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Keyboard Review: Logitech Illuminated Keyboard

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Vincent Alzieu Published on October 10, 2008
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SPECIFICATIONS

  • Number of keys 107
  • Mouse? No
  • Wireless keyboard/mouse? No / NA
According to a study sponsored by Logitech themselves, 67% of computer users questioned said they use their PC after seven o'clock in the evening.  At night, then, when it's almost by definition darker.  Their natural response was to start making (and marketing) backlit keyboards like the one we're testing today.

The Logitech Illuminated Keyboard is, apparently, the very best product in a category that is still becoming mainstream.  Until recently, backlit keyboards were mainly the preserve of gaming fans and specialists working in dark environments, but Logitech is now trying to bring this functionality to a wider audience.

The usefulness of a having lights behind the keys is fairly self-evident, but whether or not it's a good keyboard itself is another question.

Nice and thin

Once you turn it over, you discover that it's possible to use it either flat, or, by engaging a support at the back, with a gentle slope.  What's missing is the opposite--a support at the front, allowing a downward slope--which some recent Microsoft keyboards have featured.  While this is certainly hard to get used to, it's actually a more natural position for the hands.

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The whole thing resting on the back of my hand
Backlit Keys

The keys themselves are like those on a laptop: flat, and without much depth.  They are all quiet, apart from the space bar which rattles a lot.

The backlighting system it works excellently.  The font used for the letters on the keyboard has been updated slightly (and we can't help but think it looks a lot like our own logo), and makes for a strikingly modern look.  Every key is always perfectly legible, from bright light, through darker conditions right through to absolute darkness whether the keyboard itself is the only light source.

A button to the top right of the keyboard allows the intensity of the light to be set to any one of four levels, or even turned off entirely.

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Three different brightness levels for the backlighting
 
Noise Levels

Although we were initially worried by the first of these keyboards that we tested, which had a very loud space bar, and, as you can hear in this video, noise levels are well under control.  We compare it here to one of the quitest keyboards we've ever tested, a Cherry, and a classic Logitech with big deep keys.

Finally, according to your needs, you can change the mappings of the different hotkeys using a tool supplied by Logitech.

The keys up close
Each key is backlit, and a gentle light glows underneath the lines in between keys. Letters, numbers and punctuation are shown in white, with function keys in orange.

The whole thing is elegantly executed, and Logitech has avoided going over the top with multimedia keys. The ones you need are there, in the top right, but don't overwhelm the whole keyboard like elsewhere.

PROS

  • Great styling
  • Backlit
  • Easy to distinguish orange function keys
  • Wired, so no battery life worries
  • Pretty quiet

CONS

  • No matching mouse
  • Can't make it slope backwards
  • Wired, so an extra cable trailing on your desk

CONCLUSION 5/5

This is a great keyboard, which combines stylish backlighting with quiet keys and understated design. You can't fault it--we'll take one please!
5 Logitech Illuminated Keyboard DigitalVersus 2008-10-10 00:00:00
Compare: Logitech Illuminated Keyboard to its competitors
Store Available Price £
Pc world 54.99 See offer  
Ebuyer - 59.74 See offer  
Dabs.com - 74.16 See offer  
Amazon 75.69 See offer  
Play.com - 76.97 See offer  
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