As many of us are either gamers or PC enthusiasts, we often overlook the more office / productivity oriented mice and keyboards that are available on the market. Today, Microsoft unveiled two new keyboard and mice combos to its Sculpt line of Ergonomic peripherals. The company designs these new models based on the input from more than 5,300 workers that say they experience discomfort on a daily basis when working with traditional keyboards and mice.
First, we have the boomerang shaped Sculpt Ergonomic Desktop bundle, which features an oddly shaped key layout with a wide split in the middle. Microsoft says this split provides the perfect angle which allows users to rest their hands more naturally on the keyboard. This set also includes a separate wireless number pad and wireless mouse, which has also been redesigned to fit more naturally in the user's hand.
The second offering unveiled today is dubbed the Sculpt Comfort Desktop Bundle and features a more traditional looking keyboard with a curved typing service and flat numerical keypad. A detachable palm rest is present alongside a split spacebar. The mouse included in this set also features a new design that integrates a Windows touch tab that allows users to swipe over this blue button to view or cycle through open applications.
Razer has launched a new gaming keypad dubbed the Razer Tartarus, which is a successor to the Razer Nostromo. The Tartarus features 15 face buttons with 25 programmable keys and an 8-way directional thumb pad.
Razer says that games will be able to use the thumb pad to move with more precision, while at the same time the thumb pad doubles as a modifier key. This, in reality, makes the Tartarus add eight more keys to its keyset, which ramps up to a total of 128 different command options. Anti-ghosting is of course featured, as well as a braided USB cable. Backlit keys are on offer, which makes gaming in the dark easy.
The Tartarus allows for unlimited macro lengths and unlimited game profiles through Razer's Synapse 2.0 software. The Razer Tartarus is available through Razer's online store, as well as a few retailers across the world for $79.99.
Earlier today, Logitech debuted its new TK820 all-in-one wireless keyboard. While there are plenty of wireless keyboards on the market, Logitech's new offering is unique in that it has a built-in touchpad that supports up to 13 Windows 8 multi-touch gestures.
Logitech says that the new keyboard is aimed at Windows 8 users who do not have a touchscreen. The support for multi-touch will allow users to get more out of their Windows 8 experience. The keyboard is designed around Logitech's "PerfectStroke" key system that distributes typing pressure evenly across the surface of each key.
The keyboard is membrane-based, which allows for quiet operation, and the entire keyboard features a concave design that helps fingers glide from key to key more efficiently. The device features a 2.4GHz wireless receiver that will support up to five wireless Logitech devices at once. The new TK820 will be available in the US and Europe later this month for about $100.
Hot on the heels of last week's Tritton Kunai launch, Mad Catz today announced that it has began shipping the Tritton Pro gaming headset for PC and Mac. The company says that the Tritton Pro is a true 5.1 surround sound headset that features four separate drivers in each ear cup for a true 5.1 surround sound experience.
The headset also features an in-line remote that allows selectable voice monitoring that allows users to choose if they hear their own voice in the headset or not. "The TRITTON Pro+ headset received a warm reception with the passionate gamers at E3 thanks to its advanced feature set and multiple speakers, delivering highly accurate sound separation, ideal for online gaming," said Darren Richardson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mad Catz. "We believe the TRITTON Pro+ for Windows PC and Mac will enable us to further diversify our platform base within the high-end audio category."
The Tritton Pro is available in white, black, and gloss red and is available in the US, Canada, UK, France, and Germany for around $199. The headset will be available at all major electronics retailers that carry the Mad Catz brand. For more information on the Mad Catz Triton Pro, head over to Source #2 below.
The Xbox One will be unleashed in just a few months time, but will the Xbox One controllers work on our PCs? No, not for now at least. Microsoft has confirmed that they will work on the PC, but in 2014.
Microsoft confirmed the news during an interview with Kotaku, where a Microsoft spokesperson said: "There is some work that we need to do to make sure that existing PC games that support the Xbox 360 controller will work with the Xbox One controller. While it seems trivial, it's actually quite a bit of dedicated work for all that to be seamless for the user. We know people want to use the Xbox One controller on their PC, and we do too--we expect to have the functionality available in 2014."
Sure, it's good that Microsoft will give consumers the ability to use the Xbox One controller on the PC, but why wait? Surely they have the staff and development time to write a simple driver and get it working since the controller isn't that much different when next to the Xbox 360 controller that is already available and working on the PC.
