8 Best Buys for Essential Gear

Canon's bargain-priced PowerShot A590 IS (left), and RIM's Wi-Fi-equipped wonder, the BlackBerry Pearl 8120.
Pop quiz: Which would you rather have on a business trip, clean socks or your laptop? These days, clean socks are nice, but the laptop is indispensable, just as a desktop is at home, a camera is on vacation, and a cell phone is pretty much everywhere.

But tech is continuously in flux, so it's always the right time to upgrade your gear. Here's our look at today's best of the best: the top product in each of eight essential tech categories, including printers, hard drives, monitors, and HDTVs.

If you prefer to jump straight to our current charts, use the links below. To read about our picks, start on the next page.

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