Monday, November 19, 2007

Keyboard follow-up


In Tools of the Trade: Keyboard I talked about the importance of keyboards as well as some of the models I was looking into.

Shortly after, I ventured out into the wild world of consumerism where I visited Micro Center, Circuit City, and Best Buy trying out the various keyboards. I decided to start with the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. Turns out, that's where I'm going to end too. This is a fantastic keyboard.

It has one flaw: the space bar. If you push the space bar near the top, it gets kind of stuck. It's also the only key that's loud and "clack-y." I was able to get used to it, but it is less than ideal.

I was willing to get used to it because this keyboard has a lot going for it. Its most distinguishing feature is that it is raised from the back and slants down away from you. This is in contrast to most models which have feet in the back causing them to slant down toward you. Having it slant away is actually a lot more comfortable. I find that I rest the back of my hands on the wrist pad and allow my fingers to dangle down onto the keys. This seems to keep some of the stress off my wrists.



I also love the touch and spacing of the keys. They require more pressure and travel distance than some keyboards today, but not enough to make it annoying. Its a good balance.

I bought it from Micro Center. They sold me an OEM model that came in a simple brown unmarked box for half what Best Buy and Circuit City had it for.