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Logitech MX Mechanical Mini Keyboard Review: Compact and Premium

Rating: 9/10 ?
  • 1 - Absolute Hot Garbage
  • 2 - Sorta Lukewarm Garbage
  • 3 - Strongly Flawed Design
  • 4 - Some Pros, Lots Of Cons
  • 5 - Acceptably Imperfect
  • 6 - Good Enough to Buy On Sale
  • 7 - Great, But Not Best-In-Class
  • 8 - Fantastic, with Some Footnotes
  • 9 - Shut Up And Take My Money
  • 10 - Absolute Design Nirvana
Price: $149.99
side view of the logitech mx mechanical mini keyboard on a wooden desk
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

I’ve tried out a few mechanical keyboards in random retail stores, but I’ve never owned one. After testing out Logitech’s MX Mechanical Mini, all I can say is, man, I didn’t know what I was missing. This keyboard is so satisfying to type on that I actually found myself wanting to work more just so I could keep typing.

Logitech is launching two new products within its MX line. The MX Mechanical is a full-size keyboard with a ten-key pad, and the MX Mechanical Mini is a compact option that lacks a ten-key pad. Since I prefer compact keyboards that don’t take up a lot of space and are easy to take with me, I opted to review the MX Mechanical Mini. If you’re more into full-size keyboards, check out our separate review of the MX Mechanical.

Mechanical keyboards are often more expensive than non-mechanical keyboards, though now there are many more decent options for around $30. Extra components go into a mechanical keyboard’s assembly, resulting in a higher price tag. Logitech’s MX Mechanical is $169.99 and the MX Mechanical Mini is $149.99. These certainly aren’t the most affordable mechanical keyboards, but they’re not the most expensive either.

It’s also worth mentioning that Logitech made these two keyboards with sustainability in mind. About 45% of the parts for the MX Mechanical and 47% of the MX Mechanical Mini’s components are made from post-consumer recycled (PCR) plastic.

But without further ado, let’s check out Logitech’s latest addition to its MX line and see what impressed me and what left me wanting more.

Here's What We Like

  • Love the Tactile Quiet switches
  • Smart backlighting saves battery life
  • Feels cool to the touch and looks neat

And What We Don't

  • Compact 75% layout took some getting used to
  • Not much customization for backlighting
  • Not hot-swappable

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Specs as Reviewed

Although the true merit of a mechanical keyboard is determined through testing and physically handling it, it’s important to look at the specs too. This is what the keyboard is boasting it’s capable of, and you can then compare this to the actual hands-on experience.

  • Layout: 75% ANSI
  • Number of Keys: 84
  • Switches: Tactile Quiet (Brown); other options include Linear (Red) and Clicky (Blue)
  • Switch Compatibility: Not Hot-swappable
  • Keyboard Compatibility: Windows, macOS, Linux, Chrome OS, iPadOS, iOS, and Android
  • Pairing: Via Bluetooth or USB-RF
  • Bluetooth Version: Low Energy (4)
  • Dynamic Backlit Types: 6
  • Inclined Angle: Yes
  • Charging: USB-A to C
  • Battery Life: Up to 15 days w/ backlighting; up to 10 months w/ no backlighting
  • Weight: 612g
  • Dimension: 312.6mm × 131.55mm × 26.1mm
  • Input: 5V/500mA

Build Quality and Design: Compact and Premium

Logitech is known for making quality tech products for gaming and everyday office use. Everything about this keyboard screams quality. It weighs less than two pounds, but it feels super solid. Then, the chassis is made of low-carbon aluminum, or aluminum made with renewable energy rather than fossil fuels.

I love tech products that incorporate aluminum or magnesium somewhere in the chassis because it feels cool to the touch. Using these materials is awesome for long typing sessions because your hands won’t get sweaty or anything even if you’re using the keyboard’s backlight.

There are six dynamic options for the backlighting feature, though I assume most people will use the simple, static backlight effect. In my opinion, the other effects were lackluster and just seemed like they were put there to say there were other dynamic backlighting options.

One of the backlighting features I loved on the MX Mechanical Mini is Smart Illumination. When your hands get close to the keyboard, the backlight automatically turns on. Then, when your hands pull away, the backlight turns off. This feature worked well for me and will result in a longer battery life between charges.

closeup of the arrow keys at the corner of the logitech mx mechanical mini
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

There are two main layout options to choose between for compact QWERTY keyboards, mechanical or otherwise. There’s tenkeyless (sometimes referred to as 80% form factor) or 75% form factor.

Imagine a full-size keyboard with the ten-key number pad on the right side; a tenkeyless (80%) keyboard has that ten-key pad removed. But the spacing and overall key layout (except for that ten-key pad) is the same.

However, a 75% form factor keyboard has about the same number of keys as a tenkeyless keyboard, but with everything more squished together. Because it has the same general key layout I’m used to, it wasn’t that much of an adjustment for me to switch from an 80% layout to a 75% layout.

The most challenging part to get used to was the bottom right corner, where you’ll find the arrow keys. I’m more familiar with a larger Shift key, so frequently when I reach my right pinky over for the Shift key, I accidentally hit the up arrow key instead. It didn’t take me more than a few hours of using the keyboard to get used to where all the keys were.

closeup of the usb-c port and the on off switch for the logitech mx mechanical mini keyboard
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

There are quite a few dedicated function buttons on the keyboard’s top row that make your life easier. While these are preset, you can change the associated command in the Logi Options+ software (more on this later). A few of my favorite preset buttons include an emoji button, a screenshot button, and a button for voice-to-text.

