Gyration Ultra GT Cordless Suite

Author
Aron Schatz
Posted
October 11, 2003
Views
28446
Another cordless keyboard and mouse... With a twist! Being able to be used in the air. Let's see how this small keyboard and innovated mouse can handle itself.

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<B>Intro</B>:

This market is filled with different types of input devices. In reality, nothing really sets one set from the other. It is innovation and ease of use that you should be aiming for in a product. The problem is, no one seems to be doing any innovation, and it also seems that companies are just trying to add features without thinking of how easy those features are done. This brings us to the <a href="http://www.gyration.com">Gyration</a> Ultra GT Cordless Suite. Now, I have already seen the quality of the Ultra Cordless Mouse, so let's see how the suite is.

<B>Box</B>:

<center>Packaging</center>

Here is the purple packaging in retail form. This is what you'll be buying if you pick it up at a store.

<B>Parts</B>:

<center>Parts</center>

Here are all the parts. What we have: Product Registration, Quick Start, Product Brochure, Software, Ultra Cordless Mouse, Ultra Cordless Keyboard, Receiver, Charger, AC adapter, and batteries. Basically, everything you need is in the kit.

<B>Keyboard</B>:

<center>Keyboard Keyboard size</center>

Here is the keyboard. The keyboard is about a foot long and the keys have the feel of a laptop. They are responsive, and not spongy or springy. You might need to get used to not having the dedicated number pad, and the layout of the keyboard is different that normal. This is all individual choice preferences, so you may want to check out a demo unit in a store before purchasing one. You can never be too sure when it comes to input devices.

The keyboard takes all four batteries, and it lasts for a very long time. The reason is lasts for months is because it only needs to transmit when a key is pressed, and in reality, this isn't that often. That's why most cordless keyboard's last a few months before needed batteries. With 4 batteries, this thing better last long.

The top of the keyboard has a ton of function keys. Most of these work without the software (I don't like software Wink). There is also a green status light on the upper left corner that tells you when it is transmitting data. Right near that LED is the Channel and Teach buttons, both are important.

<B>Receiver</B>:

<center>Receiver</center>

The only thing that I don't like about this base station is that it isn't built into the mouse charger. It has the normal three indicator lights on the station, plus a status light to tell you when it is receiving data.

<center>Comparison</center>

This is a comparison to the old base station. As you can see, Gyration did a number of optimizations to the base station. The best thing is that it is smaller. It is about 1/3 the size of the old one. Like the old one, the unit is only USB, no PS2 here. Unfortunate for people like me who hate USB for input devices. Regardless, most people won't mind.

<B>Charger</B>:

<center>Charger</center>

The charger is a normal charger. No frills, no wacky design. Just a normal charger with a long cord. Too bad it wasn't built into the base station.

<B>Mouse</B>:

<center>Mouse 1</center>

This is what the suite is all about. Actually, this is the exact same mouse that I reviewed the last time, so we already know how it works. For kicks, I completely retested it. My father also has been using it for the past year.

<center>Mouse 2</center>

The mouse can be used fine on the desk, and the response time is good, better than the normal battery operated mice. Since the mouse is rechargeable, the unit doesn't need to conserve battery power like the crappier mice.

<center>Mouse 3</center>

The contour of the mouse takes some getting used to, but there are two ways to use this mouse; on the desk, and in the air. It isn't called GYRatiOn for nothing... (Bad play on the name to show it has a Gyroscope in the mouse)

<center>Mouse 4</center>

The spec of the mouse has 25ft, but the website says 30ft. I don't think you'll have a problem using the mouse in a room, and you wouldn't be using it in another room (unless you're weird...) This picture also shows the dual LED that actually helps to conserve power in the mouse. The top of the unit has a small LED that only detects distance. It'll turn off the main LED until the distance is close enough to a surface to read the movements. Also on the top, the Channel and Teach buttons.
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<B>Testing</B>:

As a normal mouse, this is a fine unit, good response time. The charge for the mouse lasts around 10 hours with moderate use. Regardless, if you're not using the mouse, drop it on the charger. The keyboard is great, quick response, battery life will last for a very long time. The keyboard is also small. This is a major selling point to me.

In testing, I hooked the suite up to the newly built HTPC in the living room. The small size of the keyboard and mouse really helped the look of the living room, we don't want bulky keyboards and mice cluttering up what little space on the table we have (with all the magazines are crap).

Sometimes we don't have a choice and using the mouse in the air is great. You need to hold the unit like a gun, pulling the button on the button of the unit to enable the gyroscopic movements. Release the button to hold the unit in its position. It takes some getting used to, but once you master it, you'll be thankful that you bought the mouse, especially for a HTPC. It has been a dream to use, and with a large range, we never had a signal loss (unlike the Logitech Elite Duo I tried to use).

<B>Conclusion</B>:

<a href="http://ase.dealtime.com/dt-app/SE/KW-gyration cordless suite/FD-0/linkin_id-3002062/NS-1/GS.html">Valued at around $100</a>, this thing is a winner for HTPC and presenters alike. You can't go wrong with a keyboard and mouse like this. A HTPC needs a small keyboard and a mouse that has the innovative technique of being able to use it the air. This thing gets a highly recommended award, of course, until the new Media Center Suites come out. Until then, buy this set!

<center><img src="http://www.aselabs.com/images/awards/2.gif"></center>

I'd like to thank Cory from <a href="http://www.gyration.com">Gyration</a> for sending me the unit for review.

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