It’s an older model, but it checks out
Just a few years ago, it would have been unimaginable to score a premium full-frame mirrorless camera for under $1,000 with a kit lens, but we’re now at the point where decent options are starting to crop up. One example is this Sony Alpha a7 IIK with a 20-70mm lens for just $998 (was $1,672) (opens in new tab).
This model is a little older now and doesn’t feature the latest sensor or snappiest autofocus – but it’s an absolute bargain entry point into enthusiast photography. It’s a reasonably priced way to significantly upgrade your Instagram game with some full-frame goodness and get great low-light performance.
This particular listing is with a versatile zoom lens (great for traveling), but there are a number of really cheap prime lenses for this system that are great for portraits and achieving those super pro-looking blurry backgrounds with your shots.
One cheap TV to keep an eye on…
We’re sure to be getting a ton more TV deals as midnight rolls around, but this 50-inch Amazon Fire Omni Series 4K TV for $399.99 (was $509) (opens in new tab) has caught my eye. It’s not the cheapest deal available right now (listings start at $199 (opens in new tab)) but it’s got a decent mix of features, size, and value – enough to keep an eye on it, in my opinion.
What I’m really hoping for with this model is a return to its record-low price of $288; a deal that cropped up on one rare occasion back in August. Put simply, that’s a great price to pay for a TV that features Fire TV built-in and support for HDR 10.
Amazon Fire Omni UHD Smart 4K TV:
$509.99 $399.99 at Amazon (opens in new tab)
My personal choice for an ereader today
While it’s not the cheapest Kindle in the range, the mid-range Paperwhite gets my nod of approval if you’re an avid reader looking for a reliable slate. Why? Well, basically it’s all about the adjustable warm light filter.
While the base-line Kindle has a fancy new model with an upgraded screen, it’s the ability to tone down that harsh light in dark environments that’s the deal-breaker in my opinion. If you, like me, are someone who’s always up after their bedtime then it’s definitely worth investigating a slate that’s easier on the eyes.
Flat whites all round
There are already loads of coffee maker deals on Amazon. One of the best-value we’ve seen is the single-serve Keurig K-Mini Coffee Maker, which is back to its cheapest price ever. But there are a lot more to look through…
How to sign up for a free 30-day Prime trial
Not a Prime member? Fear not, you can still play… If you haven’t been an Amazon Prime member in the last 12 months, you can sign up for a free trial to see the deals in the Prime Early Access sale. Here’s how to do it:
You can cancel before the trial’s up, no strings attached. Just don’t forget, otherwise you’ll pay a fee: Prime membership costs $14.99/month and $129/ year in the US, and £8.99/month and £95/year in the UK.
A super underrated (and cheap) gadget…
Another early deal recommendation from me – check out the Amazon Smart Plug for $12.99 (was $24.99) at Amazon US. I realize this might not be the flashiest deal on our list – especially after having written about the MacBook Air – but hear me out. This is one very handy little gadget that’s great if you’re looking to kickstart your smart home setup on the cheap.
The Amazon Smart Plug (opens in new tab) is essentially all you need to add smart functionality to any socket in your house – be that for lights, appliances, or other gadgets. Simply plug this super cheap device in and voila – you’ll instantly get Alexa voice control over that socket. Like I said, it’s not fancy, but it’s very handy – especially if you’re going to be pairing it up with the myriad of other Amazon devices that will be discounted over the Prime Early Access sale.
The MacBook Air M2 is going cheap right now at Amazon US
I may have been slightly hyperbolic when I claimed you should forget the MacBook Air M2 in favor of the MacBook Pro last week, but I’ve now abruptly my mind – like any good shameless deals editor should.
This excellent ultrabook is down to just $1,099 (was $1,199) at Amazon; a price that’s just $50 off the record low. What was a very price proposition in comparison to the 13 Pro model has now become a very tempting one indeed with this discount.
It’s well worth checking out our MacBook Air M2 review if you want to see us gush on this latest model from Apple. We’ve always had a place for the MacBook Air on our best laptops buyer’s guide since the M1 model and this new iteration is a welcome upgrade – in particular the fancy new bezel-less display. This, alongside the speedy M2 chip and fanless design make the latest MacBook Air arguably the best laptop around right now for those who want a nice balance between power, portability, and battery life.
