What I noticed straight away about the keyboard was how compact and light it was. Cleverly, the keys especially designed for navigating Media Center 2005 fall under the thumbs on either side of the keyboard, and as it’s so lightweight it’s comfortable to pick up and use whether standing or sitting.
It’s slightly narrower than a full size keyboard and much less high. The keyboard is similar to that used on laptops with low profile keys. All the keys are very neatly arranged and fortunately none are too out of place with the delete key next to the backspace key and Page Up and Down running in a line on the right hand side. The Windows key is even present and correct.
The keys themselves are fine to type on, and I managed to type this review using the keyboard without any problems, though I did have to ensure that the sensor on the front was in line-of-sight with the receiver to avoid any missed key presses.
The classic small green MCE logo adorns a dedicated button on the right but you don’t have to press it to launch the software, you can press one of the ‘My’ folder buttons, (Music, Radio, Pictures, Videos and TV). Accessing live TV, recorded TV and the Guide is accessible from buttons on the right hand side. There’s even a button for launching Messenger, should you feel the need to chat to people online while within the Media Center.
On the left is a volume control buttons. Outside of Media Center this controls the Windows volume. Unfortunately, the volume up button didn’t work on my review sample. To the left of this are controls for fast forwarding and rewinding. Essentially if it’s on the remote, it’s on the keyboard too.