We often extol the virtues of buying yourself a decent keyboard (and mouse, and headphones, and monitor, etc.) regardless of how slow your PC is or how little you use it. This is because we feel the most important thing you can do to make using a computer more enjoyable is to make interacting with it as comfortable and effortless as possible. On occasion, though, it's also nice to make an upgrade just for the sheer hell of it or, as is the case here, because something looks pretty.
The Logitech Illuminated keyboard, then, is an elegant slim-profile keyboard that, as the name suggests, employs backlit keys to both add a touch of flare to your desktop and make it easier to type in low light conditions. The latter factor being of particular interest if, like us, you spend many an evening working long into the night.
As soon as you take it out of the box, this keyboard has a quality look and feel to it. Although it's an entirely plastic affair the main chassis is strong and sturdy and the finish is exemplary. In particular, the soft-touch plastic wrist rest feels nicer than the harsh plastic of some cheaper keyboards. That said, in terms of comfort, it's not a patch on models that feature a proper cushioned wrist rest, like the Logitech Wave.
A clear plastic strip runs round the top and sides and a complementary strip of glossy black plastic bisects the keyboard between the keys and wrist rest. Together they add a touch of class that few other keyboards can match at this price. Embedded in the glossy plastic are the Num Lock, Caps Lock, and Scroll Lock notification lights, which are invisible when not illuminated, further adding to the keyboard's stylish minimalist appeal.
Looking at the keyboard side on, you can see just how slim it is. At its thickest it's just 9.3mm and the front is tapered so as to be almost flush with the surface it's sitting on, which some people find gives a more comfortable typing position. I can't say it works for me, now that I use a Microsoft Natural Keyboard with its split full-size keys, raised cushioned wrist rest, and sloping middle. However, this keyboard certainly feels no more uncomfortable than any other low-profile, straight keyboard I've used.
That said, it does have one oddity that could prove an annoyance for some. The bottom row of the main section of keys is slightly raised. I can dream up all sorts of semi-logical reasons why this might be useful - to distinguish the row to make it easier to touch type; to compensate in some way for the angle of the keyboard; to prevent accidental key presses - but none of them seem to hold up. Overall, it just feels slightly odd. If you're not sure what I mean, the video review demonstrates this nicely.
A further complaint we have with regards the typing position and feel is the little feet that raise the back of the keyboard up, which simply aren't long enough. Consequently I found the angle of the keys to be too shallow. Again, it's not a deal breaker but it does limit the appeal.