Click to open new window with larger image of the Adesso Wireless Multimedia Keyboard WKB-3200UB.
Here is a do everything, multifunction keyboard:
Today we are reviewing Adesso's newest wireless multimedia keyboard, the WKB-3200UB. If you are looking for a keyboard that does just about everything, consider this one.
the Adesso Wireless Multimedia Keyboard, WKB-3200UB
Swiss Army Knife of keyboards
The WKB-3200UB combines enough major functions and features to make it highly multifunctional:
* multimedia control of your PC, TV and home theatre
* optical trackball
* scroll wheel
* numeric keypad
Very few keyboards have all of these features. Obviously many people will find value in being able to carry the the keyboard around with them like a remote control for their TV, in-house sound system, or home theater.
Does it work?
So if the WKB-3200UB is a jack of all trades, can it also be a master of any?
I installed four AA batteries into the battery compartment of the keyboard. Then I plugged the USB receiver into a USB port of a Lenovo T61 notebook running XP SP2. Then I pressed the ID button on the receiver. The green LED began to flash. This means that it is searching for an ID. Then I pressed the ID button on the keyboard. Then the green LED light on the receiver stopped flashing and turned off. This means that the connection was successful. Then I started typing this review into this document. The wireless function was working perfectly. That's a pretty simple setup.
Adesso claims to have a 100 feet effective working range for its 2.4 GHz, 16 channel wireless keyboard. To test it, I walked across the room to another desk, perhaps 30 feet. I then pressed the My TV Media Center Edition ("MCE") hot key to see whether the TV controls came up. Yes, no problem. Next the tough test. I walked down the hall, 80 feet away and into the bathroom. As you can imagine, I wanted to listen to some smooth music, so I pressed the Play multimedia key. Yes, the music started playing, but I couldn't hear well. So I pressed the Volume Up key. The laptop received all the keyboard commands perfectly from 80' away, through walls. Great!
Can it replace your trusty, crusty mouse or trackball connected to your PC? It would save deskspace and a USB port. The trackball is highly accurate, being 800 dpi resolution. The slightest roll translates into cursor/pointer movement on the screen. It is in a very comfortable position, easily reachable with minimal movement.
While this may be personal preference, no keyboard review would be complete without a comment on the function that you use more interactively than anything else: pressing keys and typing. I found the keys responsive, not too soft to the touch, and not requiring too much finger pressure.
With lots of other battery powered devices, when the battery runs low, the unit just stops working. They have no low battery indicator. Sometimes, a user will not think of this as the source of the problem and spend hours troubleshooting. This is why I appreciate that the WKB-3200UB has a low battery indicator. So when low battery LED lights up, it means the keyboard requires a change of batteries.
What we don't like
On HomeGear.com, we try to be as critical as possible, so we usually find something wrong with every product we review. For the WKB-3200UB, it is a bit too easy accidentally press the reconnect button at the bottom of the keyboard. This caused the keyboard to lose the wireless connection with the computer. You can remedy this problem by taking the keyboard apart and shortening the button by snipping it with a pair of sissors.
The WKB-3200UB is covered by a one year limited warranty.
Adesso was founded in 1994. The company manufactures and markets innovative, ergonomic, industrial, programmable, wireless, and foldable keyboards as well as touchpads, mice, trackball, Barcode scanners and high performance Graphic Tablets. Adesso most successful product lines include its Tru-Form ergonomic keyboards and Glidepoint touchpads.
MPN: WKB-3200UB. UPC: 783750003513