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There are few media controls, but then, thanks to the included Windows remote, the keyboard arguably doesn't need any. And despite being undersized and slightly crowded, the media keys are really easy to press, because of their alternating layout and highly-raised profile. The nicest feature of this keyboard is a strong lid that can either be attached to the bottom when in use, or over the top when you put it away, preventing accidental presses. You could probably sit on it without either damaging the peripheral or causing buttons to be activated.
It runs on four (included) AAA batteries. Visually, it is not flashy but neither is it particularly unattractive, despite looking a bit cheap. The Gyration keyboard features a matte black finish on both the keys and surround, with white symbols and silver media buttons.
As such, it contrasts with the Meida Remote, which sets black buttons against a silver surround. But the remote more than makes up for its slightly cheap looks by offering similar functionality to Gyration's Air Mouse. This causes a little extra bulk which, combined with the reassuring weight and helped by two AA batteries, is actually quite comfortable. The shape is ergonomic and lets your thumb rest naturally on the ‘mouse' controls. It's also symmetrical, making it as suitable to left as right-handed use.
The remote's functions are sensibly divided into several ‘zones'. Along the top is device selection, since the Gyromote (as it shall henceforth be known) allows you to control up to three additional machines, including Televisions and satellite boxes. For this purpose it has an IR sensor in addition to the 2.4GHz RF it uses to communicate with its dongle. This is the same transmission the Logitech G7 gaming mouse utilised, and should mean that using the Gyromote's air-mouse function will be a lag-free and responsive experience.
The next zone down contains the media controls. Below that are navigation buttons for menus. Then we have the mouse zone, more on which later. Under these are volume and channel controls, the distinctive Windows Media button and connection, setup and input buttons. All the buttons are coated in soft rubber, except the mouse zone which is hardwearing matte plastic. Layout is well-spaced and fairly intuitive, though not quite as comfortable as a Microsoft Media Center Remote.
The Gyromote's quoted range of up to 30m (100ft) also seems to be accurate, and it stayed utterly responsive throughout my testing. Of course, that testing simply had to include a few rounds of Unreal Tournament 3. And no, there is simply no way the Gyromote will ever match a normal mouse for FPS gaming. But on the other hand, I don't think I ever had so much fun playing the game before - there is just something so natural about pointing and shooting. If you combine this nifty peripheral with keyboard turning, like in the days of Doom, many shooters should be at least playable.
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