What the BestReviews staff is buying on Black Friday

From bestreviews.com
Katie Reseburg

For better or worse, most great Black Friday deals are on Amazon devices.

The staff at BestReviews always has their hands on the latest products. There are a lot of hits, and some end up falling short of our lofty expectations. Others just aren't for everyone. But there are some clear stand-outs both in our tests in our lab, and after extended use in everyday life.

Here are the Black Friday deals members of the BestReviews staff - from managers and expert consultants to our dedicated team of writers and product researchers - are buying today.

Smart-home improvements

I'm definitely purchasing the Google Home Mini in the Walmart-exclusive aqua color. I've been wanting one for a while and this new color, and super low price, make it impossible to turn down. -- Courtney, writer

DIY essentials

I am going to buy a DEWALT impact drill. I just bought a new-to-me fixer-upper house and need to get to work. -- Steve, cooking expert

Electronics upgrades

I've been in the market for a new smart TV, and I'm considering the Samsung 50-inch with 4K resolution. I think that screen size is perfect for setting up a small home theater, which is my goal. I've been impressed by the picture and sound quality, and the reliable WiFi connectivity of this Samsung model. -- Jennifer, writer and product researcher

PlayStation 4 DualShock 4 Controller - it's not easy to find a DualShock 4 for less than $60, so this is a deal I'll be pouncing on. And this is a great opportunity to upgrade from my 1st-gen DualShock to the new 2nd gen. -- Peter, writer

Amazon is selling their Fire TV Stick -- complete with an Alexa Voice Remote -- for $24.99 all week. At that price, I'm looking to outfit all our TVs and cut down on having to drag one Stick from room to room. -- Rich, writer

I'm definitely picking up the Samsung Note 9. -- Taji, writer

Kitchen warriors

A carbon steel skillet, Anova Nano sous vide, a couple more Echo Dots to keep syncing up my house, and a Sena headset for my motorcycle helmet. -- Amos, director of photography

After 16 years of marriage and four children, I have broken nearly every casserole dish I have. I know the next one I buy will eventually break too. So, Black Friday, give me a good deal! -- Karen, writer

My biggest vice is drinking diet soda. This year, I am going to be hunting down the best soda maker I can find so I can turn my addiction into a healthy choice. -- Allen, writer

I'm sick of screwing up when I cook meats, and I've been told a sous vide can solve that problem for even the most amateur cook. I have a small apartment, but the model from Anova won't take up too much space and it'll drop the chances of me overcooking another New York strip considerably. -- Jacob, editorial manager

Headstart on New Year's resolutions

At this time of year, many strength training and athletic equipment manufacturers and retailers are holding sales at a discount. I am considering buying specialty equipment to round out my home gym such as a Yoke squat bar, which would allow me to train the squat movement without stressing my shoulders. -- Robert, sports and fitness expert

I'm looking for camping gear, especially a lightweight backpacking tent. Finding a good one that is under 5 pounds and under $100 is quite a task, but I'm eyeing the Ozark Trail 1-Person Hiker Tent with D-Shaped Door. At 4.4 pounds, it's a lot easier to carry, and its wide base means I've got plenty of elbow room inside - something that many ultralight 1-person tents are lacking. -- Samantha, writer

Buying for the kids

I'm snatching up a three-month subscription to the Why and Whale boxes for 25% off. My kids love everything they've gotten previously, so this gift will keep giving into 2019. -- Elaine, writer

My son, who loves both LEGOs and the Ninjago show, snuck up on me while I was reviewing this a couple weeks ago. He thought it was the Best of the Best, too. -- Kristin, writer and product researcher

Holiday-season essentials

We plan to look for Christmas tree sales and hopefully replace ours, since the lights on ours no longer work. However, I'll be researching both online deals and in-store deals, since it's now very possible to buy a good Christmas tree online and have it shipped. -- Stephanie, writer

On my list: a juicer, weighted blanket, Krinner xmas tree stand, and an ECOVACS robot vacuum. -- John, head of business development


Katie Reseburg is a writer for BestReviews. BestReviews is a product review company with a singular mission: to help simplify your purchasing decisions and save you time and money. BestReviews never accepts free products from manufacturers and purchases every product it reviews with its own funds.

BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. BestReviews and its newspaper partners may earn a commission if you purchase a product through one of our links.

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