Hela Duraflex Comfort Keyboard Inverness

Hela's Duraflex Comfort Keyboard is aimed at people who work in dirty, chaotic and messy environments, so as journalists we're the ideal testers. Whether there are kids running amok in your study or you just tend to be a bit clumsy first thing in the morning, chances are you've ruined at least one keyboard. And if a catastrophe doesn't kill it, it'll succumb to a gradual accumulation of dust and grime.

ITP SOLUTIONS
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Laing PC Support
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Sutherland Systems & Services
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Solution X
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PC World
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iTek Solutions Ltd
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Sneckie Ltd
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39, Laggan Rd, Inverness
Inverness
 

Hela Duraflex Comfort Keyboard

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Hela's Duraflex Comfort Keyboard is aimed at people who work in dirty, chaotic and messy environments, so as journalists we're the ideal testers. Whether there are kids running amok in your study or you just tend to be a bit clumsy first thing in the morning, chances are you've ruined at least one keyboard. And if a catastrophe doesn't kill it, it'll succumb to a gradual accumulation of dust and grime.

Not so with the Duraflex. Soft and thin, it can be rolled up for easy storage and travel, which is certainly a talking point and will make it attractive to PDA, laptop and ultramobile users. It's also ruggedised to withstand knocks and liquid spills. It plugs into a USB port, although a supplied adaptor also allows it to be used with old-style PS/2 ports.

It does seem durable and easy to clean. We spilled hot tea and breadcrumbs all over it, then submerged it under hot water - a reasonable simulation of a domestic accident, we reckoned. The Duraflex emerged with no ill effects, and was usable in mere seconds after a quick wipe down.

Unfortunately, the 'Comfort' part didn't bear the same scrutiny. The rubbery keys give little feedback when pressed, making typing a frustrating experience, even if it's only a web address, never mind a long report.

That may not matter to all users. If you just need to hook up your PDA to a digital detonator planted in the snow beside a railway bridge, enter the activation password and sprint for a waiting helicopter, you probably won't find your carpal tunnel syndrome unduly aggravated. We can't help feeling, though, that this is rather a small niche market.

You might decide it's worth putting up with the poor feel in return for near-indestructibility if you frequently work in a real-life messy environment, such as a laboratory or garage. Or you might just think it's really, really cool. Either way, we still couldn't recommend the Duraflex Comfort Keyboard for regular use, and it does cost 50 quid. Type-through dust covers are available for less than half that price, and provide protection from most everyday hazards. If you just want a general purpose portable keyboard, you'd be better off with a more responsive one, such as iGo's Stowaway series.

System Specifications

Connection: USB (USB-to-PS/2 adapter included);

Dimensions: 403x130x8mm

Verdict

Black rubber is a wonderful thing, but a keyboard? The Duraflex is one of a kind, but there's little reason for most users to buy it.

Author: Alan Lu

Computer Buyer Online