When you have a home theatre PC a wireless keyboard is an essential item and over the last few years I have used some good ones (Microsoft Multimedia keyboard) and the bad ones (Microsoft Windows Media Center Keyboard with the world’s worst mouse). Logitech have a new keyboard for home theatre PCs which could be one of the best keyboard for a HTPC I have used.
The K830 is a backlit keyboard that comes with a USB wireless receiver, Logictech say it should work up to 10 metres and I found I got at least that far before it stopped working. There was no problem using it at the back of my living room and there were no dropped keys.
The key action is very responsive, it feels very much like a laptop keyboard and you would have no problem using it for typing emails and long documents (In fact I am typing this review on my Surface using the keyboard). As well as the main keys there are Function keys and multimedia keys. There is Play/Pause and volume controls which work with as standard controls in Windows 8. Where I really like this keyboard is the trackpad. It works just as a laptop trackpad, it support two finger scrolling and Windows gestures so you can use it to switch between apps and bring up the charms menu.
Another nice feature is it’s rechargeable, it comes with a micro usb charging cable and extension lead, I haven’t worked out how long you get between charges as it came charged and after a day of playing with it the keyboard was still charged. Logictech say you should get ten days between charges.
I found the keyboard really useful connected to my Windows 8 HTPC, the trackpad is great and the keyboard is very responsive. It works great with the Windows media apps including Windows Media Center. The backlight comes on when you start using it so it’s great to use in the dark when you are controlling movie playback.
My slight criticism is the trackpad is on the right hand side of the keyboard and as a lefty this is the wrong side for me bit it’s only a minor quibble and I can use it find on the right hand side, maybe Logitech could offer a left handed version. Other than that it’s a really good keyboard and is at home in the living room as well as a desk, it has a compact and sharp design that is not going to look out of place on the sofa. The keyboard costs around £89 from Amazon.
Here is my first look at the keyboard.