It's not too late to pick up top tech kit like Amazon Echo and SleepPhones in time for Christmas.
It’s not too late to pick up a last-minute Christmas gift, and if you know some people who are really into their music, these fancy gadgets are definite winners.
1. Amazon Echo
This hands-free speaker that you control with your voice is a genuine game-changer. Just ask for your favourite artist, song or genre and the Alexa Voice Service will search over 40 million songs on Amazon Music Unlimited to find a match and play it with 360° immersive sound. Alexa is compatible with Spotify too and you even also ask for sports scores, news bulletins and a handy reminder of your daily schedule. You can’t ask Alexa to phone in sick for you (yet), but few gadgets are this effortlessly life-enhancing.
2. ROLI Lightpad Block
Together with an app on your iPhone or iPad, this portable music studio allows you to create beats and melodies by touching its pressure-sensitive surface. If you know someone who wants to become the next Calvin Harris, or even someone who just wants to have a go at writing their own tunes, The Lightpad Block is definitely a fun way to start.
3. Sony PS-LX300USB Turntable
Choosing the right turntable to play your vinyl records is a minefield, but this Sony model is an affordable strong option. It’s fully automatic, has a diamond stylus for great sound quality, and comes with USB output so you can convert vinyl tracks to MP3 quickly and efficiently. Ideal.
If your mate lives on a noisy road – or has a snoring partner – SleepPhones could be a lifesaver. This super soft-headband contains slim removable speakers that connect to any smartphone or audio device, allowing the wearer to drift off to whichever album, podcast or strain of whale noise (s)he likes. Sure, ordinary headphones do the same job, but SleepPhones make listening to music in bed so much more comfortable.
5. Jamstik+ Smart Guitar
Billed as “the world’s first digital guitar”, the jamstik+ connects to apps on your iPad, iPhone or Mac so you can learn to play chords, riffs and solos using a variety of interactive lessons. Because it’s easily portable and tunes itself automatically too, it’s the perfect gift for any budding St Vincent or Kevin Parker.