[clug] wireless keyboards with pointing devices

Michael Carden crash at michaelcarden.net
Thu Feb 23 12:21:09 GMT 2006

On Thu, 23 Feb 2006 10:06 pm, Bob Edwards wrote:
> a similar keyboard (some years old now) which uses IR, but it
> is becoming hopeless (maybe the IR emitter is wearing out or something)
> and was never that good in the first place.

If it was never particularly good, I can see why you would replace it. If it 
was okay and now it's not so good. you may be better off finding out why.

IR LEDs are not noted for having dramatically short lifetimes. Relying purely 
on my dodgy memory I vaguely recall that they may approach the thousands of 
hours that visible LEDs do. Certainly in their primary role (as TV, Video, 
stereo etc remote controls) they seem to do 20 years plus with no trouble.

FWIW, you can readily view the output of any IR LED with most modern video 
cameras. Their response creeps enough into IR that remote control units light 
up in the viewfinder. Look at your keyboard with a camera to see if it's 
spraying stuff to the receiver.

Things like obstructions in the light path ( I have seen cockroach poo inside 
remotes more than once ) even scratches in the crappy red plastic lenses will 
make a difference. Poor quality batteries or corroded battery contacts in the 
keyboard will severely limit performance.

And of course if the keyboard has spent a long time in your lounge room, the 
random output of kids or pets might render it useless in minutes, let alone 

Anyway, I guess I'm suggesting that what you have may keep working with a bit 
of attention. If not, I'm as keen as you are to hear of what's out there now.


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