This article was first published on 2007-12-17. Due to the age of this article, it is included here for archive purposes only.
When shopping for a new Mac user, sometimes the variety of options and products can be completely overwhelming. Here at MyFirstMac.com we want to take the uncertainty out of new Mac holiday shopping. To that effect we have complied some great gifts for any Mac user organized by price level. Be the gift-giver that any Mac user will love.
Gifts Under $50
MacUpdate Bundled Promo $49.99
This is an amazing holiday promotional pack of some of the best Mac shareware out there. It includes ForkList, a FTP, WedDAV and Bluetooth file transfer program that works great. Also in the bundle is the website publishing software RapidWeaver which is one of the best website designers I have ever used and easily worth the cost on its own. All in all the pack comes with 11 pieces of software for $49.99. If you were to purchase this software individually it would cost over $666 dollars. A note, the promotion ends in December 20th so move quickly.
Mac OS X Leopard: The Missing Manual $24.00
We like David Pogue for his wit and knowledge. He’s been writing the Missing Manual for years. This is the latest update for Leopard. It should be the perfect companion for the new Mac user.
Kingston 4GB USB Flash Drive $42.50
Often when moving to a new computer there is a need to transport huge amount of files. Also for students or technology professionals, bringing your work along with you on your keychain can be extremely useful. This Kingston 4GB flash drive is perfect for all of your USB needs. It can handle several hundred MP3′s, millions of documents, even video files. A great purchase for any Mac user in your life.
QuickTime 7 Pro for Mac $29.99
This is a slightly more controversial choice for Mac software among some expert users. However QuickTime Pro 7 adds immense value to that little blue program that ships with all Macs. Adding the ability to convert movies to a variety of formats for viewing on any device and over the web lets any new Mac user to use their video and built-in iSight to the greatest effect. Also for any budding Podcasters out there, QuickTime Pro comes with great recording software.
Burning Monkey Solitaire $24.95
The one thing I miss about not having a PC around is FreeCell Solitaire. This pack gives you that and dozens more solitaire games. As Freeverse puts it, "The wittiest, wackiest, most delightful solitaire collection you’ve ever played!"
Gifts from $50 to $150
OS X Leopard Upgrade $129.99
For any Mac user who happened to buy their Macs before Leopard, this could be the best gift they get this holiday season. Packing immense value into a low cost, OS 10.5 Leopard brings hundreds of new features into the familiar OS X environment. Some of the most notable features are Boot Camp, which allows you to run Windows on your Mac and Time Machine, the easy to use backup software that works great with any Firewire or USB external drive.
Seagate FreeAgent Pro 320 GB External Hard Drive $119.99
Time Machine requires a external hard drive to work and there are few better than the Seagate FreeAgent Pro. Working with both USB and FireWire 400, it allows any Mac user to use whatever port works best for backup and the drive itself is extremely cost effective. Also the drive itself looks quite good, especially next to a new Mac.
iWork 08 $79.99
In a world dominated by Microsoft Office, Apple has come out with an powerful Office alternative in the form of iWork 08. Included is Numbers, a spreadsheet application that is easier to use than Excel. Pages is the word processor, a simple, clean, elegant program that works well with Word files but is more intuitive to use. Also in the package is Keynote, a PowerPoint alternative that looks absolutely stunning and can export to YouTube and iPod and iPhone formats. Overall a great collection of software that is perfect for the student or professional in your life.
.Mac Subscription Service $99.99 for one year
Dot Mac is a service whose merits have been debated since it first was offered by Apple. However in the last year the value of Dot Mac has increased quite a bit. Offering email, integrated web publishing services with iLife and online file storage, Dot Mac is a powerful tool for the mobile Mac user or a budding website designer looking for a simple tool to get their work online. One of the most valuable tools is a service called Back To My Mac, you can access files on your home computer using any Mac running Leopard and can also remotely control that Mac. While it is possible to get a collection of services for less that does almost everything on this list, it is impossible to beat the sheer ease of use of .Mac.
Replacement Laptop Batteries From $149.99
For any Mac laptop user, one of the better gifts would be an additional battery. Allowing mobile Mac users to gain hours of working ability, a replacement battery can be just the thing to breathe some more usability into any Mac laptop. Some aftermarket batteries even have higher capacities than original Apple batteries although I have never seen considerable gains from using one.
Guitar Hero 3: Legends of Rock $79.95
One of the worst things about switching over from Windows to Mac is the loss of games. While there have been huge strides in the number of games for Mac, especially with Cider technology that brings Windows games over to OS X, there is still a gap between the number of games for computers. However for the gamer in your life it doesn’t get much better that Guitar Hero 3. While it does require a dedicated video card and a newer Intel mac, the game plays beautifully and is really fun. The game package includes the guitar controller, the game, even some stickers to help you decorate your axe.
Gifts Above $150
M-Audio Studiophile DX4 Professional Desktop Monitoring System $150
If you want amazing speakers, look no further than these from M-Audio. They fill a room with sound and rarely have I ever heard such beautiful sound quality. This is really the perfect compliment for the serious music lover out there.
AirPort Extreme Base Station with Gigabit Ethernet $179.00
One of the greatest things about Macs is how easily they work with wireless Internet. Everything from the Macbook to the iPhone and iPod touch work well with wireless and when it comes to shopping for a wireless router it doesn’t get much better than the AirPort Extreme from Apple. It comes with a USB slot for putting a hard drive or printer on the network along with three gigabit Ethernet ports. It supports all the modern wireless networking protocols like 802.11 a/b/g/n and it very easy to set-up.
VMWare Fusion + Windows XP Bundle $169.99 or $149.99 after rebate
As far as software has developed for the Mac, it is sometimes necessary to run Windows applications. Be it for work or for gaming, there are few better options for Windows virtualization than VMWare Fusion. The beautiful of this bundle is that it comes with both the virtualization software and a valid copy of Windows XP to run it on. Its a great deal and an excellent way of using your Mac for all of your needs.
Stay tuned later in the week for our iPod/iPhone/iTunes Gift Guide.
Do you have any must-have gift suggestions? Let us know in the MFM Forum thread in the link below!