The Blade 9180p is a media centre friendly slimline keyboard from Rapoo that fits in with your home environment, being discreet yet powerful.
The 9180p relies on a 5GHz wireless dongle that plugs into a USB socket on your computer. No further setup is required as it is recognised as a standard keyboard (even though it’s definitely not standard!).
The Blade has a built-in trackpad on the right side of the keyboard which allows for multi-touch and gesture support, especially for Windows 8.
The Blade has a solid metal base with standard laptop Chiclet keys and is only 336mm long x 110mm wide x 12mm high. That metal base keeps it very rigid, so there’s little to no flex across the keyboard. If it wasn’t for the battery case (2AA), it would be little more than half the height.
More users are moving to the flat style keyboards as they’re used to typing on a laptop. The keyboard does feel slightly narrow with slightly smaller keys then standard, but not enough to throw touch typers off though!
The touchpad has a good precise action, with accurate tracking and easy recognition of gestures, but is aimed at right handers. I prefer the trackpad in the centre (as per a laptop) or on the left. I would have liked to have seen the ability for the trackpad to be swapped to either side (plugged in?), but obviously this would add expense and difficulty.
Also the keyboard does not have backlit keys. With more and more laptops having this built in, I would like to see Rapoo building this feature into more of its keyboards, especially those that would be ideal for a media centre integration.
- Slim, like super slim
- Long battery life
- Integrated trackpad recognises up to 15 gestures
- Trackpad is aimed at right hookers
- No backlit keyboard
Rapoo really seem to be making headway in the keyboard market. Their main competitor really is Logitech who offer similar solutions, but with Rapoo’s rapid iteration of products, I see them really starting to challenge Logitech when side by side on the shelf. The Blade 9180p shows Rapoo’s capability to produce striking products, but I‘m still waiting for the wow factor.