Archive Home arrow Reviews: arrow Input Devices arrow Microsoft Arc Wireless Compact Keyboard
Microsoft Arc Wireless Compact Keyboard E-mail
Reviews - Featured Reviews: Input Devices
Written by Nate Swetland - Edited by Olin Coles   
Wednesday, 24 March 2010
Table of Contents: Page Index
Microsoft Arc Wireless Compact Keyboard
Features and Specifications
Closer Look: Microsoft Arc
Microsoft Arc Detailed Features
Testing and Results
Final Thoughts and Conclusion

Wireless Keyboard Final Thoughts

I can really think of very few reasons why someone in the market for a simple, yet functional wireless keyboard would pass the Microsoft Arc up. With a price point at roughly $60, it is an affordable no-nonsense wireless keyboard from a respectable brand. If you are looking for a more than fully-featured wireless keyboard for your HTPC setup, this may not be for you, but if you want a simple solution for a keyboard to put in your living room, kitchen, or some other minimalist setting, but don't want to sacrifice looks, this keyboard is worth a look.

Microsoft_Arc_Wireless_Keyboard_packaging.jpg

I wanted to conclude with this image. This is the way the Arc came packaged. I am not completely sure what this represents, but if I had to guess, it has something to do with the way the keyboard is designed in such a way that it would become a part of your every day life.

Microsoft Arc Keyboard Conclusion

Performance on this keyboard was not an issue. I never noticed any hiccups typing whether I was using it for hours at a time, or using it touch-and-go. The wireless did not seem to be affected by other wireless devices at all, and the range of 15ft is more than adequate for most users.

Appearance was a focal point for this keyboard. You can really tell that their design team put a great deal of effort into making this look as good as it performs. The colors, shape and size exude elegance.

The construction quality of the Microsoft Arc is top notch. They keys feel very solid, and leave no impression of wearing out any time soon. I have no reason to believe that this keyboard would not survive a few drops from the kitchen counter, and as stated before, the magnetic holster for the USB receiver held strong through some light abuse.

Often you find that a device either functions well, or looks good. This device does both. The functionality of this keyboard is all there. It may not have all of the fancy buttons of some other keyboards, but it has a full size qwerty layout, a directional pad, and a nice selection of function buttons along the top row. It is nothing to be disappointed about.

The Microsoft Arc J5D-00001 keyboard has a $60 MSRP, but sells online for as low as $45. The price may seem a bit on the expensive side for a keyboard, but when you add in the fact that it is wireless, compact, and damn good looking, the price easily seems on par with the device, especially with the included 3 year warranty from Microsoft. I have a feeling people will be pleased with their purchase at either price.

As I have stated in several other ways, I see no reason why this would not be a top choice if you are in the market for a wireless keyboard. The good looks immediately caught my eye, and the quality and functionality definitely won my favor.

Pros:

+ Small and lightweight
+ Very attractive design
+ Wireless with mini-USB adapter that easily stores under keyboard
+ Battery life indicator
+ Dead simple to set up and use
+ Great wireless robustness

Cons:

- Slightly lacking HTPC keys, but it is not necessarily designed to be one
- Not very comfortable after using for an extended period of time

Ratings:

  • Performance: 9.00
  • Appearance: 9.50
  • Construction: 9.50
  • Functionality: 8.50
  • Value: 7.25

Final Score: 8.75 out of 10.

Recommended: Benchmark Reviews Seal of Approval

Questions? Comments? Benchmark Reviews really wants your feedback. We invite you to leave your remarks in our Discussion Forum.


Related Articles:


 

Comments 

 
# UserUser 2011-02-13 05:27
The esc and del keys are very stupid, and hard to use. The arrow keys are bad too.
Becuase of that, its a bad idea.
Report Comment
 

Comments have been disabled by the administrator.

Search Benchmark Reviews
QNAP Network Storage Servers

Follow Benchmark Reviews on FacebookReceive Tweets from Benchmark Reviews on Twitter