Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
- Split ergonomic design encourages natural hand, wrist, and forearm positions
- Cushioned palm rest provides support and promotes a neutral wrist position
- Palm lift promotes a relaxed, natural angle for your wrist
- Media keys for music and video control
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From the manufacturer
Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
Looks different, feels amazing
Type in total comfort with the split ergonomic design of the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000, which encourages natural hand, wrist and forearm positioning.
Get better support with the plush palm rest and lift, which keeps your wrist in a relaxed, natural angle with the keyboard’s curved key bed, ergonomic arc, and reversed slope.
Handy hot keys
Enjoy quick, customizable way to reach files, folders, and web pages with handy hot keys. For close-in tasks, use the Zoom Slider, located in the middle of the keyboard, to zoom in and out with the touch of a finger.
Industry-leading ergonomic design
Given the time you spend with your hands on a keyboard, investing in Microsoft’s best-selling line of ergonomic keyboards can pay dividends in greater comfort. According to some studies, ergonomic keyboard designs, such as the Microsoft Natural line, have been associated with significant reduction of carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms.
|Natural Ergonmoic Keyboard 4000||Wireless Comfort Desktop 5050||Wireless Desktop 3050||Wireless Desktop 900||Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop|
|Overview||Ergonomic design, customed palm rest||Ergonomic design, built-in palm rest||Stylish design, built-in palm rest||Modern desktop at a great value||Ergonomic design, cushioned palm rest|
|Type of design||Natural||Curved||Straight||Straight||Split|
|My Favorite Keys||✓||✓|
|Keyboard name||Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000|
|Keyboard Cable Length||60 inches +/- 6 inches (1530 millimeters +/- 152 millimeters)|
|Operating systems||Microsoft Windows 10 / 8.1 / 8 / RT 8.1 / RT 8, Windows 7, and Windows Vista, Microsoft Windows 10 Phone, Mac OS X v10.7x - 10.10, Android 3.2 - 5.0|
|Hot Key Features||Mail, Web/Home, Search, Back, Forward, My Favorites, My Favorites 1, My Favorites 2, My Favorites 3, My Favorites 4, My Favorites 5, Calculator, Equals, Open Parenthesis, Close Parenthesis, Back Arrow, and Forward Arrow|
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|Price||From $39.62||$39.99||$28.86||$36.83||See price in cart||$199.99|
|Shipping||—||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping||FREE Shipping|
|Sold By||Available from these sellers||Perixx USA||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||Amazon.com||THEGINKAMOS|
|Are Batteries Included||No||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|Are Batteries Required||No||No||No||No||Yes||No|
|Hardware Connectivity||USB||USB||USB, PS/2||USB||Bluetooth||USB, PS/2|
|Item Dimensions||19.8 x 10.3 x 3.26 in||18.92 x 9.2 x 1.72 in||19.25 x 10.75 x 2 in||20.5 x 10.6 x 2.6 in||18.11 x 9.02 x 1.36 in||18 x 8 x 2.2 in|
|Item Weight||5 lbs||2.28 lbs||2.25 lbs||2.28 lbs||2.23 lbs||4 lbs|
Top customer reviews
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1. I'm able to type extremely quickly on this, and it's very comfortable.
2. No wrist fatigue
3. Little to no readjustment period from traditional keyboard angles to the more ergonomic style here
1. Key strikes are very loud. They can hear me typing two offices away.
2. The letters have completely rubbed off of all letters aside from Q, W, Z and X. Good thing I'm not a "hunt and peck" typist
3. F lock is intermittent - you only realize it's off when you try to use it and get some other function popping up instead
1. Expect a steep learning curve to get used to the layout. The "bend" in this keyboard is significant, and it will take time for your fingers to get used to hitting the right keys on a consistent basis. Give it one or two weeks of regular use before deciding if you like it or not. You can't know in a couple of days if it's helping you because you do need to re-learn your hand placement and fingering to some degree.
