Dynex Keyboard: in and out of our house in record speed!
Jan 23, 2013 (Updated Jan 23, 2013)
Review by Kris Thompson
Rated a Very Helpful Review
Pros:cheap, a keyboard, cute calculator button
Cons:shift key doesn't work, wonky number pad, buttons, and arrows arrangement, cheap.
The Bottom Line: cheap piece of plastic that doesn't work well and seems destined for a garbage can--or would, were we not returning it tonight.
Oh, what an exciting time! Finally, after months of putting it off, we headed off to Best Buy and grabbed a new keyboard!
Recommend this product?
Being four years old, our old keyboard was sad. One of the little lift-y legs had broken off, making it rock with abandon with each keystroke. Not as big a hassle as you’d think, since you do become accustomed to the motion. Much like trying to dance on a waterbed, I’m sure. You adjust, find your rhythm, though it does make a heck of a racket as it bangs about. In addition, many of the letters had worn off their keys—not too big a deal when you’re really typing, but made the one-handed hunt-and-peck a real challenge. So it was time.
Das Spousinator ran into Best Buy to pick our new keyboard while I hung out in the car, hacking. Miserably. See, I’ve been breathtakingly (har-de-har) sick for the past two weeks. Some sort of hateful respiratory thing. I had to choose whether to have that looked at or the new probably cancer on my arm. I went for the cancer behind door number two, thank you Monty!
The new keyboard, a Dynex (a brand I’ve never heard of), was hooked up last night (it is a corded keyboard). It goes back to the store tonight. Why? Well, the fact that it took FOURTEEN tries to get the left-hand shift key to give me a capital ”W” back there (and another eight tries to get the quotation marks) has a little something to do with it.
The Dynex keyboard is smallish, black, and the letters and numbers are not as well-marked as I would like. In fact, in average light, they appear a pale grey rather than a strongly contrasting white against the black keys. The number pad is set up differently from our old keyboard (a rather nice HP), with the zero being the same size as the other numbers and the arrow keys being weirdly shoved beside and, in part, UNDER the number keys, which makes for some real issues using the arrow keys and number pad. The keyboard itself is a bit small and cramped—about 1.75 inches shorter and about .75 inches narrower—and that’s with an extra row of keys above the function keys. Not a big hassle for me, but if you have trouble with laptop or portable keyboards, you might have trouble with this.
The F-key row is a bit different from what I’m used to—none of the keys double for video control. Instead, this keyboard has that row of buttons above the F-keys for volume, home (which bears the Internet Explorer logo, but opens a Google Chrome page, Chrome being our default), play/pause, and stop. It is missing the rewind and fast forward buttons. Strangely, this top row of above-F-key buttons also boasts a calculator button. That’s right—push the button, and your computer’s calculator pops up. That’s actually a nice touch, I like that.
Feel-wise, this keyboard is about average for a new keyboard on the cheap end of the spectrum. Still fairly quiet, hasn’t picked up the clattery feel and sound yet. Probably because there’s no food hanging out in there.
Some of the buttons (other than the basic QWERTY) are in an order I’ve never seen them before. The print screen/sys button and the scroll lock button are reversed, and the whole insert, home, and end array are jammed in with the number keys. That’s not too big an issue for me because I don’t often use those keys. Just print screen, and I have to look for that one no matter where it is. But for someone who uses those keys frequently, perhaps using the number pad as part of their work? This keyboard’s layout would likely be a deal breaker.
The wonky shift key is the deal breaker for me. Take a moment to remember that EVERY capital letter here (other than whole words where I used caps lock), every bit of shift-requiring punctuation, I had to try at least a half dozen times to get it. I considered not trying repeatedly, just to let you see the disaster of typing at speed with a keyboard that won’t shift for caps and punctuation, but I thought that would be overkill. Suffice to say, this has been an utter pain in my backside to type, and the keyboard goes back tonight.
If you’re in the market for a good keyboard that seems of solid construction, logical layout, and reliable performance? This ain’t your keyboard. If you’re looking for a pain-in-the-backside conversation piece that will provide you with a steady stream of things to complain about? The Dynex is your keyboard, for sure.
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