This morning, TT eSports officially announced the launch of the POSEIDON, an illuminated gaming keyboard. TT eSports says that they built the POSEIDON with the goal of providing a quality Cherry MX switch-based keyboard, while retaining an extremely affordable price, allowing more gamers around the world the chance to experience the difference a mechanical keyboard can make. Our own Anthony Garreffa got a chance to check out the POSEIDON back in June at Computex 2013.
The keyboard is constructed out of a hefty ABS plastic body that gives the keyboard a very solid feel and virtually removes all flex when pushing down on the keyboard. TT eSports says the POSEIDON was designed meticulously with no shortcuts being taken in the construction or overall function, giving this mechanical keyboard a premium feel while retaining a budget friendly price.
The POSEIDON is a pretty bare-bones gaming keyboard that provides everything you need without excessive clutter from macro keys or extra functionality. It is truly a plug-and-play experience with no extra software needed, allowing it to become the "ultimate plug-and-play" keyboard for gaming at home or on the go. The POSEIDON will retail at an MSRP of $79.99 and will begin shipping out worldwide later this month.
Apple has just opened up a new trade-in program for your old USB power adapters after the death of a flight attendant who was electrocuted by answering an iPhone 5 that was on charge.
Apple have stated that "recent reports have suggested that some counterfeit and third party adapters may not be designed properly and could result in safety issues." This has led the Cupertino-based company to institute the USB Power Adapter Takeback Program, which lets consumers pick up a first-party iPad, iPhone or iPad plug for just $10, down from the usual $19.
In order to receive this discount, you just have to trade-in your old power adapter. The deal is limited to just one adapter for each device you own, so put down that box of old USB power adapters.
If you're an MMO gamer, you've most likely heard, or maybe even own Razer's Naga MMO gaming mouse. Well, the best-selling MMO gaming mouse has just been updated, and is better than the original Naga MMO gaming mouse in nearly every single way.
The Naga's MMO strange, but useful 12-button thumb grip now sports mechanical switches for increased tactility, speed and actuation assurance. Each button on the thumb grid is more pronounced than its predecessor, allowing for improved blind-folding. Razer have given the Naga mouse an reworked form factor, which provides a broader shape to help a range of hand sizes feel comfortable.
There's a clickable scroll wheel on the updated Naga MMO gaming mouse, which clicks in and out, as well as left to right. Razer have also reworked some of the software, too, with the company including a copy of their in-game MMO configuration software with each Naga MMO gaming mouse. There's also a left-handed version of the mouse now, which covers most of the gaming market.
The Razer Naga 2014 Edition is available right now for $79.99 through Razer's website, or your closest e-tailer or retailer.
The Xbox One inches closer to release with each day that passes, but to calm those next-gen gaming nerves, pre-orders for the Xbox One controller are now open for your business.
You can pre-order the Xbox One controller on the Microsoft Store for $59.99, with the store also offering the controller with a Play and Charge kit for $74.99. The Microsoft Store lists their "must-have" wired headset for just $24.99.
Amazon also have pre-orders for the Xbox One controller open, ready for a November 27 release. The Microsoft Store still has "Day One" editions of the Xbox One still available, listed as being available in November. If you're sitting on the Sony side of the next-gen gaming fence, the DualShock 4 controller is available for pre-order for around $60.
This morning, ROCCAT announced the release of a new gaming mouse alongside a new mousepad to match. The new Kone Pure Optical Gaming Mouse is designed for those who do not want the high dpi resolution of a laser mouse, but prefer the softness of an optical mouse. Additionally, the company released the new Sense Meteor Blue Mousepad which is the latest installment in the company's praised Sense line.
"The new sensor featured in the Kone Pure Optical is the successor to the sensor featured in the famous Savu mouse. The Savu drew praise from gamers and reviewers alike, who complimented the mouse for its accurate and reliable tracking. Building on this success, the Kone Pure Optical has a new and more powerful MCU, which features more memory, and two new native DPI steps." said ROCCAT founder and CEO Rene Korte.
The critically-acclaimed Sense mousepad, which entered the market in 2008, has been reissued by ROCCAT, and is now available in a slick Meteor Blue design. The extremely thin textile pad, 2 mm thick, provides precise cursor control - allowing for absolute accuracy. The special micro-crystalline coating minimizes frictional resistance efficiently, and therefore provides a noticeable improvement in the gliding capability of accompanying mice.The large surface area, 400 x 280 mm, ensures the pad is of a size optimized for low- and high-sensitivity gamers alike. The Sense mousepad also remains available in Chrome Blue.