2. There is a physical break in the left and right hand keys. This "no man's land" means you need to unlearn using the wrong hand for the wrong keys because you will either miskey or just hit nothing when you go to use your right hand to it the G key (or a similar situation). Likewise, some of the keys have an odd shape that takes getting used to. I had considerable issue getting used to hitting V and B correctly. Again, this is all about relearning how to keyboard properly. My best tip is to avoid looking at the keyboard while typing. For me, looking at the keyboard made it harder compared to just backspacing and repeating until I got it right. Passwords are about the only thing where I still watch what keys I strike.
3. This keyboard is wider and "taller" than most. If you use a keyboard tray, clearing it might pose and issue (see next point below). You will likely have less room for your mouse as well, but I found it something I could live with.
4. The keyboard has three (maybe four) resting positions. There's a removable front skirt that elevates the front. There are the standard rear folding supports to elevate the rear. So, that's resting flat (none), rear elevated, front elevated, and both elevated. Lying flat, the keyboard works fine with my keyboard tray. Set the way I find it's most comfortable for me, I can only push the tray in halfway before the keyboard hits the desk. This isn't a deal breaker for me, so I'll live with it. You keyboard tray may need to allow at least 3 inches of vertical clearance to not have an issue with this keyboard.
I was divided on four or five stars, but since I need this more extreme curve to deal with wrist pain, it's not the product's fault, so I won't hold the awkwardness of it against the designers. It does what it's designed to do for a good reason. That comes with a trade off.
It was about 90% plug and play on my Linux system. On Windows, there's a special driver to make sure everything works, but no such thing for Linux. Still, almost all the keys worked and it was completely usable. With a few relatively easy configuration changes I was able to get 100% of the keys working as they should. That's very satisfactory. I put maybe 20 minutes into it, compared with the 5 minutes I would have spent installing a driver on Windows. So overall, Microsoft has played fair here and there are no show-stopping incompatibilities, in fact really none at all.
The keyboard has a rich set of functions and features. It takes a little getting used to if you want to get the most out of it, but you can do this "as you go." The keyboard is usable as a simple keyboard right from the get-go.
Also on the positive side is that the keyboard is relatively quiet. It's not as quiet as some super-silent keyboards that I've used, but I like the idea that there's just enough audible feedback, which, combined with excellent tactile feedback, leads to more accurate typing.
The keyboard is a little bulky but on the other hand it rests stably on the work surface and doesn't scoot around like some lightweight keyboards.
So, what about the vaunted ergo features?
First, there's a gadget provided that changes the tilt of the keyboard and supposedly provides ergo advantages. I took it off right away; I couldn't get used to the rather extreme tilt downward. Maybe I should have given it a chance but I really hated it. Your mileage may certainly vary.
The wrist rest is comfortable and provides good support. Now, the main feature; the split of the keyboard into two "sides" and the angling that goes with it, really takes some accustomization. I mean, really. Even after a couple of months there are some things I find strange and more difficult. I'm a big Emacs user and so the control key comes into play often, and I have caps lock mapped as an extra control key. The "reaches" are strange and I've had to alter finger usage to deal with this. But don't give up; after some practice, regular typing is fast and comfortable. The layout of the keys is sensible and generally works pretty well.
The biggest issue, and why I rate this four stars overall, is the spacebar. It takes a lot more force to depress it than it ought to, and it's something you use a lot, so it's a problem. There is a lot online about how to fix the spacebar, but you shouldn't have to.
To be fair, I didn't apply any of the fixes, and with usage, I learned the best way to use the spacebar (pulling my thumb to the side a little). Also, it's loosened up a little with repeated use. But this is a real design flaw.
Do I recommend this keyboard? You can get a Logitech for more money, but I think this keyboard is about right for the price, so I give it a guarded recommendation. You've got to give it time. Don't expect to be a pro with it the first few days. And you've got to learn to work with the spacebar.