97 of 105 people found the following review helpful
on September 2, 2004
First let me say that thier is a P/S version and a USB version of this keyboard. The P/S is the one that stinks like last years socks and only comes with the standard keyset.(it also REQUIRES you to buy a keyset for every game). This version sold here is the USB version and comes with 2 keysets. The standard is very sturdy and comfortable to type on. The keys are firm and resistant to presses(which I like myself) I have no problem typing on the standard. The gaming keyboard is just that, it is for games. I love it! It is for any game. It has a left hand controll keyset for most FPS but I have found that it also works in CRPG's like Neverwinter Nights(which a keyset was once avalible for but is no longer) and even old infinity engine games like Icewind Dale- set your keys to: W=select all q=quest journal e=inventory and s=return as well as spells in A(wizards) and D(clerical) R to default(stats) and F=attack and your set to be carpel tunnel free.
my gripe(and 4* rating) is the lousy website that requires you to register personal info to get support(Mother's maiden name and all that) as well as the Zboard.com website not loading on dial-up connections. Just because some of us use dial up does not mean we don't have a life, we game too(hacker free becasue of disconnect.)
35 of 35 people found the following review helpful
on February 3, 2005
The zBoard is sweet. The ease of the keysets and the keysets that are available (like the World of Warcraft one) make it a worthwhile buy. The keyboard is comfy and feels good on the fingers. And it has TWO low-power USB ports on it for accessories like your mouse. If you are into gaming and looking for a good keyboard to use, this is one to look at. I am quite picky when it comes to keyboards and I love the zBoard system. ^_^
If you decide to buy one, buying from Amazon.com will save you a few bucks. BUT BE FOREWARNED! As someone else has already mentioned here in feedback, when I received my zBoard, it came with the OLD version of the standard keyset. I have been told by [...] support that that keyset is not even produced anymore so why (and how?) Amazon.com is shipping them with the new zBoard base and gaming keyset is beyond me?? FYI, the current zBoard model is ZBD101.
Amazon.com did offer a replacement if I wanted to send the zBoard gaming system back in, but I really don't want to wait on shipping. lol Plus, I bought mine for gaming mostly anyway so no big deal as I won't be using the standard keyset much. Amazon.com did offer me a 20% refund, though, since I didn't choose to return the item. (So yay! I saved even more money. ^_^) In case you are wondering, the new version of the standard keyset has colored-coded labels (green, blue, white) with more keys/shortcuts labeled. The old version (which I was sent) has all white labels with fewer keys/shortcuts labeled.
The zBoard is a 5/5 for me.
Note: You will want to get the newest drivers from [...]. I have had a problem in the past with updating the driver and had to contact zBoard support to have them tell me all the registry keys that I needed to remove before I could suceessfully install the newest version. I have never again experienced that problem, though. ;)
EDIT 2/4/05: I was contacted via e-mail by [...] support again. They're going to replace the old version standard keyset that I received from Amazon with the new version. I think this is very nice of them, especially considering I never asked for a replacement. Just some food for thought since a couple people here have had problems with [...]/Ideazon.
EDIT 2/21/06: Well, it has been a little over a year that I've had my zBoard. I've had no problems with it - with exception of the wrist rest tabs breaking off, but that's because that part is cheap and the zBoard got knocked off a table twice by my cat. The zBoard base and keysets are very durable, however, (it's been knocked off the couch a few times, too. lol) and work fine. ;)
The gaming keyset IS very awkward to type on like others have mentioned. Usually, I have my World of Warcraft keyset in, though, and have no problems typing. (My boyfriend hates it -lol- and complains until he snaps in the standard keyset.)
Easy, durable, functioning, feels good on the fingers.... Those all describe the zBoard.
Still 5/5 after a year.
49 of 54 people found the following review helpful
on May 15, 2006
When I first heard about this board I was incredibly excited. I have been playing BF2 (Battlefield 2) for almost a year now and still continually find myself stumbling over the keys. So it was a godsend to be able to purchase something like this directly intended to help me be better at my game.
The interchangable keysets for different games and applications is quite intriguing -- the first that I have seen. But the price for each is kind of high but well worth it.
The board is constructed well but don't expect this to replace your home keyboard. The "Windows Keyset" that comes standard with this board has all the keys as any run-of-the-mill keyboard but it is awkward to type with (I might be biased since I have a MSoft ergonomic split keyboard).
In-game typing is difficult at best (with the gaming keysets). With most of the gaming keysets the keys on the left 1/2 of the keyboard are laid out like your home keyboard but on the right 1/2 side they are all vertical (not staggered.. like U,J and M keys are 90 degrees vertically on top of each other). The keys feel a little "cheap" .. When you push them down they don't bounce back as much.
