Matias' wired, backlit Mac keyboard serves as replacement for discontinued Apple version

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited January 2018
Third-party accessory maker Matias debuted a new version of its wired Mac keyboard at CES on Tuesday, adding a few creature comforts like adjustable RGB backlighting to fill a product category Apple abandoned last year.




Matias' latest keyboard creation takes cues from Apple's iconic design language, complete with a svelte aluminum chassis in silver or space gray black chiclet-style keys and key font faithful to the original.

Not content on delivering a near replica of the now-discontinued wired Mac keyboard, which it did last year, Matias adds an RGB backlighting system that can be controlled by a rotary dial located on the keyboard's rear panel. Rotating the dial shifts backlight colors through a rainbow of colors.

Matias notes the Color Dial effectively negates blue light levels at night, which some studies have found to negatively impact a body's natural sleep cycle. From white, the keyboard cycles through a range of colors including yellow and red. Brightness can also be customized in 10 percent increments using a dedicated key and pressing the "+" or "-" buttons, or tapping on a number key.

Like all good Mac keyboards, Matias includes function keys that correspond to macOS system controls. The keys themselves offer two millimeters of travel, while a built-in USB 2.0 port serves as a handy connection point for a wired mouse.

Matias offers the RGB wired keyboard in a number of language layouts including U.S. English, UK English, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Portuguese, Swiss, Nordic, Japanese, Taiwanese and Korean.

The device can be preordered from Matias for $99, with shipments expected to head out in February.

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 11
    jdwjdw Posts: 805member
    I've not yet tried the "wired" version, but I suspect the feel of the keys matches that of the wireless edition which I reviewed here:



    The space gray aluminum frame is great, but the keys definitely don't feel as nice as the keys on Apple keyboards.
  • Reply 2 of 11
    I never liked the key feel on the Matias keyboards.  Also, unless it is an optical illusion from the photo, but the Matias keyboard looks longer than the Apple keyboard.  Why can't they make it the same size?  I just got the current Apple extended wireless keyboard and I love the key feel on it.  It is nothing like the awful MacBook Pro keyboards.  It has much better feel.
  • Reply 3 of 11
    Rayz2016Rayz2016 Posts: 4,790member
    I never liked the key feel on the Matias keyboards.  Also, unless it is an optical illusion from the photo, but the Matias keyboard looks longer than the Apple keyboard.  Why can't they make it the same size?  I just got the current Apple extended wireless keyboard and I love the key feel on it.  It is nothing like the awful MacBook Pro keyboards.  It has much better feel.
    Funny that. I think the MacBook Pro keyboard is one of the most comfortable and accurate keyboards I’ve ever used. 

    APART FROM THE TINY CURSOR KEYS. 
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 4 of 11
    mike54mike54 Posts: 349member
    I can't understand why Apple didn't make a wired version or at least it should be backlit. 
    I prefer they used AA batteries as well.
    If battery was concern using backlight, they could of made one with 4AA rechargables, and it battery life would lasted 6 months.
    I'm still happy with 2AA batt Apple keyboard, using Apple charger and batteries.
    But of course its more profitable using non-replaceable Li batteries.
  • Reply 5 of 11
    Agree that Apple should make a full-size wired version. Oh and add a touch bar while you're at it! The Matias looks nice, but boy, whats up with their website. Looks like its from the year 2000 and they have so many nice product images that are hidden away. If you copy Apple's design you might as well emulate their visual style and presentation as well. I really hope they are selling this through some other resellers as well, or I think this will remain a niche product for Apple nerds (like us). Also not sure about the "space gray" option. On the website I can only see one that is completely black, but NOT space gray like the one that ships with the iMac Pro!?
  • Reply 6 of 11
    mike54 said:
    I can't understand why Apple didn't make a wired version or at least it should be backlit. 
    I prefer they used AA batteries as well.
    If battery was concern using backlight, they could of made one with 4AA rechargables, and it battery life would lasted 6 months.
    I'm still happy with 2AA batt Apple keyboard, using Apple charger and batteries.
    But of course its more profitable using non-replaceable Li batteries.
    I use a Logitech K811 which is wireless, backlit and find the key feel I find fairly close to the Apple equivalent. As long as I keep the backlighting off during the day it has lasted weeks between charges, which doesn't take long. It also has the benefit of 3 device switching, so a kind of built in KMV, although no numeric keyboard, which is actually my preference for desk space. It almost exactly matches the mac keyboard in size as well: https://www.logitech.com/en-us/product/illuminated-keyboard-for-mac-ipad-iphone
    dewme
  • Reply 7 of 11
    docno42docno42 Posts: 3,348member
    My mom got a 5K iMac over Christmas and I was pleasantly surprised to find out the latest extended keyboard works just fine as a wired keyboard when plugged in. You can completely disable Bluetooth and it still works just fine. 

    No backlight tho - that would be a nice upgrade. 

    BTW - free and immediate swap for keyboard with keypad if you buy your iMac at an Apple store vs having to wait weeks if you customize online; just a tip for anyone getting a new iMac and who wants a keyboard with a numeric keypad quickly. 
    baconstangwatto_cobra
  • Reply 8 of 11
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,001member
    docno42 said:
    My mom got a 5K iMac over Christmas and I was pleasantly surprised to find out the latest extended keyboard works just fine as a wired keyboard when plugged in. You can completely disable Bluetooth and it still works just fine. 

    No backlight tho - that would be a nice upgrade. 

    BTW - free and immediate swap for keyboard with keypad if you buy your iMac at an Apple store vs having to wait weeks if you customize online; just a tip for anyone getting a new iMac and who wants a keyboard with a numeric keypad quickly. 
    Yep my dad got a 21.5" 4K iMac back in November at an Apple Retail Store and wanted the Extended Magic Keyboard. All he had to do was pay the extra $30 and they pulled the one in the box out and then grabbed one of the extended ones off the shelf and gave it to him. They did take the smaller Magic Keyboard away as you would expect. So it is possible if all you want is one of the standard configs with the Extended Magic Keyboard. 
    edited January 2018 watto_cobra
  • Reply 9 of 11
    The wired keyboard and mouse option is still available to business and education customers if you have access to Apple’s business-to-business store.
  • Reply 10 of 11
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 5,001member

    mike54 said:
    I can't understand why Apple didn't make a wired version or at least it should be backlit. 
    I prefer they used AA batteries as well.
    If battery was concern using backlight, they could of made one with 4AA rechargables, and it battery life would lasted 6 months.
    I'm still happy with 2AA batt Apple keyboard, using Apple charger and batteries.
    But of course its more profitable using non-replaceable Li batteries.
    I think you'd get longer battery life out of the way Apple does it and when the batteries fully discharges, all you have to do is plug it in and you can still use it. If its AA and the keyboard goes dead, well you're SOL if you happen to not have batteries in your house. I don't really see the issue with the way Apple is doing it. 
    fastasleepwatto_cobra
  • Reply 11 of 11
    neilmneilm Posts: 659member
    mike54 said:
    But of course its more profitable using non-replaceable Li batteries.
    And you know that how?

    We have a number of the new rechargeable keyboards. Their charge lasts a long time, and when they need some juice you can plug them into your Mac with the Lightning cable and keep right on working while they recharge. That said, and unlike a wireless mouse, I don't see whole lot of advantage over the corresponding wired version when used with a desktop Mac, but for laptops they're terrific.

    The one thing that does baffle me is that the short-ass BT keyboard with no numeric keypad is included as standard with new desktop Macs. It's very annoying to have to special order the full size keyboard version. Does anyone actually prefer the short keyboard, and if so why? 
    williamlondon
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