The Roku 3 is the best streaming-video box you can buy. It supports more services than anything else, with a superfast interface and a remote that has a nifty built-in headphone jack. Best of all, it's only $100, making it perfectly giftable.
If you need a new AV receiver, Sony's STR-DN840 is the best place to start. It's relatively affordable, plus it packs in all the latest features you'll actually use: six HDMI inputs, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and AirPlay. You won't find a better deal this year.
If you don't need a full AV receiver, NAD's D 3020 is a delightfully compact alternative. It has a great design, excellent sound quality, and built-in Bluetooth, so it works well with your mobile devices, too. It only supports stereo (although it has a dedicated subwoofer-out), but it's a great choice if you don't need surround sound.
If you only want one extra box under your TV, the PS3 Super Slim is the way to go. It has all your entertainment needs covered, from Blu-ray to gaming to a healthy selection of streaming video. The PS4 may be the "hot" buy this holiday season, but the PS3 remains an excellent value, especially if you haven't played the huge back catalog of games yet.
Just because you're going for a sound bar doesn't mean you can't have real surround sound. The Vizio S4251W adds two surround speakers to the standard sound bar design, letting you get true surround sound without the hassle of a more elaborate system.
The Roku 3 is our favorite streaming box, but the Apple TV isn't far behind. If you've bought into the Apple ecosystem, it's especially potent, thanks to killer features like AirPlay and tight integration with iTunes content. And while the Apple TV used to trail in app selection, it's closer than ever before with the apps that matter.
You might think that the Chromecast is the ultimate stocking stuffer, but don't count out the Roku LT. It offers access to many more streaming-video services, including HBO Go, Amazon Instant, and Pandora, plus its dedicated TV interface means you don't need a smartphone/tablet to use it. It's just $15 more than the Chromecast and we think it's a much better value.
But if you have an Android fan on your gift list, the Chromecast is worth considering. It's dirt cheap at just $35, plus it's the best way to watch your Google Play content on your big TV. We're still waiting on it to support more apps, but in the meantime, it's a fun little device that doesn't cost much.
The 3M Streaming Projector isn't exactly a practical gift, but you can't deny that this gadget is fun. It's a pico projector with an integrated Roku Streaming Stick, which means you can be streaming Netflix anywhere you have a wall and a Wi-Fi connection.
If you've been on the fence about Sonos' best-in-class wireless audio products, the Play:1 is an excellent entry point. It's a gorgeous speaker that sounds great for its size, plus Sonos is packing in a free $50 wireless bridge for first-time customers.
It's not the prettiest-looking sound bar, but for $400 there's nothing that sounds as good as the Pioneer SP-SB23W. The included subwoofer is tiny and wireless, plus there's built-in Bluetooth for wireless audio streaming.