Review: Rapoo E9080

Rapoo's Wireless Touchpad Keyboard E9080 is designed for the sort of home theatre PC (HTPC) and boardroom presentation setups where you have a PC connected to a big screen.

NameWireless Touchpad Keyboard: Rapoo E9080
At a glance:2.4GHz wireless with miniature USB receiver,Large touchpad doubles as numeric keypad,Brushed stainless steel base
Summary:An ideal controller for more elaborate, frequently-used HTPC setups.
Rating:4.5/5
RRP:$99
Contact:rapoo.com

Rapoo’s Wireless Touchpad Keyboard E9080 is designed for the sort of home theatre PC (HTPC) and boardroom presentation setups where you have a PC connected to a big screen. It’s a ‘floating’ controller that’ll let you direct the action from anywhere in the room.

The E9080 connects using 2.4GHz wireless, via a miniature USB 2.0 receiver. The setup has an advertised range of up to ten metres and in our open-plan office, I made it 7 - 8 metres from my desk before the signal gave out.

Where most wireless keyboard/touchpad combos are ultra-miniaturised, the E9080 is a full-sized 101-key keyboard, set into an attractive brushed stainless-steel backplate. It has the kind of key travel you find on the average laptop, and after a few hours of typing I was able to match my usual 100-110wpm speed, without too much finger-strain. At high typing speed, the lack of traction means the keyboard tends to slide backward along the desk, but that’s the only problem I encountered.

The QWERTY portion has 82 physical keys, but Rapoo has opted to make the 19-button numeric keypad a multi-touch surface instead. With a finger-swipe along the bottom edge, that pad turns into a massive 72 x 106mm touchpad, with two-finger scrolling and a three-finger tap gesture that functions as a right-click. There are no physical buttons, so everything is handled via taps. The pad is extremely responsive, and its large surface makes it ideal for controlling PCs with high-resolution displays.

If you have an HTPC or presentation setup that requires more keyboard input than the occasional search term of web address, you can’t do much better than this.