With Christmas just around the corner, our tech gift suggestions will make short work of present buying for the music lover in your life.
Headphone features explained
1. Sony MDR-ZX770BN Wireless and Noise Cancelling Headphones
If you’re looking for a comfortable pair of wireless headphones that offer decent sound quality for less than £100, then Sony's MDR-ZX770BN are just the ticket.
These lightweight headphones have well-padded ear cups, making them comfortable to wear for extended periods. The closed-back, over-ear design does a good job of muting all surrounding noise to a whisper.
You can stream music via Bluetooth or through NFC tap-to-pair technology – as used by many Android phones and devices. The built-in rechargeable battery lasts a decent 13 hours with Bluetooth and noise cancelling switched on – and the headphones come with a cable for wired listening and a handy case for easy transport and storage.
Buy from Amazon for £89
The Vinyl Revival
2. Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones
While expensive, Bose’s QuietComfort 25 headphones deliver on all counts. Noise cancellation is excellent – the outside world simply disappears so there’s no need to crank up the volume and risk tinnitus when wearing these.
Audio performance is impressive. With rich, well-balanced output across bass, treble and mid-range frequencies, these headphones are perfect whether your musical tastes run to opera or heavy metal.
As you’d expect at the price, the Bose QuietComfort 25’s build quality is excellent. The headphones sit close to the ears but the soft, leather ear cushions are extremely comfortable. The ear cups pivot so they fit snugly in the new compact carrying case, making them ideal when travelling.
A single AAA battery provides around 35 hours of use. The headphone will work without power albeit without the noise-cancelling capabilities and the sound boost given by the built-in amplifier.
Buy from Amazon for £229.95
Discover more about music apps
3. Azatom Home Hub Lightning Dock
At £57.99, the Azatom Home Hub Lightning Dock is a cracking buy. It combines an alarm clock, FM radio, docking facility and wireless speaker to serve as an all-in-one music centre – perfect for use anywhere in the house.
Its lightning connector lets you charge and play music from Apple devices including the iPhone 6s, 6, 5s, 5 Nano 7G, Touch 5G, iPad mini and iPads. If your devices don’t have a lightning connection, you can still use the Azatom Home Hub to play music across a Bluetooth connection or use the auxiliary input to connect older devices. Its powerful 30W speaker with dual bass ports delivers great quality, well balanced stereo sound.
Featuring a standard radio alarm design, the Azatom Home Hub is a doddle to use. The stylish black and chrome box has a large digital display at the front with the docking station and control buttons for volume, source control, play/pause, dual alarms and snooze on the top.
Buy from Amazon for £57.99
Discover seven cool things your iPad can do
4. UE Megaboom speaker
The UE Megaboom is the big brother of the popular UE Boom portable wireless speaker. The UE Megaboom shares the same cylinder-shape and quirky design of its smaller sibling, but packs a far more powerful sound.
The robust Megaboom is completely waterproof and virtually shockproof. Light to carry, you can place this 360-degree speaker anywhere and its rich sound with deep bass with easily fill any size room with music. A companion app allows for EQ sound tweaks, alarm functionality and the ability to pair more than one Megaboom speaker for enhanced sound.
Its Bluetooth range has been upgraded from the UE Boom’s 50 feet to a whopping 100 feet, and it has an improved battery life of 20 hours.
Buy from Amazon for £197.07
Five of the best flat speakers
5. Pure Evoke D6 Portable Stereo DAB/FM Radio with Bluetooth
The Evoke D6 with Bluetooth combines a stereo digital radio and Bluetooth speaker with plenty of features in a smart-looking design.
Two front-facing speakers deliver a rich stereo sound that’s clear and detailed. Built-in Bluetooth lets you use the radio as a wireless speaker so you can play music from your phone, tablet or streaming service without the need for messy wires.
The real oak veneer casing and white front panel give this radio a stylish modern look that will suit any room in the house. You can save up to 30 stations as presets with four buttons for quick access and two alarms let you set different times for weekdays and the weekend.
A credit-card size remote control lets you enjoy the Evoke D6 from the comfort of your armchair and it has a headphone socket, input for an iPod/MP3 player and an optional rechargeable battery pack for portable listening.
Buy from Amazon for £241.40
Enjoyed this article? Why not sign up for our Technology and Motoring newsletter?