Sunday, June 11, 2006

Xbox 360 + Microsoft Wireless Optical Desktop 3.0

Blogger was having some troubles when I originally wanted to share this information. All is well, so here you go!

I've always wanted to try this "naturally curved" keyboard since I really hate the broken-in-the-middle ergonomic keyboards of the past. Howevever, the idea of dealing with wireless and batteries was really a turn off, so I didn't pay much mind.

However, after seeing how much easier XBL messaging with a keyboard is, I decided it was time to get one of these keyboards to see if it would work. If it didn't, I could still use it with the laptop I use for gaming on the TV.

To my surprise, it worked on 360 without hassle! And an added bonus: I could connect the PS/2 wire to my laptop's docking station and the USB wire to the 360...AT THE SAME TIME! This mean that I didn't have to swap wires whenever I wanted to switch between the laptop and the 360.

Note: This is NOT the Bluetooth version of the Optical desktop

Not all was glorious, however. The range on this keyboard/mouse combo is only about 5 feet. The couch was just out of range. So I purchased some cheap PS/2 and USB extension cables off ebay. But since the laptop was on one side of the TV, and the 360 was on the other, I needed these anyway. I just ran the wireless receiver behind the couch (out of sight) and all most was well.

The last problem was the mouse. I don't currently have a 360 game that supports a mouse, so I can't test this out. I'd be suprised if it didn't work though. Unfortunately, since the USB cable was plugged into the 360, that meant I lost mouse support for the laptop. I'll have to try a USB splitter to see if I can get the mouse to work with it. Then I won't have to mess with cables for that either.

Adding a wireless keyboard ot the 360 is great. Conveniently convenient if you will!

Edit 06/14/06: There's a temporary solution to my last problem. Assuming a PS/2 to USB adapter will work, I could plug the adapted end into the 360 and the stock USB end into the laptop. This will work out fine until a 360 feature/game has mouse support. At that point, I'll need a KVM switch, separate wireless mouse, or an automatic switching USB splitter.


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