2014 iPad iPhone iPod Buyers' Guide from iLounge.com

$100
Speakers

XtremeMac Tango Bar

Made to fit right underneath your iMac, Cinema Display, or Thunderbolt Display, XtremeMac’s just announced Tango Bar ($100), a good-looking way to pump some more sound into your home or office. While it can connect to any computer—or any other audio source, for that matter—the speaker is particularly well-suited for using that otherwise unoccupied space under Apple monitors, and is designed to match their aluminum bodies. Updated December 20, 2011: We’ve now had the opportunity to test the Tango Bar in person, and have added some new details below.

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$4
Apps

Gray Goo Labs Readomator for Instapaper

Developers know they’re headed in the right direction when Apple “borrows” or offers to buy their software—just ask Marco Arment, whose “save this web page for later reading” app Instapaper inspired Apple’s Reading List feature. But Instapaper is still a better tool, and Gray Goo Labs has built upon it with a smart tool to help you manage your ever-growing list of saved articles: now you can listen to them instead using Readomator for Instapaper ($4).

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$25
Extras

Heckler Design OneLessDrop

Heckler Design’s OneLessOffice was one of the coolest Mac-inspired furniture concepts we saw this year, and we’ve been waiting patiently for the companion piece, OneLessDrop ($25), ever since we first heard about it. After a round of Kickstarter funding, the cable anchor is finally available to the general public, albeit in limited quantities. If you’ve been looking for a well-designed way to manage tangled cords on your desk, now’s the time to go for it.

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$69-$229
Peripherals

Apricorn Aegis NetDock - Mac Edition

If you need an optical drive for your MacBook Air or Mac Mini for whatever reason, Apple’s SuperDrive has been the main contender for the past few years. But along with the Apple design, you have to pay the Apple price—$79 in this case. What if you could get the equivalent of the SuperDrive, plus a four-port USB hub and 2.5” hard drive enclosure for ten bucks less? It’s called Aegis NetDock - Mac Edition ($69-$229), from Apricorn.

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$8
Apps

Appnotix Ripped from Reality

There’s no shortage of speciality photo editing apps in the Mac App Store, allowing you to do everything from HDR to black and white effects, and of course much more. The newest addition to the pack is definitely a standout though, bringing an effect we haven’t seen in any of the others. Ripped from Reality ($8) by Appnotix juxtaposes photography and sketching, resulting in some genuinely cool pictures.

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$250
Cases

Bodhi MacBook/iPad Convertible Tote

There are more than a few reasons to like Bodhi’s Macbook/iPad Convertible Tote ($250). It’s a truly nice-looking bag, with room to carry not only an 11” or 13” MacBook/Air, but your iPad, too. The company chose some really high-quality materials to make the bag. And, importantly, it’s significantly less expensive than other bags from Bodhi, including its Ostrich Zip Top Messenger—a fancy colored birdskin bag that sells for $758.

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Pay What You Want
Available Until December 27, 2011
Apps

Humble Indie Bundle #4

The holidays are the best time of the year to give and to get, so Humble Indie Bundle #4 (Pay What You Want) definitely comes at the right time. Not only do you get up to seven solid games from independent developers for whatever price you choose, but a portion of the profits goes to two worthy charities: the American Red Cross and Child’s Play. If you’re looking for a gift for the gamer in your life, look no further.

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$139
Extras

BulletTrain Aluminum eXpress Keyboard Platform

Ever since the fateful day that Apple brought the Magic Trackpad into our lives, we’ve been waiting to see an accessory that pairs it with a Wireless Keyboard in a setup that looks like the bottom half of a MacBook Pro. Well, here it is: the Aluminum eXpress Keyboard Platform ($139) from BulletTrain.

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$10/$20
Apps

MacPhun Snapheal

Enhance. Sharpen. Remove that bush. MacPhun’s new Mac App Store release Snapheal ($10/$20) may not work quite like photo software on shows like CSI, but it does take many of the more impressive photo editing features from apps such as Photoshop and present them in an inexpensive, easy to use title. Photobombers, your days may be numbered.

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$2
Apps

KroNick Photo Police

Photoshop is a great thing—it lets you bring out the best in your photos by making adjustments until every pixel is exactly how you want it. And, of course, it also lets you hide anything that you may not want to be seen; blemishes, ex-lovers, those kinds of things. New software from KroNick may just throw a wrench into your plan to convince people that your photographs are perfect: Photo Police ($2) actually exposes portions of photos that have been corrected.

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$38
Extras

Hatje Cantz Apple Design

We’ve been searching for a great Apple coffee table book, and Apple Design ($38) from German publisher Hatje Cantz looks like just what the doctor ordered. It’s a history and explanation of the company’s design principles, presented in a large hardcover layout. The 320-page tome doesn’t go all the way back to the company’s earliest products, but rather focuses on Jony Ive’s work—arguably the best and most important products in Apple’s storied history.

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$70-$100
Peripherals

j5 create USB HDMI + DVI Display Adapters

Adapters to turn a Mac’s USB port into a second display have become fairly common over the past couple of years, but options with Mac-matching aesthetics are few and far between. j5 create’s USB Display Adapters are different: available in HDMI ($100), DVI ($70), and even VGA ($70) versions, each has a Mac-matching silver aluminum body with white and silver plastic ends, a white USB cable, and a single female port for video output. Connect it to your Mac and you can hook up an external monitor of your choice—j5 create notes that certain computers can support as many as 6 displays over USB, provided that they have dual-core processors and 2GB or more of free RAM.

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TBA
Furniture

Herman Miller Teneo Storage Furniture

No matter how uncluttered your workspace, odds are your Mac has acquired some peripherals while you’ve had it, and in some cases, those peripherals—printers come to mind—might need supplies of their own. Herman Miller Teneo Storage Furniture ($TBA) lets you stash your extra stuff in Mac-complimenting style.

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Chronos Lumio

We like some of the wallpapers that Apple ships with Lion, but the selection is limited to just a few dozen different images and a lot of them have been around for years now. If you’re going to replace the background with something new, skip the cat pictures this time and pick up Chronos’ Lumio ($5) instead. With over 250 professionally designed wallpapers, there’s sure to be some legitimately nice images that you can stand staring at for at least eight hours a day.

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$15
Extras

Workerman MacHook

Any accessory that helps free up some desk space is good by us. If it looks nice too, that’s a definite bonus. That’s why we’re digging MacHook ($15) from Workerman. This handmade hook is the perfect way to raise your headphones out of the clutter that is your workspace by hanging them from the side of your iMac.

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