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UE Wonderboom

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There are a multitude of sub-$100 wireless speakers to choose from and we've included a few of our favorites in this roundup. 

Disclaimer: CNET may get a share of revenue from the sale of products featured in this gallery.  

First off is the UE Wonderboom: This softball-size Bluetooth speaker is waterproof, sounds great for its size, and travels from room to room (or on road trips) with ease. It retails for $100, but many of its myriad colors are available on Amazon for closer to $70.

See it at Amazon.

Check out the complete Holiday Gift Guide for 2018.

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JBL Flip 4

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The $99 JBL Flip 4 is also waterproof and delivers similarly great sound. As with the Wonderboom, it's available for less in some colors.

See it at Amazon.

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Bose SoundLink Micro

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Even smaller and lighter than the Wonderboom and the JBL is the Bose SoundLink Micro. You won't find any other speaker this small that sounds this good, especially for only $99. And it's waterproof, too.

See it at Amazon.

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JBL Link 10

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JBL's Link 10 is its entry-level portable Wi-Fi speaker (it also has Bluetooth) and is voice-enabled with Google Assistant (Google's version of Alexa). It lists for $150 but Best Buy has it on sale for a limited time for $60. That's a very good deal.

See it at Best Buy.

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Anker SoundCore Boost

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The SoundCore Boost comes from the accessory mavens at Anker. It doesn't sound quite as great as the JBL, Bose or the UE, but it's also water-resistant -- not fully waterproof, though -- and it costs closer to $80.

See it at Amazon.

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Amazon Echo 2017

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If you don't need battery power and prefer a smart speaker, Amazon's second-generation Echo is a great first choice. Its ubiquitous Alexa voice assistant handles a boatload of queries and smart-home controls, and the audio quality is better than that of the entry-level Echo Dot. And with seven plastic or fabric finishes (oak is shown here), it can fit into any decor.

See it at Amazon.

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Roku Streaming Stick Plus

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The $70 Roku Streaming Stick Plus has been out for a while but still offers good value in this category. The plug-in design gives you full 4K and HDR compatibility, and a remote with both voice control and the ability to control your TV's volume and power. Oh, and it streams every major video service out there (and hundreds of minor ones), including Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime, YouTube, Vudu, Movies Anywhere and HBO Go.

See it at Amazon.

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Amazon Fire HD 8

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Speaking of Amazon: The company makes the only tablet priced under $100 that we can enthusiastically recommend. The 2018 version of the $80 Fire HD 8 tablet supports hands-free Alexa, which means you can issue voice commands without touching the screen by simply saying "Alexa." The screen is "only" 8 inches, but stepping up to the 10-inch Fire HD 10 will almost double the price to $150.

See it at Amazon.

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Kingston Nucleum USB-C Hub

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Many folks already have a new Apple MacBook or MacBook Pro, but do they have the ultimate USB-C Hub for said MacBook (or any USB-C based notebook that's got limited port options)? Kingston's sturdy Nucleum allows you to add external ports for HDMI, USB-A (two), standard and microSD memory cards, as well as an extra USB-C port. It lists for $80 but can be found for a little more than $50 online.

See it on Amazon.

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Gunnar Optiks blue light blocking glasses

For several years Gunnar Optiks has been making "computer glasses" designed to block blue light and help alleviate the eye strain that you get from staring at displays for long periods. The glasses come in a variety of styles and a few different tints. The core models have an amber lens, anti-reflective coatings and slight magnification.

All are under $100. You can add a prescription lens through the Gunnar website, but those RX packages cost more.

See Gunnar glasses on Amazon.

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Amazon Kindle 2016

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If you're buying for a reader who prefers reading documents and e-books without the distractions of social media and other apps, a Kindle reader is the way to go. The entry-level $80 Kindle offers a better reading experience in the sun than a glossy-screen tablet or smartphone.

See it at Amazon.

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Plantronics Backbeat 500

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The Plantronics BackBeat 500 ($80) is an attractively designed, affordable on-ear wireless Bluetooth headphone that's comfortable -- for an on-ear model anyway -- and sounds good for the money. It also comes in a version called the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 500 that features additional sweat resistance and costs slightly more.

See the Plantronics BackBeat 500 on Amazon.

See the Plantronics BackBeat Fit 500 (sweat-resistant) on Amazon.

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Skullcandy Grind Wireless

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The Skullcandy Grind Wireless headphones have been a longtime budget favorite of ours, especially now that the price has dipped to around $60.

