Logitech Craft Advanced Wireless Keyboard

    Logitech’s new Craft Advanced Wireless Keyboard might possibly be the sexiest Bluetooth keyboard we’ve ever laid our hands on. Designed with creative types in mind, not only does Craft provide a very slick design, but it’s extremely solidly built and brings a whole new workflow with the new Crown — an aluminum dial that can be used to access context-specific tools, ranging from more obvious features like volume and brightness control right through to adjusting brightness, contrast, and saturation in Photoshop or adjusting charts in Excel. Smart backlighting not only adjusts automatically based on room conditions, but also remains off until Craft detects your hands approaching the keyboard — a cool and almost magical feature.

    Perhaps not surprisingly coming from a Logitech keyboard, Craft also provides a very comfortable typing experience, with chiclet-style keys with concave surfaces arranged in a standard keyboard layout. As Mac users, we definitely preferred the chiclet design as compared to Logitech’s MK850 that we looked at earlier this year, but it’s also worth noting that Logitech has gone beyond the basics with Craft, with keys that provide much firmer and more solid action. In other words, Craft doesn’t just look good, but it also provides a great-feeling typing experience. The keyboard itself is built from a very solid plastic, with an aluminum bar at the top giving it some extra heft and stability — it’s noticeably heavier than it looks — which combined with the solid rubber feet ensures that it stays put on your desk. Logitech’s easy switch feature also allows Craft to be used with up to three Bluetooth devices, although we should note that it’s Bluetooth 4.2 Low Energy, so if you’re using an older Mac you’ll need to use Logitech’s bundled USB Unifying receiver to pair it up instead. The built-in battery charges via an included USB-C cable, and lasts for about a week of heavy use between charges.

    As much of a delight as Craft is simply as a keyboard, the real power behind it comes in the form of the Crown, which appears to be Logitech’s answer to Microsoft’s Surface Dial, allowing users to quickly access a wide range of contextual functions in popular creative apps such as Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, Premiere Pro, InDesign, Chrome, Firefox, and the Microsoft Office Suite — although the latter are limited to the Windows versions for now. Combined with Logitech’s Options software, the Crown can be rotated or pressed to access and switch between the various functions, and a light touch will even provide a bezel-overlaid on-screen display advising you of the currently-selected function. In addition to contextual app-specific controls, the Crown can also be assigned to various global macOS functions, allowing you to switch desktops, navigate between apps, adjust volume, and more — it can be a handy way to access macOS features like Mission Control and quickly adjust screen brightness and volume, but it’s especially great in apps like Photoshop where you can quickly fine-tune brightness, contrast, exposure and more in a way that feels much more precise than the usual on-screen controls. After even a day of using the Crown in our favorite creative apps, we felt its absence when we had to go back to our built-in MacBook keyboard.

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