Today Leap Motion launched what is being billed as the "Worlds most accurate 3-D motion control technology." The software allows people to control their computers with natural hand and finger gestures much in the way that motion tracking WebCam software works. Alongside the software they launched, the company opened up its AirSpace platform, a sort of App Store that is exclusive to the Leap Motion controller.
The company also announced that beginning July 28 the actual Leap Motion Controllers will be available for purchase in Best Buy stores across the United States at a price point of $79.99. Customers in the UK are able to purchase from Amazon and the company has partnered up with ASUS and HP to offer bundled packages with select computers from each manufacturer.
Leap Motion went on to say that at launch the Airspace Store contained over 75 applications that were purpose built by developers and more than four countries. The apps range from free to paid and spans the width of many categories. The Leap Motion controller works with computers running Mac OS X 10.7 or 10.8, Windows 7 and Windows 8. It requires a minimum of an Intel Core™ i3 or AMD Phenom™ II processor, 2 GB RAM and a USB 2.0 port.
Apple TV launched as just a 'hobby' for the Cupertino-based giant, but it has grown out of control, but in a good way. Apple have now become the force to be reckoned with in the "streaming IP device" market according to a new report.
Apple scoop up 56% of the market, representing more than 13 million units sold in Q1 2013 alone. This number is more than all of the competitors' devices combined. Competing brands include Roku, WD TV, Boxee and Google TV, but Apple leads the market by a large margin. Roku takes second position with 21.5% of the market, which represents an estimated 5 million units.
I think this will change in the coming years, as Google push forward with media devices and companies like Netflix continue to dominate the new Internet market with original TV shows.
SteelSeries is known for their high-quality professional grade gaming peripherals, and their latest product fails to disappoint in any way possible. The new SteelSeries Apex Gaming Keyboard is comprised of what I can only describe as sheer beauty. It's no secret that I love backlit keys as well as RGB LEDs, and the new Apex combines both to bring a keyboard landscape unlike any other.
The SteelSeries Apex Gaming Keyboard goes beyond just choosing from 16.8 million color options, it features SteelSeries Active-Zone illumination, a visual support tool that allows the user to independently customize colors - up to 8 levels of illumination intensity in each of its 5 zones - with up to 4 different customizable layers per zone.
Additionally, the keyboard features unique enhancements to its layout which include low-profile keys, macro keys that are configured in rows for quick access, as well as multiple layers of customization in color and intensity. The keyboard is powered by the SteelSeries Engine which allows the keyboard to completely remap all of its 22 macro keys and offers users the ability to program up to four separate layers of the keyboard. This means that consumers now have up to 500 keys for instant control across multiple layouts, profiles, and commands that they choose for any game.
Priced at just $99.99, the Apex is available now at local retailers, online e-tailer's and gaming enthusiast centers near you. Below I have listed out the features list for the Apex Gaming Keyboard.
This morning, Sharkoon announced that it will be expanding its range of gaming peripherals and is kicking off the expansion by releasing a new version of its popular Drakonia Gaming Mouse. The new mouse is dubbed the Drakonia Black and comes in a gray-black stylish design that sports a rubberized surface and an Avago ADNS-9800 Laser sensor capable of a resolution of up to 8,200 DPI.
The Draconia Black features the same ergonomic design as its predecessor, the Drakonia Green Laser Gaming Mouse, and features 11 buttons as well as a four-way scroll wheel. The mouse also features internal memory that allows users to save their profiles based on which game they will be playing or to save profiles between multiple users.
The Drakonia Black features Sharkoon's well-known weight tuning system which consists of six interchangeable metal weights that allows the weight to be adjusted to the personal preference of the player and gives the mouse enough inertia for smooth yet very precise performance. Customers will find the new Sharkoon Drakonia Black laser Gaming Mouse from authorized retailers at a pricing point of around $50 US.
This morning, GIGABYTE announced the arrival of a new addition to its gaming keyboard lineup. The FORCE K7 Stealth Gaming Keyboard is touted as having the embodiment of a Stealth fighter with its scissor-key structure and slim solid body. The keyboard features an extremely short actuation distance for accurate and stable key presses in addition to a switchable three-color backlighting system.
