Logitech MK710 Review: Wireless Keyboard+Mouse+Micro Receiver



Logitech MK710 Review

Confusingly, the keyboard in the MK710 package is the MK700, and the mouse is the MK705. However, there is also an older keyboard+mouse package called the MK700, which has the old big USB-stick receiver. Avoid the MK700 keyboard+mouse package. Get the MK710.

Price

Staples Canada had this on sale for $80. Best Buy's price was $100, I was able to pricematch without any difficulty, and got a price of $78+tax. Researching Ebay and Shopbot.ca (at the store!) didn't reveal any better deals. Pro-tip: The Mac computers always have internet access at these stores, while the PCs often don't, so use the Macs for your competitive analyses.

MK710 Keyboard + Mouse Battery Life

The product includes 4xDuracell AA batteries. According to the documentation, they last "up to 3 years". I doubt I'll get that much use, but I bet I'll get 6+months out of them, which is more than reasonable. Interestingly, the keyboard reports that it uses 30ma@3V, while the mouse uses 100ma@1.5V. So, I would imagine the mouse batteries will run out sooner, as it uses (potentially) more power, and probably transmits more often, not to mention the power usage of running a camera and doing rapid image processing (which is how laser mice work).
The mouse can run with just 1xAA battery for those that prefer a lighter feel (and half the time between battery changes)

I started using the product 17 July 2010, I'll update this article when I have to replace the batteries :) I've had good luck with Logitech's previous mouse products and their battery life.

Function Keys

Most of them work right out of the box on my linux distribution, Ubuntu 10.04. The calculator button is nice, since my laptop has one already. I'm not sure of what the purpose of being able to eject my CD-ROM using a hotkey is. On Windows, I think you can reprogram everything, I'm not sure about Linux (yet).

Micro "Unifying" Receiver

This is why I bought the mouse. The receiver is just a minor stub on a USB port, so just plug it in and forget it. I would rather not have a Bluetooth system, since it's going to require drivers (the MK710 just works out of the box), may not work in command line prompts and won't be as easy to move between a main workstation laptop and a netbook (+ not all netbooks have bluetooth yet).
It seems relatively recent that the keyboard+mouse packages use the micro USB receivers. It seemed that mice had them a while ago, but it took a while for the keyboards to start using them.
My problem is that I needed a wireless keyboard for home theatre usage, but also a mouse that used a micro-receiver that I could leave in and just take the mouse when I needed to take my laptop somewhere.
This is a part of Logitech's "Unifying" receiver tech, which can operate multiple products with the same stub (so far, just keyboards, mice and number pads methinks). I suppose you could have multiple keyboards/mice, but that seems senseless. Maybe they'll come out with game controllers for it one day, and you can just buy the controller and attach it to your receiver.

Look and

Susceptible to finger-prints on the shiny portion. Padded wrist-rest is actually very nice and useful, definitely get a wireless keyboard with it if you're not going to always use it on a desk.
Skip-song, Play/pause buttons are very convenient (as my laptop keyboard didn't have these before).

MK710

I have two computers, two monitors and the MK710. I need a USB2.0 AB switch (inverse or sharing USB hub) to allow me to switch MK710 from one computer to another. The switching could be provided by a hot-key combination which must work with Linux or an electronic switch (not a mechanical one) which could be actuated by a push button or other form of toggle.

There are a wide variety of these devices advertising on the internet. Are you aware of a specific device that would satisfy my requirements?

Are there any Linux drivers that would increase the functionality of the keyboard?

Thanks,

Ken

Synergy

Synergy is perfect for this (one mouse, 2 computers). I use it all the time, and it plays nicely with both Windows and Linux.

See: http://synergy2.sourceforge.net/

I have no experience with any

I have no experience with any USB devices that would do what you need. I wonder if a KVM switch could be configured in such a way but without hooking up the monitors? Or how about streaming the Keyboard and mouse movements from one system to another with a script with a hotkey to turn on/off the streaming functionality to System B? Should be possible in linux...
Would this work: http://www.routemybrain.com/share-single-keyboard-mouse-in-linux-mac-and-windows-using-synergy/

I'm using it on linux, but never bothered with any drivers. The hotkeys for sound+music work out of the box, as do most of the hotkeys, but I hardly ever use them.

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