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Microsoft Wired Desktop 600 review

Our Rating :
Price when reviewed : £19
inc VAT

It may have been essentially unchanged for five years, but the Wired Desktop 600 set is still a great budget choice

Microsoft’s Wired Desktop 600 has been around a long time, and we’ve seen it bundled with innumerable PC systems over the years – the box even boasts of its Windows Vista compatibility. It may be old but that’s no reason to criticise it, with the design standing the test of time.

As the name suggests you get a wired USB mouse and wired USB keyboard in the set. The mouse is very basic, with just two buttons and a clickable scroll wheel. The wheel doesn’t tilt to pan sideways, but it’s nicely textured, and easy to spin either rapidly or one click at a time. The simple design makes the mouse ambidextrous.

Our main complaint is that the mouse is incredibly light, which can make cursor positioning trickier and means the weight of the cord can move the pointer even after you’ve stopped moving the mouse.

The mouse’s buttons are very quiet and give a good level of feedback when you click. The keyboard is also quiet in use, with muted thumps as you press the keys down, rather than sharp clicks. This makes the whole set pretty quiet to use, which is certainly a bonus for those around you

The keyboard itself is concave, with the spacebar and number keys higher than the letter rows. This makes it marginally less of a stretch to reach the upper keys, and makes the rows of keys feel more separated than they actually are. The Function keys are smaller than the rest, but they don’t double up as shortcut keys. One minor complaint is that the keys on the far left, including the left shift key, are a little small.

There’s no software to install, and in Windows all the shortcut keys performed their assigned tasks. There’s a play/pause key, volume up and down, mute and a button to launch the calculator. Hardly expansive, but all useful. There’s no light on the Caps Lock key, unfortunately.

If you’re looking for a basic keyboard and mouse set, don’t need many extra features and don’t want the fuss of changing batteries on a wireless set, the Wired Desktop 600 is still a good choice. We’d be tempted to buy the Wired Keyboard 600 on its own for £11 and get a better separate mouse, such as the Cherry MW 2300 for around £15.

Keyboard shapeStandard
Number padYes
Shortcut keys2
Volume controlYes
Mouse typeOptical
Tilt wheelNo
Programmable partsNone
Mouse batteryN/A
Buying information
WarrantyOne-year RTB
Price including VAT£19
Part codeAPB-00006

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Reviews | Mice