About 2 weeks after I purchases this board (and the BF2 keyset) 9 keys went completely dead. I tried to reinstall the software, reboot and even resinstalled a fresh copy of Windows XP to no avail.
I contacted support and it has taken us 3 weeks to finally reach the decision that I have a faulty base unit. DUH! They are "reviewing my warranty" but most likely it will not be covered because it has been longer than 30 day. Maybe this post is premature but I don't think I am getting a new base unit.
The expression "Great Idea, Bad Execution" holds true here. My opinion: Don't buy this board. Ideazon has too many issues, not enough support staff and a website that doesn't do anything but look good.
22 of 22 people found the following review helpful
on October 26, 2004
This Keyboard absolutely ROCKS ! I got mine last week from Comp USA. As a hardcore Gamer I can really appreciate this keyboard and its functionalities, first of all when using the standard Windows keyboard its really about the same as other keyboards with the pretty much the same features as other keyboards like Microsoft and Logitech keyboards and sometimes I find its even better, one instance is if you open a program often in Windows like Word Pad, you can program a hot key to open it instead of clicking through windows programs folders. It works the same as programming a radio station on your car stereo, it remembers the last thing you did.. nice ! now the keys do take some getting use to, nothing major though. The keys for do feel a little less quality then other more expensive keyboards but again nothing major. Now for the Huge difference. Clipping on the Gaming keyset is very easy and fast and Zboard automatically recognizes the change for you. right clicking on the Zboard tray Icon and selecting the keyset setup and choosing a Game from a big list that Ideazon supplies and they do frequently add to list. Choosing Farcry it loads all the keys needed that come with the Game and are really nicely appointed for your convenience and ease on the left side of the keyboard all within your left-hand and within fingers reach..Awesome ! Zboard even shows you with a color diagram all the keys and what they do and where they are, it also gives you the option to print out the diagram for easy reference while you play until you get use to what's what and where on the keyboard. UT2004 is also a breeze too with the included gaming keyset. The included gaming keyset isn't very type friendly because of the way the keys are positioned, but in games like these where type chatting isn't of importance especially when the action gets hot it does not become a problem, using talk with a microphone is so much better anyways. All default keys that are in a game will be programmed for you and on the Keyset. if the game isn't on Zboard's list of games well then all you have to do is program it yourself and still then you will have all the keys you need for use at your left-hand and in fingers reach like Thief Deadly Shadows. Other games that require more keys like the upcoming Everquest 2, buying a separate keyset for $20 will be well worth it in my opinion and all you OLRPG Gamers know what I mean when I say trying to program thousand of keys it seems at times and trying to remember what each key does can be a nightmare at the wrong time in a crucial part of a game. the Zboard Everquest 2 keyset does look like a regular keyboard which will aid you in typing in chat where it will be a must to communicate and all the keys will be labeled of their function for you to see and its all programmed for you. That in itself will Kick Butt and will make the game sooo much easier and funnier to play as does the gaming keyset that comes with this set which is excellent for games like Farcry, UT 2004 and Rome Total War. There is no any other Keyboards out there for hardcore Game playing and regular Keyboards that cost as much and more can't do what this Keyboard can do for your game playing and this keyboard unlike regular Keyboards that are always a threat while gaming because of the closeness and position of the keys, mistakenly hitting the wrong key and messing up your game and even taking you out to Windows ... done that way too many times on EQ and DAoC .. now that sucks ! hehe ! this Zboard almost eliminates those problems. I haven't had any issues with Zboard and using Windows XP or any Games. The Zboard is an excellent keyboard and well worth it. after using it I would gladly pay more for it if I had to. it's worth it in my opinion! and I don't mind paying $20 again for an EQ 2 and other Game's keysets for games that I love and play for long time. It's really a Incredible keyboard for Gamers and still Windows friendly.. I Love it !
Any questions feel free to ask me @ email@example.com
83 of 97 people found the following review helpful
on April 9, 2005
I purchased an WoW addon and worked for about two weeks. It then completely crapped out. My PC's keyboard becomes non-functional as soon as the WoW keyset is inserted. Support does not publish a telephone and is accessible via the web only. They have completely ignored repeated requests for assistance. They have not even responded with an acknowledgment to my requests. I would not recommend a Ideazon product to anyone. If it ever breaks, you are simply screwed.