See it at Amazon.

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Plantronics Backbeat Go 600

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Last year Plantronics put out an affordable wireless on-ear headphone, the BackBeat 500 Series, that sounded decent and fit comfortably -- for an on-ear model anyway. Now the company has brought the same value concept to an over-ear design with the BackBeat Go 600. It lists for $100 but sells for as low as $60 online, depending on the color (it comes in four colors).

See the Plantronics BackBeat Go 600 on Amazon.

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174 Hudson Stack packable helmet

You know that problem of your bike helmet just taking up a little too much room in your bag? Well, the innovative Stack helmet from Priority Bicycles is designed to collapse down into a more more compact form factor. Fear not, it has a double safety certificate in the US and EU.

Designed in collaboration with Closca, it weighs only 330 grams and features hidden air vents and a robust locking mechanism when fully expanded. Available in multiple color options and large and medium sizes.

See it at Priority Bicycles. (Ships December 18)

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Plantronics Backbeat Fit 350

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Both Amazon and Best Buy have the Plantronics BackFit 350 wireless sports headphone on sale for $60 ($20 off).  It's not ideal for running because the remote is a little big, but for light workouts at the gym and everyday use it's a solid in-ear Bluetooth headphone.

See it Amazon.

See it Best Buy.

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JBL Reflect Mini 2

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The JBL Reflect Mini 2 doesn't have the absolute best sound quality for a $100 pair of wireless headphones, but they're so comfortable that it kind of makes up for it. And thanks to the reflective cord that glows at night when it catches the light, these are ideal for students who run or walk.

See it at Amazon.

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Jaybird Tarah

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This summer, Jaybird -- one of the early leaders in wireless in-ear sport headphones -- introduced its new X-series headphones, the X4. Just a month later it released the Tarah, which looks a lot like the X4 but costs $30 less.

Aside from the price, what's the difference? Well, the buds themselves are shaped a little differently and aren't designed to be worn with the cord looped back around the top of your ear. Also, the Tarah has 2 hours less battery life than the X4.

Otherwise the specs are similar. Not only is the Tarah sweatproof but Jaybird says it's fully waterproof, with an IPX7 rating (it can be fully submersed to 1 meter for up to 30 minutes). There's also the same fast-charge feature that gives you 1 hour of play time from a 10-minute charge.

See it at Amazon.

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Sony MDR-7506

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Moving from wireless to wired headphones: The Sony MDR-7506 model is a true classic. These first debuted in 1991, but they're also arguably still the best-sounding headphones you can get for under $100. Just note that these are so old-school that they lack an inline mic for phone calls.

See it on Amazon.

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Amazfit Bip

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The Fitbit Versa and Apple Watch are both great, but they'll cost you $200 minimum. In the under-$100 category, you're best off going with the Amazfit Bip. It somehow crams all the must-have smartwatch features into an $80 package that delivers marathon battery life.

See it at Amazon.

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Logitech MX Anywhere 2S Wireless Mobile Mouse

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The MX Anywhere 2S mouse is basically a downsized, portable version of the MX Master 2S. And it's available for closer to $50.

See it on Amazon.

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Plantronics BackBeat Fit 2100

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Plantronics recently updated its BackBeat Fit wireless headphone, a popular model for runners. The BackBeat Fit 2100 features touch controls and comes in multiple color options for just less than $100.

See it on Amazon.

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Logitech MX Master 2S

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If you're shopping for someone who spends all day on a Mac or Windows PC, a top-notch mouse like the Logitech MX Master 2S is just the ticket. It's the sequel to the original MX Master, which we quite liked. 

See it on Amazon.

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SNES Classic Edition

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For students who want to relive their parents' school-age gaming, the Super Nintendo Classic is the way to go. It packs 21 awesome retro games into one tiny box that hooks up to any HDTV, and it even includes a second controller for two-player matches in Super Mario Kart and Street Fighter II. This one is still terribly hard to find at its normal retail price of $80.

See it at Best Buy.

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Nintendo 2DS

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The Nintendo Switch is arguably the perfect gift for the college-bound student gamer, but it does cost $300. For half of that, the Nintendo 2DS XL is a nice alternative. If that's still beyond your budget, though, the standard 2DS is just $80. The one snag: The standard 2DS can't play most SNES titles from Nintendo's library. It does, however, come bundled with either New Super Mario Bros. 2 or Mario Kart 7.  

See it at Best Buy.

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