I have recently been using a Microsoft Natural Ergonomic keyboard 4000, and I have to say, its definitely in the top 3 best keyboards I have ever used.
I have never been a huge fan of the microsoft natural keyboards, but I am of this one.
the wrist/palm rests are comfortable and shaped well - they look like they shouldnt be, but they are very comfy.
the keys have enough space between them, as I have large hands, I find it uncomfortable to use a lot of keyboards as the keys are too close together, however on the 4000 the key spacing is fantastic.
there are a few extra keys, some of the best I have found is the addition of 4 keys above the numpad which are great for working in excel and other similar apps.
the new keys are " = ", " ( ", " ) " and backspace.
there is also the additional multimedia keys / favourites keys,
Web/Home, Search, Mail are above ESC f1 and f2.
then there is a set of 5 user configurable favourites keys, then there is a mute, volume up, volume down, play/pause and calculator.
all very handy and useful keys.
between the left hand keyset, and right hand keyset, there is a zoom slider, and below the space bar there is a back button and forwards button.
I use the zoom all the time - I am yet to use the back and forward buttons, however this is probably as I have a four button mouse and Im used to doing this there.
the feel of the keys is very nice as well, it has a satisfying amount of resistance, that gives it a great tactile feel,
but at the same time doesnt have a loud clack, the sound is muted but still audible enough for you to be able to here the keypresses - without being a loud distraction.
asthetically its quite pleasing with a reasonably cool black and silver setup.
all in all Im really happy with it and I would recommend it as a cheap option for an ergonomic keyboard solution.
the main Cons are that there is no dvorak option, and it takes up quite a lot of room.
adding this in for chiefie.
shows the new keys, however the photos a bit blurry so i Paintbrushed them. bigger picture at flickr.com (click the photo)
Other related posts:
What Keyboard layout do you use?
Optimus Maximus, OLED Keyboard release announced.
Thought powered game controller - Emotiv releases a "mindreader"
Comment by chiefie, on 19-Sep-2006 14:30
I like Natural keyboards, I have been using one since its first generation and still got it.
I have seen this one, I like its design. Sadly it is only a wired version, I'd hope it would have been the wireless version with the centre swing-switch.
Anyway, I must say, I never did pay much attention at those extra keys. Are you able to post a pic of the additional keys you mention? Namely the ( ) = in its general area.
Comment by chiefie, on 20-Sep-2006 14:22
Cheers mate, I take that the normal "(" , ")" , "=" are still there too?
This will be real convenient on typing formula and functions when coding.