I'm always looking for side accessories for my Lenovo ThinkPad X230T. This time I'm going over two numeric keypads with a slight twist: each have a side button. The Connectland USB Numeric Keypad, from now only referred as Connectland, has the usual buttons found in a keypad but it also has a side Space bar key. The HDE Multi-Functional Keypad, from now only referred as HDE, has similar buttons but additionally has a Fn key. Each offers different possibilities and the details can be found below.
Connectland CL-USB-NUMSPC (Spacebar one)
- Shorter cable than Fn number pad. This is ok for most laptop users, however for desktop the length may not be enough.
- The Space key is well positioned.
- There is no tab key.
- Disabling Num-Lock gives you access to some useful shortcuts. You can also press and hold shift on a separate keyboard in order to access the secondary functions.
HDE Multi-Functional (Fn one)
- Longer cable than Connectland--which is ok for desktop users. Laptop users may not need this much length of cable.
- The Fn key is well positioned.
- The secondary function buttons work very well. The tab key can be accessed via Fn+5. The Undo button does "undo" and "redo" so you can go back and forwards. There is an "=" equal function button, which is very useful for doing math in Microsoft Excel. Common day shortcuts, such as cut, copy, paste, are present. Zoom in-out functions are useful in some programs.
- I don't think there is a need for Num-Lock key.
- The Connectland keypad has a two digit zero, the Fn one has three digit zero--I prefer the two digit zero.
- The keypads send up to three keys at a time to the PC. Response time is superb, better than some of the previous keypads I tested before.
- The keys feel roomy and their travel-depth is good.
- I wish the keypad's rest angle (elevation) could be adjusted.
- Using Auto-Hotkey allows you to modify all keys so you can reprogram them to suit your needs.
- After testing each for a period of time I have to say that the HDE (Fn one) is the better choice. The Connectland has limited secondary function buttons and the HDE trumps it. Both though are better than what a wireless keypad can offer.
Back of the packages.
They both look identical but the HDE (Fn key one) does offer more options.
My now unused Tagus keypad is here for perspective. As you can see, both the Connectland and HDE have buttons that are more suited for ten-key.
The bottom side of the three keypads.
The side button on each device is very well positioned.
While they are physically very similar the HDE offers a longer cable.