2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com

Eikon Digital Privacy Manager with TrueSuite Premium for Mac

There’s already great software on the market for storing your passwords—AgileBits’ 1Password immediately comes to mind. But if you want to add an extra layer of security to your Mac—something more than just a string of letters and numbers—check out Eikon’s Digital Privacy Manager with TrueSuite Premium for Mac ($50). This USB fingerprint swiper does a whole lot more than just log you into your computer: it keeps everyone else out.

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$100
Mounts

Kensington SafeDock MacBook Air Security Dock & Keyed Lock

Even though Kensington continues to add new categories to its product lineup, the company’s name is perhaps best known for computer locking solutions. Today it has introduced a few new options for security-conscious Mac users, including the SafeDock MacBook Air Security Dock & Keyed Lock ($100). This dock is available for both the 11” and 13” models, and offers more than just hardware to lock up your Air. Thankfully, one of Kensington’s Clicksafe Locks is included in the price.

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$110
July 2012
Peripherals

G-Technology G-Drive slim

Walk into an Apple Store looking for a backup solution and it’s likely that G-Technology’s G-Drives will pop out at you: Hitachi’s sub-brand has great and well-deserved placement, as the drives are high-quality inside and out. We have a particular affinity for G-Drive slim ($110), a crazy thin option that matches our obsession for the MacBook Air. Starting this July, it’ll be an even better value: along with a handful of other drives from the company, it’s getting updated to support USB 3 just in time to plug into the brand new Macs announced at WWDC.

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Apple AirPort Express (Mid 2012)

We’ve been expecting an updated AirPort Express ($99) for more than a year now; thankfully Apple finally acquiesced. Under the roar of new Macs, Mountain Lion, and iOS 6 at WWDC, it quietly slipped an redesigned version of the router into its stores. Now resembling a white Apple TV, there are also new features previously only seen with the AirPort Extreme and Time Capsule, including one outbound Ethernet connector. Thankfully, the Express maintains its audio-out and USB ports, making it a truly valuable tool around the house and on the road. Updated x3: Click through to see even more hands-on + comparison pictures with the Apple TV, as well as testing results!

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$600
Summer 2012
Peripherals

Drobo Drobo Mini

Professionals seeking a redundant storage solution on the go have, up until now, had a rough go of it—either pack along a bulky RAID array and carry the drives separately, or carry multiple external drives and hope that simple mirroring can ensure their data’s integrity. The new Drobo Mini ($600) takes care of all those problems and more.

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$15
Apps

Disney Interactive Brave: The Video Game

Nearly anyone that followed the career of late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs also has a soft spot for Pixar and its films, so it should come as no surprise that we’re excited to see its latest film, Brave. Set to coincide with its premiere, Disney Interactive’s Brave: The Video Game ($15) has arrived on the Mac.

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D-Link All-In-One Mobile Companion

Disappointed that the new AirPort Express lost it’s wall wart status in favor of traditional plug? D-Link’s All-In-One Mobile Companion ($100) is showing up at just the right time. An alternative to Apple’s portable router, this little guy hooks directly into your outlet without additional cables. It doesn’t have quite as much going on under the hood but it’s still a pretty impressive device.

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Satechi Premium 4 Port Aluminum USB Hub

In the Apple accessory field there’s Mac-complenting and then there’s Mac-matching; Satechi’s Premium 4 Port Aluminum USB Hub ($25) falls squarely in the latter category. With a strip of USB ports and a 9.5” long cable connecting it to your computer, the functionality is clear. It’s the design that sets this one apart from the crowd.

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$2199
Macs

Apple 15" MacBook Pro with Retina Display (Mid 2012)

After months of rumors, the next generation MacBook Pro has finally been announced. Dubbed the MacBook Pro with Retina display—the lower case “d” is Apple’s—it really is an impressive beast. Designed with the size of the MacBook Air and the power of the Pro in mind, this Mac is super thin, super light, and has an incredible display. Just as impressive are the internals: a huge battery, super fast processors, RAM, graphics, and flash storage, plus a new quiet fan to keep it all cool. Of course, the price matches the specs; this Mac starts at $2199.

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$10-$79
Peripherals

Apple MagSafe 2 Power Adapter + MagSafe to MagSafe 2 Converter

There’s only so much Apple can do to slim down its laptops at this point, and cutting the height of its power connector is the most recent trick it’s using to shave off millimeters. Today saw the introduction of the MagSafe 2 connector on both 45W and 85W MagSafe 2 Power Adapters ($79 each)—the former is for the new MacBook Air, the latter the MacBook Pro with Retina display. In addition, it brought out the MagSafe to MagSafe 2 Converter ($10), a welcome accessory for those with older adapters for displays.

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$999-$1499
Macs

Apple MacBook Air (Mid 2012)

It’s WWDC, and this year, that means new Mac hardware. The first updates announced by Apple today were for the MacBook Air ($999-$1499). The story is what you’d expect from Cupertino: faster Ivy Bridge processors, more memory, and increased SSD storage. USB 3.0 is now finally built-in, and the FaceTime camera has been updated to 720p, earning it the “FaceTime HD” designation.

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$1199-$1499
Macs

Apple MacBook Pro (Mid 2012)

Apple updated its 13” and 15” MacBook Pro ($1199-$1499) family with modest spec bumps at this year’s WWDC. If an optical drive is still important to you, the new chips inside make these guys worth checking out, and the price points have stayed the same across the line. New to these guys and Macs in general is USB 3, though Apple’s latest screen innovations remain locked into the more expensive 15” MacBook Pro with Retina display.

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$2499+
Macs

Apple Mac Pro (Mid 2012)

There’s not much to say about the 2012 flavor of the Mac Pro ($2499+): sure, Apple updated its powerhouse, but with such modest spec bumps that one has to wonder why they even bothered. This is the company’s most professional, heavy-duty machine, yet it didn’t even get a Thunderbolt port of its own. Is this box going to go the way of the iPod classic, just kind of existing with no real love from Apple?

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Free
Apps

Found Software Found

Found Software’s new Found (Free) app is the latest third-party Spotlight alternative for your file-searching needs. Like Apple’s search tool, Found scans your Mac for files matching whatever term you put in. The big difference here is that it adds support for cloud storage systems including Dropbox, Gmail, and Google Docs/Drive. Once you’ve logged in to your accounts, just start typing in Found’s search window and boom—your files pop right up.

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Free
Apps

kyleconroy Journey to the Center of Hawkthorne

Apps like this demonstrate why the Internet is so fantastic. Just a few weeks after the fan-favorite TV show Community debuted a video game-inspired episode —you can check it out here—Reddit user kyleconroy and his team released Journey to the Center of Hawkthorne (Free). Built from the ground up on the love game engine, it’s a faithful recreation of the 8-bit game the study group plays in the episode. Cool. Cool cool cool.

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