Christmas gift ideas: top Christmas gifts for 2014

Get fit and keep an eye on the time in style - plus a selection of action cameras for recording those moments of sporting brilliance.

Ultimate gadget watches

Casio Pro Trek PRG-240T - £125

Casio Pro Trek PRG-240T

When we say the Casio Pro Trek PRG-240T is the ultimate watch for hikers, we're not kidding. Features include Auto Illuminator, which detects when the watch is facing you and turns on its electro-luminescent panel, a digital compass that detects magnetic north, solar power, a pressure sensing altimeter, a thermometer, stopwatch, world time and water resistance. Phew!

Garmin Forerunner 610 - £200

Garmin

Come on, you've got to admit it - any watch that displays the message "searching for satellites" when you first turn it on is pretty damn cool.

This is the perfect timepiece for going on runs, working out at the gym or riding your bike, with a load of features for keeping track of your workouts. It's rain, sweat and water proof, and has a touchscreen that's easy to use.

Casio G-Shock GB-6900 Bluetooth - £175

Casio G-Shock GB-6900 Bluetooth

The G-Shock range has been a familiar presence on our wrists for a long time, and it's great to see a brand new Bluetooth version that's packed with great features.

Along with worldclass shock resistance, the watch connects to your phone so you can see emails and voice call notifications on your wrist. A "Find me" function lets you use the watch to find a lost phone.

sWaP Rebel - £145

sWaP Rebel

The sWaP Rebel is a feature-packed watch and smartphone hybrid that comes complete with a touchscreen, USB connectivity, camera, 3G internet, and voice and text communication.

You can transfer files via USB or Bluetooth, and add memory cards up to 8GB. You can listen to music and even read ebooks - if you must. Perfect for killing time on those long train journeys. It also comes in an array of stunning colours.

sWaP Active - £200

sWaP Active

While some watches are able to connect to your mobile phone, the sWaP (smart watch and phone) Active goes one better by combining the two devices into one. Features include built-in memory, MicroSD card support and a camera.

It boasts almost all the features you'd find in a smartphone, including the ability to play music and watch videos, as well as voice recognition and a waterproof body that makes it ideal for workouts.

Fitness gadgets

Nike+ FuelBand - £129

Nike+ FuelBand

At first glance, the Nike+ FuelBand is stylishly understated. Available in black or white, it sports a rubbery yet rigid texture and links around your wrist with a retractable silver clasp.

But with a press of the band's discreet button, a strip of coloured LED lights illuminates a seamless animated display that can show the time, your steps taken, calories burned, and accumulated Nike Fuel - the company's proprietary unit for calculating activity that's tied to your Nike account, and feeds into other Nike-linked activities.

Below the display sits a spectral dial of traffi c lights, which indicate your progress towards a predetermined goal. This is chosen via the iOS app, which looks as sleek as the wristband and represents your data in various insightful ways.

Holding down the button activates the all-important Bluetooth sync, and while GPS tracking is absent, it's the visual nature of the instant feedback that will win over most users.

Fitbit Flex - £80

Fitbit Flex

The Fitbit Flex combines the company's honed pedometer technology, key to its One product (see below), with a convenient wristband that, while not the most stylish of accessories, oozes ruggedness like no other tracker.

An adjustable clasp keeps things secure, while a black strip acts as a simple progress display that's activated with a double-tap and powered by a removable plastic sensor housed inside a rubber pouch.

Battery life is around five days, and although the five LED lights helpfully indicate the number of steps taken in a day, it's the iOS and Android apps that offer a more detailed and extended picture of your activity.

This data can also be shared with other Flex users, all of whom can choose between a range of cool custom band colours.

Fitbit One - £71

Fitbit One

The Fitbit One is a more inconspicuous type of tracker, with a sleek pebble-like design small enough to keep in your pocket or attach to your belt using the supplied clip. During the day it tracks your steps, distance covered, calories burned and even stairs climbed, thanks to its built-in altimeter.