The new gaming keyboard also features anti-ghosting capabilities that surround the WASD cluster that guarantees that the general gaming combination keys are registered and executed without conflict. Just like other models in the line, the keyboard features a twin wheel design that offers prompt control of keyboard backlighting and volume levels during intense gaming sessions.
Next-gen Kinect for Windows development kit applications are now available, SDK will set you back $399
If you want to get in on the next-generation Kinect for Windows platform, applications for software development kits opened today. If you're a developer who wants to get down and dirty with the next-gen Kinect, you have until July 31 to submit an application.
Applications that are accepted will be notified by Microsoft sometime in August, with the program starting in November. The SDK will be generally available next year. For those getting in early, it'll cost you $399 which will include direct access to the Kinect for Windows engineering team through private webcasts and forums, access to all API and documentation for the Kinect.
You'll also receive an alpha version of the sensor and a final version of the new Kinect at launch in 2014.
The next-gen console war is upon us, but which side (or console) are you going to take? An important factor of this is the controller itself, something we have a side-by-side comparison of, below.
As you can see, the PS4 controller actually looks quite big sitting next to the Xbox One controller. From what I've read, the Xbox One controller 'feels' better, but everyone has different sized hands and expectations. I'm hoping to get some hands-on time with both controllers at PAX AU, which happens next month in Melbourne, Australia.
The super-realistic assault rifle controller, otherwise known as Delta Six, has enjoyed a successful Kickstarter campaign, raising over $200,000. The Delta Six is thanks to David Kotkin from Miami, who is a teacher.
Kotkin developed the Avenger, making enough money from it to retire from his career in education. The Miami-based now retired teacher saw the absence of a realistic gun controller, and thought it would be a good idea to make one. Kotkin told the Miami Herald that the notoriety scared off a public relations firm, "whose owner cited 'moral reservations,'" and that Arduino, the microcontroller staple of PC and console mods, backed away from the partnership because of the potential problems.
Kotkin's own wife won't let their 11- and 8-year-old sons play with the Delta Six, but stands by him and is proud of his inventiveness and accomplishments. She says: "When it comes to the gaming gun, you look at all the violence that's occurred and it's really difficult for me to say this is a great idea."
Logitech have just unveiled a new standalone version of their Harmony Ultimate Hub. All that is required is an application for your Android- or iOS-based device, which will then allow you to control up to eight home theater devices.
Users can use the app to swipe to adjust the volume, change TV channels by tapping on a network icons and control recorded video playback. Control options are also on offer for video services usch as Netflix hosted on game consoles, too. Logitech also says that the Hub is compatible with the Harmony Touch, the remote's RF signals are translated into IR and Bluetooth format. We should expect the standalone Ultimate Hub to go on sale in both the US and Europe in August, for around $100.
e3 2013 - Mad Catz has just unveiled yet another gaming headset aimed at the Windows and smart devices market. The F.R.E.Q. 4D features ViviTouch 4D Sound, which is designed to add a new dimension of sound perception to the gaming experience by effectively creating a fourth dimension of sound.
ViviTouch 4D Sound combines muscular base and sensory feedback to produce an actual physical sensation to the gamer's audio experience. Additionally the F.R.E.Q. 4D is equally impressive when used on a home theater systems or for general music listening, as it features multiple EQ settings, which have been precisely tuned for various audio stages.
A detachable in-line table allows for easy conversion from USB 23.5 mm to support standard stereo audio on iPhones, tablets, and android-based devices. "Utilizing ViviTouch™ 4D technology, we believe the F.R.E.Q. 4D brings an added sense of realism to sound effects in first person shooters and action adventure games," said Darren Richardson, President and Chief Executive Officer of Mad Catz Interactive. "The F.R.E.Q. 4D demonstrates our commitment to PC and Smart Device gaming, which we believe will resonate with passionate gamers."
E3 2013 - Mad Catz has just announced the latest edition in their PC gaming peripheral line. Mad Catz says the Catz S.T.R.I.K.E.3 gaming keyboard is an ideal entry into the world of competitive gaming. Whether your game of choice is an FPS, RPG, MMO, RTS, MOBA or any other genre, precise key response, customizable backlighting, and programmable macro keys all help give you an advantage over the competition.
The S.T.R.I.K.E.3 is a non mechanical, membrane based keyboard that is available in black, red and white trim. Stay tuned to TweakTown for a hands on later this week when we stop in for a visit at Mad Catz booth at E3. Leave a comment and let us know what you think about all of Mad Catz new products we have seen at E3 2013.