Customer Review

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5.0 out of 5 stars Logitech G13 vs. Belkin n52te, July 30, 2009
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This review is from: Logitech G13 Programmable Gameboard with LCD Display (Personal Computers)
I have used both the Logitech G13 and Belkin n52te extensively, so I thought it would be useful to write a review comparing the two products.

I have used both keypads to play World of Warcraft (WoW) extensively. Typically I use the mouse to steer my character, and the keypad to do the actions on my action bar. I use the joystick to move forward, back, and strafe left and right. My hand is average to small in size.

The Logitech G13 has more keys than the Belkin n52te. In fact the main reason I bought the G13 was because I ran out of keys on the n52te. The G13 has 22 keys plus a joystick button, and two extra buttons near the joystick for a total of 25 programable items. The n52te has 14 keys, a scroll wheel up-down-click button, and two buttons by the joystick for a total of 19 programmable items. When you get advanced in WoW, the more buttons you have, the better your game will be since you can quickly do an action by pressing a button.

The n52te keys are all pretty much the same shape, and the middle key has a bump on it to help you locate where you are. The G13 has the most common keys the same shape, but other keys near the edges have a different shape. I find this helpful since I can feel the key and know where I am due to its shape. The G13 all has four keys with a concave impression to help you locate where you are on the keypad. Again, I find this more useful than the one key the n52te uses with a bumb on it.

The n52te has a D-Pad that allows you to control movement in 8 directions. It has an optional joystick insertion that makes it feel more like a joystick. When playing WoW, I actually only used 4 directions, and disabled the corner directionals, since it was too easy to go the wrong way by mistake. With just 4 directions (forward, back, strafe left, strafe right), it was easier to use.

The G13 has a small joystick which allows you to control 4 directions. Comparing the two, I think the G13 is much easier on the thumb than the n52te. After hours of play, and days of gaming, this makes a big difference. The G13 moves much easier and with less effort than the n52te. The G13 also pivots more naturally, so it is much easier to switch directions with less effort. The only thing I don't like about the joystick is the joystick button is very hard to press.

I feel that the n52te actually promotes carpel tunnel syndrome in the way its designed. The problem is that it forces you to bend your wrist upward so that you are continually putting stress on those tendons. The palm rest does not help, as it simply forces this bad wrist orientation. In order to use the n52te without pain, I actually had to prop up my elbow on some books so that my wrist could be in a more natural position.

The ergonomics on the G13 are far superior than the n52te. The way its designed it allows you to keep your wrist in its natural position, as when you are typing, without having to bend it upward as in the n52te. I can use the G13 continuously for hours upon hours with no discomfort at all.

The G13 comes with a LCD display, which the n52te does not have. At first I thought I would not use it much, but now I find it to be a helpful addition. For WoW, it shows your characters stats as well as other things such as your equipment durability, so you know when it is time to repair. On battlegrounds it shows stats like how many players on each side, time elapsed, deaths, killing blows, and honorable kills. The LCD does other stuff too when you are not playing the game (time and date, cpu usage, stopwatch, rss feeds, music info, etc). So I think it is a nice bonus.

I found both units really easy to program. It is very easy to assign any keystroke or key combinations or macros to any key on the keypad.

Overall, I would say the Logitech G13 is superior than the Belkin n52te and would highly recommend you buy the G13 over the n52te. My feeling is that the G13 is the next generation of keypads with all the best features, while the n52te is the old generation of keypads which has now been surpassed.
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Tracked by 2 customers

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Showing 1-10 of 14 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Feb 11, 2010 5:10:50 PM PST
J. Shoemaker says:
Thanks for the comparative review. I currently own a N2TE and was considering "upgrading" to the G13 due to lack of support from Belkin.

Based off of your review I will be purchasing a G13 today.

