| 05 Oct 2023
Gift some music cheer this X'mas!

MUMBAI: Time was when you walked into the neighbourhood book and music store and picked up CDs to give away as gifts during the festive season.

The Christmas shopper today however is spoilt for choice between a myriad cordless headsets, numerous offspring of the Apple family and a dozen new speaker devices that can make the perfect X'mas gift. While we decided to round up all the snazziest music gizmos available in the stores (and online) to make your shopping a trifle easier, we at also decided to undertake a snap poll from among 50 urbanites across India to find out what counts among the most popular of the wares.

Here's the lowdown

According to our random sample survey conducted on 50 urbanites, the entire music range of Apple - from the iPod nano, iTtouch and even the evolving  iPhone seem to walk away with the winners' sash. The iPod, by far, emerged as the ultimate winner with 80 per cent of the respondents vouching for the device as their music guide and the ideal music gift for the season. This one, not surprisingly, is loved by both genders. The fact that it's available for a range that starts low and goes up higher to suit every pocket, appears to tilt the scales in the little gadget's favour.

Headphones, MP3 players, speakers and even music phones are the other gadgets that people like to gift and be gifted, we realised   

Music CDs are dead. Almost. With the advent of music streaming sites, CDs got a hefty thumbs down from our respondents, 60 per cent of whom admitted that CDs as a gift are passe, but a few are still lured by the charm of gifting CDs as they add the much required personal touch and have a 'collectible' value. Most buyers said they would prefer to stay away from the physical form of music.

Says one of our respondents "I will never buy a CD and gift it to someone only for one or two nice songs. It is a waste of money since they wouldn't want to hear the rest of the tracks." Another agrees, "CDs are out of fashion though they have their market and still lure people. I personally would download music rather than buying CDs."

Music CDs however have two factors in their favour - they are cheaper and still make for good gifts for the 'elders'. For the younger set, even a set of blank DVDs, burned with a newly downloaded album
and gift-wrapped for a loved one, is the latest mantra.

While most men we spoke to assured us they would be going in for gifts like speakerphones, headphones, woofers and similar gadgets, many women said they would consider music phones like Nokia Xpress, iPhones and even handsets from Samsung as gifts for near and dear ones.

USBs preloaded with music which were hailed as next big thing in music by the music labels have also failed to generate interest amongst the masses      

Also, brands that are available in the country are  preferred by the buyers rather than opting for the international ones, because of easier availability and accessibility. Concerns like the time lag in delivery, the condition of the product on delivery and the lack of being able to touch, feel and test the product puts off many.

The slowdown is no more on the minds of X'mas shoppers this year, with respondents willing to loosen their purse strings from as low as Rs 2000 to Rs 8000 per gift  "The budget depends as to whom are you buying the gift for. If the person is close giving a gift which is slightly heavy on the pocket is acceptable," adds a media executive       

So, if your pockets are still burning with the cash and you haven't zeroed in on the music gizmos you plan to get your loved ones, here's's ready reckoner for you.

iPod Nano

Nothing would please a music buff more than an iPod Nano. Available in 8GB and 16GB capacity, this current fifth generation iPod supports integrated video camera, FM radio, video recording, live pause, iTunes tagging, a microphone for voice memos, Nike+Ipod Support and speaker and a pedometer. Available in nine hues of Silver, Black, Purple, Light Blue, Dark Green, Yellow, Orange, product Red and Pink. Priced at Rs 9200 for 8GB and Rs 11,150 for 16GB this ultimate music gadget will be loved by all age group alike and is the safest bet this season 

Skullcandy headphones

Launched in India a few months ago, these trendy headsets will be every receiver's delight. Breaking away from the boring monochromatic headphones Skullcandy offers a wide range of headsets in trendy bright hints and in funky designs. At a range that starts at Rs 800 and goes up to Rs 7000, these headphones will make a good gift for young music buffs    

Sony Ericsson MH-907 motion activated headphones

Most tech-savvy will almost certainly toss the earbuds that came with the player so here is an extremely high tech headphones that music lovers will adore. The clever MH907 headphones
mean users simply plug in two earphones to start listening to music and pause by removing one earbud. To start listening again, simply plug it back in. Do exactly the same to answer and end calls. The headphones are available in Yellow/White and Titan Chrome colour and is priced approximately at Rs 2700.

