Whether you’re piecing together a new computer or just need to replace existing accessories that have seen better days, there’s no easier – or cheaper – way than a budget boxed keyboard + mouse combo. True, chances are you won’t be getting the “best” of either peripheral; stock keyboards tend to be cheap and flimsy while the mouse, if you’re lucky, offers a point ‘n click experience one step above having a seizure. If both are wireless then all bets are off. Good luck!
Thankfully, things have gotten better in recent times – much better. Such is the case with Logitech’s MK270 Wireless Combo, a light-green pairing of two wireless accessories from the accessory king in one affordable box. If you’re among the typing snob elite that thinks a wireless keyboard – especially a cheaper wireless keyboard – could ever match up to a proper tethered experience, prepare to be converted.
Included in the box is everything you’d expect from a set like this: keyboard, mouse, and Logitech’s Unifying Receiver. And yes, batteries are included (2 AAA for the keyboard and a single AA for the mouse). Both are plug ‘n play (on Windows, Mac, and Chrome OS), so simply plug the Receiver into a free USB port and you’ll be wirelessly typing and clicking in no time flat.
Updated 4/5/2016: Logitech did inform us that the MK270 DOES include (AES) 128-Bit Encryption…but you wouldn’t know unless you were reading their Business website. A honest mistake as their consumer site leave this feature unlisted, but it’s apparently included. In this privacy-crazed world it would have been nice to have this listed somewhere on the consumer website, or on the box, or in some place where actual consumers could know their typing experience was protected.
For you security-obsessed types out there: the MK270 combo features fancy Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) 128-Bit Encryption baked in. If for some reason you need a budget wireless keyboard that guarantees all your private keystrokes protection from evil-doers, similar to some of its equally-affordable rivals like Microsoft’s Wireless Desktop 850 combo.
Also, Logitech offers extra software for button customization and whatnot for both Windows and Chrome OS users (and not for Mac users, oddly enough). You shouldn’t need anything for basic functionality, however, but depending on your individual setup or needs those with issues may want to visit the Logitech website.
The “keyboard” part of this keyboard + mouse combo is actually a repurposed K270 Wireless Keyboard – with a few visual flourishes: the streamlined Logitech logo replaces its busier predecessor, the stretched Windows logo is now the norm, and the row of media buttons on top is now cool gray. Why gray? Why does C3P0 have a red arm now?
Actually, the row of gray media buttons do look pretty cool and distinctive among a sea of black keys. Keep in mind the original K270 keyboard was released nearly five years ago – half a decade! – which says a lot about Logitech’s quality control. It was a fantastic keyboard then, it’s just as fantastic now.
At just over a pound (1LB) it’s a sturdy keyboard that stays put on desks and other flat surfaces, and even plays well on laps for you media-centric types. Five circular rubber pegs on the bottom keep things sturdy and accurate, and two flippable legs add a slight incline for those who need such things. This is clearly a desktop keyboard, despite its wireless powers, so those wanting a fully wireless solution for their media server / couch setup may want to look elsewhere.
Also worth mentioning is that both keyboard and mouse have on/off switches, so extending what seems to be already great battery life is even easier.
You’re getting a full-sized keyboard here, complete with full numberpad and all function, option, shift, and whatnot keys for your full-sized fingers to poke and press to your heart’s content. The keys themselves are low-profile, with shockingly great travel time between keystrokes that are surprisingly quiet and very comfortable. I was able to get my preferred WPM (words per minute) without much hassle, and that’s a big deal for me.
A real issue typing purists (such as myself) usually have with “budget” wireless keyboards is how often cheap wireless keyboards use ‘sticky’ plastic that hinders typing speed and accuracy, especially over time.
The “mouse” part of the combo is a generic 2.4 GHz wireless mouse, a repurposed M185 optical mouse, which retails for a whopping $25 by itself. It’s lightweight, ambidextrous, super accurate, and sports a scroll wheel that doubles as a middle-click button and doesn’t feel like a wet noodle. All things you’d want – at minimum – on any decent mouse experience. Would this mouse be my first choice? No, but I’m glad Logitech included it with the keyboard and using it (for this review, at least) wasn’t unpleasant. It’s a fantastic spare mouse when you need one most. It does the job well, and that’s about it.
Those in need of a decent wireless keyboard and mouse combo could do worse (much worse) than Logitech’s MK270 Wireless Combo. For the money you’ll get a surprisingly robust wireless keyboard that offers typing snobs an accurate full-sized typing experience without the lag and cheap plastic afflicting most wireless keyboards. The mouse is nothing special, but it’s there if you need it. What more could you want for thirty bucks?