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Surprising tech and gadgets you can get on Amazon for under $50

These items are fun, useful and in many cases, weird as hell.

Fox Van Allen
Fox Van Allen is a Los Angeles-based writer for CBS Interactive covering technology, tech lifestyle and gaming topics for GameSpot, CNET, ZDNet and TechRepublic. He has previously worked as a news and feature writer for a number of other sites, including Techlicious, Tecca, WoW Insider (Joystiq) and Blizzard Watch. In his spare time, Fox is an amateur skydiver, retro gaming and arcade enthusiast, 8-bit pixel artist, podcaster and Twitch live streamer.
Fox Van Allen
1 of 30 Sean Buckley/CNET

Surprising gadgets and tech you can get on Amazon for under $50

Are you looking for something cool without breaking the bank? We found 30 fun (and sometimes weird) gadgets, all available on Amazon right now for less than $50.

First on our list: If you're going to play retro games, you might as well do it right. This 8Bitdo SN30 ($45) is compatible with the Switch, the NES and SNES Classic and most computers. It has the classic look of a Super Nintendo controller while adding Bluetooth, extra buttons, rumble, motion controls and more.

CNET editors pick the products and services we write about. When you buy through our links, we may get a commission. 

2 of 30 Rite In The Rain

This waterproof pen that can write underwater

This rugged Rite In The Rain pen ($29), perfect for outdoor explorers, writes in just about any condition, even through water and mud. And because the ink cartridge is pressurized, this pen writes underwater too.

3 of 30 Universal Direct Brands

A happy little Bob Ross toaster

This Bob Ross Toaster by Universal Direct Brands ($40) raises the question: Do you need Bob Ross's face burned onto your toast every morning? No, of course not.

But is it really cool to have Bob Ross's face burned onto your toast every morning? Yes. Yes it is.

4 of 30 Wacaco

This hand-powered espresso maker that makes coffee anywhere

Unlike most espresso machines, the clever Wacaco Minipresso ($46) is hand-powered, requiring no electricity.

5 of 30 Paladone via Amazon

This PlayStation light that reacts to music

This beautiful little PlayStation-themed light ($31) measures roughly 12 inches wide and operates on three AAA batteries (or the included USB cable).

6 of 30 Amazon

This compact-but-powerful smart home starter

The voice-activated Amazon Echo Dot ($50) can do just about everything the larger Echo can do, it just has a less powerful speaker. It's a cost-effective way to turn your home into a smart home.

7 of 30 Addtop

A solar-powered charger for all your devices

Perfect for students, backpackers and anyone whose adventures take them far from wall outlets, this Addtop Portable Solar Power Bank ($40) can store up to 25,000 mAh-worth of juice for when you need it most.

8 of 30 100X Nation via Amazon

This custom LED hat says whatever you want

This $45 app-controlled LED hat will definitely get you noticed. The battery lasts about five hours on a charge.

9 of 30 Litake

An adorable, remote-controlled night light

This simple cat nightlight ($17) boasts 16 static colors and four different lighting modes.

10 of 30 Rocketbook

This reusable notebook works with Evernote, Slack and more

The Rocketbook Everlast Fusion letter-size notebook ($37) has 42 reusable pages. Just write your notes with the included pen, capture your notes using the Rocketbook app, and then wipe the pages clean with a damp cloth.

Note that Rocketbook is offering a back-to-school discount between Aug. 30 and Sep. 3 when you purchase at getrocketbook.com. Enter the code B2S2019 at checkout to get 25% off an order of $25 or more.

11 of 30 Victrola

A Bluetooth turntable-in-a-suitcase

Get out the vinyl! This three-speed Bluetooth Suitcase Turntable from Victrola ($43) plays your music wirelessly via Bluetooth or on the built-in stereo speakers.

12 of 30 Outdoor Technology

This crazy rugged Bluetooth speaker

Don't let the low price fool you: This 4-star-rated Turtle Shell 2.0 Bluetooth speaker ($46) is IPX-65 water and dust resistant, puts out 96 decibels of sound and offers 16 hours of play time on a single charge.

13 of 30 Sonic the Hedgehog via Amazon

A Sonic the Hedgehog touchscreen smart watch

This is far from a full-featured competitor to the Apple Watch. But if you have Sonic-loving kids, this touchscreen watch ($35) has a selfie cam, voice recorder, pedometer, stopwatch, calculator and three games.

