Cintweak 27-X Keyboard Tray Review

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Today I want to write about a nifty little helper that changed the way I work.

Recently I got my new drawing table(!), the Cintiq 27QHD. ((You can find a review here)
That piece took a lot space on my desk away for good.

The drawback was the placement of my keyboard. I need it  often for hot keys and for writing, so hiding it under the tablet is not the best idea, especially when it uses a cable.

DIY-Approach

I came up with a DIY-solution. It worked, but - don´t ask me how...


My approach had the keyboard bent over and sitting rather loose. Moving the tablet was possible, but always with a risk of turning over the keyboard or worse, leaving scratches.

The idea of such a tray is to attach the Keyboard on top of your Cintiq.

And then there are people who have a simple solution to such a problem:

Not a futuristic sleepmask, but does help to feel good as well

Sounds like something you can do yourself. I wondered how a little plastic thing could be any better than my self-made solution? Spoiler alert: It is better!

Professional Help

Lack of time is definitely a reason to turn towards ready made products. It broke my DIY-heart, but why bother if someone else has a better idea.
A week ago, I got my package then with the Cintweak keyboard tray.

No it does not came opened, just closed it for a capture

It came nicely packed in this box. From the measurements it could contain a rolled print - the label on top is the only thing suggesting that the content is for nerds only.

I checked the contents and really like that everything was careful packed.

Bubblepack credits: Not in the picture

The Installation

When you go to the Gizmotweak website, there is an installation guide, it is simple but it does not hurt to read through the few sentences.

Actually the installation explains itself, I put the velcro dots on the strips first and remove all protective film.

Preparing the invisible helper

I attached the keyboard first because this way the tray has the proper weight to go in place. It might be better to mount the tray first, but I placed it with the keyboard and it worked too.

Synthetic fur protects your cintiq from scratches

It took 2 hands and a few seconds to mount the keyboard with tray onto the Cintiq 27. An easy installation, that is for sure.

I like floating keyboards
An apple keyboard leaves about 10 mm to the edge which is more than enough room. And opposed to my tilted DIY-version, I was curious to see if the flat lying keyboard would have an impact on my writing.

Testing The Gadget


After installation I tested it with various applications and now even blog writing. I have to say that this is my only keyboard, I don´t use any other. When I write, my lower arms rest on the Cintiq which is a comfortable position to write and work, even for long hours. And now after a few days of working, it is even more natural than the bent over way it was before. More ergonomy and I have less to deal with mistyping.

The back view of the newly placed tray including the keyboard

It looks like it would turn over any moment, but it is surprisingly sturdy. If you tip the upper edge of the keyboard hard, it might even go down a bit, but only 5 millimeter before you feel a resistance and then it jumps back into place.

Magnetic surfaces are good for a lot of things...

That is how my current setup looks like. The frame of the Cintiq is used to its fullest potential and with the new Cintweak tray even more complete. The next challenge would be to find a book holder - any suggestions? ;)


Conclusion

For a price tag of $59.00 plus shipping this gadget is more expensive than most keyboards.
However, this is an investment in an ergonomic workflow. If you have a Cintiq and a standing desk like me, than skipping a meal in your favorite restaurant is worth this awesome lifesaver.

Credits


A big thanks over to Gizmotweak for the nice contact and for coming up with something like this awesome product. It is really these little things that can make an artist happy.


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Oliver aka Fantasio is a creative blogger who likes to share his insights about art, marketing and social media. Follow Fantasio on twitter or facebook

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