X-Gene Imperial Wireless Keyboard with Trackball


Hey, check this out: For review today I have what I believe is the perfect keyboard for any HTPC system. The keyboard is from X-Gene and it is not only wireless but also features a trackball and ergonomic grips on the sides. It looked like a really cool keyboard on the X-Gene site, but it wasn’t until I got it into my hands that I found out just how great it really is. The X-Gene Imperial has your standard keyboard sans the keypad, with multimedia and internet hot keys lined across the top and an optical trackball built into the keyboard itself. It’s small size make it perfect for storing when not needed. The X-Gene Imperial isn’t just for HTPC systems by any means it would work for any computer, but I just found it to be the perfect compliment to my HTPC system. Well read on to check out this exciting and very cool product…


X-Gene Imperial Wireless Keyboard with Trackball

Reviewed by: Kristofer Brozio AkA Dracos

Sponsor: X-Gene


Tech Specs,Features or the Basic Info:

Imperial 2.4G Wireless Keyboard+Trackball (PN: 01027)

Price: $85

Ingram Micro SKU# J81765

To order, please call 909-598-6988 ext.111


Streamlined full-featured RF keyboard with built-in trackball optical technology

2.4Ghz radio frequency, 15 meters effective working range, USB port

360-degree navigation, sleek and elegant design

With notebook keyboard module design, enables mobile operation and effortless typing

{amazon id=’B000AOAAN8′ align=’RIGHT’}


Mac and Windows 2K, XP, and above compatible.


Frequency: 2.4Ghz

Channel: 8 Channel

Optical trackball: 800 DPI

Hot Key: WWW, Pre-page,

Next-page, Volume-up,

Volume-down, Mute, E-mail,

My Computer, Play/Pause,

Stop, Pre-track,

Next-track, IE


Carton Dimension: 495x310x450mm

QTY/Master Carton: 10pcs

Gross Weight: 12.96Kgs

Unit Net Weight: 0.95 Kgs

Unit Dimension: 385x178x50 mm (Keyboard)

78×21.5x10mm (Receiver)

Retail Package Dimension: 412x186x61 mm

Retail Package Weight: 1.13Kgs

Barcode: 7 57896 01027 8

Real Time price X-Gene Imperial Wireless Keyboard : Ergo Guys: $79.00

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A Better Look at Things


The packaging is always the first thing we look at it, it is something that can sometimes make or break the sale of any new product. The X-Gene Imperial Wireless keyboards packaging is rather cool looking, with a nice bright contrast of colors. The front of the box features the actual keyboard taking up more than half the box and the background featuring possible uses for the keyboard. Notice on the bottom left the little character, I’m not quite sure what that is, but I’m guessing it is the X-Gene mascot. It appears to be a girl in sort of hip hop style clothing, personally I think GACK, but it’s the style with the ‘youngins’ out there so in marketing that’s where you go.

The back of the box features lots of information about the product, this is the way all product boxes should be, you essentially know exactly what you are buying, all its features and specs.

Here are a couple close up of the features listed on the box.


Opening the box we are greeted with the USB receiver, instruction manual and four AA batteries.

Under that we find the keyboard itself, nicely wrapped in plastic for protection.

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A Better Look at Things


Moving on, here is everything all unpacked and laid out for your perusal.

The USB receiver is the size of a USB thumb drive and/or about the size of all the other USB type receivers I have for my other wireless products. On the front is an LED indicator and a connect button.


The back of the receiver has your standard FCC information and serial numbers etc.

The X-Gene Imperial keyboard is a stylish black color with gray colors on the main keys and the special keys to highlight them. I mentioned in the intro that there is no keypad, but that is not quite true, there is just not a separate numeric keypad like a standard keyboard would have.

The right side has one of the main features the optical trackball, it is small but still very usable. The right side is also where you will find the multimedia keys. You can see the numbers in blue over the letter keys in the picture, this is activated with the ‘FN’ or function key on the keyboard, as is the other special functions in blue on the keyboard.

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A Better Look at Things


The left side is where you will find the standard left and right mouse buttons, to be used with the thumb of your left hand. Along the top of the left side you will also find the internet keys as well, featuring the main browser keys like Forward, Backward, Internet Explorer, Outlook Express and My Computer. Of course these are set to activate your default settings, if you use other applications by default the X-Gene will open those instead.

The bottom of the X-Gene Imperial keyboard does have four non-slip rubber feet, but what makes it really special is the ergonomic design of the sides so that it fits comfortably in your hands while using the trackball and buttons. The bottom is also where the batteries go.


