By Andrew London May 24, 2018 World of tech
For when only the best is good enough
Choice paralysis is something that you may or may not have heard of, but you’ll definitely have been affected by. It’s the thing that happens when you’re given so many options that you end up not being able to make a decision at all.
You want an ice cream? Yes. Do you want vanilla? Chocolate? Pistachio, hazelnut, strawberry, peach sorbet, rum raisin, mint choc chip, chunky monkey? Suddenly, the idea of an ice cream doesn’t seem so appealing.
Well, the tech world is rife with choice paralysis. For every phone, TV, or tablet there’s a mind-boggling amount of options, which can make the process of buying a new piece of tech far less enjoyable than it should be.
To help you overcome this problem we’ve collated a list of the best gadgets available right now. The industry leaders. The creme de la creme.
For each category there is only one entry and this will only be updated when a new challenger knocks the reigning champ off the top spot.
What that means is that sometimes the list doesn’t change for a long time. So quite a few of the items you’ll see below have been there for months, and have even endured major releases in their field.
If you’re the sort of person who just wants to know what the best is and you don’t care about the rest, welcome to your new shopping list…
TechRadar Senior Editor, Mobile and Buying Guides Matt Swider thinks the Samsung Galaxy S9 Plus is the best phone on the market for a number of reasons, but the write-home-to-mother feature has to be the low-light camera.
Samsung is making a big deal about the camera on the S9 range and for good reason, on the back of the S9 Plus are dual 12MP cameras, both with an impressive f/1.5 maximum aperture. At the time of writing the S9 range is the only phone with a camera aperture this wide, making its low-light prowess second-to-none.
Add on top of that the ‘infinity’ screen that the Samsung Galaxy range is now famous for, and this big-screened beauty comfortably takes the top spot. We thought the AR Emoji feature was overrated, but if you’re in the market for the best screen and best camera on a phone, this is the handset for you.
The Huawei MateBook X Pro is our new pick for the best laptop money can buy in 2018, after years of this list being dominated by the (still excellent) Dell XPS 13, which is now in second place. While Huawei hasn’t been making laptops for as long as more established manufacturers in this list, it has absolutely knocked it out the park with the MateBook X Pro.
This is a gorgeously-designed laptop with a stunning screen (albeit with a rather odd aspect ratio), and it comes packed with cutting edge components that allows it to perform brilliantly, and a battery life that runs rings around many of its rivals. It also has a very competitive price, giving you features, design and performance for quite a bit less money.
Best games console
The battle between Sony’s PlayStation consoles and Microsoft’s Xbox series is hard-fought, but right now we think the PS4 Pro has the edge over the Xbox One S, thanks to a combination of good hardware, great games, and a generous online offering.
An improvement on the already very strong PS4, the PS4 Pro supports 4K and HDR technologies; plus with advances in frame rate due to beefed-up processing speeds, gaming will look cleaner, crisper and smoother.
The only thing stopping the PS4 Pro from being the ultimate console is the omission of an Ultra HD Blu-ray drive. Instead you’ll have to rely on streaming to get your 4K media fix.
Best fitness tracker
The Moov Now doesn’t have all the bells and whistles you would associate with a fitness tracker. It doesn’t have GPS tracking, it doesn’t even have a screen; but what it does have is a cheap price tag and six-month battery life. Yes, you read that right: six months.
During those six months you can track your steps, your sleep, your fitness, your running technique and a whole lot more. This may be an unconventional fitness tracker, but it’s a great one.
According to TechRadar’s Photography Editor Phil Hall, the “fabulous D850 DSLR pretty much ticks every box”.
It has a brillaint 45.4MP full-frame sensor, stunning image quality, and that’s where the story starts.
It has a sophisticated 153-point AF system and 9fps bust shooting speed. The D850 is just as home shooting wildlife, landscape, and portraits. He thinks it could perhaps be the most well-rounded camera he’s ever seen.
According to our Phones, Wearables and Tablets Writer James Peckham, the best tablet on the market right now is the new iPad (2017), with its sharp 9.7-inch display, beautiful design, and A9 chip – and all for a price that isn’t going to break the bank.
While the new iPad (2017) isn’t doing anything revolutionary, it’s a solid update on an already five-star device, and at a much more palatable price.
The new iPad starts off at 32GB of storage rather than Apple’s usual 16GB, and considering it’s cheaper than the entry-level iPad Air 2, that’s seriously good value for money.
Apple has managed to knock itself off the top spot for best smartwatch with the excellent Apple Watch 3. It will look very familiar to anyone who has the Apple Watch 2, as it’s basically the same frame with different innards, but those innards make all the difference.
One of the major changes is the addition of LTE connectivity, which is a great addition. For those that have been hankering for it, the feature has finally arrived, and for those that couldn’t care less, you can pick up a non-LTE version for a cheaper price that still includes upgrades on the Watch 2 like longer battery life and faster speed when flicking through.
The Apple Watch Series 3 is waterproof, has GPS capabilities, and looks good on the wrist. The real question is whether another company is going to be able to take the top spot off Apple, or if this space is going to stay the same until the Apple Watch 4 comes out.
Best VR headset
The HTC Vive is the best VR headset in the world right now. The controls are intuitive to use, the resolution is incredible, with a 1080p screen per eye, and the base stations mean you can play in a space that’s 13 x 13 feet in size – that’s some serious playing space to swing yourself around in.
Like most of the entries on our list this is a premium product at a high price, but if you’re looking for the best first-generation VR headset around, then the HTC Vive is the one to go for.
Choosing a ‘best pair of headphones’ is a tricky proposition, because everyone needs something slightly different from their listening devices.
If you need a lightweight pair for the gym then you’re probably better off with a pair of wireless earbuds; or, if you do most of your listening at home and want the best-possible sound quality, then a pair of wired over-ears might be better.
But if we had to pick the best headphones overall then we’d go for the Sennheiser Momentum Wireless. They’re wireless, which makes them more convenient for portable use, and they’re noise-cancelling for those who want to use them on a noisy commute.
And, most importantly, they do all this without compromising on sound quality, which still lives up to the high standards that Sennheiser normally achieves. Oh, and they look pretty good as well.
There are absolutely better-sounding, better-looking and better noise-cancelling headphones out there, but none of them do everything better than the Sennheiser Momentum Wireless, which makes them the best overall pair of headphones around right now.
That said, if you do want to get the absolute best, purest, sound quality, we recommend the fantastic Oppo PM-3’s.