With Christmas just around the corner, it’s time to start thinking about gifts for your dad.
Don’t worry, we’re here to make things easier for you. There are heaps of cool things that you could pick up for your tech-savvy old man, but not everything is worth forking out the money for.
We’ve put together this guide so you can sort the wheat from the chaff and make sure that your dad won’t be disappointed when he opens his presents on Christmas morning.
Jaybird Freedom 2
$169 from JB Hi-Fi.
Whether your dad listens to Joe Rogan podcasts, Johann Sebastian Bach’s Baroque compositions or old cricket videos on YouTube, the chances are he uses headphones all the time. The Jaybird Freedom 2 Bluetooth earphones offer great sound and a fit so comfortable he’ll honestly forget he’s wearing them.
They are also perfect for dads who want to get fit or spend their days on a busy worksite because they’re sweat-proof, water-resistant and have eight hours of battery life. With the Jaybird app your dad can adjust the sound settings to suit his ears, and with no cords, he won’t have to spend ten minutes untangling his headphones before he can listen.
Amazon Echo Plus (1st gen)
$99 at Amazon Australia.
The Echo Plus is the simplest way to begin your smart home and is perfect for your dad whether he spends his nights on the couch or in the garage. The Echo Plus connects to Alexa – Amazon’s more advanced version of Siri – to play music, make calls, set timers and alarms, answer questions, check traffic and weather, and more. All you need to do is ask.
The Echo Plus can even read your dad Kindle ebooks and news reports. Simply plug the Echo into a power socket, follow the simple instructions and your dad will be ready to go. Dads love tinkering with things around the house, and once he gets used to the Echo he’ll be wanting to fit the entire house with smart lights, locks and speakers. Oh and the best thing is that Alexa gives your dad someone else to ask annoying questions!
iGrill 2 Bluetooth Thermometer
$149.95 from Weber.
Only a few degrees separates good meat from great meat, and measuring internal temperature makes the job way easier for your dad. Without technology, there’s a lot of guesswork and a bit of luck to cooking the perfect steak, but the iGrill changes that. All your dad needs to do is download the iGrill app, connect his smartphone and get ready to cook up a storm.
The iGrill lets your old man choose presets – from medium-rare steak to well-done lamb – as well as create and save dishes of his own. It has four probes that can be inserted into four different cuts of meat at once, and once they hit the right temperatures, he’ll get an alert on his phone. The iGrill makes barbecuing meat easy, and its small size makes it easy to hide, so your dad can pretend to all your guests that he’s just a master cook.
AT-LP60BT Audio Turntable
$299 at Audio-Technica.
If your dad is anywhere near as nostalgic as mine, then a stereo turntable is a great gift idea. Audio-Technica has a whole range of stylish, modern turntables that play records and connect wirelessly to speakers and other Bluetooth audio systems. You can connect up to eight different pairs of speakers, headphones and other devices with just a single button needed to connect.
Your dad doesn’t have to use the fancy Bluetooth connections: this beauty can also play records the traditional, wired way. Whatever he chooses, Audio-Technica turntables have excellent audio fidelity and are a breeze to operate. Prepare for some Iron Maiden to be blasted through the house!
Star Wars Jedi Challenges AR Headset
$99 from Lenovo.
A whole new generation of kids are obsessed with Finn and Rey, but once upon a time, your dad was probably a Star Wars tragic too. Back when Star Wars: A New Hope came out in 1977 there were no Playstation games, no animated series and certainly no AR headsets – your old man was stuck with his imagination.
You have the power – the force, if you will – to change that. With the lightsaber controller, tracking beacon, Lenovo Mirage AR headset and a compatible phone, your dad will be able to travel to a galaxy far, far away and train as a Jedi. He’ll even be able to fulfil a childhood dream and take on Darth Vader – worth every cent.
82V Rapid Trimmer Console
$239 from Bunnings.
There is nothing more Aussie than spending Christmas in the backyard with beers and a barbecue. Part of that is a freshly mown lawn, and we can guess your dad takes great pride in his. The 82V Rapid Trimmer has a lightweight, ergonomic design that makes sure your dad can keep the backyard looking great without being exhausted afterwards.
This line trimmer is quiet, light and has low vibration levels that mean that your dad’s hands won’t be numb while he’s trimming the yard. Being battery-based also means that he won’t have to fool around with priming and fuel – just charge and hop to it. The 82V Rapid Trimmer Console is one of those luxuries that you might not think makes a huge difference, but your dad will thank you for.
