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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Dear All:


I'm going to permanently hook up a laptop to my media rack and connect its HDMI output to my receiver, and in turn, use my projector and screen as a monitor from time to time. As such, I'll need a keyboard with a built-in navigation trackpad (or similar) so it's a neat, all-in-one keyboard/navigation device. Less to fuss with on a sofa.


I already have a Microsoft Wireless Entertainment Keyboard 7000, but I find it's so-called navigation "pad" (which is uber tiny) to be not very responsive and difficult to move precisely.


I'm looking to get the best keyboard with a navigation pad/trackball/other tool all together on one device so I can surf the web from my sofa, or watch some videos from online streaming, or reply to an occasional email during the evening.


May I ask for the best suggestions?


Thanks much in advance.
 

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They all pretty much suck in one way or another. Just keep what you have and add a remote. Might as well get a nice universal remote with the money you save on another keyboard and mouse.
 

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I certainly haven't tried many of the available choices, but I like this one quite a lot, enough that I plan to buy another one to go with my new planned HTPC build.


It's the IOGEAR GKM561R Black 2.4GHz Wireless HTPC Multimedia Keyboard with Laser Trackball and Scroll Wheel

http://www.iogear.com/product/GKM561R/
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16823176018


It's compact, light, and using your thumbs for the track ball on the right side and the mouse buttons and scroll wheel on the left side is quite convenient and easy without trying to balance anything. Unlike trying to use a touchpad with one hand while holding the keyboard with the other, you can use the trackball, scroll wheel and buttons while still holding the keyboard with both hands.


There probably are other better ones, but I happen to like mine.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zon2020 /forum/post/20398107


I certainly haven't tried many of the available choices, but I like this one quite a lot, enough that I plan to buy another one to go with my new planned HTPC build.


It's the IOGEAR GKM561R Black 2.4GHz Wireless HTPC Multimedia Keyboard with Laser Trackball and Scroll Wheel

http://www.iogear.com/product/GKM561R/
http://www.newegg.com/Product/Produc...82E16823176018


It's compact, light, and using your thumbs for the track ball on the right side and the mouse buttons and scroll wheel on the left side is quite convenient and easy without trying to balance anything. Unlike trying to use a touchpad with one hand while holding the keyboard with the other, you can use the trackball, scroll wheel and buttons while still holding the keyboard with both hands.


There probably are other better ones, but I happen to like mine.

+1 I love ours so much, bought 2. Got them from the egg for 39.99 shipped.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by jbcain
nothing but good things to say about the dinovo mini
If I didn't have to pull the battery out almost every time I want to use it I'd say the same. I read that only the older ones had this problem so I got a new one and it does the same thing. Once it's actually working it's great, good compact size-not too small or too big, great battery life, good range.
 

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never had that problem with mine. i had some weird driver issues but after uninstalling and reinstalling a few times, no problems since.
 

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Dinovo Edge here - great battery life, good range. I primarily use a harmony remote, but very satisfied with the Edge for when I need a keyboard / mouse.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Thanks all for your suggestions so far.


I read somewhere that folks have problems with the Logitech diNovo Mini, but far fewer problems with the diNovo (bigger one of the two diNovo keyboards). in general, i've had excellent experience with both Logitech's products as well as their customer service should something go wrong, but as both of these diNovo keyboards have been out since 2008/2009, it's been quite a while so i thought that maybe they are rather dated/old tech? i.e. no Bluetooth 3, etc.


that said, i don't have any experience with the Iogear brand. how well constructed are they? does the trackball have a way to be partially taken apart for cleaning? they frequently get gunky and malfunction if not cleaned. look forward to hearing more about this one, and hopefully/possibly, some other recommendations!


btw, it is worthy to note that my laptop is less of an HTPC but more a laptop that "lives" on the media rack and merely functions as a convenience tool for me to be able to occasionally browse on my sofa/projection screen, and view some videos via online streaming. i don't have any downloaded videos so i will not have a video library to play from.


Thx again.


PS: already in the process of getting an improved universal remote as an upgrade to my current universal remote.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by eieio
that said, i don't have any experience with the Iogear brand. how well constructed are they?
Iogear is a well established and solid brand. They've been around at least 10 years or so, and make all sorts of peripherals. I think they are based in Caifornia but are part of a Taiwan based company. I've used their KVM switches, USB hubs, and other things and consider them a "name" brand. You see their stuff in all the computer and office supply stores. I think I ordered my keyboard from Amazon.


I haven't really had the need and haven't checked yet how to clean the trackball. But the keyboard is solid. When I first got it, I was disappointed because the trackball seemed rough in its movement, but it was only a day or two before it smoothed out and now works great. It takes a little bit of getting used to the movement of the small trackball (much smaller than, for example, the standard Logitech desktop trackball device) but I find it easy to use.
 

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I have a logitech Harmony remote, but for keyboard/mouse I use a Logitech S510 combo and it works great.


The mouse will pick up off the microfiber couch just fine, so I use the couch cushion as a mousepad, it works perfectly.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by brianley
Dinovo Edge here - great battery life, good range. I primarily use a harmony remote, but very satisfied with the Edge for when I need a keyboard / mouse.
I second this vote.


Dinovo Edge and 1100 Harmony for all else.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by MoNkLorD /forum/post/20399217


I second this vote.


Dinovo Edge and 1100 Harmony for all else.

Third this vote. The Dinovo is great... plus it's bluetooth, so the range is decent. I couldn't afford the Dinovo, but know quite a few people that have it and love it.


Instead of going with the Dinovo, I went with the Logitech PS3 Mediaboard Pro. I had a bluetooth dongle laying around, and it synced up perfectly on Windows 7. It has a mouse pad built in, and the keyboard is fairly solid. Plus at 60 bucks, you really can't beat the functionality.
 

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I been using the Adesso wkb-3200ub.

http://www.amazon.com/2-4GHZ-Multime...4692562&sr=8-2


It's very easy to use keyboard nearly full size, media keys and numpad. I really like the location of all of the buttons and even my GF was able to pick it up and know how to use it right away. I tried those mini keyboards and they don't work for me. I'm so use to a full size that it really slows down my typing. Works out of the box like a wired keyboard would. I want to try out the dinovo edge but the price is so high.
 

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Unless you plan to type up a doctoral dissertation on your HTPC, you will not be doing much "typing".


You will be doing a LOT of pointing and clicking. For me its almost 98% pointing and clicking and 2% typing. So if you get a KB+mouse combo you are cradling the weight of the KB 100% of the time but using it only 2% of the time.


I know this, because I have a separate mouse (Gyration) and KB (also Gyration) and I rarely reach for the KB (its got a lot of dust on it).


So think about your specific needs and then invest in the right product.
 
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