14 of 30 RunningSnail

This emergency flashlight can charge your phone, too

The RunningSnail Emergency Weather Radio ($20), a solar- and hand-powered device, is a great choice for your home emergency kit or go bag. It even has a 1,000-mAh power bank that can charge your phone.

15 of 30 RayCue

A hub that adds USB 3.0 ports to your MacBook Pro

Apple has an unfortunate habit of retiring useful ports, such as the USB 3, a bit too early. This color-coordinated RayCue hub ($24) offers a Thunderbolt 3 port, two USB 3.1 ports, a USB-C port and an SD/microSD card reader.

16 of 30 Divoom

A Bluetooth speaker that displays pixel art

Sure, the Divoom Aurabox ($40) is a 5-watt Bluetooth speaker. But its key feature it that its companion app allows you to design (or choose from a selection of premade) 10x10-pixel drawings and animations.

17 of 30 Anker

This wireless Qi phone charger bargain

Have a new phone that supports Qi wireless charging, but don't have a compatible charger for it? The Anker PowerPort Wireless ($20) will do the trick, though note it doesn't come with an AC adapter -- you'll need to use the one that comes with your phone.

18 of 30 Quirky

A smart-home-compatible egg tray

Quirky's Egg Minder Smart Egg Tray ($10) interfaces with the Wink smart home app to keep tabs on your home egg supply, letting you know when you need to buy more and which eggs are the oldest.

19 of 30 Sarah Tew/CNET

An under-$50 tablet that doesn't suck

Sure, it's nowhere near as powerful as an iPad Pro, but the 16GB Amazon Fire 7 ($50) has plenty to offer.

20 of 30 Fred and Friends

This USB desk fan provides a gentle breeze

This adjustable pink fan ($22) -- also available in aqua and white -- is a bit of a novelty, but it will help keep you cool at your desk.

21 of 30 Tile

This is a handy device for people who keep losing things

Pair this handy little Bluetooth device with your smartphone, then slip it into your wallet. If you ever misplace your wallet, you can "ring" the water-resistant Tile Slim ($30) and even pull up its last known location on a map.

22 of 30 Sarah Tew/CNET

This handy stick turns your TV into a smart TV

This Roku Stick ($45) may not be 4K ready, but if you don't care about that, it's CNET's choice for the best streaming stick.

23 of 30 Marathon

This travel clock charges your USB devices

If you're looking for an inexpensive alarm clock with USB ports to take on trips or for guests in your spare bedroom, this 4.5-star-rated clock from Marathon ($35) is a good choice.

24 of 30 CanaKit

Here's a Raspberry Pi kit for making your own retro gaming console

This could be the most fun hobby kit you'll ever buy. With just a little bit of work, you can turn this CanaKit Raspberry Pi 3 Kit ($50) into a retro game console with Bluetooth and Wi-Fi support. Includes a case and 2.5-amp power supply.

25 of 30 HyperX

A comfy gaming headset that's an Amazon favorite

The HyperX Cloud Stinger ($50) boasts a lightweight design, comfortable memory foam ear cups and on-ear volume controls. It's a great entry-level headset.

26 of 30 Wahoo

This speed sensor for your bike

This easy-to-install Bluetooth Wahoo RPM Sensor ($40) will help you keep accurate tabs on your cycling speed. It's compatible with iOS, Android, bike computers and a number of popular cycling apps.

27 of 30 Tyler Lizenby/CNET

The right-size smart home plug for your life

Looking for something to pair and control with your new Amazon Echo Dot or Google Home? The Belkin WeMo Mini ($25) adds home automation functionality to just about anything you can plug into an outlet.

28 of 30 Supernight

Check out this 16.4-foot strip of LED lights

With this adhesive-backed, linkable 16.4-foot LED strip from Supernight ($24), you can easily add dramatic mood lighting or game-show-style flair to any room of your home. The included remote lets you choose between 20 colors with dimming and brightness controls.

29 of 30 Poweradd

An inexpensive 10,000mAh battery pack

Having a spare battery for your phone can sure come in handy. This 10,000-mAh external battery by Poweradd ($18) has enough juice to recharge multiple devices at once.

30 of 30 American Art Decor via Amazon

This cool reproduction of an arcade advertising sign

This battery-powered (two AA batteries, not included) sign ($47) measures 25 inches by 10 inches and makes a neat addition to a game room.

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