Black Friday Favorites for 2023


By Dan Ackerman

As the new Editor-in-Chief at Micro Center, and a technology journalist and product reviewer for the past 20 years, Black Friday season is one of my favorite times of the year. It's when some of the coolest tech is on sale, and a chance to splurge on something special for you or your giftee. 

I've gone through the hundreds of products on sale forBlack Friday (many already on sale) and picked out a handful of my personal recommendations across laptops, monitors, TVs, 3D printers, audio and more. Find the entire list of Black Friday deals here, and don't forget to add some of these to your cart to see the sale price.

Samsung Odyssey Neo: A Spectacle of Screen Real Estate

This isn't just another wide-screen monitor; it's an extraordinary 54-inch display that's 1440 pixels high but extends over 5000 pixels in width. It stands out as one of the most immersive gaming and computer monitors I've seen. And yes, it's usually quite a splurge, but with Black Friday savings, it's about a thousand dollars off. It curves around your field of vision, enhancing everything from flight sims to space and racing games. 

Creality Ender 3 S1: A User-Friendly 3D Printer

When people ask about the 3D printer I use at home, right now it's the Creality Ender 3 S1. What sets it apart is how it simplifies the setup process. The classic Ender 3 3D printer comes in pieces, requiring hours of assembly, but the Ender 3 S1 is almost ready to go straight out of the box. You can get it up and running in about 20 minutes. It maintains the Ender 3's reputation for quality, and with its compact size, it's perfect for those of us trying to save space. 

LG OLED C3: The Television of Choice

Almost every tech journalist, myself included, has an LG OLED at home. Why? Because it's a fantastic piece of technology and one of the best TVs you can buy. The C3 model has a fast refresh rate of up to 120Hz, making it ideal for gamers and sports fans alike. Every TV is 4K nowadays, but the OLED's superior contrast and color quality truly set it apart.

Acer Nitro 17: A Budget-Friendly Gaming Beast

I'm always on the lookout for standout deals on gaming laptops, and the Acer Nitro 17-inch caught my eye this season. It's got a big 17-inch screen with a 165Hz refresh rate, an Intel Core i7, and it's priced under $1,000. But the real kicker is the Nvidia 4060 card—you usually can't snag that in a laptop at this price. That's why the Acer Nitro is my top pick for a budget gaming laptop this Black Friday.

Lenovo IdeaPad Flex 5: The Smart Hybrid

Lenovo's Yoga series may have pioneered the hybrid computer, but the IdeaPad Flex 5 follows closely in its footsteps at a more modest price. This Black Friday, the Flex 5 stands out with its 16-inch screen and versatile 360-degree hinge. It gives you the freedom to use it as a laptop, in a screen-forward kiosk mode, or as a touchscreen tablet, making it a smart choice for those looking for something close to the Yoga experience without the expense.

MacBook Air M2: Iconic Yet Affordable

The MacBook Air with the M2 chip is a computer I've called one of the most universally useful laptops you can buy. And now it's back below the classic $999 MacBook Air price of old this Black Friday. The most recent design and color options (like the cool midnight color) have been a hit, but the price was a bit steep when it launched. Now, it's more affordable than ever, making it the default laptop for a wide range of users, from students to professionals.

Anycubic Photon Mono 2: The Resin Printing Revolution

For those who are more seasoned in the 3D printing world, the Anycubic Photon Mono 2 is a resin printer that's a step above. It's a more complex system, where models are constructed from UV-cured resin, rising majestically out of the liquid. It's an intermediate to expert level printer, perfect for when you're ready to go beyond FDM printing. Just be sure to have adequate ventilation and wear gloves...

Razer Black Widow V3: The Gamer's Compact Choice

The Razer Black Widow V3 has impressed me with its ability to combine functionality and form in a compact size, all without compromising on the essential mechanical keys that provide that satisfying tactile feedback. It saves space by omitting the numberpad, but still offers both yellow and green switch options and can connect wirelessly or via USB-C. 

Logitech Pop: A Mod Take on the Typewriter 

The Logitech Pop is one of the more unique mechanical keyboards I've come across lately, with a design that ties back to the days of the classic typewriter. This isn't just a keyboard; it's a statement piece with its vintage charm and clacking keys. It's perfect for those who appreciate a touch of retro in their tech. Plus, the emoji key buttons add a fun, customizable twist. 

HyperX SoloCast: The Streamer's Simple Solution

HyperX is HP's gaming accessory brand, and it has a lot of headsets and mics, including some with impressive light-up effects. But for streamers and podcasters looking for a simple high-quality USB microphone at a great price, the HyperX SoloCast ditches the frills for excellent basic performance. 

JBL Clip 4: Music That Moves With You

When my son was looking for a bluetooth speaker to carry around with his backpack, I went right out and got him a JBL Clip 4.  It's small and tough, designed to withstand the adventures of outdoor play. The carabiner-style clip is a smart addition, securely attaching to any backpack or bike. The sound quality is impressive for its size, and this Black Friday, it's an ideal gift for the music lover on the go.

Check out the video above to see some of my Black Friday tech picks in action, and check back for more holiday shopping advice.


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