Logitech’s new wireless keyboard has a crafty trick for creative pros

At IFA 2017 Logitech’s latest premium wireless keyboard adds a dial allowing creatives to easily manipulate functions in apps like Photoshop.

In a way, you could say that Logitech’s Craft Advanced Keyboard bolts a Surface Dial onto the chassis, because the aluminum dial – or Crown as the company calls it – adds functionality similar to Microsoft’s standalone accessory and then some.

The Crown is touch-sensitive, so you can tap or turn it to access different functions. It intelligently adapts to the app you’re using, so for example while working in a paint program, you can use it to swiftly alter the size of the brush you’re using, or in a word processor it’ll change the font size and much more.

Logitech provides custom profiles for Adobe Photoshop CC, Adobe Illustrator CC, Adobe Premiere Pro CC, and Adobe InDesign CC, along with Microsoft Office apps (Word, Excel and PowerPoint from versions 2010 onwards but only on Windows).

You can assign one custom function to the Crown in supported apps, and the dial also offers global controls such as adjusting volume, or tabbing between programs or desktops.

There’s more to this keyboard than just the dial, though, as Logitech adds another clever touch in the form of smart backlighting, which can detect the user’s hands and only lights up when they’re present. The lighting also adjusts itself depending on the ambient lighting in the room.

A further boon is an ‘easy-switch’ key which allows you to change swiftly between three separate devices at the touch of a button – the keyboard connects wirelessly using either the Logitech Unifying USB receiver (basically a mini-dongle) or via Bluetooth Low Energy.

The Logitech Craft Advanced Keyboard is set to be on shelves come October priced at $199 (around £155, AU$250).

Stylish speaker

Also at IFA, Logitech unveiled a new pair of desktop Bluetooth speakers which are designed to be stylish and compact, yet have high-end drivers to produce sound with a decent level of bass belying their size.

Logitech’s MX Sound is rated at 24W (peak) and it has backlit touch controls, making it easy to pair with other devices or adjust the volume. A premium fabric cover gives it a suitably classy aesthetic. The speakers will also be out in October and they’ll set you back $99 (around £75, AU$125).

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Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).