Reviews and Problems with Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
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Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000
16 January 2012
Summary: Lastly, PCMag.com's Joel Durham recommends the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 as the best reasonably priced keyboard. The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 has been on the market for a relatively long time, and most professional reviews are on the old side, but even newer comparisons and fresh reviews by amateur bloggers and Amazon users find the unit to be the best value in the ergonomic marketplace.
Pros: Comfortable, Easy to use, Customizable, Mac compatible
Cons: No USB hub, Stiff keys, some say, Noisy spacebar
Summary: Microsoft is the only hardware company still engineering new ergonomic keyboard designs, but that doesn't mean they've gotten lazy. Their new Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 is the most comfortable computer input device I have ever used. This keyboard is a must-have if you spend a lot of time typing, or if you're thinking about upgrading from an older ergonomic model.
Conclusion: Keyboards don't get any better than this -- at least not with currently available technology. The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 is quiet, comfortable, and overall a joy to work with. Highly recommended to anyone interested in a more comfortable computing experience. If you're trying to decide between this keyboard and one of Microsoft's Comfort Curve designs, the Natural Ergonomic 4000 is superior in every way.
Excerpt: The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000 is a small but interesting step forward for Microsoft. While you may be familiar with Microsoft's Natural Keyboard Elite Pro which has been around for almost seven years, the Natural Ergonomic 4000 adds a curved keywell to the split, tented design.
Pros: Aside from my key switch and programmability complaints, this is a great keyboard. The additional parentheses keys above the numeric keypad are a huge help when doing calculations. The range and number of programmable additional keys is good, with application and program control extended to anything installed on your computer. The curved keywell works with the moderate split and upward tent angle to relieve most wrist and forearm stress caused by wrist pronation and r...
Cons: This keyboard would be the perfect, all around productivity keyboard if it had professional quality mechanical key switches instead of the membrane key switches found in almost every consumer keyboard on the market. The effort put into designing and manufacturing a genuinely ergonomic layout and form factor is betrayed by the mundane and non-ergonomic key switches. For this kind of money there should be a small USB 1.1 or 2.0 hub. The key indicator (LED) lights are po...
Conclusion: Microsoft has made some upgrades and made a decent keyboard here but the few flaws that we fond are to serious to leave unnoticed. I forgot to mention the software that is included, there you can set the zoom and what actions to do with all the extra keys also. The software is easy to use and alot of you will recognize it from the older versions of Microsoft keyboard software.
Conclusion: If you've suffered from carpal tunnel syndrome or other hand and wrist pains, you'll want to run, not walk, to check out the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000. Even if you're repetitive-stress-injury-free but curious about the state of the art or tempted to try a split keyboard, it's the best such board we've seen -- it'll slow down your typing for the first week or so, but it'll make you a better typist.
Excerpt: Between school and this website, I’ve been finding myself typing more and more recently. So under the guise of ‘health and safety’, I decided it was time to ditch the regular keyboard and spring for an ergonomic one. I picked up an OEM version of the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic keyboard 4000 from DirectCanada for under $30CAD. It was a pretty good deal, considering Future Shop sells the same keyboard, but with a nicely colored retail box for $80+.
Conclusion: This keyboard was definitely designed around ergonomic ideals. Microsoft has taken a well-tested split "Natural" keyboard design and ergonomically improved it even more for the heavy user in mind. In addition to the ergonomic improvements, Microsoft has updated the style and design to give a more sleek/tech feel, all while still including additional functionality such as the zoom wheel and improved numeric keypad without wasting space on the keyboard.