Full size keyboard suggestions

I am looking for a full sized Bluetooth keyboard to pair with my iPhone 5s. I don't deal well with mini or even compact keyboards. I am the sort of person who, in the past, carried around a full sized PC keyboard in a laptop case so I wouldn't have to deal with the laptop keyboard.

I am hoping to be able to use the keyboard to do some writing when I am out and about as well as to make using some apps easier. Size of thre keyboard is only a concern if it is too small. I will happily cart around the same keyboard one would use on a Mac desktop in order to have comfort and ease of use. any recommendations for particular models would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks,

chris

Forum: 

#1 Logitech k810

I strongly recommend the Logitech K810. Googling that should bring it up as one of the first results. It's $99.99 and well-worth the price. I have it connected to my Mac, Windows PC, iPhone, and when I need to, my Android tablet. Synchronization is fairly easy, and if you don't want to use bluetooth to conserve battery life, it's plug-and-play for any computer.
It's slim and compact, yet sports a full keyboard (save for a numpad). Not to mention the great warranty -- I lost a key a while ago, do to my own error, not the keyboard. Taking a picture of the keyboard and sending it to Logitech was all I had to do to get a free replacement.
Hope this helps.

#2 Full Size Keyboards

Chris:

You're a man or woman after my own heart, (Chris being an androgenous dominitive, I'm necessarily constrained to speculate on gender, !)

Anyway, I'm a big fan of both the apple Bluetooth keyboard and the Logitech K760 keyboard. The apple keyboard is very small yet has full-size keys. I love its action, but do not like that one turns it on and off by holding down a button on the right side. Okay, if you press keys and the iPhone doesn't react, you can be pretty confident that the keyboard hasn't been turned on, but I'm not a fan of "press and hold" for turning on a device. For example, I took the keyboard with me on a recent trip to New York, and felt compelled to remove one of the keyboard batteries to prevent it from being turned on in my suitcase by being squashed by its contents. I also love the Logitech keyboard. It's slightly bigger than the apple, but: (1), has a slide switch to turn it on and off, and, (2), runs on photoelectric cells, meaning that you never have to worry about changing batteries. The Logitech will charge in the presence of any light source. I've never had it run down on me.

Hope this helps. Feel free to contact me at:

lists@jamsite.us

if you want to discuss this further.

John

#3 I can only speak from the apple sandpoint.

Hi. The apple keyboard is very thin. It also comes with batteries preinstalled. Though it's 64.00 from www.amazon.com a bit high, I'd rather spend then then antoher forty on a different model. That's me though. Be warned, put this metal keyboard on your knees wearing shorts, or in the winter putting it near bare skin and it's cold lol. I did lose a key, thought i could find it, but I can't. I need to replace the keyboard anyway, I've dropped it so it has a bunch of scuff and bite marks taken out of it. I promise, I don't snack on my keyboard. :) Hope that helped.

#4 Thanks for all of the input

Thanks for all of the input so far. Chris is short for christopher BTW.

If the Apple keyboard discussed is the compact Apple Bluetooth keyboard, I had one and had to give it up despite the great construction and nice keys. The close together keys are part of my problem. Despite the fact that I have small hands for a guy my size and am not that old, I have joint problems in both hands and just don't do very well with things packed closely together. What I am hoping to find is basically the same keyboard one would have on a Mac desktop with Bluetooth connectivity. If I were just looking to type texts and emails, I could probably get by with what one usually finds in the portable keyboard category, but I am hoping to substitute at least one of my iOS devices for a laptop for writing, which means many pages in a session, at least I hope for many pages per session. I would happily lug around a big, mechanical key gamer keyboard with widely spaced, big keys if I could find one that has Bluetooth capability. Are the Logitech options more standard like this or is the Apple keyboard liked by others larger than the one I had? The one I had came with a slot for the battery, double A or triple A I beliecve to one side and the button for power on the other. That one was just too crowded for me, I got way too many typos when typing at a good rate and my hands began hurting after just a few minutes.

I wish i could just get a bluetooth adapter for a standard USB keyboard. That would work just fine for my purposes, though if I can find one that is comfortable to type on in long sessions, the capability of switching the same keyboard between different devices is quite a temptation.

