Logitech diNovo Mini – Review (UPDATE)
This is a re-review… I felt the need because the addition of in-game messaging has increased the value of this device. For the most part, I message all day while I play. Without this device, messaging would be cumbersome and time-consuming, to a point that I could not keep up with my messages, invites, etc. This device has become a staple in my PlayStation 3 experience.
We all know using the PS3 on screen keyboard to type, can be very tedious. So tedious, that I have had people whom I’ve sent a PSN message to, reply via email, just so they could just type on their computer.
I didn’t really want a huge full-sized keyboard and mouse setup, as I game from the comfort of my couch. I don’t have the space for it and its inconvenient.
There is a thumbpad accessory for the PS3. But many have reported that it was a waste of money, even some people claiming it couldn’t even connect to the PS3.
So what is a PS3 owner to do to be able to type with ease? The answer? Logitech diNovo Mini. Read the review below…
The Logitech diNovo Mini, is marketed mainly toward Home Theater PC owners who don’t want a huge keyboard in their living room, much like my situation. However its not just for the PC. There is a switch on the backside of the mini keyboard that lets you switch from PC to PS3.
This review is only for the PS3 functionality.
This sexy piece of gadgetry goes perfectly with your PS3. It has a glossy (yet easily scratched) transparent black finish (much like the PS3). The clamshell design keeps dust and other debris out of the keypad, and overall gives it a nice look. The backlighting gives it some extra wow factor, and is great if you are gaming in the dark.
The diNovo Mini also syncs perfectly with the PS3 via Bluetooth and it STAYS paired. I have went through a few headsets because they wouldn’t stay paired with the PS3, and I had to re-pair them every time I turned on the PS3. Want to use it on your PC? Just flip the switch in the back and pop in the included USB bluetooth dongle to your PC’s USB port. Want to go back to your PS3? Flip the switch and your ready to go. No need to pair it again.
Typing is easy with the keys being large enough that you aren’t pressing a few keys at once… A common problem with today’s qwerty cell phones. There are media keys such as your normal fast forward, pause/play, volume up/down. It also has your basic keyboard keys as well such as shift, ALT, CTRL, FN. They even thought of the fact it would be hard and very cramped trying to press CTRL + ALT + DEL, so they included its very own key for that.
There is a switch on the front that lets you easily toggle back and fourth from “Mouse mode” which lets you use the touch sensitive pad to scroll like a mouse. Or you can use “Input mode” where the touchpad turns into a D-pad which lets you easily navigate through the XMB.
It also works well with Blu-Ray playback using the media buttons you can launch the BD from the XMB, you can pause, play, stop, fast forward, and rewind. However there is no triangle button so you cannot bring up the menu.
I have talked about all of the pros so far. Here are the cons.
The price… at $149.99 retail, this isn’t for the average consumer. You can find them cheaper on Ebay, I won mine for $75, new in the box. I bought it because of my need to have something small, and functional. It was worth the cost to meet my needs.
Lack of PS3 buttons, such as Triangle, Square, Select, etc. If you are browsing the internet this works great, until you need to bring up your bookmarks… There isn’t a select button, or if you want to enter a new web address you cant, there isn’t a triangle button. However this is easily resolved for most PS3 users, as we already have our controllers handy. You just reach over and press select or whatever button you need.
But that’s really it for the cons.
Another thing I haven’t talked about is its use with Linux, it does have a USB dongle so one would assume it would work with Linux, but since I haven’t tried it yet myself.
Once last thing I want to note, is that this thing has a built in lithium ion battery that has a 30+ hour battery life. I have had this item for a for a few months now, and its only been charged 3 times.
PROS – functionality, size, sleek design, use with PS3 or PC
CONS – Price, lack of dedicated PS3 buttons
So I give this device a 9 out of 10. Price shouldn’t affect a review but I knocked off a point because of its lack of dedicated PS3 buttons. But like I said this can easily be remedied by having a PS3 controller on your lap. (Which most of us already have on our laps)
Here is a video messaging Chris Rah Osiris on the PS3 with ease. Just flip open the diNovo Mini, and start typing. Sorry about the poor video quality, I never make videos.
Here is another video of using the “Mouse Mode” to browse the internet…