Kokomo Tribune; Kokomo, Indiana

Features

June 11, 2014

Gift Guide: Wood-themed tech gifts for Dad

Complete dad's stylish ensemble of personal technology

ATLANTA (AP) — Dads try to stay handsome, and their technology should, too.

Items that have a blend of technology and wood can look more exquisite than plastic or metal when included in the construction correctly. I found three noteworthy products sure to complete dad's stylish ensemble of personal technology:

— Grain Audio Packable Wireless System ($249):

Bluetooth speakers are readily available these days in various shapes and colors. But many of them are shaped oddly and made of plastic. This speaker from Grain Audio bucks the trend and opts for a walnut wood finish on the majority of its exterior.

The grain pattern of the wood is attractive and blends nicely with the grey rubber edging that surrounds the speaker's metal grill. My tablets and phones synced easily after holding down the "G'' button on the top for five seconds.

The sound is among the best you'll find in a Bluetooth speaker at this size and price. It easily handled some of my bass-heavy electronic dance playlists.

— Grovemade iPhone case ($39-$99):

One way to class up your dad's mobile gear is to encase it in something slim, not bulky. Dads like to ruggedize everything in huge, obtuse rubbery cases. A better-looking alternative are some iPhone cases handcrafted from Oregon black walnut.

If dad is rocking an iPhone 5 or 5s, he may like the full case for $99. The sides and the back of the two-piece slide-on case are made of hand-finished walnut.

If he wants something light for an iPhone 5c, he can opt for the less-expensive walnut bumper, at $39. It offers protection around the edges of the phone.

Both cases allow access to all the buttons, ports and camera lenses on the phones. Consider this a needed upgrade from dad's current Day-Glo "Go 'Niners!" cellphone case.

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