We have more buttons on the front section of the keyboard to be use by the index fingers of your hands while using the X-Gene keyboard. The left side features the scroll wheel, while the right side has another Left mouse button, the left mouse button placement is perfect for using in conjunction with the trackball, move the trackball with your thumb and then click with your index finger.


Here’s a shot of the entire front of the keyboard, it is angled so when on a flat surface you do have a nice typing angle.

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Installation, Testing and Comparison

First up let’s check out the comparison, here is a shot of the X-Gene with Logitechs’ multimedia cordless keyboard. Big difference in size.

The X-gene is thicker but that’s basically for the grip to hold to while doing things. I really like the feel of the X-Gene while I’m using it.

Here’s the X-Gene with your standard keyboard, this is one from a Gateway computer, but it’s your standard sized keyboard, you can see the X-Gene is quite small and compact.

Height wise the X-Gene is only a little taller at the highest point, the back.

Well that’s it for all the cool pictures, now you have to read… anyway installation is very easy, it is truly plug and play. It was working fine even before Windows recognized it and installed it, but I had to hit the left mouse button to activate it.

As for the receiver, I found that I couldn’t have it hidden behind my HTPC/Stereo, it seemed to keep loosing the signal. I have to believe this is from all the wires etc back there that could interfere with the signal, because as soon as I attached a USB extension to the receiver and moved it up higher everything was fine. Other than that the keyboard works great overall.

My living room is approximately 12 feet long and the couch is at one end with the TV setup and HTPC etc at the other end, I could comfortably sit on my couch and use the X-Gene keyboard with no problems at all.

The trackball is a thrill to use, it was actually, almost too responsive, but I haven’t used a trackball for years so after a while I found it to be pretty much perfect. The trackball is very responsive, moves very smoothly and with very little effort on my part. To be honest I actually enjoyed the setup like this, it is in the perfect position on the keyboard. You can control the trackball with your thumb and use you index finger to press the left mouse button beneath the keyboard. While your left hand thumb can use the regular mouse buttons and your index can control the scroll wheel. The scroll wheel is sideways and took a few minutes to get used to but after a while it was easy.

The size of the X-Gene actually makes it almost perfect for typing while on your lap as well, the ‘legs’ on the bottom are angled and you can rest one on each leg to type is need be. Of course you can also put it on a table as well and the non-slip feet will hold it in place very well.


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Installation, Testing and Comparison Continued:

Typing on the X-Gene takes a little bit to get used to, the keys seem closer together. I found that after typing for a few minutes I got the hang of it. The keys are a soft touch style with a long key press actually but they are very responsive. Of course having a keyboard this small some of the keys are in different places, but this is something I have found with most any keyboard, not all the non-standard keys are in the same places on all keyboards. There is a slight palm rest built into the X-Gene, small but yet just enough to rest your palms on.

Using the X-Gene is like a dream, it’s cordless and you no longer need a separate mouse. The layout of everything is pretty much perfect for me. The X-Gene is also fairly lightweight, and seems very well made. I can attest to the ruggedness of it as my one year old son found it and was carry it around the house banging it off of various pieces of furniture, he also had it out and was banging on the keyboard, if it can stand up to him, it can stand up to ‘normal’ use easily.

One note though is that the X-Gene is a small keyboard, those used to the standard keyboard will find that it might take a lot to get used to it, but in the end it will be worth it. I personally love the smaller style keyboards, I use two different ones on my two main computers actually. Yes they took sometime to get used to, but after a while I found that I loved them, and will use them till they die and then go and buy a new one, the exact same kind (if I can).

On another side note, I don’t do too much gaming on my HTPC, but i did switch it over to my main PC. I found it to be a bit awkward at first to try and use the trackball for gaming, but after a while it seemed kinda cool to use for gaming actually. It will take quite a bit of practice for gaming use though.

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Well like I said in the intro, I think this could be, or for me anyway, is the perfect HTPC keyboard. It’s cordless, it permits the end user to do away with a separate mouse, it’s small and compact and just is overall very well designed. The X-Gene Imperial keyboard is something that I can highly recommend to someone who has an HTPC system. I can’t say enough good things about this keyboard, until you get it into your hands you won’t understand just how great this keyboard is.

DragonSteelMods gives the X-Gene Imperial Wireless Keyboard with Trackball a 5 out of 5 and our Recommended Award as well.

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-Well designed


-Small compact size

-Just a great keyboard


-None really

I would like to thank X-Gene for the chance to review their products and for their support of DSM.

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And of Course: DIGG IT!!!!!