Thanks again for the input.

Regards,

chris

#5 Apple Wireless Keyboard

Club AppleVis Member

I have the Apple Wireless Keyboard, and as far as I can tell, the keys are the same size as they are on the Apple keyboard on my Mac desktop. The only real difference is the lack of a numeric pad.

The keyboard is designed as you describe, with the batteries on the left side and the power button on the right, which you have to hold down to turn the keyboard on or off. I agree that this is an awkward way to turn the device on and off, but it doesn't really bother me, so long as I remember to test the keyboard to ensure it is off before putting it away.

I am not sure if this is the compact keyboard you mentioned or not. If it is, though, then I'm afraid a lot of keyboards out there will not suit you, as the keys on this keyboard are comfortably large, at least for me. I have not heard of Apple making a keyboard with smaller keys, but perhaps they did in the past.

#6 I don't think my problem with

I don't think my problem with the keyboard I had was so much the size of they keys, but rather the crowded placement. I had to fold my hands in typing positions that led to aching fingers and wrists and also got a lot more typos from missing the keys I intended to press. The latter I could probably get used to, but I am not sure anything can be done about the former. I may just have to try some different ones until I find one I can get used to or I may just not be able to do as much writing as I had hoped on my iPhone and iPad.

thanks,

chris

#7 So Grateful For This Topic!

I have the exact same problem, so many thanks to Chris for starting this topic. And thanks to those who made recommendations!

#8 Test it out in a store.

Hi blind cat. If you can, try going to a store and asking to type on the keyboard. It's got large keys, very light, forgot to mention that, and despite how pricey I think it is, I'll go buy anothe rone, not because it's Apple, but because I've had great use so far. Also, when I returned my first keyboard, they swapped it no problem.

#9 RE: Full size keyboard suggestions

Great topic, Chris. As much as I like my Macbook Air, I would gladly trade it's keyboard for a good old-fashioned IBM "Model M" clickety clackety, 101 key keyboard, if only I could find a way to shoehorn one into my Air. Of course those IBM keyboards weighed 3 pounds by themselves and were probably twice the width of my 11 inch Air.

What was the make and model of the PC keyboard you used to carry with your previous laptop? Also, could you expand a bit on what exactly defines a full size keyboard for you? FOr example, does it include a separate number pad, page up/down, home/end, insert/delete? Is it a matter of key size, spacing between keys, key layout, key travel, tactile and/or audible feedback to key presses?

Cheers,
Bryan

#10 keyboard.

Hi.
I use a USb keyboard for my mac, I don't use the mac side, bought it and don't find a use for the mac lol. I use windows eight on it, and am very happy with it. it's a full sized keyboard with a numb pad all the keys, so letters, top roe for numbers, basically a keyboard you'd find with a PC.
If you look for USb keyboards on amazon, I'm sure you'd find lodes.
Although this isn't for writing when walking around since it doesn't pair with the Iphone, it should help you when it comes to typeing on a laptop or pc.
I really like the logitec keyboard a poster posted about.
I'm really think about checking it out, it sounds great.de

#11 My experiences

Hello.
I don't recommend Apple BT firstly cause that power button issue, secondly its so easy to being broken.
As mentioned above, K810 I bought from Amazon for $59 and K760 also awesome with solar technology.
these are good of course without numpad.
best wishes.

#12 Hi all,

Hi all,

Thanks again for the continuing good discussion. The problem with trying out a keyboard is that I live in a small city in southern New Mexico with no Apple Store and with the few stores that would carry such products quite far away. I have a physical disability that limits my mobility, so it is difficult to go out and find such things. i generally end up getting information online and then trying products out. It isn't the most efficient method, but it is easier than the alternatives which generally iinvolve getting rides to the nearest larger city and hoping I can find what I am looking for.

