Just when we thought that Logitech had taken the keyboard to the penultimate design level with its DiNovo Desktop series, along comes the DiNovo Edge. Not only is the Edge the most stunning keyboard we’ve seen, it is also a well-thought-out and durable piece of art, fitting the bill for any computer that might be in an area frequented by guests.
Features and Design
Its no secret that we’re fans of Logitech input devices here at Digital Trends, and the DiNovo Edge keyboard is an example of what we have come to expect from the Master of the Mice (or, in this case, the King of the Keyboards).The DiNovo Edge carries the name of Logitech’s premium designer input device line, and leaves previous DiNovo models in the dust when it comes to features, style, and the overall package.
Packaged with the Edge keyboard are a USB 2.0 Bluetooth receiver (pre-paired with the keyboard at the time it’s manufactured), charging dock, microfiber cloth (for cleaning up fingerprint smudges), power cord, and software CD. The keyboard itself measures only 11 mm thick (about the height of your thumb) and is constructed from a Plexiglass composite. This means the keyboard is not only thin, but incredibly durable. The surfaces surrounding the keys are a glossy black, with the wrist rest made of brushed aluminum. Surrounding the full-sized keyboard are shortcut buttons and controls galore.
Along the right side of the keyboard are the most interesting and innovative controls. A touch-sensitive volume slider that glows a soft, fading orange color as the user’s finger brushes the glossy surface. At the base of the volume slider is a mute hard button, and above the slider is a Windows Media Center Launch key. Below the volume control is a circular track pad, which is used for mouse control and scrolling. Below the track pad are left and right mouse buttons. When in use, a ring of orange light illuminates around the track pad. The track pad supports both horizontal and vertical scrolling. Also, in some cases the track pad can get in the way, but Logitech allows the user to quickly disable it with Function + Left Click. Along the left side, you’ll find the mouse left click, zoom in/out/100% buttons, and the sleep button. All the hard buttons have a fading, glowing indicator to confirm they have been pushed.
When the function button is toggled, switching the F-keys to shortcut keys, glowing icons identify the function of each key. These include quick access to your favorite VoIP application, a quick search application, e-mail, and a web homepage. The second set of four function key shortcuts is tied to media controls (forward, back, play/pause, and stop). The final four function keys are user-customizable and can be set (like all the previously mentioned function keys) to open web pages, applications, documents, and folders; they can also simulate keystrokes.
Image Courtesy of Logitech
Testing and Use
The DiNovo Edge uses Bluetooth 2.0 to communicate with the miniature USB dongle, which translates into approximately 30 feet of wireless goodness. We topped out at around 25 feet before dropped keys became troublesome. The Edge uses the Widcomm 5.1 Bluetooth stack, which means any PC with Bluetooth can be used without the dongle. That places the Edge directly in line for use as a Media Center PC keyboard, or any other application where the CPU tower is out of sight. The keyboard does need to be recharged, though not often — once every month or so — which means that the charging stand needs to be accessible. Five minutes of charge translates into one day of use, while a full two-hour charge will keep the Edge running for two months, according to Logitech. We used the keyboard for a week, admittedly with only light usage (approximately 14 hours), and the battery level never left full charge.
The charging stand itself is six inches wide and sits the keyboard upright. But don’t worry about the appearance of a propped-up keyboard ruining your decor. Your friends will probably mistake the setup for a tasteful sculpture, provided that you clean the glossy coating after each use. Seating the keyboard in the charging dock causes all the lights to blink on and off, confirming correct insertion. There is also a built-in speaker that will give a brief beep when inserted into the charging dock, or when the device is successfully paired.
Image Courtesy of Logitech
Typing on the Edge feels like typing on a good quality laptop keyboard. Because the keyboard is so slim, there is little travel per keystroke, but Logitech seems to be very proud of the key switch technology, boasting about the PerfectStroke technology implemented in each key. We found that key strokes feel good, though no better than a Sony VAIO laptop. Still, in case it is a selling point for you, the PerfectStroke keys use 18 x 18 mm keys, with 3.2 mm travel and 60g activation force, and they should last for 10 million keystrokes. The strangest part about typing on the Edge keyboard was that we felt like we were typing on the desk surface, due to the low profile.
One major convenience of the Edge is the ability to use it as the sole input device for a media center PC. The track pad is ideally used with the right thumb, while holding the keyboard up with the left hand poised near the left click button. One oddity, though: we found the track pad very difficult to control when using our index finger, similar to a laptop track pad. Perhaps it is the comparatively diminutive size of the Edge track pad, but we kept tripping into the scrolling areas on accident. Another minor missing feature is backlit keys, which the competing Microsoft branded keyboard does feature. We have not had a chance to use both side by side, but we expect power consumption might have played a significant role in the decision not to include this feature. We hope to see it in future product revisions.
The Logitech DiNovo Edge keyboard represents the pinnacle in Media Center keyboards. The DiNovo Edge is undeniably chic, the range is great, and it provides every function you could ask for in a keyboard. However, we would recommend having a Bluetooth mouse, as the track pad can be a blessing for quick and dirty usage, but a curse for prolonged precision control.
• Slim and beautiful design
• Light-up indicators
• Recharging dock
• Keys are not backlit
• Slightly intrusive wrist rest