Will this one go any lower tonight? Well, the jury’s out but it’s worth mentioning that most Apple products aren’t included in Amazon’s Prime Day deals proper. They usually have discounts (and good ones, too) but they don’t tend to need Prime membership for access. Overall, we don’t think Amazon or any other retailer will go crazy with the discounts on this model over the next few days.
A couple of fantastic pre-Prime Day deals in the UK
Amazon’s own-brand devices are always at the forefront of any Prime Day event and this year’s October Early Access sale is no different. A few of these excellent devices have actually already been on sale for a few days in the UK at extremely competitive prices. We’d potentially opt for a ‘wait and see’ approach in regard to picking these ones up as there could be a few further price cuts at midnight, but these listings are definitely worth keeping an eye on.
TechRadar’s top tips for Prime Day
1. Find an Amazon Prime free trial…
Amazon Prime Day deals are reserved for Prime members only. It goes without saying you’ll want to be signed up by midnight and the Amazon Prime 30-day free trial is a fantastic way to do that. While it’s not open to those who have previously had a trial open on their account before, it’s an extremely low-committal way to get your hands on all the best deals over Prime Day. Note, you will have to cancel your trial before it’s over though if you don’t want to be charged, so bear that in mind.
2. …but don’t rely on it
Counter-intuitively, it’s not just Amazon that’s going to be offering excellent deals over this second October Prime Day event. You can expect stores like Walmart and Best Buy in the US and Currys in the UK to host their own sales. Basically, it’s worth shopping around if you’re interested in a particular product. While these other stores may not have as big of an inventory as Amazon, they do sometimes offer cheaper prices on hot-ticket items. If you can get a certain Amazon deal cheaper somewhere else, we’ll be sure to tell you with our coverage here.
3. Know what you want to buy…
It’s always a good idea to have a shopping list ready before you head into a retail event like Amazon Prime Day or Black Friday. There are always literally thousands of deals on offer so having a clear idea of what you need (and what you don’t) can help you stay on budget and save precious time. If you have a particular product in mind, take the time to check its price history or the other models in the range.
4. …but stay flexible
This point follows on from our previous one, namely it’s worth having a few alternative products on your shopping list, just in case the model you’ve been eying up isn’t on sale. This is where research again comes in handy as it’ll immediately help you source alternatives.
For example, you may not be able to find an OLED TV from your favorite brand in a certain size but you may find another from a rival brand that’s just as worth your time. You could also, potentially, find a cheaper model or a more expensive model and one that’s actually better suited to your needs. Again, utilizing resources like TechRadar’s own buyer’s guides and reviews is incredibly handy if you’re looking to clue yourself up on alternative choices.
5. Get in there early…
The vast majority of Prime Day Early Access deals will be going live at midnight tonight, so you can basically be first in the queue by staying up and checking them out tonight. There should be thousands of deals – some of which may sell out, depending on whether it’s a popular model or not. In this case, it’s probably a good idea to order your items sooner rather than later.
6. …but check back throughout the event
That said, Amazon does love a lightning deal. Scattered throughout this year’s second Amazon Prime Day event will be a couple of super-hot listings with record-breaking price cuts. It’s too early to tell what these will be yet (it can be literally anything), but it’s always worth keeping an eye out for these. They’ll be prominently listed on the Amazon deals page – and we’ll be highlighting any particularly good ones right here too.
One early Prime deal to check out…
In the US? here’s a quick listing that we’ve spotted that’s a Prime-member’s only deal. Basically, this is a Prime Day deal in all but name and one we don’t expect to go any lower tomorrow.
So, the award for the first Prime Day deal goes to… the Fire TV Cube. While it’s usually overlooked in favor of the smaller (and cheaper) Fire TV Sticks, we think the Cube is a fantastic choice – especially if you have a higher-end 4K TV.
Amazon Prime Early Access sale starts at midnight
Hello avid deals hunters! We’re kicking off our coverage of the Prime Day Early Access sale a little early today. The festivities proper will be landing at midnight tonight, so that’s when you’ll want to tune in if you’re eager to bag a bargain. In the meantime, we’ve rounded up a couple of early deals to check out – all of which we expect won’t be beaten once the sales proper begins tonight.