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
on August 12, 2004
Well, I won't mince words, This keyboard has to be one of the best innovations of our time.. :) The fact that it is optimized to run with most of the 3rd and 1st person action games out there already makes it a worth buy, plus, if you don't like the way the "preset" keys are mapped, you can customize them to your favorite settings.. :) The use of the keyboard itself is phenomeonal, switching keysets couldn't be easier; snap on, snap off; But what really drew me about this item is the swappable keysets customized for some of todays hottest titles.. For instance, you get the universal Keyset with this set as well as your standard keyboard, this will work for everyday activities, as well as, popular titles such as Battlefield: Vietnam, Battlefield: 1942, Farcry, Unreal Tournament 2003/2004, GTA III/Vice City, and many more! If the game is not listed, don't fret, you can still use it in any other FPS or 3rd person action game (since, the controls are usually the same), but more to the point.. The swappable keysets? Doom 3, Everquest, Age of Mythology... Cool? Yes! Makes playing the game easier and or more fun? Yes! Costs 19.99 a piece? Yes! That's the only reason I can't give it 5 stars, the beauty of it, is also it's boon, *cha ching sound*. Want the Doom 3 Keyset? 19.99. How about the EQ one? 19.99.. Well, if you want to collect them all you'll have to order direct, but if you end up going that direction, you'll spend more on the keysets than the keyboard. That's the only real downside..
To summarize, If you own a lot of the titles listed, or just FPS or 3rd person action games in general, GET THIS BOARD! :), if you don't or aren't very hardcore about it, this board isn't for you. :)
24 of 26 people found the following review helpful
I've been PC gaming for a very long time (essentially since there have been PCs (Yes, I'm THAT old))
I was pretty impressed when I first saw the Zboard. I picked one up about a year ago for BF2 and was very pleased with the smart game layout and the easy access to commands. Very slick.
As others have said, the drivers are a bit flaky and I've had to reset my system a few times to get things back to normal. If this were a better keyboard for general typing, I'd be happier with it, but frankly I'm not happy with the ability for normal typing.
The keys are very mushy and seem to need a longer than normal push to type. The keytops are also very wobbly and vague feeling. I normally type fairly fast, but my speed has dropped about 50% with this keyboard. Since they've munged the keyboard layout around, In-game messaging for the various keysets is difficult.
Switching keysets is sometimes problematic and I've had the keyboard get so confused that I have to reset my system.
I ended up giving this product three stars. 5 for game play and 1 star for normal keyboard use.
I finally ended up retiring the Zboard a few months back and have switched over to a Nostromo Speedpad N52
14 of 14 people found the following review helpful
on November 26, 2004
This board makes all gaming experiences better. No more getting lost looking for the right key.One can program the gaming set to match the game or download a custom layout from the company. I do not recommend the keysets that are onlt for one game. They really dont make that much difference. I got a free Doom 3 set, yes its neat but the standard gaming keyboard can be programmed to do the same thing. Switching between standard and game sets is a breeze. Works flawlessly with XP. Support is good from the company. They usually answer in less that one hour. A really neat product for gaming. Price is right too.
14 of 15 people found the following review helpful
on May 4, 2005
I LOVED the IDEA of this keyboard, and being able to switch keysets, cause in addition to gaming on my computer, I also do video editing in PREMIERE and AFTER EFFECTS, and also work in Photoshop. I loved the Photoshop keyset and the gaming keysets- HOWEVER- the actual hardware had ISSSUUUUEEES!!!! Like for example I'd be working away and all of the sudden a key I HADNT PUSHED would be going ENDLESSLY and in order to make it stop I had to remove the whole Keyset!! This started happening more and more frequently and cost me alot of time and effort when I had projects ruined or crashed by this keyboard. I contacted the manufacturer, got no response- downloaded the latest drivers and all that junk- but it never got any better- in fact it got worse! Finally I removed the whole thing and went back to my old keyboard- not nearly as fun, but it WORKS RIGHT!
12 of 13 people found the following review helpful
on August 31, 2004
It did not take me too long to realize that I wanted this keyboard after seeing all of its features on Amazon.com. I can only say that I am absolutely blown away by this keyboard! You cannot get anymore features packed into a keyboard for this value!
First off, the construction of the base/keysets is top-notch, not plasticky-feeling like many keyboards out there. You get 2 USB ports to boot!
Second of all, I like the intuitive software that enables the gaming keyset to recognize the game that is loaded.
I especially like the fact that this keyboard comes with 2 keysets instead of one (gaming and standard). The Standard keyset has all of the key shortcuts beautifully integrated via color-coding on the keys. As for the Gaming keyset, I was very impressed with how comfortable it felt while gaming. The keys are very well spaced out and easily identifiable.
I've read complaints about how expensive other gaming keysets are for the Zboard and all I can say is this - with the customization that is available with the gaming keyset included, there really is no reason to get any other keyset (sorry Ideazon, but there isn't).