Gaming peripherals usually fall into one of two categories - useless or ridiculous. Sometimes both, but there isn't often something that's both sensible and useful. That's why I was mildly startled by the G13, which does what it does very well, and doesn't look like it was designed by a moron on acid.
Unfortunately, you pay through the nose for that kind of quality. £75's worth of nose, to be prescise. Competing products, despite not being quite as good, are less than half that price. Perhaps in a few months it'll cheapen down a bit. I'll be waiting patiently until then before I make a purchase.
Next up, it's Logitech's turn to show off its new products to the world. They've got the G19 keyboard, the G13 gameboard, the G9x mouse and the G35 surround sound headset. I'm going to go out on a limb and assume that the G stands for 'gaming', because these are all very squarely focused at PC gamers.
I'll start with the G19, which we spotted previously, but called the G18. In every other respect, though, it seems to be the same model - it's got the same 320 x 240 colour LCD, the same 12 macro keys, and the superb "game mode" switch that disables the Windows key so you don't hit it by accident at a crucial moment. No sign of that D-pad, though.
I really want to try this. It's a "Gameboard" (i.e. mini-keyboard for gamers) that's designed to complement an existing keyboard and mouse setup, rather than replace it, like other gaming keyboards.
It's got 25 programmable keys, as well as a programmable analogue stick and three different 'game modes'. Logitech claims this gives you "87 ways to control their game", though that seems like they've just picked a random figure out of the air. 25 x 3, plus 1, then bump it up a bit more to make it sound good?
Features-wise, it's got backlit keys, it's got onboard memory, so you can store your configs and port them to other PCs, it's got a 160 x 42 LCD panel, for displaying stats and other random info, and it comes pre-configured for WoW, CoD4, and "many other popular games". It costs £70 and appears to be available now.