It also tracks the quality and duration of your sleep, and packs a vibrating alarm to wake you. This data is stored minute-by-minute, and is converted to a daily total, which can be viewed on the LED display or through the Fitbit Connect software, which works on both Mac and PC via the supplied cable.

It syncs the stored data from your tracker to your Fitbit.com Dashboard, where you can also record diet, weight and more.

Striiv Play - £57

Striiv Play

Like the Fitbit One, the Striiv Play smart pedometer adopts a sleek, understated polycarbonate design that's easily hidden away in your pocket or clipped to your belt. Powering the device is a three-axis accelerometer that measures your steps taken, calories burned, and distance travelled, as well as an altimeter to record stairs climbed (though sleep isn't tracked by the Striiv).

The device runs for up to seven days on a single charge, which takes just a couple of hours. The button-toggled OLED display highlights your running daily totals, while Bluetooth 4.0 lets you sync data to your iOS device via the accompanying Striiv app, which includes some fun fitness-based games.

Jawbone UP - £100

Jawbone UP

The second-generation Jawbone UP resolves the problems that dogged the original device, and can finally square up against the leading contenders in the activity tracker market. The water-resistant band is flexible and casually surf-styled, comes in a range of colours, and still retains an unobtrusive, secure profile.

It records your daily movement as well as your sleep, distinguished by manually pressing the silver button on one end. Specific periods of exercise can be defined to the second with the button, while a pop-off cap reveals the mini jack that fits into the headphone port of your iOS or Android device for manual syncing.

The app takes a holistic approach to a healthy lifestyle and, aided by an online nutritional database, enables you to record dietary habits by taking shots or scanning barcodes with your camera. It also offers a visually-rich representation of your activity, with the option to share this information with like-minded friends.

Action cameras

Ion Air Pro Wi-Fi - £250

Ion Air Pro Wi-Fi

You'll have no trouble attaching Ion's Air Pro to your extreme sports vehicle of choice, as it comes with all kinds of straps and fastenings. Its video quality is a little grainy by day, but great in low light. The 170-degree lens picks up action in all directions, and its Wi-Fi pod makes uploads easy. If it seems a bit pricey, it can be bought more cheaply without the Wi-Fi.

Sony HDRAS15 - £185

Sony HDRAS15

Sony's action camera is surprisingly inexpensive, but doesn't skimp on features. It uses SteadyShot image stabilisation and an Exmor sensor to ensure smooth filming with high image quality. There's Wi-Fi, too, enabling you to control the camera and view footage via your smartphone.

Our only issue is the case - it's waterproof to 60 metres, but it muffles the sound and it's the only way to mount the camera without buying extra kit.

GoPro HD Hero3+ Black Edition - £360

GoPro HD Hero3 Black Edition

Truly the king of action cameras, the GoPro Hero3+ provides jaw-dropping image quality in both light and dark scenes. It's really easy to use and comes with housing that waterproofs it to 60 metres, making it perfect for diving.

There's also a Wi-Fi remote so you can control it from afar, and an app so you can use your smartphone to preview your footage.

Drift HD Ghost - £300

Drift HD Ghost

The Drift HD Ghost is the biggest and bulkiest in this round-up, but that's probably due to the sheer amount of tech it contains. It's the only camera here with an LCD screen, which means you can review your footage on the fly.

Image quality is good, with high frame rates even in low light. Its rubberised finish and Gorilla Glass screen feel sturdy, and it includes a handy remote with a tag function for highlighting moments as you're recording them.

Contour ROAM2 - £150

Contour ROAM2

Available in red, blue, green and black, Contour's camera is certainly the most colourful in this selection. Its aluminium body feels reassuringly solid, and it's waterproof to one metre.

A nifty feature here is a built-in laser that helps you see where it's pointing, which is especially useful in low light. Its controls are quite minimalist, so check the manual before you set off.