Withings / Nokia Body Composition Wi-Fi Scale
$178 from Harvey Norman.
The chances are that after all that Christmas ham, turkey, pudding and beer, your dad will be looking to lose a few kilograms. Even if he isn’t your mum will thank you for this gift. This scale doesn’t just take your weight, it monitors your body fat and water percentage plus your muscle and bone mass.
The scale synchronises data from each weigh-in in the Health Mate app automatically via Wi-Fi. It also gives your dad the change to set a weight goal and manage his daily nutrition. Up to eight users can connect and if you aren’t too fussed about your weight, it’ll even tell you the weather. Your dad might not be overjoyed to receive a scale for Christmas, but he’ll be thanking you when he fits into his high school footy jersey for the first time in twenty years.
ROG Zephyrus S GX531 Gaming Laptop
$3,299 from ASUS.
So, like, how much do you love your dad? I mean all he did was bring you into this world, no biggie. Can you really put a price tag on that? Of course you can. But if you’re looking for something extra special this Christmas, then the Zephyrus – named after the Greek god of the West wind – is the hot item. After all, 54% of people between 45-54 years old play video games.
Gaming laptops are known as being thick and ugly, but the Zephyrus turns that stereotype on its head. ASUS’ magicians have managed to make the Zephyrus the slimmest gaming laptop ever without sacrificing performance. The Intel Core i7 Processor and GeForce 1070 graphics card ensure that your dad will be able to play the latest games on maximum graphics, while the 144hz screen means that games, videos and images always look as sharp as possible. The Zephyrus will make his current computer look like a calculator.
Nest Outdoor Security Camera
$278 from Officeworks.
There is nothing my dad hates more than people coming to our house unannounced. Family turning up is bad enough, but dad would rather amputate his leg than open the door to a stranger. If your dad enjoys his privacy like mine then the Nest Outdoor Security Camera is a great gift for him this Christmas.
Your dad can use the Nest camera to monitor his house from the outside. The camera connects to your WiFi network, so he doesn’t have to worry about any complex set up. Just put it up, connect it, and it will start live-streaming to his smartphone or tablet. The camera shoots at 1080p and has a wide 130-degree field of view. It also supports two-way audio, so if a Mormon turns up at your door your dad will be able to tell them to go away without even having to get up!
$149.95 from Logitech.
The only thing more convenient than having a universal remote is turning your smartphone into one. That’s what Logitech’s Harmony Hub does. You can change channels and volume, program favourites, control lights and other smart devices, and even create complex ‘Activities’.
Activities allow you to program certain actions. For example, the ‘Good Morning’ activity can play your dad’s favourite music, raise the blinds, set the lights, turn on the TV and change the channel to a news program. Dads don’t like leaving the couch, and the Logitech Home Hub makes sure he won’t have to very often.
Garmin Dash Cam 45
$199 from Garmin.
Dash cams are one of the best investments you can make. It puts an end to the ‘he said/she said’ that happens if your dad should ever be unlucky enough to get in a car accident. The device attaches to your dad’s car windscreen, plugs into the cigarette socket and automatically records footage onto the memory card of the camera. Set it, forget it, and one day it’ll save your dad a lot of trouble and money.
The camera records in blocks of 1, 3 or 5 minutes, automatically saving the footage when an incident occurs. The Garmin 45 also has collision and lane departure warnings as well as alerts for red light cameras and speed cameras. It is constantly recording and able to act as a visual document for any incident that occurs – whether it’s a front-on collision, a dog running out into the road, or your dad is accused of running a red light.
$149 from Big W.
What better way to have some quality time with your dad than to kick his butt in the video games of your childhood? 1994 will feel like yesterday when you sit down with him and play this mini reimagining of the classic PlayStation. Whether it’s Cool Boarders 2, Rayman or Tekken 3, your dad is bound to have a blast.
The beauty of the PlayStation Classic is that he doesn’t have to worry about buying extra controllers, memory cards or games. Twenty games come preloaded, two controllers come in the box for split-screen fun, and games are saved on a virtual memory card. Blitzing your dad in Ridge Racer Type 4 sounds like the perfect Christmas activity.
That’s it for now! Stay tuned, this page may be updated as new deals spring up as Christmas approaches.