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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Accessory company Alogic recently launched a few new input devices with Mac support as part of its Echelon series, and I've been spending some time testing out the USB-C Rechargeable Wireless Keyboard for macOS and the USB-C Rechargeable Wireless Mouse.

alogic-echelon-keyboard-mouse.jpg

The Echelon series is a budget-friendly line of accessories, seeking to offer a mid-range feature set at value pricing, and the mouse and keyboard do just that. The keyboard is priced at $59.99 and the mouse at $24.99, with Alogic frequently running promotional discounts of around 20% to bring prices down even further.

Echelon USB-C Rechargeable Wireless Keyboard for macOS

Alogic's keyboard offers a full-size 109-key layout with function row and number pad. The membrane-style keyboard with chiclet keys has some similarities to Apple's Magic Keyboard for Mac, though you obviously don't have an option for an integrated Touch ID key with Alogic's offering. I've found the keys to be well spaced to allow for smooth typing, and have not experienced any problems with missing keystrokes, double letters, or other issues.

alogic-echelon-keyboard-front.jpg

The Echelon keyboard offers a traditional extended keyboard layout, optimized for Mac with key arrangement and labels such as Command. The function keys in the top row include most of the usual Mac-specific functions such as display brightness controls, Spotlight, Mission Control, Launchpad, media playback controls, mute, volume controls, and even one to jump straight to your home folder when you're in Finder. There's also a dedicated system sleep key in that top row. In the bottom row, there's another dedicated key that will open up your Downloads folder when Finder is active.

At the far right of the keyboard is the number pad, which includes the usual layout of number and arithmetic keys, plus a top row that serves double duty for switching among paired devices and as dedicated keys for select all, cut, copy, and paste.

alogic-echelon-keyboard-rear.jpg

Unlike Apple's Magic Keyboard which inexplicably still uses Lightning to charge, Alogic's Echelon keyboard charges over USB-C, and a white braided USB-C to USB-C cable is included in the box. Alogic says the battery lasts "weeks" between charges, but the battery level on my unit has barely dropped at all after several days of heavy usage, so I'm expecting charge intervals to be on the order of a couple of months, similar to what I see with the Magic Keyboard.

It is worth noting that Alogic's keyboard goes to sleep within a few minutes of going idle, even if the computer it's connected to remains active, and you'll need to hit a key on it and wait a beat for the keyboard to wake up before you can begin typing. That took a little getting used to for me given my long-term experience with the Magic Keyboard that pretty much always seems to be ready to go.

The Alogic keyboard easily connects to Apple devices over Bluetooth using the standard pairing steps, with support for both Bluetooth 3.0 and Bluetooth 5.0 included. One distinct advantage compared to Apple's Magic Keyboard is that the Echelon supports connections to up to three devices, so you can pair it to your Mac, your iPad, and even another device and easily switch between those devices with a key combo.

Overall, I've found Alogic's Echelon USB-C Rechargeable Wireless Keyboard for macOS to be a solid budget keyboard, with a slim profile, a solid typing experience, and a nice set of key functions. The matte white plastic is a clean look that complements the Apple aesthetic, though I'll have to see how well it holds up to picking up dirt and stains over time. I do miss having Touch ID right on my external keyboard, but if that's not a deal-breaker for you, this keyboard might be worth a look. It's normally priced at $59.99, but an Independence Day sale going on now knocks the price down to $48.00 with promo code ID20.

Echelon USB-C Rechargeable Wireless Mouse

Alogic's new mouse is a well-matched complement to the Echelon keyboard, coming in the same matte white plastic. It's an ambidextrous mouse, so it's a simple matter of switching between left and right hands in macOS settings, though it's not as ergonomic as a handed mouse.

alogic-echelon-mouse.jpg

The Echelon mouse includes the standard left and right mouse buttons and a scroll wheel in between them. The scroll wheel can also be pressed to act as a middle mouse button, but that's it as far as input options on this mouse. There are no additional side or thumb buttons, so if those are something that's become part of your workflow, this mouse isn't for you, at least as an everyday mouse.

The left and right mouse buttons have relatively quiet clicks, which I tend to like, but the middle scroll wheel button is quite loud. Fortunately, that one isn't needed nearly as often so it's not a significant issue. The scroll wheel has well-defined clicks as you scroll to help you feel the movement, but there's no inertial free-spinning capability for quickly scrolling long pages or documents as I have come to appreciate on the Logitech MX Master 3 mouse that has been my daily driver for many years.

At just $24.99 for a wireless mouse, this is definitely a budget pick, and it does show in the overall experience, especially when you're used to a more powerful option. Alogic's Echelon mouse is extremely lightweight, and I find it glides best with some sort of desk pad or mat under it for a better feel, though it is certainly usable on a bare desk surface.

alogic-echelon-mouse-bottom.jpg

Alogic's Echelon mouse supports both Bluetooth 3.0 and Bluetooth 5.0, and it easily connects to a Mac or iPad using the system settings, but the mouse also supports 2.4GHz connections that can deliver improved performance such as lower latency. That 2.4GHz support comes via a small USB-A dongle that conveniently fits into the underside of the... Click here to read rest of article

Article Link: Review: Alogic's Echelon Series Delivers Budget-Friendly Keyboard and Mouse Accessories
 
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ArtOfWarfare

macrumors G3
Nov 26, 2007
9,583
6,097
You can buy a Raspberry Pi in the form-factor of a keyboard... it looks like this keyboard. Disappointed that this keyboard, however, has no computer built in.

