Thinking about upgrading your workstation to make it more ergonomic? In this review, we’ll be diving into the details of the Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard for Business, in hopes of finding the accessories that will suit your lifestyle and health needs.
Why You Need an Ergonomic Keyboard
You’re probably asking yourself if you actually need an ergonomic keyboard.
There’s a common misconception that only those with Repetitive Stress Injuries (RSIs) or Carpal Tunnel Syndrome are the only people who should switch to an ergonomic keyboard. Truth be told, you don’t need to be in pain to benefit from this computer accessory. Because it adjusts to you, it prevents the development of future stress injuries, pains and strains, so that you remain comfortable while typing in the years ahead.
Another myth about ergonomic keyboards is that it’s only deemed necessary when you spend most of the workday typing. Regardless if you spend all day in front of a computer or a mere 15 minutes for daily reports or emails, the benefits are not lost on the user.
Plus, ergonomic keyboards on average have a longer product lifespan than most basic keyboards. Thus, not only will you save on future medical expenses, but you also won’t need to shell out on a keyboard replacement.
Testing the Quality of an Ergonomic Keyboard
Because these ergonomic accessories come in all shapes and sizes, it’s vital that you keep the following factors in mind to judge which products have superior features. This list will help narrow down your options to the one that suits your needs.
Adjustability: Unlike a traditional keyboard, an ergonomic keyboard allows the user to adjust the angle in various positions, or is at least already positioned in a way that promotes natural wrist, hand and finger positioning.
Connectivity: Connectivity preferences vary from person to person, depending lifestyle, usage, etc. For example, a video gamer might look for the freedom of movement with his keyboard, while a desk worker might need a keyboard to connect to his fixed workstation. Whether you choose wired or wireless, one is not necessarily better than the other, objectively speaking.
Size: While ergonomic keyboards are generally larger than most basic keyboards, some tend to be bulkier than average. Size may not matter for those with worktops or large keyboard trays, but it may affect those who are low on space or have no intention of purchasing additional ergonomic accessories. Therefore, always consider the dimensions.
Tactile Feedback: The amount of pressure needed to type on the keys affects the fatigue in your hands and fingers. So the less pressure you exert, the more comfortable it is to type for extended periods of time. You should be able to tell immediately how hard you have to press the keys, but feel free to type for 15 minutes straight to see if your hands experience any strain whatsoever.
Now, onto the product review.
General Product Information
|Dimensions||9 x 16 x 2.5 in (22.9 x 40.6 x 6.4 cm)|
|Hardware Interface||USB 2.0|
|Batteries||3 AAA batteries required (included)|
|Item Weight||2 lb (0.9 kg)|
|Shipping Weight||2.7 lb (1.2 kg)|
The uniquely designed Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard for Business is a modern take on the traditional keyboard, incorporating ergonomic principles to provide optimum comfort and promote productivity for all computer users.
With user comfort in mind, the Sculpt Keyboard features a split keyboard layout that is also domed to mimic the natural position of the forearms and wrists. For additional wrist support, the product also includes a rubber palm rest.
Additionally, the keyboard also has a separate number pad for versatility in use and storage.
Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard Features
The design seems fairly straightforward, but let’s take a closer look at the advantages of the product features.
Design Elements for Neutral Hand Position
Forearm, wrist and finger strains and pains while typing derive from the use of awkward, straight-lined positioning of regular keyboards. With several design components to correct those issues, the product encourages natural forearm and wrist positioning to keep your muscles relaxed.
How does the keyboard do that, exactly? First, the split key set follows the natural spacing between your hands when placed in front of you. Second, the domed shape reduces wrist pronation, or the rotating forearm movement that occurs when palms are facing down. And lastly, the arc follows the natural curvature formed by your fingertips. Together, all these elements work to combat the stress and fatigue associated with the traditional keyboard setup.
Cushioned Palm Rest
Another way that most people don’t realize they’re tiring their wrists is the lack of cushioning while typing. Just as a wrist pad easily corrects that, so does the built-in cushioned palm rest. With normal keyboards, you often drop your wrists, lifting the fingers higher, making you use more force to press the keys. When your wrists are elevated, your fingers are angled and less curved towards the keys. In short, the palm rest lets gravity do more work, taking the stress away from your hands.
Something worth noting is the material used for the cushioning. Because its made of rubber, hand oil transfer is quite noticeable. Though this may not be a big deal for some, it might be off-putting for others.
Separate Number Pad
Traditional keyboard setups, as well as some ergonomic keyboards, keep the numbers as part of a singular board. The Sculpt Keyboard, on the other hand, separates the numbers on its own pad, which provides greater flexibility for the user as it functions almost like its own handheld calculator. Plus, there’s also more flexibility in terms of the workspace setup, allowing you to arrange your desktop as you see fit.
However, this is also a personal preference. Some may not enjoy the standalone number pad as much as others.
Where to Buy the Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard
Interested in the product? Purchase the Microsoft Sculpt Ergonomic Keyboard for Business on Amazon, sold by Buy Top Tech. The price includes free shipping. Rated 3.7 stars out of 5 based on 1,988 customer ratings, it’s also ranked as #14 in the Best Selling Computer Keyboards, as well as a favorite ergonomic keyboard among Amazon editors.
Warranty is also available for an additional fee, with buyers having a choice between a 3- or 4-year protection plan. For anyone who doesn’t mind buying secondhand or finds the price of the keyboard too steep, Buy Top Tech also sells used products for much cheaper. Free shipping is also included with the secondhand purchases.