I love typing on a good keyboard which is why I was willing to shell out a low three digit sum for a mechanical keyboard. Most mechanical keyboards out there in the market are solid slabs of pure typing goodness.
Contrast that to the humble Logitech Wireless All-In-One Keyboard TK820, I was expecting an underwhelming typing experience but after a good extended run with it, the TK820 might a solid recommendation for anyone who is lacking desktop space or for use with their living room tv-computer combo depending on your overall needs.
The office gauntlet
To actually give the keyboard a solid testing environment, I had used the keyboard exclusively in the office and nothing else. With the in-built track pad, I was able to dump my mouse from my current setup in the office, freeing up precious desk space. Things were already looking good!
My initial office setup consists of typing direct into my laptop with an additional mouse. The tactile response from my Lenovo laptop’s keyboard was sufficient from day-to-day with little to no typing fatigue. It was no mechanical keyboard experience but it did the job.
The TK820 is a solid step up from the Lenovo – not only was typing emails now a breeze, it felt as though I was a master pianist performing a concerto. As my fingers danced across each and every key, the words magically appeared on my screen with each light touch. While I might be exaggerating in my description, the raw feel of it all was amazing.
Consider the fact that we spend most of our working lives in an office typing away for most of the day (at least in my case), the best you could do would be to grab a comfortable keyboard to ease into a hard day’s work. The TK820 performs this role flawlessly as each keystroke was a delight to depress.
Despite the smaller form, the TK820’s keys were reasonably spaced out and it did not take me long to get used to the alignment of the keys. The lack of the num pad keyboard would have been nice, but considering that my existing did not have one as well, there was little to complain about.
I didn’t quite like the positioning of the function key being on the left of the windows key. In my case, it would have been better to have the two swapped around as I often use the windows key more often than the function key in day to day. Early on, I found myself hitting the function key too often and had to conscientiously remind myself of the change in position of the keys.
Losing the trail
While I’ve been raving about the actual keyboard side of things, the situation is not as ideal for the trackpad.
The trackpad for the TK820 will never be able to fully replace an actual mouse, which is a pity, considering the amount of desk space saved. If you are a user of Photoshop, you might want to just stick to the standard mouse and keyboard.
Clicking in general works fine but that’s not the full range of actions that one uses everyday. In order to right click, you are able to use two fingers execute the command. While it sounds good in theory, using two fingers to right click an item on the desktop would lead you to have the cursor shift due to the nature of the trackpad. Thankfully, the trackpad itself is clickable but depressing it feels more stiff as compared to a mouse.
Dragging and dropping items around would be the next biggest pain. Unlike on a mobile phone, the screen real estate on a desktop screen is far larger for the trackpad to keep up. Initially, I found myself tracking my finger to the boundaries of the keyboard, having to drop the file on the desktop, lifting up my finger and reattempting to migrate a file across the vast desktop space. Too much work and time spent for an action that should be quick and painless. While the issue could be remedied somewhat with increasing the sensitivity, it would hurt the right clicking action as illustrated above.
Initially, I had welcomed the Logitech TK820 with much enthusiasm but found that actual real world usefulness being hampered by the trackpad. While the keyboard shines, the trackpad suffers. Somewhat like a pair of Siamese twins with contrasting looks.
I still stand by the claim that the keyboard performs its role competently, it would be more than sufficient for use in a home environment where speed and precision might not be a key need.
In my use of the keyboard, I had kept the keyboard on at all times and found that the battery drain was faster than expected. Forgetfulness will cost you here, so remember to power it off when not in use.
My use of the keyboard was exclusively on Windows 7, users of Windows 8 might find this more functional due to the lack of an actual desktop.