Neck Tie

A silk woven commuter tie which doubles as a music player storage device--comes in colors such as purple, blue, green, orange, and red, as well as a more subdued gray for the MP3-toting investment bankers out there. The tie accommodates the new iPod Nano and other smaller music players. Part of the U.K. shirtmaker's autumn/winter line, the tie was previously only available as a limited edition, but now is tying one online at a price close to Rs 4500. A different gift for the music
lovers on a run.

Nokia 5800 Xpress music

This smartphone by the Finnish manufacturer is one gift that every music lover would want Santa to give them this christmas. With a Nokia Ovi player the handset is equipped with a 3.2-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss lens, LED flash and video capability. While the phone's virtual QWERTY keyboard is ideal for text messaging, email and instant  messaging, the WiFi, 3G, GPRS, dual-band WCDMA, HSDPA, WLAN (802.11 b/g) and HSCSD support ensures wireless access to the internet. With stereo speakers and eight band graphic equalizer and easy volume control the handset also provides with 35 hours of music ona  multi format player. Available at RS 13500 this handset would be an ideal gift for the music lovers, though would leave a small hole in the pocket of those who buy it    

Logitech Pure-Fi Mobile Speaker System

Pure-Fi Mobile Speaker is a wireless speaker phone that can be put at use even while conversing on the phone. It eliminates the need to pick up the mobile phone, thank to the control buttons of the call-answer and call-end that are available on the speaker unit. Moreover, the mobile speaker system not only works as an accessory for a mobile phone but also to PC, MP3 players and iPods. Users can pair their portable audio players to the unit via Bluetooth or a 3.5 mm audio jack for immediate music playback. A perfect gift to indulge in this Christmas.

Bose SoundDock 10 digital music system for iPods

The music system is Made for iPod and Works with iPhone certified, compatible with any click-wheel iPod or iPod Touch, and the iPhone 3GS, 3G and original iPhone model, MP3 player or portable CD palyer A Bluetooth dock is offered separately and streams music wirelessly from a stereo Bluetooth music phone  As new devices become established standards, new docks will be made available  A video output lets user's play video from an iPhone or iPod on a TV while listening to the soundtrack on the system. An infrared remote controls the system and the basic functions of an iPod or iPhone, including playlist navigation  It also allows listeners to switch back and forth between sources  A treasure for the music buffs who already own a gadget from the Apple family      

Belkin TuneBase FM and TuneBase Direct

The products allow users to listen to all their favorite music from an iPhone and iPod. They also enable customers to answer phone calls through hands free on the iPhone. The TuneBase device can be connected to the cigarette lighter adapter located in the car. The models are ideal for the users' car.When there's an incoming call, the music slowly fades and users can answer the call by simply pressing a button. The audio can be heard via the stereo system of the car. The iPod and iPhone can be heard and charged in the car itself. Through the USB a second device can also be charged. The TuneBase Direct can be acquired for Rs.3117 while the TuneBase FM costs Rs.5421 is suitable gift for those on move.

Sony NWZ-E440

Sony's NWZ-E440 Walkman Video MP3 player is certainly worth a second glance or more. Available in hues of of black, red, pink and violet, this entertainment device ooffers approximately 6 hours and 30 hours of video and music playback, respectively. This device tips the scale at just 54 gms and has been released in two models, its memory capacity being cited as the only difference between them. Owners can enjoy the video content on a 2 inch LCD display screen. Its audio system boasts of Clear Audio technology that delivers a Clear Bass and Clear Stereo sound system. The 4GB NWZ-E440 which is priced at Rs.5,990 and is sold in all four of the above mentioned colors while the 8GB NWZ-E440 costs Rs.6,990 and comes only in black is sure to brighten up the festive season of the receiver.