Father's Day shopping guide: 13 gifts for the techie dad in your life

PHOTO: Asiaone; Marshall

Sure, entering phase 2 of the post-circuit breaker period is nice and all for your dad (and everyone else’s) this weekend, but why stop there? 

The easing of pandemic restrictions comes right on time for Father’s Day celebrations. Besides eating at a nice restaurant, dear old dad will surely appreciate something a little more indulgent — and that means toys. 

Tech toys, to be exact. Are some of his equipment and gizmos already past due? Got a rad dad/father figure in your life that deserves a bigger smile this weekend? Here are some gear recommendations that we think they’ll love. 

Marshall Monitor II ANC

PHOTO: Marshall

With stellar sound and a rockstar aesthetic to boot, these wireless headphones would make anyone — dad or not — a proud owner. Exceptionally sturdy thanks to the build and look reminiscent of Marshall’s iconic guitar amps, these cans pack up to 45 hours of battery life so there’s no need to worry too much about charging it frequently. Having active noise-cancelling capabilities is always a plus for dad to enjoy some me-time with his music.

Buy: $549 via TC Acoustic

Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra 5G

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

Most dads love their colossal phone screens. It doesn’t get any bigger than the Samsung Galaxy S20 Ultra, the smartphone that some would call a little overkill. It has a massive 6.9-inch AMOLED screen, so watching videos and having video calls with friends and family on Whatapps WhatsApp will be a joy to behold. On the rear is a beast of a quad-camera system that will see dad having loads of fun messing around with the 100x zoom. Plus, there’s something called Single Take, which lets users take different angles and shots and compile everything into a moment. Perfect to whip out during that Father’s Day blowout. 

Buy: $1,898 (with various freebies) via Samsung Online Store

iPhone SE

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

Now, now, hear us out. Apple’s take on a budget smartphone is surprisingly respectable — they fit an iPhone 8 with the very same processor that runs the latest top-of-the-line iPhone 11 Pro. The souped-up internals also mean that this affordable iPhone can still shoot decent photos on a rear single-camera system thanks to some software magic. It’s perfect for the dad who’s been complaining that smartphone screens these days are way too big for his hands. We’re willing to bet that he prefers good old fingerprint recognition too instead of Face ID, which can’t really work with masks on anyway. 

Buy: From $649 via Apple Singapore

Thule Paramount 2 24L Backpack

PHOTO: Thule

Now that we’re primed to return to our offices eventually, give your old man a new, actually cool backpack to replace his withering one. Thule’s known for its durable, spacey backpacks and this one’s no different with plenty of access points and lots of compartments to fit all workday essentials. Dads will appreciate the easy access to pockets and zippers on the go. Plush mesh padding should help ease his backache a little.

Buy: $249 via Lazada

Sonos Arc

PHOTO: Sonos

After months cooped up at home, some of you might have realised your living room entertainment system could do with a bit of jazzing up. The new Sonos Arc should do the trick — and more. It’s the first Sonos speaker to adopt the Dolby Atmos support, which means truly cinematic sound thanks to eight woofers and three tweeters packed within. If all that doesn’t make sense to you, don’t worry — it probably does to dad. If not, he’ll still appreciate the immersive 3D sound experience afforded by the Sonos Arc. Having Google Assistant built right in is a bonus, too, for voice command control. 

Buy: $1,499 via TC Acoustic

Google Nest Hub

PHOTO: Google

Speaking of Google Assistant, having a smart display in the house will be greatly appreciated by all dads rigging up a smart home by himself. More than just a speaker with a voice assistant built in, the Google Nest Hub can show the things that you want on its touchscreen — a central dashboard of sorts for all connected smart home devices. On top of playing YouTube videos, it also displays Google Maps directions, Google Calendar schedules, and weather forecasts. When left alone, it doubles as a digital photo frame that shows images from your Google Photos account, so the whole household can remember those family trips years ago. 

Buy: $129 via Google Store

MacBook Air 13-inch

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

Apple’s latest MacBook Air held up impressively as an ultraportable device for work and creative assignments during the work-from-home situation. Despite its thin-and-light aesthetics, it shines as a daily driver that barely sputters while running multiple apps at a time — even intense ones like Adobe Lightroom. Great for dads who need to upgrade their current machine but don’t need something as powerful as the new MacBook Pro models. 

Buy: From $1,449 via Apple Singapore

Razer Blade 15 Advanced Model

PHOTO: Razer

Of course, we’re not forgetting the dads who prefer a laptop that can punch through any tasks, including AAA gaming. For that, we recommend the new Razer Blade 15 Advanced Model, a gaming laptop for the ages. Overpowered is putting it lightly — this portable rig is able to hold an 8-core 10th Gen Intel Core i7 CPU and customisable graphics card options that go up to the Nvidia GeForce RTX 2080 Super Max-Q. It may all sound gibberish, but the bottom line is that this is a laptop that most (if not all) gamer dads would dream of having. 

Buy: From $2,419 via Razer Singapore

BenQ Zowie XL2746S

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

BenQ is not exactly a household name, but hardcore gamers would know that the brand produces the best computer monitor for esports. In fact, it’s made specifically for fast-paced gaming (like Counter-Strike: Global Offensive or Call of Duty: Modern Warfare) that demands quick response time and low latency. The BenQ Zowie XL2746S is specifically made for esports pros, and who says dad can’t make it to the big leagues too? 

Buy: $999 via Lazada

Marshall Uxbridge Voice

PHOTO: Marshall

When it comes to speaker boxes, you can’t go wrong with Marshall — the company made its name through guitar amps after all. With a combination of hard-hitting audio delivery and the smarts of Google Assistant, the Uxbridge Voice is where Marshall wants to find its place in internet-connected homes. Not to mention it looks like a mini Marshall amp that would fit perfectly on Dad’s workstation. 

Buy: $399 via TC Acoustic

Fitbit Charge 4

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

It’s surprising how many of us are actually exercising a lot more while sheltering in place during the Covid-19 outbreak. With an increased focus on health and fitness during the pandemic, your old man deserves something that can accurately monitor his progress. In the world of fitness trackers, nothing beats Fitbit wearables — and their new Charge 4 is the best one yet with a built-in GPS, better battery life than any smartwatch, and lots of personalised insights to boot. 

Buy: $248 via Lazada

Huawei Freebuds 3i

PHOTO: AsiaOne / Ilyas Sholihyn

AirPods Pro? Undoubtedly awesome, but alas, expensive. Skip the splurging! Huawei has been catching up fast in the realm of audio gear, and their new FreeBuds 3i prove that you don’t need to break the bank for bluetooth earbuds with active noise-cancelling capabilities. The plus side is you don’t have to live in the (relatively small) Huawei ecosystem to use these buds. They still work perfectly fine with non-Huawei devices. 

Buy: $168 via Courts online

Bosch GSB 120-LI

PHOTO: Bosch

Of course, which Father’s Day gift guide would be complete without a power tool? A good power drill is always handy to have in a tool kit, and cordless ones these days work just as well as its wired siblings. This Bosch kit comes with a 23-piece drilling and screwdriver set that can let handy dads handle wood, steel, and masonry in a cinch. 

Buy: $139.50 via Lazada

This article is brought to you by TC Acoustic.