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HolidayBuyer's Guide

Altec Lansing BackBeat Titanium 326 headphones

Apple Mac Pro (Two 2.26GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon, Winter 2009)

Samsung S1 Mini (120GB, Silver)

Dell Studio XPS-122B

HP Mini 1000 Mi Edition

LG Rumor2 (Sprint)

Nikon CoolPix S630 (jet black)

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-G3

Sony Vaio VGN-FW351J/H

TomTom ONE 125 - GPS receiver

Here's our weekly roundup of the new products CNET reviewers liked best.

Altec Lansing BackBeat Titanium 326 headphones

Editors' rating: 4

The good: The Altec Lansing BackBeat Titanium 326 earphones offer a comfortable fit and excellent sound for the money. The cloth-covered cord seems durable and a carrying case is included.

The bad: When the BackBeat Titanium 326 cord rubs against your clothing, you may be able to hear it if your MP3 player is set to low volumes or if it's during the silence between songs.

The bottom line: About $40, the Altec Lansing BackBeat Titanium 326 earbuds offer impressive sound for the buck.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $37.45-$79.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

Apple Mac Pro (Two 2.26GHz Quad-Core Intel Xeon, Winter 2009)

Editors' rating: 4

The good: Best-in-class desktop design; interior makes upgrades and parts replacement simple; strong performance on HD video and 3D rendering thanks to new Intel CPU and faster RAM.

The bad: Relatively slow performance on programs such as Photoshop that rely on single-core CPU speed; we wish it had eSATA instead of FireWire 800 for external hard-drive connections.

The bottom line: Apple's new eight-core Mac Pro demonstrates marked improvements over the older model in high-intensity digital media and multitasking scenarios. We also love the design tweaks that improve on Apple's already industry-leading sensibilities. Any Apple-bound design professional would welcome this new tool in his or her arsenal.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $3,168.04 - $3,299.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

Samsung S1 Mini (120GB, Silver)

Editors' rating: 4

The good: Classy design; small footprint; decent transfer speeds; generous three-year warranty.

The bad: Very expensive.

The bottom line: The Samsung S1 Mini's high cost per gigabyte and slow throughput benchmarks overshadow its sexy design and small 1.8-inch footprint. We prefer the Transcend StoreJet, which offers more storage at a fraction of the cost.

Read CNET's full review
Price: $140

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Samsung

Dell Studio XPS-122B

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Fast quad-core CPU performance; strong price-to-performance ratio.

The bad: Limited upgradeability; competing systems offer better 3D performance.

The bottom line: Even though Dell's Studio XPS-122B has the latest Intel CPU, its sparse configuration feels like a throwback. This is not to say it's slow or lacking in features, but you'll find this system has relatively few aspirations aside from serving as a standard desktop. We recommend it to anyone in need of raw computing power for an affordable price.

Read CNET's full review
Price: $999.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

HP Mini 1000 Mi Edition

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Still has our favorite Netbook keyboard; sleek Mi interface makes for a user-friendly experience.

The bad: Linux-based custom interface will appeal to a limited audience; won't work with most of your existing software.

The bottom line: HP has added a Linux-based OS to its popular Mini 1000 Netbook's Mi edition, dressed up with a glossy, sexy front-end--but many users will still want the flexibility and familiarity of Windows.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $359-$459

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

LG Rumor2 (Sprint)

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: The LG Rumor2 has an easy-to-use design with a vibrant display and a spacious keyboard. It offers solid call quality and extensive e-mail and messaging support.

The bad: With a low-res camera and no 3G support, the LG Rumor2 offers no improvements over the original Rumor other than the support for corporate e-mail. The navigation controls and numeric keypad buttons are slick, and the e-mail syncing is unreliable.

The bottom line: The LG Rumor2 is a great option for a messaging phone, but LG missed the opportunity to make it both new and improved.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $99.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

Nikon CoolPix S630 (jet black)

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Excellent design; 7x optical zoom in a compact body; ISO range limiter; good photo quality up to ISO 400.

The bad: Slow performance; photos can look over-processed, soft.

The bottom line: The Nikon Coolpix S630 puts a little extra zoom in your pocket, but you might not find the high-resolution photos it shoots pleasurable.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $260.99-$296.25

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

Sony Cyber-shot DSC-G3

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Surprisingly speedy; 4GB internal memory.

The bad: Wi-Fi is slow and difficult to use; touch screen is occasionally nonresponsive; poor battery life.

The bottom line: Though it's a decent camera, the Sony Cyber-shot G3's Wi-Fi implementation is a disappointment, and makes the camera overpriced relative to nonwireless models, including its better designed but otherwise similar sibling, the DSC-T700.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $499.95-$499.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

Sony Vaio VGN-FW351J/H

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: Blu-ray combo drive; separate multimedia controls; attractive design.

The bad: Slow performance for a system in this price range; resolution isn't suited for 1080p Blu-ray content.

The bottom line: While its overall specs are somewhat lower end for the price, the Sony Vaio VGN-FW351J/H makes up for it with sharp design and Blu-ray playback.

Read CNET's full review
Price: $949.99

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET

TomTom ONE 125 - GPS receiver

Editors' rating: 3.5

The good: The TomTom One 125 delivers accurate directions and good performance. The GPS is easy to use and offers the essential navigation features, including a Help Me safety feature.

The bad: The One 125 doesn't include text-to-speech functionality. The display is on the smaller side, and the car mount is weak.

The bottom line: Though we miss text-to-speech functionality, the TomTom One 125 is an easy-to-use, accurate, and affordable GPS for first-time buyers.

Read CNET's full review
Price range: $99.95-$151.88

Caption by CNET Reviews staff / Photo by Corinne Schulze/CNET
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