There are plenty of third-party keyboards and mice available for Mac users.
Most are fantastic, but one annoyance about non-Apple keyboards is that they often lack a Mac-friendly layout that includes the Command and Option keys, as well as a row of shortcut keys, akin to what you’d find on an Apple keyboard.
For example, the Logitech MX Keys has always been a dual-purpose keyboard, made for Windows or Mac users. Until now, that is.
The Windows and Alt keys have been replaced by Mac-specific Option and Command keys on the MX Keys and K380. There’s also a function row that includes shortcuts for common tasks like viewing Mission Control, all of your installed apps, or controlling media playback.
The MX Master 3 and MX Keys now come in a very Apple-like space gray color to match its Mac, iPad and iPhone lines. To add variety, the K380 now comes in a brand new pink option, called rose, along with an off-white color.
It can switch between three Apple devices with the press of a button and offers a battery life of up to two years.
The MX Keys and MX Master 3 have both fit right into our normal work routine over the past few weeks.
The cupped key caps on the MX Keys keyboard provide a gentle reminder of where your fingers should rest between keystrokes, as well as offer a landing pad as you hammer away at an instant message or work document.
The 10-key number pad isn’t something we’re accustomed to, having switched from Apple’s compact Magic Keyboard, but by the end of our testing, we found ourselves instinctively reaching for the number pad when needed.
You should be able to get about 10 days out of the MX Keys battery with the backlight turned on, or five months with the backlight disabled. Charging is done via a USB-C port on the back of the keyboard, and, yes, you can use the keyboard while it charges.
By far, our favorite feature of the MX Keys is its smart backlighting. Not only do the lights automatically adjust their brightness based on ambient lighting, but they turn off when you move your hands away from the keyboard — and then they magically turn back on as your hands approach the keyboard.
Forget the fact that it saves on battery life; it’s just fun to use.
You can pair up to three devices to the MX Keys and switch between them with the press of a button.
We love everything about the MX Master 3 wireless mouse, which we’ve extensively tested. So much so, we named it the best ergonomic mouse in 2020.
The Master 3 offers a battery life of up to 70 days and is also charged via a USB-C port on the front of the housing, making it possible to charge and use the mouse at the same time.
There’s also a suite of gestures you can use to quickly move around your Mac, including holding in the gesture button on the far left side of the mouse and moving the mouse to complete tasks like switching between desktops or opening Mission Control. You can also customize the gestures using Logitech’s Options program.
We’ve also reprogrammed the two shortcut buttons that are found just below the vertical scroll wheel, to launch 1Password and to open Mission Control so we can quickly sign into apps or websites, or switch between apps.
You can even set up button functionality for different applications, like Chrome, Safari, Excel or Photoshop.
The entire MX line is built and designed for creatives who spend a lot of time working in video or photo editing software.
When you spin the wheel like you’re on “The Price Is Right” to scroll through a long document, it can speed up to 1,000 lines per second, either until you stop it, or it eventually stops itself. That means you can accidentally scroll past what you’re looking for. Or if you started scrolling and then moved your mouse to another window, the scrolling follows the pointer, and you can end up losing your place in a different document.
Our advice? If you start scrolling and need to move the mouse, first stop the wheel.
Note: The prices above reflect the retailer’s listed price at the time of publication.