Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 Keyboard and Mouse Set review: Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 Keyboard and Mouse Set

The Good Easy-to-adjust keyboard height and angle; split keyboard design with raised center makes for comfortable typing; programmable quick-launch keys cut down on mousing; unique mouse design keeps wrist at a neutral angle.

The Bad Keys and scroll wheel offer a bit too much resistance for ultimate comfort; mouse is right-handed only; inconvenient thumb-button placement.

The Bottom Line Though it may not offer much relief from clinical repetitive stress injuries, the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 will satisfy users who want a slightly more comfortable keyboard and mouse than the one that came with their computer.

7.0 Overall
  • Design 7
  • Features 7
  • Performance 7

The Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 is a mainstream solution: It's likely not going to solve the unique problems of clinically injured computer users, but it does seem like a decent entry point for the average user who wants a slightly more body-friendly desktop setup than a standard keyboard and mouse. And it's priced accordingly, at $150--pricey for a desktop set, but really at the entry level for ergonomic solutions.

We used the Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 with our primary computer for several weeks, and we're mostly pleased with the level of comfort it offers. Our only gripes come from resistance: The keys feel just a bit too stiff, and the mouse scroll button requires just a bit too much force. These weren't enough to outweigh the other comfort benefits of the set's design for our moderately achy wrists, but they could very well be deal-breakers for those with more serious injuries.

The design of the keyboard in the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Desktop 7000 is essentially the same as the Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000, though the former connects to your computer wirelessly via a USB receiver. The split design rises in the middle to keep your wrists and arms in a naturally rotated position. An optional riser snaps under the front of the keyboard to create a backward slant that prevents you from flexing your wrists. You can further adjust the keyboard's height and angle via snap-up feet on the rear corners. The keyboard's wrist rest is padded with a faux-leather cover that's preferable to bare plastic but nevertheless not as comfortable as the gel wrist rests you can get elsewhere.

All these features add up to a rather comfortable typing experience; after just a few days with the Natural Ergonomic Keyboard we came to prefer it to traditional keyboards for all our typing. However, we were frustrated by the stiffness of the keys, especially the space bar. Even after prolonged use we felt we had to press just a bit too hard to type--not exactly ideal for a keyboard that's supposed to reduce repetitive stress injuries and certainly a deal breaker for anyone whose hand and wrist pain starts in their fingers.

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