Published on February 13th, 2011 | by Greg0
The Infinite Keyboard: Logitech’s Solar K750
There are many gadgets that we use everyday, but few of them as important as the humble keyboard. They have to take quite a beating, stay clean, and be quiet- and hopefully transmit information accurately and with as little latency as possible. And for everyone who says that keyboards haven’t changed much, the newer chiclet style of keys is a major transition, and we like quite a bit. Wireless has also expanded the range and the technology has improved quite a bit, and some new coatings and materials have made for glossy attractive sets that still work well.
Logitech continues to innovate in the PC peripheral space. We’ve seen nifty stuff from them, like the Squeezebox series and the new Revue- but the item we’ve been going hands-on with for the last month has been their Wireless Solar Keyboard, the K750. Billed as an alternative to regularly replacing the batteries in your wireless accessories, the solar panels are placed at the top of the keys, and the fairly small board contains a complete set including a number pad.
We loved the feel of these keys, as quiet as any keyboard we’ve tried, the small curvature on each one adds a nice touch to the now-common chiclet. Gamers might not love the tactile response- a bit squishy- but regular users will like the lightweight portability and comfortable feel. Officially compatible only with Windows PCs, we had luck trying it with Macs as well, though a nifty application for Windows allows you to closely monitor battery status and even the light input. We tested in a variety of conditions, and couldn’t easily get the battery percentage below 100%. It’s not clear, of course, if that will last over the long term, but we found it automatically charging in almost any light, natural indirect daylight or a home lamp. Using it in the dark for a couple of hours did manage to drain the battery slightly, however it took only a bit the next day before it was fully back to 100%.
There was barely any wireless delay noticed, and installation is true plug-and-play easy. The USB dongle is small, perfect for notebook/netbook users who want a larger or more comfortable keyboard. And this is one thin, sexy gadget, which made more than one onlooker ask what it was and where we had gotten it.
However, the picture isn’t quite perfect. We noticed the legs were both weak and non-adjustable, a fairly big downside for many. We would’ve liked a bit more stability for lap use. And, though not really a criticism of the keyboard itself, we found ourselves wondering why Logitech didn’t also release a mouse that would fit nicely alongside, featuring the same technology. Sure, it’s a bit harder considering the surface and size, but it seems plausible. At $80, it’s a good deal for a solid keyboard that should serve for years to come, offering the best use of solar we’ve seen since pocket calculators.