If we were grading on sex appeal alone, the Timber Wolf would skip to the head of the class. Its unique shape and two-tone color scheme instantly catch the eye, and gaming on the keyboard is sublime. When it comes time to work, however, we’re not so easily seduced; indeed, we have serious concerns about embarking on a long-term relationship with this board.
On the gaming front, a large circular portion of the Timber Wolf serves as a dedicated command center, with 40 standard keys (letters, numbers, and modifiers) in easy reach. Numbers 0-9 arc around the top of the gaming area, allowing you to effortlessly switch between weapons. The quick-access buttons are far superior to a standard keyboard layout.
When it comes to hand fatigue, we’ve never considered the benefit of a vertical spacebar, but we’re sold after feeling how comfortable it is to rest a thumb during extended gameplay. A spacious area on which to rest our wrists made us feel even more pampered.
We also love the Timber Wolf’s K-lock feature, but hate its implementation. The common method for engaging in voice chat is to hold the K key down while speaking. Hitting the K-lock a single time activates your chat feature until another key is pressed. Sadly, though, the K-lock button’s location requires a long pinky stretch, and the key is permanently bound to the K key, which makes it a wasted feature if your game uses a different key for voice chat.
But aside from gaming, the Timber Wolf left us longing for our traditional keyboards. WolfKing squished the cursor control keys onto the main area of the keyboard, and eliminated the numerical keypad completely. The design makes everyday typing less comfortable than a standard keyboard, giving the Timber Wolf limited appeal.
Month Reviewed: August 2006
+ BEOWULF: Circle design is comfortable, and the keyboard looks great.
- TEEN WOLF: K-lock feature is hard to reach, everyday typing is cramped, and where's the numpad?