The Goods: July 2012’s Hottest Gadgets

Featuring the most versatile wrench around, a virtual caddy in a watch, and more

These dozen toys are the best gadgets of the month, whether you’re looking for recreation (a better bike tire) or something more practical (a better washing machine and vacuum cleaner).

Click to launch the gallery.

Pressure Chamber

The SuctionSeal vacuum works as well on hardwood and tile floors as it does on carpet. A polycarbonate plate on the front of the upright creates a sealed chamber between the vacuum head and the floor, which makes for more-focused suction. Eureka SuctionSeal Vacuum $150


The Craftsman Figure-Eight is the most versatile wrench available. Each end of the one-foot tool has two swiveling heads of different sizes. Each head’s teeth grip round, square or hexagonal bolts. Craftsman Figure-Eight Wrench $25

Inner Tube

On smooth terrain, mountain bikers need firm tires, and on rough ground they need softer ones. With a set of Adaptrac wheels, riders can adjust their tire pressure without stopping. They use a handlebar-mounted switch to either send CO2 from an onboard canister through tubing and into tires or release air. Adaptrac Adaptable Traction System $1,800

Speed Demon

Gamers looking to upgrade their towers won’t find anything more powerful than the GeForce GTX 690. Nvidia engineers built the graphics card with 3,072 parallel-processing cores and housed the fan in magnesium alloy to more effectively dissipate the heat that the cores produce. Nvidia GeForce GTX 690 $1,000

Seeing Greens

The Garmin Approach S3 watch is a virtual caddy for 27,000 courses. Users can check where they are in relation to the hole on overhead maps and plan their shots by setting targets on the touchscreen. The Garmin Approach S3 $350

To-Go Topper

The Ecotop makes any coffee mug portable and more leak-resistant. Users press the polypropylene lid onto any three-inch mug, and a pair of silicon gaskets seal the rim. Ecotop $6

Flavor Extractor

The Stem turns any piece of citrus into a spray bottle. To extract juice, users pierce a fruit’s skin and pump the spray nozzle, which is attached to a tiny juicer that squeezes moisture out of the fruit. Quirky Stem $5

Password Protected

This eight-gigabyte thumb drive is the first to use voice encryption. The drive includes voice-recognition software that verifies a user’s password and distinct vocal frequency. Hammacher Schlemmer Only Voice Authenticating USB Drive $50

Air Tunes

The ARIS is the first speaker to connect directly with Windows PCs over Wi-Fi. As long as the 100-watt speaker is within wireless range, the user can play music to it with a one-click option in Windows Media Player. Aperion Audio ARIS Wireless Speaker for Windows $500

Flex Fan

Many laptops run so hot that they need extra fans to cool them down. The Cryo E40 notebook pad allows users to customize ventilation to match their laptop’s hotspots. Two 3.1-inch fans magnetically attach (and reattach) to the pad’s mesh lid. NZXT Cryo E40 $28

Spray Off

The Gallery dishwasher blasts stuck-on food better than others. Typical washers have perforated spray arms that distribute water in a wide circle. Frigidaire designers added a rotating head that hits dishes with four times more water. Frigidaire Gallery Dishwasher with OrbitClean Wash Arm $649

No More Tangles

The new CordCruncher headphones prevent knots. To store them, users push the 3.5-foot cord into a rubber sheath, which keeps the cable tightly coiled. CordCruncher $20