nitro RC car, then they haven’t lived.

These beasties go incredibly fast, and are a huge thrill to drive. Something like the Kyosho DRT would be a good entry-level model. Warning: these things are addictive, and you can go wild and spend thousands of dollars if you get into the racing scene.

RRP: $699
Stockists: Online or in person from RC Bandit

RC Helicopter Gifts

E-Flight Blade MCX blademcx
Why? I reviewed this tiny helicopter a few weeks ago, and fell in love with it. More stable than larger coaxial choppers, the Blade MCX is a blast to fly and easy enough to be operated by anyone who has used an RC car before.

It’s perfectly capable of flying in a lounge, but you might find it more fun to try flying into each room in the house. It won’t handle any wind, so outdoor flying is not an option.

You can read my original review over here.

RRP: $209
Stockists: Online or in person from RC Bandit

RC Plane Gifts

Parkzone Mustang P-52D Ready to Fly MUSTANG P-51D Ready to Fly - Parkzone
Why? Until recently, if you wanted to fly powered RC planes, you’d need to spend thousands on models and equipment, and join a club. These days, you can pick up a ready-to-fly model like this brilliant looking Mustang and have a crack at flying within minutes.

Having said that, you might find a club is useful to teach you the basics and save a few dollars in glue and parts after crashes.

RRP: $429
Stockists: Online or in person from RC Bandit

Other RC Gifts

RC Mini Submarine (and other vehicles) 2 Channel Remote Radio Control RC Submarine RTG SUB Boat 8836
Why? Do you sometimes get bored in the bath and wish you had a radio controlled submarine? Great! It’s not just me.

I wrote an article this year about cheap Chinese RC gadgets in a general sense, and this sub was one of the items I reviewed. Take a look at my original article for a bunch of cheap gadget ideas.

RRP: US$18 + shipping
Stockists: BudgetGadgets

Christmas Gadget Gifts: Digital Cameras

It’s November – I’m just as surprised as you are – and you’re starting to scramble for presents for the tech freak in your life. Relax, I’ve got your back. Below is the first in a series of Christmas gift guides I’ll be posting over the coming weeks. Don’t worry if these ideas are too expensive for you: look for follow-up gift ideas for radio control, computer and console games, mobile phones, and more. There’ll even be a specific one on cheap gadgets.

I’m kicking this off with digital still and video cameras. Everyone needs a good camera, and with the rate of progress and price drops, you can almost afford a new one every year. So what’s top of the pile this year?

Digital Video Camera Gifts

Flip MinoHD Camcorder Flip Mino HD
Why? Why fork out thousands of dollars on a high-definition camcorder that’s tricky to use, and so bulky that you hardly ever carry it with you?

The Flip Mino HD takes the idea of “good enough for YouTube”, and packages it in a device small enough to fit in your jeans pocket. At $349 it’s a bargain, and cheap enough that you’ll be happy taking it to the beach or park.

You can read my in-depth review here.

RRP: $349
Stockists: Noel Leeming, Dick Smith, and (just quietly) Amazon.

Digital Compact Camera Gifts

Samsung ST550 Compact Camera Samsung T550
Why? The Samsung ST550 is the first digital camera that includes a font-facing 1.5″ LCD as well as a giant rear touch-screen. It might seem like a gimmick, but the practicalities are obvious for kids (they can’t stop smiling at themselves) and self-portraits.

Samsung have also pulled out all the stops on usability. Most operations take place on the touch screen, including the ability to delete photos by just swiping an “x” with your finger. The camera also has an accelerometer so you can rotate and sort through photos by tilting the camera.

And of course like most compact cameras today it takes HD video as well.

RRP: $599
Stockists: Call 0800 SAMSUNG for your nearest stockist.
Canon G11 Canon G11
Why? The G11 is the bad-boy of the Canon “point-and-shoot” range. It’s capable of pushing out shots that compare quite well with a low-end SLR, but you can fit it into a (large) handbag.

The photo geek in your life will be impressed by your taste in cameras if they find this under the tree.

Update: Thanks to Simon’s comment, maybe the Canon S90 is a better high-end compact. Same sensor, much smaller, cheaper, and with a nifty control dial around the lens.

RRP: $1099
Stockists: Most department stores and good camera stores like PhotoWarehouse

Digital SLR Camera Gifts

Canon 5D Mark II Canon 5d
Why? For those of you with piles of spare cash and a photographer in your family who doesn’t want to compromise on quality, you couldn’t go much better than the new Canon 5D.

It’s a heck of a lot of money to spend on a gift, but this camera has been dubbed “life changing” by one review.

RRP: $6499
Stockists: Good camera stores like PhotoWarehouse

Wii: My Good News, Bad News Story

  • Good News: I’ve ordered a Wii
  • Bad News: Doesn’t come out in New Zealand until Thursday
  • GN: Will be delivered to my door by the wonderful people at GPStore.
  • BN: The purchase has only been permitted on the condition that the Wii gets locked away till Christmas day.
  • GN: My brother is coming home from Singapore for christmas. Wii boxing beeyatches!
  • BN: The rest of my family is gathering for Christmas too.
  • GN: Wii golf with pops!
  • BN: We’ll all be at the beach house, a long way from recovery if we break the Wii.
  • GN: Random beach house neighbours coming over for Wii boxing fights beeyatches!
  • BN: Drunken family/neighbours playing Wii

Addendum: The damage toll is growing!  There will be have to be stern pre-Christmas-Wii safety lectures.

[tags]nintendo, wii, gaming, christmas[/tags]