Azio Large Print Tri-Color Backlit Wired Keyboard
Last updated date: October 23, 2020
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We looked at the top Backlit Keyboards and dug through the reviews from some of the most popular review sites. Through this analysis, we've determined the best Backlit Keyboard you should buy.
Update as October 23, 2020:
Checkout The Best Backlit Keyboard for a detailed review of all the top backlit keyboards.
This backlit keyboard helps your eyesight in more ways than one. The backlighting comes in your choice of three easily changeable colors, and the print on the keys is large enough to read at any distance. Add in a palm rest and the ability to tweak the angle of elevation, and this is truly a keyboard built for comfort.
In our analysis of 139 expert reviews, the Azio Large Print Tri-Color Backlit Wired Keyboard placed 4th when we looked at the top 12 products in the category. For the full ranking, see below.
From The Manufacturer
The KB505U backlight provides a great solution for those who need that extra help seeing the keyboard in low light. The large print makes the letters easily identifiable and the keyboard backlight can also be cycled through 3 different colors to fit your mood or preference. Shortcut keys make it a breeze to navigate your favorite programs. AZIO’s KB505U is a great way to spruce up your home or office while adding much needed functionality and readability. To troubleshoot : 1. Unplug the USB Transceiver. 2. On the keyboard, press and hold L.SHIFT and ESC. The Blue LEDs should start flashing. 3. Insert the USB Transceiver into the computer.
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Our Expert Consultant
Technology and parenting blogger
Molly Thornberg is a professional writer, creative and mom to four kids, living her best life outside of Dallas, Texas. With a love for all things tech, she is passionate about helping parents raise kids in the digital age. She writes about technology, parenting and humor on her blog Digital Mom Blog.
Overall Product Rankings
An Overview On Backlit Keyboards
It takes a pounding from your fingers, possibly thousands of times a day. When you’re frustrated, it might take a few extra. In the worst-case scenarios, it might even put up with soda spills or smears of potato chip residue. And through it all, it dutifully relays your commands.
When buying a computer, the humble keyboard never gets enough credit. But with the advent of backlit keyboards, they’ve finally found a way to make you sit up and take notice.
As cool as they look, backlit keyboards aren’t just lit up for show. They incorporate tiny LEDs or some other type of light underneath the keys, illuminating them for use in dimly lit areas. They can be great for work sessions on red-eye plane flights or dorm rooms where you’re obligated to keep the lights at a minimum. For gamers, high-end backlit keyboards can be particularly useful with custom settings that illuminate particular frequently-pressed keys.
But there’s more to consider than lighting when buying a keyboard. As technology and parenting blogger Molly Thornberg explains, finding the right keyboard layout is essential.
“Before purchasing a backlit keyboard, determine if the keyboard layout meets your needs,” says Thornberg, who runs the Digital Mom Blog. “These may include special function keys and a keypad.”
These days, the layout of a keyboard can vary greatly, but there are three general configurations. Full-size keyboards will have the standard number of keys you might be used to on your office desktop computer. That includes the “F” or function keys along the top plus a bank of navigation keys and number pad off to the right. That’s 104 keys in all, though in some specialized keyboards it might even be more! Then there are TenKeyLess or “80%” keyboards. These eliminate the number pad or incorporate it with the navigation keys. Compact, or “60%” keyboards, do away with both the number pad and navigation keys, and might not even include the function keys (substituting in a single “F” key to do their work).
And that’s just the traditional keyboards. More daring, ergonomic models are available that split the keyboard into two halves that supposedly are easier on the long term health of your wrists and hands — though the research is still inconclusive on that point. As for the layout of the keys themselves, most keyboards use the tried and true QWERTY format that’s been standard since the days of ink-and-paper typewriters. (So named because of the first six letters you’ll see if you read your computer keyboard like a book: Q-W-E-R-T-Y.) If you’re just starting out as a typist, you might also research the much less common Dvorak layout, which puts the most commonly used letters in the middle row.
Gamers and writers alike will want to pay special attention to the kind of switches that their keys employ. Switches, quite simply, are the mechanism that makes your keystroke register when you press it, and the feel and response of it can vary greatly.
A common type of switch you’ll find on slimmer laptop keyboards is the membrane, made of a single circuit that stretches across the board. Press a key, and you activate a contact point in that matrix. While it’s certainly high-tech, it’s also relatively cheap and offers less of a tactile response.
Another common switch is the dome type, where a plunger presses against a rubber or silicone dome and activates a carbon switch underneath. This tends to have a softer feel, though the dome material will certainly be more resistant to spills. Some dome switches use a scissor-like mechanism to decrease the space between the key and contact point.
Gamers generally prefer the old-school mechanical switches, especially if they’re playing shooters or other games where response time is crucial. Mechanical switches employ metal springs that provide plenty of tactile feedback and leave little doubt as to when a button is pressed.
There are plenty of other bells and whistles that are specific to gamers, some of which you can find in our tips. But for the most part, a good keyboard — lit or unlit — will be all about the feel.
The Backlit Keyboard Buying Guide
- Here’s the bad news: There’s no one keyboard that’s perfect for everyone. The good news is that if you know what you’ll be using it for, there’s almost certainly one out there that is perfect for you. Are you a writer, student or someone who will spend a lot of time pounding out text? Consider a long-lasting, full-size keyboard with soft backlighting that won’t damage your eyes over prolonged periods of late-night typing, like the Azio Large Print Tri-Color Backlit Wired Keyboard. Are you buying your keyboard to use with a tablet or other mobile workstation? A keyboard with a slim profile might be worth it for the portability factor, though you may want to try it beforehand to see if you can get a feel for the membrane switches.
- Are you buying your keyboard for games? There’s a reason that some backlit keyboards are marketed specifically to gamers and their particular need. For most gamers, mechanical switches are a must. They offer a speed and tactile response that there’s no substitute for.
- Gamers may also want to pay attention to whether their chosen keyboard is wired or wireless. “A wired backlit keyboard will typically feature a cord that plugs into your USB port,” Thornberg explains. “A wireless backlit keyboard will either work with a dongle that plugs into the back of your computer and talks to your keyboard — or via Bluetooth.”
- Those playing shooters or other games where response time is key will want to lean toward a wired keyboard as opposed to a wireless one. Wireless signals delivered by Bluetooth or RF technology can be fast enough that regular users won’t notice — but your online enemies might.
- Finally, many keyboards boast their keys as “conflict-free” or “anti-ghosting.” Essentially, that means that you won’t run into problems with lost signals when you start hitting multiple keys at the same time. That can especially helpful not only for gamers and their key commands but also for workers using complex macros.
- There are many keyboards that come with different ergonomic features to help prevent carpal tunnel. And while a hand rest can be nice, don’t go too crazy with adjustments to the keyboard angle. For best results, both your keyboard and your forearms should be parallel to the ground while in use.
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