I thought I had sent the Apple wireless keyboard I tried back to Amazon, but apparently, in the confusion of moving at the time I tried it I forgot and I found it in a drawer. The one I have does seem to have regular size keys, seems to have all of the major keys except a numpad, and is probably only millimeters thick. The arrow keys are rectangular rather than square and are located under the rightmost letter keys rather than to the right of the letter keys. If this describes the Apple Wireless keyboard under discussion, it is definitely too compact for me. Just holding my hands in position over it for a couple of minutes gets my fingers and my wrists aching. I like the form factor and the thin build, but the lack of space between the keys forces me to hold my hands in positions that just won't work for more than a couple of minutes of typing at a time. I am thinking of using it with my Apple TV, since that doesn't require long periods of typing, but for writing, I definitely need more space.

Brian, what I consider full size would be the same size and spacing of keys of a standard 101 key keyboard, though I don't think a numpad is really necessary. Though, if I found a Bluetooth keyboard that had the full size and spacing along with a numpad, I would probably go for it since it would serve my purposes exactly. I might try the logitech keyboard, though after checking Amazon, i wonder if the Logitech K811 might not suit better since it seems to be exactly the same as the 810 except for being aimed specifically at Apple devices.

What I really want is to be able to sit back in a chair or at a table with my iPhone or iPad and type for long periods with the same comfort and relaxed hand position as I do sitting at my PC. At the PC, I use a Logitech USB standard 101 key Windows keyboard. If I ever switch to Mac for my desktop, I will probably use the Mac equivalent of the same keyboard. I like the standard key spacing and some good tactile feedback when I type. If it weren't so costly, i would probably use a gaming keyboard with solid mechanical keys for real tactile feedback. If I could find one of those in Bluetooth, I might actually save up the money to buy it just to be able to have such a keyboard that would also work with all of my portable devices.

It seems that the Bluetooth keyboard sector is almost exclusively dedicated to compactness, I get that most folks want something small to carry around, but I really think there is a market out there for keyboards that are the same as what people are used to on their desktops, but with Bluetooth compatibility. I hear too many people, including fully sighted people with very dexterous hands who complain about their laptop or other compact portable keyboards. I know many gamers who plug in USB keyboards and mice into their high end gaming laptops because, despite how close to full size and spacing the keyboards that come with some of these laptops might be, they still feel more comfortable with the standard models.

Thanks for all of the great discussion.

regards,

Chris

#13 That sounds like the keyboard I have

Club AppleVis Member

Your description of the Apple wireless keyboard seems to be exactly what I have. To me, the keys do not appear to be compact at all. Indeed, I am 99% sure the spacing of the keys is the same as those on the keyboard I use with my computer. I have had that keyboard for several years now, and I never found the keys to be compact. But that's my experience, and obviously you have had a different one.

If this keyboard is too compact for you, you will have trouble finding a Bluetooth keyboard you will like. I know what you mean about keyboard with mechanical keys. I actually remember using them once upon a time, and I initially found it hard to adjust when I first used a keyboard that didn't use that design. It has been many years since, and I don't miss those mechanical keys at all. Again, this is my cup of tea, which doesn't mean you're wrong.

Sorry I can't be much help. Hopefully the other suggestions here will better suit your needs.

#14 If you ever find one...

If anybody ever finds a bluetooth keyboard with a numpad, please let me know. I bought a bluetooth numpad that worked great, but then I tried to press command with numpad 3 or something, and found that the Mac keyboard can't combine modifiers with the numpad. I could use a USB one for the whole keyboard with built-in numpad, but I don't want wires. I like the idea of looking for bluetooth gaming keyboards; gonna search for those and will post here if I ever find one.
Btw I agree that most laptop and compact keyboards have too little space between the keys even if the keys are full size.
Sara

#15 Shocking, apple has a keyboard for that

Hi sara. Apple has a keyboard with a built in number pad, it was I think fifty bucks on amazon. I replaced my keyboard and am happy with it. Chris I really don't know what to tell you. The apple keyboard I have, the arrows are to the right ot the space bar, option, and command keys. Plus, am I the only one who really is glad I don't have a number pad anymore? Actually the non number pad keyboard is more expensive then the one with it. But I learned on the number pad as a cild, then when I wa forced especially with the mac, and other laptops, to use the top row, I find myself having to count, one, two, three, whereas the right hand side was easier. I wish I had never learned on it though. Just my experience. Sorry I can't be more help.

