Ergodex DX1


The keyboard and mouse make a fine game controller, but the experience could definitely be better. The keys, while grouped in a way that makes sense for typing, don’t always make sense for gaming. The DX1 lets you custom-place up to 50 keys on a special surface, then bind those keys to damn near any in-game function.

Here’s how it works: Each DX1 comes with a pad, a tray, and 25 keys. You mount the tray on the pad, then stick the keys on the tray in whatever configuration you’d like. Each key has a reusable sticky gel-pad on the bottom, so if you’re unhappy with a key’s placement, you can simply twist it off, and re-stick it in a better spot. We tried several different placement options with a variety of games.

Once you’ve positioned the keys to your liking, you can either open the key-management software that comes with the DX1 or simply fire up the game you want to run, and then start programming macros while you’re playing your game. Making a new macro, complete with properly programmed timings, is as simple as pressing the macro button on the pad, keying in your macro, pressing the key you want to assign the macro to, then pressing the macro button again. It took us about 15 minutes to program macros for all 25 keys that ship with the card.

The ability to create macros is the truly beautiful thing about the DX1. We used World of Warcraft to test the board, but it will function similarly for damn near any game genre. After a few minutes of mucking around, we had macros that attacked a monster, cast our three attack spells (and left the appropriate length of time between actions), and then sent our pet in to finish the monster off, all automatically. This type of manual assistance could be considered cheating, or at least unsavory, but we don’t have a problem with it when it’s used to minimize unnecessary repetitive hand movements. We wish there was a way to stop a macro once it started, but that’s a small price to pay for this much gaming convenience.
Will Smith

Month Reviewed: October 2005
Verdict: 8

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