It does make me wonder... could Apple replace the MacMini with a similar keyboard with the whole computer built-in, now that they've switched to the M-series?
 

JuicyGoomba

macrumors regular
May 20, 2021
109
333
You can buy a Raspberry Pi in the form-factor of a keyboard... it looks like this keyboard. Disappointed that this keyboard, however, has no computer built in.

It does make me wonder... could Apple replace the MacMini with a similar keyboard with the whole computer built-in, now that they've switched to the M-series?
I remember the patent filing for that being posted on MR a few years back. Apple are already researching things like that.

Personally I absolutely hate the idea. You're forced to use an Apple keyboard, which are already pretty poor compared to competitors.

In reality Apple could easily create an Aluminium Mac on a stick with a couple of USB C ports. Many monitors now come with USB C in/out ports, which would be more than enough to power a base M series Mac with the 2nd port being available for expansion if not using wireless peripherals.
 
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Analog Kid

macrumors G3
Mar 4, 2003
9,113
11,974
You can buy a Raspberry Pi in the form-factor of a keyboard... it looks like this keyboard. Disappointed that this keyboard, however, has no computer built in.

It does make me wonder... could Apple replace the MacMini with a similar keyboard with the whole computer built-in, now that they've switched to the M-series?

Like the good old days!

iu
 

nutmac

macrumors 603
Mar 30, 2004
6,103
7,503
From Apple's perspective, this is a fantastic argument not to license it.
I get that, but input devices demand more personal ergonomic fit, whether it be ergonomic layout, different keyboard switches, and anything in between.
 

Analog Kid

macrumors G3
Mar 4, 2003
9,113
11,974
Yeah…. No mention of how good these feel to use - and that ain't "budget friendly." If budget really is a concern, you aren't shopping for a $50 keyboard.

And if you are shopping for a ~$50 keyboard, there are many better options.

This is just an ad disguised as content.

If people would turn off their ad blockers, then we'd see undisguised ads.

Personally, given that choice, I'd prefer the long form content to blinking ads.
 
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AppliedVisual

macrumors 6502a
Sep 28, 2006
818
321
Apple should license Touch ID or integrate it into TrackPad or Mouse. Lack of Touch ID on third party keyboard is a deal breaker for me.
That and the Apple full keyboard with number pad and TouchID is really good. I get some people really like chunkier keyboards with big mechanical keys and lots of travel…. And I thought I did as well for a while. But I can thype all day and I can type faster on this Apple keyboard than anything else out there since adapting to it. The Magic Keyboard still using Lightning and not USB-C is an insult though. Same for the trackpad and mouse — and flipping the mouse to plug it in was just a dumb design no matter how they choose to spin it. IMO, the Magic Mouse sucks, even if you take the poorly placed Lightning connector out of consideration.

Most of these third party keyboards don’t solve any problems or offer any advantages. I guess it’s a bit cheaper to buy one of these than the Apple keyboard, but why would I if I lose TouchID and don’t gain anything in terms of functionality or comfort? USB-C port is nice, but not enough of a perk to offset any of the compromise.
 

JuicyGoomba

macrumors regular
May 20, 2021
109
333
LOL.

Turns out these exist and are dirt cheap. I take one second to attach one to my USB-C cable when I need to charge the numerous devices I have that use Lightning, and then I go on with my day.

View attachment 2392857
LOL.

Imagine needing a dongle to charge something.

Imagine losing it and then having to whip out the ole' lighting cable anyway.

Imagine being so cool you can downplay the importance of having the same charging standard for every device which a significant part of the tech community has wanted for years now.

Imagine 120hz being a "pro" feature.

Imagine.
 

ignatius345

macrumors 604
Aug 20, 2015
7,215
12,032
LOL.

Imagine needing a dongle to charge something.

Imagine losing it and then having to whip out the ole' lighting cable anyway.
Oh, the horror of having to use one of the many, many lightning cables I already own from years of buying iPhones. What a nightmare!

Imagine being so cool you can downplay the importance of having the same charging standard for every device which a significant part of the tech community has wanted for years now.
I guess I'm not cool enough to be in "the tech community" (aka extremely online computer enthusiasts) because I simply cannot give half a rat's ass about this. I also cannot for a second imagine replacing perfectly good gear because it uses a slightly different connector to charge.

Imagine 120hz being a "pro" feature.
Not sure what that has to do with what I posted, but... ok!
 
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casjohnr

macrumors 6502
Aug 31, 2007
264
213
You can buy a Raspberry Pi in the form-factor of a keyboard... it looks like this keyboard. Disappointed that this keyboard, however, has no computer built in.

It does make me wonder... could Apple replace the MacMini with a similar keyboard with the whole computer built-in, now that they've switched to the M-series?

They already have, remove a screen from a Macbook and job done :)

These looks about the same quality as the combined budget keyboard and mouse sets you can buy for around £20
 

RMo

macrumors 65816
Aug 7, 2007
1,259
322
Iowa, USA
A keyboard "designed for Mac" with Print Screen/SysRq, Scroll Lock, and Pause/Break keys? (And a weird "home folder" key in the bottom right?) Sounds a lot like they took their PC keyboard, changed Alt and Win, found some weird use for the menu key since it was already there, and forgot about everything else. :D
 
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