#16 Full Size BT Keyboard

Hi Chris: Mathias from Canada offers a full size PC style keyboard with num pad which operates on bluetooth. About $100 on Amazon. Unfortunately, the keyboard is hinged in the middle and folds in half for carrying. That would be great, but the hinge is very unstable and the halves of the keyboard collapse together when you try typing with the keyboard on your lap. I complained to the company, and they said they were working on another hinge assembly. So you might want to talk with them before making a purchase. As I recall the Mathias company is in Toronto Ontario Canada. Also the pairing button is in a small pin hole and you need a paper clip or stylus to activate it. Ultimately, I gave the keyboard away to a friend of mine who like you really needed the full size configuration.
All of this took place a couple of years ago, so I hope the product has improved and is still on the market. Scott

#17 So Sorry -- Wrong on Name of Keyboard

My keyboard was called Matias Wireless Keyboard for Mac, Model kf304, purchased from amazon in 2010. The company's phone number at the time was 905-265-8844 in Canada. Hope this helps.
Scott

#19 Apple has a keyboard with numpad, but it's USB, not Bluetooth

Hi,
For those wondering, Apple does have a keyboard with a numpad, but it's only wired with USB. The bluetooth Apple keyboard is always without a numpad.
I'm currently trying an Apple bluetooth keyboard and a belkin YourType numpad and will let you know how that works together. The guy at Apple thought the modifiers would combine with the numpad since they're both bluetooth devices and the signals should combine. We'll see...
Sara

#20 Full size keyboard for use with the iPhone

I'm still quite new to the iPhone. So, forgive me if this is a silly question. But here goes. Can you connect a computer keyboard to the iPhone via USB? Or are all of them bluetooth? My well-meaning husband bought me a little bluetooth keyboard but all the buttons are exactly the same. I appreciate this topic. Thanks all.

#21 As far as I know...

Hi,
I don't know for sure, but I think iPhone might only work with bluetooth. However, there are likely other keyboards that would work better for you. When you say all the keys are the same, do you mean all the same size? The Apple wireless keyboard has a larger enter key, shift keys, etc.
You can certainly use USB keyboards with a Mac and it may be possible with iPhones, I just don't know of an adapter that would do it.
Sara

#22 Model number for Apple keyboard w/ numpad?

Can anyone tell me a model number for the Apple keyboard with numpad that was mentioned above? I like the idea of having a numpad, especially for dialing calls.

#23 Logitech K810 is a great

Logitech K810 is a great first suggestion. I Love mine!

#24 Problem with my Logitech K810.

OK, so I have looked on this site for the problem I'm experiencing and haven't found it. I'm encouraged by others in this thread that this is a great keyboard. However, the keys clearly state what they are, but Voiceover is not recognizing them correctly. I get into Voiceover help. I press left arrow and it says left arrow. I press up arrow and it says up arrow. However, when I press right arrow, it says option. Interestingly when I press down arrow, it says "shuh, shift." So it sounds like it's doubling the keystroke somehow. I paired again after forgetting the device, but the problem persists. Is there something I need to change? I have the keyboard plugged in to charge, as I just got it.
Thanks,
Matthew

#25 Logitech k810 and k811

Hi,

I was looking at the logitech keyboard as I was looking for something to switch between mac, apple tv 4 (when the update comes out) and my iPhone. I noticed there were two models, the k810 and k811, is there any difference? I thought the k811 was the mac version and the k810 was the PC?

It's not available in the UK, so would have to get it shipped in, boo. There is a newer logitech bluetooth keyboard out, the k6 something or other. Cheaper but bigger, this might satisfy the requirements of the original post. Get Logitech on twitter, @Logitech they got back to me pretty quickly.

#26 Keyboard Thoughts

Anyone looking for a full-sized bluetooth keyboard may wish to look at the Camex bluetooth keyboard. In addition to the numeric pad, it offers the type of on/off control I like. It's one of those where you slide it one of two positions to turn the keyboard on or off. Slide it to the left and the keyboard won't work. Slide it to the right, and you're good to go.

This keyboard is identical in appearance to the wired keyboard on a PC.

I*'ve used this keyboard with an iPad Air 2, and I love the keyboard action.

I found this one at Simply Mac for $60.

