Hands on: Azio Izo wireless keyboard set is an attractive, functional addition to your des...

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Keyboard maker Azio's new wireless keyboard collection intends to bring a luxe touch to your desk, a range that is now launching on Kickstarter.




Currently on Kickstarter, the Azio Izo wireless keyboard set was designed to be a pleasing mix of function and form. While it may not be for everyone, the collection does bring a touch of luxury to your desk.

The first thing that impressed was how solid everything feels. The mechanical keyboard, for example, is surprisingly sturdy, and could even be described as heavy.

It's also appreciable that all three devices charge via USB-C, one of the cables that we almost always have lying around.

The devices provided to AppleInsider were in the "White Blossom" colorway, though it also comes in Baroque Rose and Blue Iris colors. The color denotes the body of the devices, while the keyboard and the calculator/number pad feature white keys with gold accent keys.

The Keyboard

As stated above, the keyboard feels impressively sturdy, and it's much heavier than keyboards of similar sizes. While it's easy to conflate weight with quality, the attention to detail is still appreciated.




The Izo Wireless Keyboard can be connected wirelessly with up to three devices, or connected directly via USB-C. We had no problem connecting the device to our iMac and our iPad, and could easily switch between the two on the fly.

A thoughtful addition to the keyboard is the ability to switch between PC and macOS-based layouts on the fly. This would work well for anyone who uses both a Windows PC and a Mac, and does not want to fuss with keeping two keyboards in their workspace.

The keyboard supports both Windows and macOS layouts, and features golden accent buttons
The keyboard supports both Windows and macOS layouts, and features golden accent buttons


This keyboard also uses Gateron Blue mechanical switches, meaning that they're wonderfully tactile, if a bit loud. If you're already familiar with blue switches, this probably won't be a big deal to you, but if you're more familiar with chiclet-style keyboards, the change may be a little intense at first.

If you sit in close proximity to other people, they may also not appreciate the loud click-click-click noise when you type.

The keycaps are surprisingly comfortable to type on, as each key has a rounded, almost marshmallow-like edge to it instead of sharper edges or corners. Additionally, the keys are more concave than others we've used, which has an oddly satisfying "cradling" effect on your fingertips as you type.

The accent keys, a gold space bar, and a gold escape key are a cute touch, too. However, should you not want them, they're easily swapped out with plain white keys as well.

A gold knob at the top-right corner of the keyboard acts as a volume control dial, though it can also control the keyboard's backlighting effects. By holding down the function key and pressing down on the knob, users can cycle through 21 individual backlight effects.

Overall, we were very impressed with Azio's keyboard. Not only does it offer up a luxe aesthetic that we've not seen before, it feels good to type on, too.

The keyboard is available through Kickstarter for $70.

Izo Wireless Mouse

Also available is Azio's Izo Wireless Mouse, a color-matched Bluetooth/RF mouse. There's not much to say about it, other than it works as intended and felt good in our hand.




We particularly enjoyed the metal scroll wheel, which features a diamond grid pattern cut into it. It scrolls wonderfully, with a tactile yet inaudible click.

The Izo Wireless Mouse can be purchased through the Kickstarter campaign as an add-on to the keyboard.

Izo Wireless Number Pad/Calculator

Perhaps the most interesting of the three devices, Azio has created a standalone number pad that doubles as a calculator. Following the same aesthetics of the Izo Wireless Keyboard, it features mechanical keys with rounded edges and a gold accent button.

The calculator display is easy to read
The calculator display is easy to read


Like the keyboard, the wireless number pad can be connected via USB-C or Bluetooth and paired wirelessly with up to three individual devices.

A switch allows you to easily toggle between functions
A switch allows you to easily toggle between functions


Suppose you should ever need a standalone calculator. In that case, the Izo Wireless Number Pad features a switch at the top that can be flipped, allowing you to utilize the built-in calculator function.

We liked the fact that the LCD panel is backlit, making it easier to see in both light and dark environments.

The Izo Wireless Number Pad/Calculator is available from Azio's Kickstarter campaign for $40.

Pros

  • Feels well made, sturdy
  • Keyboard allows users to switch between PC and Mac keyboard layouts
  • Calculator is backlit, easy to read

Cons

  • Only ships with blue switches, which may prove too noisy or overly tactile for some users

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 13
    sdw2001sdw2001 Posts: 17,581member
    It looks like the keyboard a certain orange billionaire might use.  
    darkvaderfred1macapfelkurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 13
    darkpawdarkpaw Posts: 199member
    Oh Gods, no. This is vile. And why is that calculator so thick?
    pulseimagesdarkvadersdw2001kurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 3 of 13
    crowleycrowley Posts: 8,178member
    Gold accents massive turn off.
    darkvaderkurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 13
    Attractive isn’t the first word that comes to mind when looking at this. 
    darkvaderfred1tokyojimukurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 13
    darkvaderdarkvader Posts: 533member
    That's hideous.

    And clicky keyboards are only good for beating the user about the head for making so much noise.  They're incredibly unpleasant to type on.
    kurai_kage
  • Reply 6 of 13
    fred1fred1 Posts: 804member
    Sorry, but I agree. With all the good qualities it may have, “attractive” is definitely not one of them. I fail to see anything that’s better than the competition. 
    kurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 7 of 13
    ionicleionicle Posts: 66member
    I like clicky chunky keyboards, being quite heavy handed i tend to destroy regular windows keyboards, not a fan of the design but anything thats robust is good
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 13
    dewmedewme Posts: 3,683member
    Had personal computers been around in the mid 1950s these would have been the peripherals that one would have expected to be using during that era. Definitely has a certain American Graffiti 1956 white Thunderbird vibe to the set, especially with the plated accents. 
    edited June 13 kurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 13
    hucom2000hucom2000 Posts: 102member
    What is it with these antique keyboards Apple insider?? Which staff is still using a typewriter at home?  :D
    MplsPwatto_cobra
  • Reply 10 of 13
    freediverxfreediverx Posts: 1,414member
    An abomination.
    kurai_kagewatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 13
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,566member
    darkpaw said:
    Oh Gods, no. This is vile. And why is that calculator so thick?
    The point is to have the keys of the numeric keypad to be the same height as the keys on the keyboard, just like a traditional full-sized keyboard.

    Remember that Mac accessory manufacturers have made a variety of numeric keypads over the decades to complement Apple's various keyboard designs, including low-profile and more traditional keyboards.


    watto_cobra
  • Reply 12 of 13
    mpantonempantone Posts: 1,566member
    crowley said:
    Gold accents massive turn off.
    Did you not read the article? It specifically says that the gold keys can be swapped out with plain white ones. My guess is that the wheel cannot be modified however.

    Note that this is no different than a Keychron keyboard. If you don't like the orange Esc key, feel free to replace it with the grey one that the manufacturer includes in the box.

    Or buy a model that uses Cherry MX style switches and pick whatever keycaps you like. The PC hardware modders have been doing this for years. There are tons of different Cherry MX style keycaps. In fact there are whole online stores that specialize in keycaps.

    I happen to have a few of the Keychron keyboards myself, mostly connected to Windows PCs. They are all Gateron Red switches (the quietest ones) and I usually add silicone O-ring dampeners to boot. Probably the closest I've gotten to the true gold standard of keyboards: the IBM Selectric (from forty years ago).


    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 13
    The gold key reminds me of Larry Johnson in the early nineties with one gold eye tooth.  Maybe this looks great in person.  Maybe.


    edited June 14 dewmewatto_cobra
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