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Improved split design and new curved key layout makes this keyboard even more comfortable to use every day.
From the Manufacturer
Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 for Business
Advanced ergonomic design
Make the Move to Superior Comfort with this Breakthrough Keyboard Design
Place your hands and arms naturally and comfortably with the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. The improved split design encourages a more natural hand, wrist, and forearm position and its new curved key layout makes keys easier to reach. The Zoom Slider lets you zoom in for close-ups of Web pages, images, and more — with just the touch of a finger. And 5 customizable “My Favorites” keys give you instant access to the folders, files, and Web pages you use most.
Zoom - Get a closer look quickly and accurately with the intuitive Zoom Slider.
Customizable Hot Keys - Perform common tasks, like opening documents and replying to email messages, with the touch of a button.
Improved Number Pad - Quickly reach for commonly used symbols, such as equal sign, parentheses, and "Backspace." They are now located just above the number pad.
Ergonomic Design - Type in total comfort-ergonomic design encourages natural wrist and arm alignment so you can work without discomfort.
Device Stage - Quickly and easily access common tasks, including product information, registration, settings, and more for popular devices such as cell phones, cameras, printers, and mouse, keyboard, and webcam products.
Taskbar Favorites - Easily access programs in the taskbar with convenient keyboard hot keys. The keys automatically adapt to the new location of applications that have been rearranged by dragging.
Email and Internet Hot Keys - Touch a button to quickly access your email application and the Internet.
Multimedia Keys - Quickly and easily access and control all of your media from your keyboard.
Lockable F Key - Lock your F keys to avoid engaging them unintentionally.
Integrated Palm Rest - Get better support with this plush, integrated palm rest.
Cutting-Edge Design - Whether you're at work or play, improve your performance with cutting-edge Microsoft design.
Computer/Operating System Windows 8, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Windows XP (excluding Windows XP 64-bit)
Hard Drive 100 MB
Other USB Port
25 x 11 x 3 inches ; 2.2 pounds
As a software developer, I am literally attached to my keyboard. On a typical day, I'll spend anywhere between 5-8 hours typing, so it's of critical importance that the keyboard I use is comfortable. As most programmers and typists can attest, the Microsoft Ergo series of keyboards is the best keyboard for prolonged use.
Having used the Ergo keyboards in some form or another for the past 4 years (most recently, the Wireless Elite set), I must say that this keyboard is a step above.
To begin with, the construction is very solid. There is far less flex in the plastic and the keyboard as a whole compared to my Wireless Elite. The wrist pad is made of a nicely textured faux leather material with a tiny bit of padding. It feels rather durable (not to mention comfortable). It's a good addition as one of my main gripes with the MS ergo keyboards was that it was hard to fit one of those gel wrist rests around the curved base of the keyboard.
Compared to previous MS keyboards that I've owned, the keys on this keyboard are very well damped in terms of the sound the produce. It's very muted, even with my hard strokes. One thing that will take some adjusting to is the increased curvature (along two different planes) between where your pinky and index fingers rest (A,F and J,;). Whereas the older keyboards have a relatively flat incline, this keyboard has a slight curve (concave). In addition, there is also a very subtle curve across the keyboard as well (a horizontal curvature), which seems a more natural fit for the shape of hands. Also of note is the fact that some of the keys have changed shape.Read more ›
This is a well-constructed keyboard that has a nice feel to it and a good assortment of programmable keys. It isn't advertised as such, but the "zoom slider" is also programmable. Here's how to reprogram it as a scroll slider: Edit C:\Program Files\Microsoft IntelliType Pro5.5\IType\Setup\Files\commands.xml.
I'm one of the many who have been typing for years; from college where I earned money as a typist, to secretarial work, and now as a software engineer and a part-time writer, so needless to say that my keyboard is basically a constant companion.
From years of typing I've come to learn my likes and dislikes of keyboards. I was one of those who ordered the very first Microsoft Ergonomic keyboard as soon as it came out, and I fell in love with it. After seven years, my faithful keyboard finally gave up the ghost and so I was forced to purchase another.
I was at first lured to purchase a different brand name ergonomic keyboard because it was cheaper, and boy did I regret that decision. Some of the keys were moved from their standard positions, the ENTER key was much larger, which meant the SHIFT key was smaller and the back slash key was moved to the last row. The spacing between the number keys was wider so I had to readjust my reach, and, to make things worse, the keys kept sticking. The whole layout was not to my taste.
In contrast, this keyboard is perfectly suited to me. The keys tap much softer which means my fingers don't absorb as much shock when I'm typing. I type over a 100 wpm and when your fingers fly over the board, they tend to tap harder. The keys are also laid out exactly how you would expect them to like any other keyboard. The shortcuts are my favorites where some are pre-set with others that you can set yourself.
Basically, I have no complaints. I'm very happy with my purchase.
I just picked this up this afternoon and have been very pleased with it so far. I used it to replace a Microsoft Natural Elite keyboard. The wrist/palm rests feel very nice, and I like the fact that the keys are quiet - I'm trying to train myself to take notes while on the phone using the computer instead of using a pad of paper, and I find that loud typing while I'm talking on the phone can interfere with my hearing the other person, and with their perception of my attention. The software does seem relatively Spartan but to be honest I'm not a big user of customization features, so it doesn't impact my use of the device. In the past, I haven't even bothered to install keyboard driver software. The zoom feature works nicely in Firefox, I don't use IE much.
So, for my use - standard typing for many hours/day, minimal use of special features - it's a great keyboard. I'm glad it's got the older-style cursor key/insert-delete-scroll key setup, rather than the setup used on the Natural Elite, that I never did really become accustomed to.
Chances are pretty good I'll buy another one to use at home this weekend - I am really happy with this, enough so that I'm ready to give up the old ergo keyboard I've got at home that doesn't have the negative tilt but does have the arrow-key configuration that I prefer.
I realize that split keyboards are interesting to a minority of the population (and everyone should use what works best for them) - but if you're one of the split keyboard people, I suggest giving this one a try.