If you don't need the numeric pad, I use the Amazon Basics bluetooth keyboard. This keyboard iw lightweight, and it costs $26 plus shipping and handling.

#27 Desperately seeking a full size BT keyboard

Club AppleVis Member

This is a great discussion. I am frustrated with the Apple BT keyboard due to its unresponsiveness and the power switch.
Tina, how do you like the Canex BT keyboard? Any updates on the Matias keyboard?
I heard Logitech came out with a mechanical BT keyboard. Anyone know of it?
Thanks.

#28 You might take a look at the Microsoft BT keyboard

I also prefer a full size keyboard. In fact, when I can, I use an ergonomic keyboard for the wider key placement and more comfortable wrist placement. The closest keyboard I found was the Microsoft Bluetooth Keyboard 6000 but there is now a newer model of this keyboard:

Microsoft Bluetooth Mobile Keyboard 5000

http://amzn.to/1XFaVgV

As I say, I have the older model 6000. It does not have a numeric pad. It's advertised as having a "comfort curve" which it does, although its curve isn't as prominent as a true ergonomic keyboard, but it helps. Its power switch is on the back and slides up and down to power on and off the keyboard.

Matthew, iOS seems to have a problem with BT keyboards "doubling" characters after some time passes. Recycling the power on your phone should make this problem go away for a while.

#29 Matias Wireless Aluminum Keyboard is full size and BT

I haven't noticed any discussion about this after the early CES press releases back in January, but Matias is now selling a full size bluetooth aluminum keyboard modeled after the Apple keyboards with numeric keypad that are USB-only. External reviews are beginning to show up, like this one from an Australian blog site:
https://mikesgear.com/2016/06/09/matias-wireless-aluminium-keyboard-review/

Also, for the first time, I've found links for buying this product at Amazon (U.S.):
https://www.amazon.com/Matias-Wireless-Aluminum-Keyboard-Silver/dp/B0195...

Highlights of what I've gleaned: the feel of this keyboard is very much like that of the full-size Apple USB keyboards, and so is the placement of the keys and travel, so this is not a solution for people who want the feel of the old style IBM keyboards. As far as I know, the gold standard for that is Unicomp's Spacesaver M Keyboard for Mac, which is USB only. The Matias keyboard uses a rechargeable battery, and will pair with up to 4 devices. It's $5 cheaper to order directly through the Matias web site rather than Amazon, and doubtless there will be other third-party vendors than the one I linked to, but the layout of the Matias site could be easier to navigate. (You have to fill out the order for the correct keyboard model on a web page that includes all the various models and then find the "submit" button at the bottom of the page to send off your order). They do support keyboards in other language layouts, but you have to order through their third-party distributors for those countries. According to the linked review article, Windows functions are supported, including Print Screen, Scroll Lock, and Pause; the Command key maps to the Windows logo key. But there is no dedicated insert or Numlock key -- you have to press Fn+Delete or Fn+Clear.

I'd be interested in learning whether the NumPad Commander keys beyond the first tier operate correctly with this keyboard. It's something to look for.

#30 I advise against the Microsoft

When I used it, I noticed a significant latency with the Microsoft Bluetooth keyboard as compared to any other. It uses an older Bluetooth standard. Personally I like either the Magic keyboard or the Logitech K811, but they have no numeric keypad.

#31 Magic Keyboard has a power switch

The new Magic keyboard has a power switch on the rear, as opposed to that button that I always hit by accident. A huge improvement, and worth the upgrade all on its own.

#32 Amazon basics

If you want a full-size keyboard that is small and easy to cary, I'm going to recommend the Amazon basics Bluetooth keyboard every time for many reasons. First, the price...This baby sells for $25 on Amazon. Yes, only 25 but that doesn't mean it's a piece of crap. That leads to my second reason...the keyboard itself is smaller than your average USB or Bluetooth keyboard, yet the keys are the normal size and it is very quiet when typing, and it's very durable. It's a hard plastic but don't let that fool you. So if you have a significant other who is sleeping, you won't wake them up when typing. Lastly, it's easy to pare to your iDevice. It's the usual idea...put in the 2 triple A batteries, which by the way last about 6 or 7 months before you have to replace them, turn the keyboard on, and on the underside next to the power switch you'll find a round button which puts the keyboard into paring mode. Hold the button in for about 15 seconds and then go to settings/Bluetooth, on, button and double-tap. Scrole down, and you'll see a list of all the Bluetooth devices youhave pared to the phone. Under the other devices section, you should find your keyboard, so double tap on that. You should then receive a Bluetooth paring request, and then you'll be asked to type in a 4-digit number, followed by the enter key. After you do that, the keyboard is pared and you're ready to rock! By the way, I should add that the power switch should be set to the right to turn the keyboard on and left to turn it off. Hope this helps.