Posted on Feb 28, 2010 4:41:07 PM PST
Frostbite says:
+ 1 to the joystick being too hard to press. Only con besides that I can find is that all the programs and LCD management apps eat up a bit of RAM but I have plenty left. Has overall been a good experience so far.

Posted on Mar 31, 2010 12:21:28 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 31, 2010 12:23:46 PM PDT
ptogawa says:
I am getting this for exactly the reasons you posted. I currently do both PVE and PVP in WoW and am getting into keybinds and have created macros to be more efficient. I wanted to contact you and see how you've progressed with this product and exchange ideas if you're ok with that. Loved your comprehensive review.

Posted on Jun 3, 2010 10:47:19 AM PDT
I currently own a Logitech G15 first gen keyboard and one issue I have is durability. Specifically the paint or coating on the keys after years of use is wearing off my ASD keys. Since you have owned this pad for awhile have you noticed any wearing of the keys? I am hesitant to update my current keyboard or purchase another logitech keyed product until this issue of durability is addressed.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 4, 2010 4:58:05 PM PDT
Rural Techie says:
I've had the G13 since it released. I've logged a lot of hours on it, and there is no key fading at all. The keys are getting a bit more glossy from the usage, but the key lettering is as clear as the day I bought it.

In reply to an earlier post on Jun 4, 2010 7:24:35 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Mar 19, 2014 4:37:50 AM PDT
Frostbite says:
I agree with J G as I've been using it since I bought it and don't notice any wear yet. The keys are glossy like he said, but they seem to be etched from underneath and not wearing the actual lettering away at all.

Still no wear and tear on it as of June 02 - 2011. I bought this as a used unit too, so it must be pretty durable. Throw those inhibitions out the window in regards to the button wear!

March 19 - 2014 Still plugging away with this used unit. No wear and tear evident other than a bottom grip pad falling off. Easy fix with some super glue.

Posted on Nov 26, 2010 6:13:47 PM PST
Reza Jalali says:
Thank you very much for this review. I've been trying to decide between the two and this first-hand review of both was very helpful in my decision.

In reply to an earlier post on Dec 12, 2010 3:07:57 PM PST
Couple of thoughts on having not enough keys on n52te: I have mapped my keys in the following way: 01:Ctrl, 06:Alt, 11:Shift. This leaves 11 additional keys available for actions. Given that I can now use 11 keys by themselves, 11 keys with Ctrl pressed, Alt, or Shift, the actual number of easily accessible keys is 11 x 4 = 44.

I also do not have the ergonomics issue with n52te described here. My elbow is located lower than the table surface, and my wrist sits naturally on the controller.

Having said that, I will be trying G13 since it seems like a very solid contender.

Posted on Apr 2, 2011 11:19:44 AM PDT
Michael M. says:
A well written review, however there were a couple features of the G13 that you overlooked mentioning. The controller has "page" keys marked M1 through M3 which effectively triple the number of commands or macros the controller can hold for each application (game). That is, if M1 is active (lit) then the controller's programmable keys correspond to commands for that particular page. Pressing M2 or M3 switches to a different set of programmable commands for the same keys. Also, the back lighting for the buttons and LCD display is user-configurable. A color wheel is brought up in the software that lets it be easily set. Each "page" (M1 through M3) can have its own color, so the page you've selected can be confirmed at a glance.

Posted on Dec 29, 2011 9:12:07 PM PST
Edd0 says:
I own both as well, but prefer the nostromo over the g13, not for lack of keys (the g13 obviously has dominance in that regard) but for comfort. I liked that the nostromo was aligned with my fingers better (the d-pad aligns in the direction of the thumb; the keys line up with the fingers). It took me awhile to get used to the nostromo's D-pad, but I could not adjust to the g13's joystick after 2 months of using it. The joystick puts your thumb at uncomfortable angles, slips easily, and is generally a nightmare to use for movement. The D-pad has much better control and the directions align to your thumb's natural movements (you can and should remove the joystick plug on it).

Well, that's my plug for the other side.
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