"I'm Impressed, but not dazzled"4.0 starson by acidph1
Pros: Full Backlighting!, Great Media Keys, Seperate Mouse Included, Lightweight, Mouse/Navigation Pad Combo
Cons: Construction quality, Charging Station Design, No Scroll Wheel/Touch on Keyboard, Media Keys Functionality
Summary: I hope my opinion will hold some value since I have had the Logitech diNovo Edge for several months, and can now compare it to the new Microsoft keyboard. The application of both of these keyboards have been in my living room for my Media PC. My Media PC is installed with XP Pro (not media center, hence the need for a multi-functional keyboard), and Cyberlink PowerDVD software for its Sony Blu-Ray Drive. The editor hit the nail on the head pointing out the diNovo Edge as the #1 competitor to the Desktop 8000. There are some features that I never really appreciated about the diNovo Edge until they were gone; features like the solid built in mouse with scrolling, simple & space effective charging station, solid design, and program-specific customizable media keys. However, the Microsoft Desktop 8000’s ability to smartly backlight the entire keyboard is just perfect for my application. Since most of my movie watching occurs in the dark, it is a dream come true to reach for the keyboard and have the backlighting softly come on. I can even surf the web and use other applications in low lighting without any trouble at all. With the diNovo Edge, the only things that are backlit are the function keys, media keys, customizable keys, and the mouse border (ok and the cool volume slider when you make a volume adjustment). The catch is that you have to push the Function key to activate the backlighting, which is only acceptable after you become use to the keyboard and the location of the Function key. Needless to say, I think backlighting is the only category in which the Desktop 8000 punches the diNovo Edge in the face. A thing I liked about the diNovo Edge software, is the ability to select an actual program for the media keys. For example, Cyberlink PowerDVD was in the drop down in the Logitech software. The media keys on the Desktop 8000 work in media programs most of the time, but not all. I have a WinTV HVR-1600 card in my PC and use WinTV 2000 to watch TV, and the media keys on the Desktop 8000 surprisingly work perfectly eg. “Pause”, “record”, “next” “channel”. However, when watching a movie in PowerDVD, the “next” and “previous” buttons work, but not the “play/pause”. Another thing I noticed about the Desktop 8000, is its sort of cheep feel. I don’t know exactly how do describe it, but the keyboard and the keys just feel like cheep plastic and that it could break at any moment. I do like the innovative concept of the touch mouse and navigation mouse combo. The navigation mode is great for DVD menu operation. I’m getting used to the touch mouse over the unsteady navigation pad buttons, and even though there’s a big” OK” button, clicking it won’t click the mouse; just a soft tap will do like any other touch mouse. My last big beef with the Desktop 8000 is the charging design. Seriously Microsoft ***. This keyboard should totally not be designed be for desktop use. Logitech got the idea perfect with the diNovo Edge charging design; simple, remote location, standing up to save space. When I had the diNovo Edge, I had the charging station on one of the end-tables next to my couch. The Desktop 8000 docked in the charging station just takes up too much space and the wires are too messy to have out on an end-table, so now it’s just set up on a shelf under my TV. And since the keyboard docks into place using magnets, the base doesn’t stay put when you pull the keyboard out. The base will slide a little bit unless you hold it. All that being said, I think that if the diNovo Edge had full backlighting, it would definitely pull a huge amount of sales away from Microsoft. But since it doesn’t, I am going to stay with the Desktop 8000. I personally love the full backlighting, and consider it a deal maker for my application. I can deal with hitting “Spacebar” to pause a movie in PowerDVD instead of a fancy “pause” media button, and charging the unit under my TV. Plus the Desktop 8000 comes with a separate mouse to throw on your coffee table or couch cushion when you other things to do besides movie watching.