#33 I like the idea of the Matias keyboard

Club AppleVis Member

Regarding the Matias keyboard mentioned in a recent comment on this topic:

The keyboard was just featured in the latest episode of the Blind Bargains Qast (number 66 I think). There's also a brief demo of the keyboard in that podcast, and it's being sold through AT Guys, the company that puts out the podcast.

I have to say that, if I were in the market for a new keyboard, I would absolutely consider the Matias keyboard. I have used Apple's extended USB keyboard for a long time now, and I would love a Bluetooth equivalent, which the Matias essentially is. All the other features of the keyboard, such as pairing to multiple devices, are icing on the cake. It would probably be a bit too big for travel, but for use around the house it would be perfect.

Alas, I don't need to spend a hundred bucks on a new keyboard now. The Apple Wireless Keyboard I am using right now is just fine for me when using my iPad, and the wired Apple keyboard I mentioned above is still working great on my Mac. If either keyboard stops working, or I need a third keyboard for something, then I will look at the Matias, but for now I will spend my money elsewhere.

#34 Does "Camex" refer to the Kanex Multi-Sync Bluetooth Keyboard?

I've been puzzled by the references to the "Camex" keyboard earlier in this thread. My guess is this is the Kanex Multi-Sync Bluetooth Keyboard, model QWERTYX-v2 based on the price and date of the earlier post that mentioned it. That version is plastic, and the key action is supposedly not as good as on the Apple wireless keyboard or the Logitech keyboard models, according to earlier reviews on MacWorld and also from customer reviews on Amazon, if I have correctly identified the model:
https://www.amazon.com/Kanex-MultiSync-Full-Size-Bluetooth-iPhone-White/...

Recently (February 2016, or about the same time Matias announced their Aluminum Bluetooth Keyboard for the Consumer Electronics Show) Kanex announced an upgraded model (K166-1013) called the Kanex MultiSync Aluminum Mac Keyboard that sells for a similar price to the Matias keyboard I posted about a few days ago:
http://www.kanex.com/multisync-aluminum-keyboard

You can also find an entry at Amazon for this new model, and read customer comments:
https://www.amazon.com/Kanex-MultiSync-Aluminum-Bluetooth-keypad-compati...

Both the Kanex and the Matias models are full size extended keyboards (including the numeric keypad). I think there have already been good suggestions for compact models. The Kanex model uses a pair of AAA batteries, while the Matias model uses a rechargeable battery. Other things being equal, I would be more inclined to choose the Matias model if I needed a full size Bluetooth keyboard with numeric keypad. First, Matias has specialized in making Mac-compliant keyboard for some time. Secondly, they offer keyboard versions and manuals in (at least) UK, German, French, and Japanese standard layouts for the Mac, in addition to the US layout, while I believe the Kanex Aluminum keyboard only offers support for the US keyboard layout.

I've now had an opportunity to try typing on the Matias keyboard, and the key action and layout is very much like Apple's full size (extended) USB keyboard, as mentioned in the Blind Bargains podcast referenced in another recent post. You can also use the NumPad Commander with other modifier keys (like Command, Option, etc.), similar to Apple's wired keyboard. And you also have access to a numeric keypad for use with paired iOS devices. The AT Guys web page for the Matias Wireless Aluminum Keyboard also links to an accessible text version of the user guide, to supplement the PDF version from the Matias support page.

It's nice to have this option, if someone wants a full size extended keyboard that works with Bluetooth.

#35 Another suggestion about double letters

If you turn VoiceOver off and on, characters should no longer be spoken twice. Hope that helps.