The only port on Logitech’s MX Mechanical Mini is a USB-C port that you use to charge the keyboard. Next to this USB-C port, there’s an on/off switch you can toggle when the keyboard is not in use to save battery. Logitech boasts an approximate 15-day battery life with backlighting or 10-month battery life without backlighting.

I’ve been using backlighting only occasionally and haven’t had to charge it since I opened it a little over a week ago. Since I opened Logi Options+ and saw the battery life percentage for the first time, it’s only dropped about 5-10%.

You can connect your keyboard to devices via a USB-RF, called the Logi Bolt, or through Bluetooth Low Energy, which is part of Bluetooth version 4.0. Many keyboards only allow you to connect through either USB-RF or Bluetooth, but not both, so I loved the flexibility offered here. If you’re connecting via Bluetooth, you can connect up to three devices at a time and swap between them using the Easy Switch key.

Feel of the Keys: My Perfect Combination

With both Logitech’s MX Mechanical (full-size) and MX Mechanical Mini keyboards, you have the option between three different mechanical switch types: Tactile Quiet (brown), Clicky (blue), or Linear (red). I chose the Tactile Quiet (brown) switches for my review unit because I prefer a less abrasive sound while typing. This keyboard is unfortunately not hot-swappable. You’ll want to make sure you pick carefully, because you’re stuck with the keys you chose at purchase.

Just in case you’re not familiar with these mechanical key switches, here’s a brief overview of the differences in sound and feel. Tactile Quiet switches still offer a tactile bump, but it’s much less pronounced and produces less noise overall while typing. Clicky switches will produce an audible click, and you’ll feel each keystroke. Linear switches provide a super smooth typing experience, with minimal noise and less tactile feedback.

showing the switch in between the keyboard and the key on logitech mx mechanical mini
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

Personally, I don’t like Clicky switches. When I’ve tested or heard Linear switches, I’m kind of indifferent, but Clicky switches annoy me. I understand why they’re satisfying to many mechanical keyboard users, but they’re just not my thing. The Tactile Quiet switches gave me the perfect amount of auditory feedback and a satisfying feel with every keystroke.

While these Tactile Quiet (brown) switches are certainly quieter than other switches, like the Clicky switches, I wouldn’t describe them as quiet. I’m a writer, so I type a lot for long periods of time throughout the day and, while I personally enjoy the sound of this keyboard, I wouldn’t want to type while on a video call with someone. They’re loud enough to possibly be disruptive to someone on the other end of a video call if the keyboard is right next to your mic, but in an office scenario, I don’t think the Tactile Quiet switches would be distracting or annoying.

I also wanted to briefly mention the keycaps as well. While they’re not as curved as Logitech’s original MX keyboard, they’re curved enough to feel comfortable while typing and resting my fingers. The keys are also cool to the touch, much like the keyboard’s chassis, which is nice if you’re typing for long periods of time.

closeup of the brown switch on logitech mx mechanical mini keyboard
Sarah Chaney / Review Geek

Customization: There’s Not Much to the Software

In order to get the most out of the MX Mechanical Mini keyboard, you’ll need Logi Options+, Logitech’s proprietary software. Although the keyboard itself is compatible with almost every operating system, the Logi Options+ software is only compatible with Windows 10 and up and macOS 10.15 and up.

There’s not a whole lot you can customize within Logi Options+. The software serves as more of a reminder to you of everything your keyboard can do and an easy way to keep up with the current battery percentage.

full overhead view of the logitech mx mechanical mini keyboard on a wooden desk

After you select your device in Logi Options+, you’ll see an overview of featured keys, most of which are on the top row and far-right column of the keyboard. If you hover over a highlighted key, you can see what it currently does. Selecting “Add Application” allows you to attach a command to one of these keys that’s different than its preset.

Then, the Easy-Switch tab in Logi Options+ lets you see which three devices, if any, you have connected via Bluetooth or the Logi Bolt. You can switch between these three devices using the Easy Switch key, which is also the F1 key.

In the Backlighting tab, you’ll get a refresher on how to toggle between backlighting effects (Fn + Lightbulb key). Or, you can test out the different backlighting effects in the software. The six different effects are static, contrast, breathing, waves, reaction, and random. The keyboard’s lights aren’t RGB, so the only color the backlight can be is white.

To Sum It Up: A Great Addition to Logitech’s MX Line

All in all, I would highly recommend Logitech’s MX Mechanical Mini keyboard. It feels great, sounds satisfying, and isn’t super expensive compared to other high-end mechanical keyboards. Logitech is also a reputable retailer in the world of tech products, which is awesome for customer service reasons.

If you need a ten-key number pad on the side, go for the full-size MX Mechanical keyboard. It has all the features of the MX Mini and gives you the same option to choose between Tactile Quiet, Clicky, or Linear switches. But if you like a compact keyboard, you’ll absolutely love the MX Mechanical Mini. It’s my new favorite keyboard.

Rating: 9/10
Price: $149.99

Here’s What We Like

  • Love the Tactile Quiet switches
  • Smart backlighting saves battery life
  • Feels cool to the touch and looks neat

And What We Don't

  • Compact 75% layout took some getting used to
  • Not much customization for backlighting
  • Not hot-swappable

Sarah Chaney Sarah Chaney
Sarah Chaney is a professional freelance writer for Review Geek, Android Authority, MakeUseOf, and other great websites. She has a Bachelor of Arts in English with a Creative Writing concentration. Her degree, paired with her almost two years of professionally writing for websites, helps her write content that is engaging, yet informative. She enjoys covering anything Android, video game, or tech related. Read Full Bio »