The PC World 100: Best Products of 2009
The PC World 100: #41-#50
41. Canon Vixia HF S10 (digital camcorder, $1300) This camcorder captures sharp and vibrant 1080p video and 8.6-megapixel stills. Its truly robust manual controls make it a great choice for dedicated users.
42. Mozilla Firefox 3.5 (browser, free) In our Web page loading speed tests, Firefox 3.5--the latest version of Mozilla's popular Web browser--significantly outperformed Firefox 3.0 and was the second-fastest browser we tested in 2009, after Google Chrome. Firefox 3.5 adds plenty of new features, too, like private browsing, geolocation (a feature that sites can use to show visitors nearby points of interest), and improved session restore.
43. Clickfree Traveler (storage device; $70 for 16GB, $130 for 32GB, $220 for 64GB) This lightweight, credit-card-size device combines a generous amount of storage with easy-to-use backup software, making it perfect for people who need extra storage on the go. The Traveler's body cleverly conceals a full USB 2.0 interface, connected by a ribbon cable. Its built-in software performs full backups automatically, and can track and back up data from multiple computers.
44. HP Officejet 6500 Wireless (inkjet multifunction printer, $200) Compact yet loaded with features, the Officejet 6500 Wireless delivers an impressive balance of good performance, ease of use, and appealing features at an aggressive price. It's robust enough to support a small office that has moderate output needs, it's easy to install and use, and HP provides excellent software support. A two-line, 16-character monochrome LCD shows menu options and messages. Media slots accept MMC/SD, xD, and MS/Duomedia.
45. Nova Development Parallels Desktop 4 (virtualization software, $75) Need to run Windows apps on your Linux PC? Want to run Linux apps in Windows? Parallels Desktop 4 lets you do it. And unlike other virtualization apps, Parallels doesn't restrict your guest OS to a box. Its Coherence feature integrates your guest OS right into the host, so you can launch a foreign OS seamlessly from within your native desktop, hassle-free.
46. LastPass 1.51 (password manager, free) LastPass 1.51 automatically fills in saved log-ins and forms with the click of a button. This handy Web freebie and browser plug-in also syncs your data to any computer that you use regularly. You always knew that someday you'd find a more reliable password manager than your yellow Post-its.
47. Panasonic HDC-TM300 (digital camcorder, $1300) Capture good-quality 1080p video and 10.6-megapixel still images with this camcorder, which allows deep manual control and provides useful automated settings.
48. Grooveshark (online music service, free) Find a song on this online service and play it immediately. It's that simple--and since Grooveshark has lots of music and can be accessed for free, it's pretty cool. Grooveshark also offers a premium service; but either way, no audio ads will interrupt your tunes.
49. Aliph Jawbone Prime (Bluetooth headset, $130) This sleek headset offers impressive call quality and excellent noise cancellation, and it can be worn with or without an over-the-ear loop. It has a textured design and comes in seven different colors. The Talk button is conveniently marked by a slight dip in the surface, but sometimes distinguishing whether you've pressed it or not can be difficult.
50. Western Digital My Passport Essential SE 1TB (portable storage drive, $199) A terabyte for your pocket, anyone? Western Digital is first out of the gate with its stylish, compact portable hard drive, which packs 1TB of storage on a 2.5-inch drive inside its chassis. Western Digital is first among the hard-drive makers to migrate to micro-USB for connections, too--making more-streamlined designs possible.