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Essential system extras that make great gifts

While the idea of giving a full system is lovely, sometimes all you can afford to contribute is the monitor. Here are some peripherals that should please practical giftees.

Lori Grunin
1 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Samsung CF791

An exceptionally well-designed 34-inch monitor, the Samsung CF791 is great for everyday use and especially nice for any gamer you know who has a relatively recent AMD Radeon card, thanks to its FreeSync support.

See more of CNET's Holiday Gift Guide picks here.

2 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

LG 34UC89G

It's not terrific for simply working or web surfing, but the LG 34UC89G is a great monitor for gamers with Nvidia cards who want more screen real estate.

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Razer Ornata Chroma

The Razer Ornata Chroma was designed as a gaming keyboard, but forget that -- it's one of the best keyboards for fast typing we've encountered, with a terrific feel and gamer-level backlight controls that help immensely for people who work in the dark. It's solid for gaming, too, but some of your giftees might be purists who sneer at anything but mechanical keys, and this is a mechanical/membrane hybrid. 

4 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Dell UltraSharp 24 (U2417H)

24-inch screens are a bit small these days, but for a kid or someone working in a cramped space, they do the job -- plus they're budget-friendly. This Dell UltraSharp 24 has above-average display quality.

5 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Wacom Intuos Pro (2017)

The latest version of Wacom's pen tablet for artists, the 2017 version of the Wacom Intuos Pro has a much better feel and a higher level of pressure sensitivity that any creatives on your gift list would love. If they like to sketch old-school style on paper, there's a Paper Edition of this that will let them draw with pen and paper and have the strokes automatically digitized.

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Asus ROG GT-AC5300

Multiplayer games require fast, customizable routers; if you know people who live and breathe online or multiplayer games, the Asus ROG GT-AC5300 is a router they would want.

7 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET


Give MacBook users the gift of touchscreen functionality with the AirBar, a USB attachment that uses sensors to fake touchscreen capabilities.

8 of 24 Lori Grunin/CNET

Dell UltraSharp 27 (U2717D)

27 inches is a current sweet spot for monitor sizes, and Dell's mainstream UltraSharp 27 model makes a great everyday display for almost anyone.

9 of 24 Dong Ngo

Synology RT2600ac

For a general-purpose model that has more customization options than the typical home router, the Synology RT2600ac rises above the rest. 

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Western Digital My Passport SSD

Almost everyone can benefit from fast external storage in some way or another, and the Western Digital My Passport SSD is a relatively inexpensive but good bet for everything except backup -- it doesn't come in high-enough capacities for that.

11 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

HTC Vive

The HTC Vive is the best VR option at the moment, a great choice for the VR enthusiast with a lot of space to roam.

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Oculus Rift Touch

At its lower price, the Oculus Rift makes a great gift for anyone wondering what all the fuss about VR is and doesn't have the expansive space needed by the HTC Vive.

Bose QuietComfort 35 II
13 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Bose QuietComfort 35 II

Know someone who works in an open plan office, cube farm or noisy home office? Give your friend this great set of wireless noise-canceling headphones. The QuietComfort 35 II headphones have Google Assistant built in, too, and because they're wireless you don't have to worry if you forget to take them off before you roll away from your desk.

14 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless

Another set of wireless headphones for the wide-open-office worker, the Sennheiser PXC 550 Wireless are a great alternative to the Bose QuietComfort 35 II with a different design that might be more ear-friendly for some people.

15 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Plantronics BackBeat Sense

Another office-friendly set of headphones, the BackBeat Sense model adds the trick of being about to connect to two devices -- like your computer and your phone -- and switch between them, plus it has a great dual-microphone headset.

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Logitech G533

For gamers, the G533 wireless headset offers wireless surround-sound headphones you can use across the house from your PC, with a boom mic for voice chat, a comfy fit and long battery life. Plus, it has a terrifically stable connection.

Logitech Wireless Keyboard K360
17 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Logitech Wireless Keyboard K360

On a tight budget? You can still get the K360, a QWERTY keyboard powered by two AA batteries that uses Logitech's "Unifying" wireless USB dongle -- which also communicates with a Logitech mouse. Yes, it's a laptop-style design without much "travel" in the keys, but it's a good deal and works equally well with Windows PCs or Macs.

18 of 24 Josh Miller/CNET

TP-Link TL-WR841N Wireless N Router

Another low-budget choice is the TL-WR841N, a basic router for friends who might be living in small spaces.

19 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Logitech M510

The Logitech M510 is a slick midrange mouse with seven programmable buttons and the company's convenient Unifying Receiver, which can pair multiple peripherals using a single microreceiver. 

Best Tech Gifts under 25$
20 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

SanDisk Ultra Dual Drive USB Type-C

One annoyance with newfangled lightweight laptops or hybrids is when they save space by only offering USB-C connectors, which means you need an adapter to transfer files using a common thumbdrive. This handy SanDisk model has both USB-C and standard USB-A connectors and it's a cheap but useful add-on for someone's new computer.

21 of 24 Dave Cheng/CNET

HyperX Alloy FPS

If you do know a mechanical-keyboard purist, the Alloy FPS is a space-conserving (while still having a number pad) model with Cherry MX Blue switches that won't break your budget. 

22 of 24 Josh Miller/CNET

Google Wifi

The Google Wifi mesh system is easy to set up, fast and relatively inexpensive, making it a great gift choice for people who need to extend the reach of their Wi-Fi.

23 of 24 Dong Ngo/CNET

Netgear Orbi RBK40

Though not nearly as cheap as Google's option, the Orbi home Wi-Fi system is an excellent gift for those living in a large home with its wide coverage. Plus, it delivers great performance and supplies a full feature set.

See more of CNET's Holiday Gift Guide picks here.

24 of 24 Sarah Tew/CNET

Twelve South Bookbook CaddySack

This $49 book-style case, the size of a hefty paperback, is tailored for Apple's new USB-C-only MacBooks. As those laptops have only one kind of port, you'll probably need a bunch of dongles and adapters. For a small accessory case, it fits a lot, including the power brick. 

See more of CNET's Holiday Gift Guide picks here.

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