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Christmas Gift Guide

Sony PlayStation 3 Slim

Panasonic DMP-BDT220

Yamaha YAS-101

Apple TV (2012)

Jawbone Jambox

Roku LT

Set your grad on the right path with the best all-around home video product on the market. The PS3 Slim handles Blu-ray, high-def gaming, and tons of streaming media services, including the recently added Amazon Instant. And by packing all those functions into a single box, you can have a full-fledged home theater in even the tiniest dorm room.
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If gaming isn't in your grad's future, the Panasonic DMP-BDT220 Blu-ray player is next-best option. Its built-in Wi-Fi means you don't have to deal with a long Ethernet cable to access Panasonic's excellent suite of streaming media services, including Netflix, Amazon Instant, Vudu, Pandora, and MLB.TV. Not to mention it's capable of playing back almost all your grad's disc-based media, including Blu-rays, DVDs and CDs.
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Your grad may not be ready for a full surround sound system, but sound bars make for a great starter home theater. The Yamaha YAS-101 is well-suited to small spaces, plus it includes an innovate feature that passes through remote signals if the sound bar is blocking the TV's sensor. There's no separate subwoofer, but that goes a long to keeping neighbor complaints to a minimum.
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If your grad has an iPhone or iPad, the Apple TV is a pretty great gift. AirPlay is the killer feature, letting you stream music, photos and videos directly from your iOS devices to your TV. And of course you can still rent/purchase content from iTunes or use the handful of supported streaming media services, including Netflix and MLB.TV.
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Okay, maybe the Jawbone Jambox isn't technically a home theater product, but I'll bet it gets more use than an old-fashioned stereo system. It has built-in Bluetooth, which means you can stream music directly from your smartphone or tablet, no wires necessary. The sound quality is pretty good for a system of this size and the fact that it has a built-in rechargeable battery means you take it with you pretty much anywhere.
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If you're grad isn't an Apple fan, the Roku LT is the best value for adding streaming video to your TV. It's just $50, but it packs a truly impressive lineup of streaming-video services, like Netflix, Hulu Plus, Amazon Instant Video, HBO Go, Pandora, MOG, Rdio, and MLB.TV. Built-in Wi-Fi just sweetens the deal, while the little purple box may not be the coolest looking-gadget, at least it's easy to use and setup.
Caption by / Photo by Sarah Tew/CNET
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