Summer vacation is almost over, and that means it’s school time once again. There’s a lot to prepare for, especially if you’re going to college or university.
We at CGMagazine have compiled a list of products that should help you get through the thick of it. These pieces of tech should handily serve as useful tools during the school year, helping you complete your projects with the efficiency you need and enjoy yourself on your breaks.
The importance of the mouse in human-computer interaction needs no introduction. For classes, and for relaxing afterwards, you want a mouse that moves fast and feels good. Designed for demanding work and gaming, the Microsoft Pro IntelliMouse includes an upgraded PixArt sensor, improved buttons, braided cable, and a customizable tail light to make it your own. At $89.99 CAN, it’ll keep you going throughout your school career.
The IntelliMouse can be purchased through the Microsoft Store.
If you’re after the best keyboard you can get and you’re interested in kickin’ it oldschool with mechanical switches, the Razer BlackWidow is an excellent choice. For $169.99 CAN, you’ll have a tactile and clicky keyboard that can provide a top-tier gaming experience – and get your papers done with minimal fuss. For another $60 Canadian, you could spring for the tournament-grade Razer BlackWidow Elite – but you are attending classes, right?
The Razer BlackWidow can be purchased through the Razer Store.
Portable Hard Drive
Sometimes, you need a lot of room, and have no room for that room. Files from both school and Steam are filling your computer up faster than you can keep track of them, and you’d be loath to delete anything – at least until next semester. That’s where the LaCie Mobile Drive comes in; with up to 5TB of capacity, there’s room for photos, playlists, docs, and more. And with Mac, Windows, USB-C, and USB 3.0 compatibility, access is easy. One-click or automatic backup makes file storage smooth, and the 1TB model is available for roughly $100 CAN just about anywhere external drives can be purchased.
The LaCie Mobile Drive can be purchased through Best Buy.
Inevitably, you’re gonna’ have some downtime. When you do, there’s nothing quite like sitting down with a good book – but lugging one around kinda’ sucks, and you’re already doing that with a bunch of textbooks. Thankfully, eReaders are around to take a little bit of that load off your shoulders. The Amazon Kindle Oasis 2019 is the latest in Amazon’s line of Kindle devices, and it’s their best yet. With a new night mode and slightly better performance, it’s more-or-less worth the $250 USD price tag – though if that price seems steep, springing for a previous model won’t do you much worse.
The Amazon Kindle Oasis 2019 can be purchased through Amazon.
This isn’t something everyone needs, but if you do find yourself in a situation where you want to stream something on YouTube or Twitch, you can’t go wrong with the Mevo Plus. It’s a fantastic addition to anyone’s broadcasting suite and easy to get set up, even when in a difficult shooting location. The ease of use and on-the-go production can shave hours off potential productions. At a $499.99 USD base price, the Mevo Plus is not for everyone, but if you already have an audience, or want to up your quality, the Mevo Plus is an invaluable tool that will more than make up for the cost in the time saving alone.
The Mevo Plus can be purchased through the Mevo online Store.
If you’re looking for a phone to keep you occupied (and perform all of the typical phone functions to the best of its abilities), the Razer Phone 2 is a perfect fit for you. Currently on sale for the half-off price of $529.99 CAN, this phone boasts the fastest response time in mobile gaming, the highest refresh rate, extra-efficient cooling systems, 8 GB of RAM, and Razer’s now-signature colour-changing symbol. You can’t ask for much more in a top-end smartphone.
The RazerPhone 2 can be purchased through the Razer Store.
Microsoft’s Surface Laptop 2 is one of the most stylish and speedy portable computers on the market. It gives you the performance to do what you want with the 8th Gen Intel Core processor, and up to 14.5 hours of battery life leaves time for some relaxation after class. Based on my brief time using it, it’s a fast and lightweight computer that’s perfect for use at a moment’s notice. Starting at just 2.76 lbs with Windows 10 Home pre-installed, this laptop, starting from CAD $1,049.00, is among the best money can get.
The Surface Laptop 2 can be purchased through the Microsoft Store.
The Nintendo Switch is the sole modern handheld option in the gaming sphere, and fortunately, it excels at its role. Gaming on the go has never been easier, as the Switch offers a full console experience that you can take on the go. It’s great for transit and short bursts of gaming, and it has a considerable library of games from all corners of the industry. If you can wait a few weeks, the Nintendo Switch Lite releases September 20th for $199 USD (roughly $100 less than the regular model), and will not only be more portable, but sport a slightly improved battery life as well.
That’s it for our recommendations. We hope these helped, and we wish you (and/or your children or loved ones) the best of luck in the coming school year!