Paul Makepeace ;-)

December 9, 2004

Awesome PC hardware mod

Posted in: Drivel

Here it is, people.

Keyboard Volume
Thanks, Dell

That's right, a volume control on the keyboard. This has proved really useful for dropping the volume for incoming calls, unobtrusively trimming the sound levels when folks visit, and pumping up the volume when a decent riff kicks in. I love it. It should be standard.

The larger button, also useful, brings the music app to the foreground. The other ones do the usual play/pause/stop etc although with winamp, iTunes, and WMPlayer all competing it's got a bit weird on this machine.

Contrast the other custom buttons on this keyboard: browser controls (back, stop, refresh, etc) and Mail, My Computer, Calculator. The last one I've used maybe three times and that's more than the others. Waste of time. I wonder if others like them.

Further mods I'd like to see: a large scroll wheel that works identically to the wheelmouse. That alongside page up/down buttons would make a relaxing document reader.

Posted by Paul Makepeace at December 9, 2004 14:53 | TrackBack

I've been trying to figure out how to make those volume controls on my keyboard work with winamp, do you have any idea how to do that?

Posted by: Rachael at May 21, 2005 01:56

Rachael, I had a dig on the Dell site and found How Do I Install the Dell™ Multimedia Keyboard Application in the Microsoft® Windows® XP Operating System on My Dell™ Dimension™ XPS? It might require registering which IIRC was just name + email.

I haven't tried this since I'm in hospital right now.

When I first got the machine, the volume worked out of the box but at a system level i.e. the "master volume" (mistress volume?) of everything being played, not just say winamp or iTunes. Most multimedia apps have their own separate volume control which just controls their volume before it hits the sound mixer.

Hope this helps...

Posted by: Paul Makepeace at May 21, 2005 14:16
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