While another holiday shopping season has come and gone, there are still lots of deals worth perusing with all those gift cards you may have stocked up. We’ve highlighted a few of these in today’s Dealmaster, which includes offers on recommended gaming mice, noise-cancelling headphones, portable batteries, and more. Have a look at them all in our curated roundup below, and we’ll be back with our usual mega-list of deals starting next week.
Note: Ars Technica may earn compensation for sales from links on this post through affiliate programs.
Razer DeathAdder Elite wired gaming mouse for $24.99 at Amazon and Best Buy (normally $44.99).
With its comfy design, accurate tracking, seven customizable buttons, and not-overbearing RGB lighting, the Razer DeathAdder Elite is our current top pick among wired gaming mice. It has sat between $25 and $30 since late November but normally retails closer to $45. If you’re interested in PC gaming, this matches the mouse’s Cyber Monday pricing.
As noted in our guide to Nintendo Switch accessories, the Switch Pro Controller is almost a must-buy if you regularly keep Nintendo’s console docked to a TV. It is a massive leap in comfort compared to the Switch’s standard Joy-Cons, it has an actual d-pad, its battery lasts close to 40 hours per charge, and it can be paired with a PC over Bluetooth if that’s ever in the cards. This $15 discount has been active for the past couple of weeks but is still a great deal while it lasts.
Beats Powerbeats Pro true wireless earphones for $199.95 at Walmart and Amazon (normally $249.95).
While they’re certainly pricey, the Beats Powerbeats Pro are a convenient pair of earphones if you’re deep in the Apple ecosystem and want total freedom from wires. We currently recommend them in our guide to iOS accessories as our favorite headphones with Apple’s H1/W1 wireless chips, which allow them to pair more smoothly and connect more steadily to Apple devices. You could certainly get better sound for $200, but the bass-rich profile here is still solid for a true wireless earphone, and they last an excellent 10-11 hours per charge. The earhook design stays stable during workouts, and there’s IPX4-rated sweat resistance, which is serviceable if not spectacular. We’ve seen this $50 discount intermittently since October, but it’s still tied for the cheapest the Powerbeats Pro have been at major retailers.
New subscribers only: Amazon Music Unlimited 4-month membership for $0.99 at Amazon (normally $9.99/month).
Though we can’t say Amazon Music Unlimited is better than Spotify or Apple Music, it’s not a massive drop-off, and if you’re looking to save a few bucks, four months of music streaming for a buck is tough to beat. Just note that the deal is only available to new subscribers and will activate auto-pay renewal by default, so set a reminder to cancel the service just before the promo period expires if you’re on the fence about it.
Lenovo ThinkPad E490s laptop – Intel Core i5-8265U, 14-inch 1080p, 8GB RAM, 256GB SSD for $607.05 at Lenovo (use code: NEWYEAR10 – normally $850).
While we haven’t fully reviewed Lenovo’s ThinkPad E490s on the site, it’s a decent option for those in the market for a mid-range, work-friendly laptop. We’ve seen this model run anywhere from $675 to $900, but as of this writing Lenovo has a model with an eighth-gen Core i5, 8GB of RAM, a 256GB SSD, and a 14-inch 1080p IPS display available for just over $600 with the code “NEWYEAR10” at checkout. You make some sacrifices in weight (3.66 lbs.) and battery life (about 6-7 hours) compared to more expensive notebooks, but you still get solid performance and a good display for the money, a fair amount of ports (including a USB 3.1 Gen 2 Type-C port), and a typically-comfortable ThinkPad keyboard. Its RAM, battery, and SSD are all upgradable as well.
The catch is that Lenovo is advertising a shipping time of “more than five weeks”; if you can’t wait that long, you can get a config with Windows 10 Pro instead of Windows 10 Home sooner, but for $18 more.
10.2-inch Apple iPad (latest model, 128GB) for $359.99 at Best Buy (normally $429).
While we like the iPad Air better than Apple’s base model iPad, we can’t deny that the latter is still a good value among tablets in general. Best Buy’s deal here takes about $70 off the 128GB version of the 10.2-inch model, which bumps up the screen size compared to previous models, moves from 2GB of RAM to 3GB, and adds support for Apple’s Smart Keyboard accessory. It retains the same A10 processor, though, which is less futureproof than the A12 chip found in the more expensive iPad Air or iPad Mini. Still, for basic media consumption or light work tasks, it’s a fine device.
Fnatic miniStreak mechanical gaming keyboard – Cherry MX Red Silent or Cherry MX Blue switches, tenkeyless for $84.99 at Amazon (normally $99.99).
Another pick in our guide to PC gaming accessories, the Fnatic miniStreak is a comfortable tenkeyless board with traditionally reliable Cherry MX switches, a sturdy frame with an aluminum top plate, a conveniently removable USB-C cable, and customizable per-key RGB lighting that can be adjusted with or without Fnatic’s companion app. The only major drawback are its ABS keycaps, which feel somewhat cheap and pick up finger grease a little easier than we’d prefer. The overall package is still great for a sub-$100 mechanical keyboard, though, and Amazon currently has the Cherry MX Red Silent and Cherry MX Blue models available for $15 off. (The former is quieter than most MX switches, while the latter is clickier and more typing-friendly.)
Sony WH-1000XM3 Bluetooth noise-canceling headphones for $278 at Amazon and Best Buy (normally $348).
We’ve recommended Sony’s WH-1000XM3 headphones in various guides for more than a year now, but they continue to be an ideal blend of high comfort, fun (if not outright accurate) sound, strong battery life (at more than 20 hours), and tremendously effective active noise cancellation. Again, the $70 discount here is one we’ve seen since the holiday season, but it’s a good deal all the same.
Anker PowerCore 10000 PD Redux USB-C portable battery – 18W, USB-C PD, USB-A, 10,000mAh for $29.99 at Amazon (normally $45.99).
We recommend Anker’s PowerCore 10000 PD Redux as an ideal portable battery for smartphones in our iOS accessories guide. It features an 18W USB-C PD port that’s capable of charging all but a few phones at maximum speeds, a 12W USB-A port, and a 10,000mAh (36Wh) capacity that can get about two full charges out of an iPhone 11. Most notably, it’s genuinely portable, with a design that can fit in a pants pocket or handbag and weighs less than seven ounces. Normally retailing for $46, it’s currently available on Amazon for $30, which is about as low as we’ve seen it. Anker includes an 18-month warranty with the purchase.
Sega Genesis Mini retro console for $49.99 at Best Buy (normally $69.99).
We found the Sega Genesis Mini to be more NES Classic than PlayStation Classic, thankfully, with capable emulation, faithfully recreated controllers (albeit of the three-button variety, not the six-button kind), and a strong lineup of classic Genesis games, with everything from Sonic the Hedgehog to Shining Force to Streets of Rage 2. Best Buy currently has the retro console for $50, which is $30 off its MSRP and $5 more than its going rate on Black Friday.