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High-tech devices for your Super Bowl party

February 2, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
Are you ready for some football? With the Super Bowl just a few days away, it's time to start mapping out a plan for the big game. To get you going, here's a roster of party-perfect gadgets.

These days it's not all about having a big-screen television to help you have a terrific Super Bowl party. There are plenty of other high-tech gadgets to help you score a touchdown at your party.

Mark Radcliffe is hoping to score a touchdown with his Super Bowl party.

"It's a nice afternoon-long combination of entertainment, of sports, of conversation, of technology," said Radcliffe.

A self-proclaimed "tech geek," he's getting his gadgets in order for the game.

"You need to see it from all corners of the room," said Radcliffe. "I keep a couple computers going, as well, so people can see it in the other room."

CNET Senior Editor Natali Morris says that the days of crowding around one TV at the party are over.

"You can prove how 'with it' or how 'in the know' you are with your technology, in terms of not just size of TV or thinness of TV, but picture quality, also streaming other media around just around the game," said Morris.

It all starts with a picture-perfect television. CNET recommends brands like Sony, Vizio, LG and Samsung. And a party bonus: Prices may be slashed for the Super Bowl.

"Or they'll give you good deals on bundles," said Morris. "So you may be able to get a TV with a really nice surround-sound system thrown in, or you might be able to get a TV and get the upgrades with it, like the service for the Internet."

Surround yourself with the action using the Cinemin Swivel portable multimedia pico projector. It lets you beam the gridiron onto any wall. Then, put the Slingbox into play.

"The Slingbox takes the signal from your home DVR, or your home cable box, and sends that to a mobile device," said Morris. "And wherever you are in the world, you call up your Slingbox account and you're able to see what's going on your home cable box."

Clear coffee-table clutter with the Logitech Harmony universal remote. Morris says it's easy to use.

"It's plug-and-play," said Morris. "You stick it into your computer. You tell the computer what electronics you have in your home system, and then it's going to allow the remote to control all of those systems."

To help split the bill for food and drinks, plug in Square. It lets you take credit-card payments using your mobile device.

"It just plugs into the headset jack and then it uses an app, either on iPhone or Android or Blackberry, and then you can take payments from anyone," said Morris. "You just swipe a credit card and it goes into your own account."

Before making a purchase, it's important to do your homework. Read reviews and message boards and ask plenty of questions.