Logitech MX Keys Mini Review: Compact, versatile and transparent





Logitech’s MX Keys keyboard is a solid offering, aimed primarily at creators as it lets you connect multiple devices to the same keyboard and even copy files to them. The newly launched MX Keys Mini brings all these features in a compact size so that it is small enough to fit in a backpack. Logitech’s MX Keys Mini also gets new features that older MX Keys don’t have, making it more appealing to younger audiences. Although it’s a one-off device, it might be a bit too expensive for some, and it’s not perfect, as I found out after using it for a few weeks.

Logitech MX Keys Mini Price in India and Contents

I received two units of the Logitech MX Keys Mini for review. The Rose finish is a slight shade of pink and, in my opinion, looks less flashy than the picture on Logitech’s website, which is a good thing. The Graphite version resembles the classic MX Keys keyboard, with a gray body and black keys. This Bluetooth keyboard also comes in Light Gray (which has a silver body with white keys). The box includes the keyboard, a USB Type-A to Type-C cable for charging, and user documentation. At a sticker price of Rs. 12,995, I wish Logitech had provided a solid, hard-shell carrying case.

Design Logitech MX Keys Mini

The Logitech MX Keys Mini keyboard looks like the old MX Keys keyboard, except for its smaller size and lower weight of 504g. It is strong enough to stay in place when typing. Logitech also claims that parts of the MX Keys Mini are made from environmentally friendly materials such as post-consumer recycled plastic, which is not the case with regular MX Keys.

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There are proximity sensors in the keyboard so the keys light up when your fingers get close to them

The keys of the MX Keys Mini are concave, just like regular MX keys, which makes them comfortable to type on. The depression in each key makes larger keys easier to identify. There are proximity sensors so the keys light up when your fingers get close to them, which feels nice to the touch and helps extend battery life.

The key labels should ideally be readable in all types of lighting conditions, but the backlight interfered with this in my experience. When using the MX Keys Mini with more than 100 lux of lighting, such as outdoors during the day, the backlight brightness is supposed to adjust. However, it only turned off a few times during the entire review period under such conditions. While the system is clearly working, it just doesn’t respond quickly or in a timely manner, which means the backlight stays on most of the time your fingers are on the keyboard. Luckily there are manual controls and I could adjust the brightness manually, with seven steps available.

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It is difficult to read the characters on the keys of the Rose version in the daytime when the backlight is on

I work during the day and have a window near my desk so a decent amount of ambient light hits my work table. This turned out to be a problem with the keyboard sensors and the backlight never turned off. This wasn’t a problem with the Graphite version (which has black keys) but the greyish labels were hard to read on the pink keys due to low contrast. What made matters worse was that the keyboard didn’t remember my previous brightness setting; it defaulted to medium every time I turned it on. Using the Pink version of the MX Keys Mini became annoying, as I had to go through a ritual of manually lowering the brightness every time I turned it on, just to be able to see the letters on the keys during the day.

Logitech MX Keys Mini performance

The scissor switches used by the Logitech MX Keys Mini are the same as on the larger MX Keys Bluetooth keyboard. The keys have good travel and produce a satisfying click sound when depressed, which isn’t too loud or distracting when typing. Very little force is required to register key presses, no matter what part of the key you press. The top of the keyboard frame is metal, while the bottom is plastic. There is no flex when pressing the keys.

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Keyboard backlight intensity does not change as expected

The compact form factor means it lacks navigation keys (Page Up, Page Down), editing keys and a numeric keypad. However, there are three new function keys, which have proven useful. The Dictation key allows you to “speak to text” in any selected text field. After pairing this keyboard with a MacBook Pro, things seemed to work seamlessly after setting the necessary permissions, which was helpful when I felt too lazy to type. The Emoji key provided a quick way to select emoji using the directional keys.

The third new key is a Mute key, which toggles your system’s microphone on and off. The Screenshot key is a handy one-button solution, especially on the Mac, since capturing a screenshot usually requires a combination of three buttons. The keyboard allows you to switch between three devices by pressing the F1, F2 or F3 keys. The Easy Switch feature worked seamlessly between my MacBook Pro, Windows laptop, and iPhone. Long-time Logitech users will be familiar with Flow, and this feature is also built into the MX Keys Mini. It basically allows you to copy and paste files between devices (Windows and macOS), provided that the Logi Options application is installed on each of them.

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New emoji, dictation and mic mute keys worked as expected and are very useful

Since I have a Logitech MX Master 3 mouse, the Logi Options application is already installed on my system. Setup was quick and easy thanks to the Bluetooth pairing process through the Settings app on macOS. Indeed, many customization options are available. You can assign an application to the F4-F12, Ins and Del keys so that it can be launched with a single press. However, you lose the preassigned functionality of that particular key.

You can also link different apps to open when you are already running a particular program. For example, you can program the F4 key to open the calculator application if you use Microsoft Excel and Twitter while in Safari. Key combinations or macros cannot be assigned, however, which would have been ideal for creators. There’s also a battery status indicator in the app’s main menu but I would have preferred to know the exact percentage remaining instead of just having three detents to show the approximate level.

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The back of the keyboard is plastic

The Logitech MX Keys Mini can be charged via the USB Type-C port, but it takes a long time to charge when completely drained. It took me about three hours to charge the keyboard using a 30W smartphone charger. Luckily, the keyboard is functional when charging. As for the battery life, it mainly depends on what you use the backlight for. I managed over ten days on a single charge with the backlight on (8-10 hours of use per day), and Logitech claims the MX Keys Mini can last up to five months on a single charge with the backlight on off.

Verdict

The Logitech MX Keys Mini is a unique piece of kit. It’s pricey, considering there are plenty of Bluetooth keyboard options available online, from Logitech and other established brands. The three new keys of the MX Keys Mini are useful but they are not necessary.

The keyboard’s device switching feature works well if you constantly need to use multiple devices side-by-side. The Flow feature makes a lot of sense for creators who often find themselves juggling multiple systems on different platforms. Just pressing Command+C to copy and Control+V to paste between macOS and Windows machines can be life changing.

For most users, the MX Keys Mini will seem overpriced. There are enough options from Logitech that offer the basic functionality of a Bluetooth keyboard with Easy Switch capability at much lower prices. The MX Keys Mini is primarily aimed at those who need a compact travel keyboard that can be used on all operating system platforms and those who want a high level of customization.

Benefits:

  • Solid build quality
  • Good autonomy
  • Easy Switch lets you connect to multiple systems
  • Flow lets you copy and paste files across multiple systems
  • New Emoji, Dictation and Mic keys come in handy

The inconvenients:

  • Backlight intensity does not change as expected

Ratings (Out of 5)
Performance: 4
Value for money: 4
Total: 4





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