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The 100 best products of 2012

PCWorld staff | Nov. 28, 2012
Around this time each year, the editors at PCWorld and TechHive gather to recognize the best new tech products—the hardware, software, gadgets, and devices that had the biggest impact on the world. The process starts out casually enough, because editors get to name their favorites from their respective beats, and everything is included in the first pass.

86. Dishonored (videogame) 

An epic departure from the typical computer game, Dishonored is set in a steampunk universe where technology and supernatural powers coexist. You play the part of a bodyguard-turned-assassin who must overcome being framed for the murder of the empress you were guarding.

87. Lexar 128GB Professional 1000x CompactFlash (memory card)

Its not every year that you get both a noteworthy bump in performance and a doubling of maximum capacity. Lexars Professional 1000x line pulled it off. The cardwhich is also available in 16-, 32-, and 64GB capacitieswrites at 150 MBps.

88. Sanebox (email filtering service) 

Most programs don't prioritize email; it just shows up, with equal weight given to emergencies and uninteresting retail pitches. Sanebox shows only your most important email, shunting lower-priority missives to folders such as "SaneArchive" and "SaneLater." This cloud-based service works with any IMAP email, and it's surprisingly good at guessing what you want to see.

89. Rikomagic MK802 (micro PC)

It costs three times as much as the Raspberry Pi, but the MK802 is more of a complete PC (including an enclosure), in contrast with the Raspberry Pis bare circuit board. While it carries Android branding, its capable of running any Linux distro, and it can output 1080p video via HDMI.

90. Telenav Scout (navigation app) 

Anyone in the market for a better alternative to the navigation software that came with their phoneand we know who you areshould give this app a try. It provides excellent turn-by-turn navigation that takes real-time traffic conditions into account. Scout runs on Android, as well as iOS.

91. Apple Earpods (earbuds)

Products bearing the Apple logo typically bear a hefty price premium, so were delighted that these high-quality earbuds cost just $29. They deliver very good acoustic performance for the money, theyre very comfortable to wear, and they have an inline mic and remote control compatible with Apples hardware.

92. Cinemagram (app) 

A body at rest will remain at rest unless an outside force acts on it. This free app is such a forceat least when it comes to digital photos. Select any area of a still image and the Cinemagram app will animate it with always interesting, sometimes mind-boggling, and occasionally creepy results.

93. Seagate Momentus XT Hybrid (750GB internal hard drive)

By marrying an 8GB SSD with a midsize hard drive, the Momentus XT delivers some of the speed of an SSD with the superior capacity of a mechanical drive. This is a highly recommended laptop upgrade; for desktops, we recommend using a discrete SSD with a second mechanical drive.

94. Sony Cyber-shot RX100 (digital camera)

With a sensor nearly three times larger than most of its competition, a lens with a maximum aperture of F1.8, and manual controls for both stills and 1080p/60fps video, the RX100 is the king of the compact-camera crop (unless you count Sonys full-frame-sensor RX1, priced at a wallet-busting $2800).

 

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