Though it's slim and attractive and features flashy new technology, the Logitech Cordless Desktop MX5000 Laser keyboard and mouse set has a few flaws that keep it from being our favorite desktop set.
The $149 Logitech Cordless Desktop MX5000 Laser, a Bluetooth-enabled keyboard and mouse duo that combines touch-pad technology with a built-in LCD, will make a cutting-edge addition to your desktop. With media controls and hot keys, the set is well suited for both multimedia and business applications. All is not perfect, however: we experienced some performance lag and found the LCD difficult to read. For similar media controls and hot-key functionality, sans the LCD and the touch pad, look to the Logitech Cordless Desktop MX3100, which costs about $50 less and includes the wonderful MX1000 laser mouse.
Included with a keyboard that has a built-in 1-by-3-inch LCD are Logitech's tried-and-true MX1000 mouse and a Bluetooth 2.0 USB dongle. We plugged in the Bluetooth USB receiver to our PC's empty port and hit the Connect button, and we were ready to go. To make use of the set's programmable hot keys and keyboard and mouse settings, you must first install Logitech's SetPoint software, found on the included CD. Logitech also provides MediaLife software, a Media Center-like app that makes it easy to access photos and music; Desktop Manager, which alerts you to software updates; Musicmatch Jukebox, a media player; and Easy Synchronization, for syncing up with other Bluetooth devices. All in all, installing the software package took about 15 minutes on our Windows XP-based system; you can install the apps all at once or piecemeal.
The keyboard is very slim and has a relatively small footprint. You can program the F-keys and other hot keys to open preferred programs, folders, and Web pages. There's a touch-sensitive media pad that has play/pause, stop, and forward/back controls, as well as dedicated volume and zoom strips. The buttons are very small and close together, and we occasionally tapped the wrong one. We also noticed a slight lag--it took about two seconds for our music to pause after we hit the button. We wish that pushing the buttons made a sound or delivered some sort of tactile feedback.
The keyboard's 102x42-pixel LCD screen was unimpressive. Its handy default view shows username, date, time, and temperature, and it can display media playback information, zoom and volume levels, and hot-key combinations. However, we experienced delays in the announcement of new Outlook messages and instant messages. The LCD lacks a backlight, making it unreadable in many lighting situations, and the viewing angle is poor; we couldn't see the display unless we were looking at it from directly above.
The included MX1000 mouse has been updated with Bluetooth support and a thinner charging station. The mouse features 800 dots-per-inch (dpi) resolution, typical for laser mice, and a strip of LEDs indicates battery level. The MX1000 is comfortable to use--but for the right-handed only. A smart tilt wheel lets you scroll both vertically and horizontally, and there are three programmable buttons.
Logitech offers a three-year warranty where most manufacturers only offer one year on input devices. Logitech's support site has software downloads and updates, user forums, product-specific support, and e-mail support options.