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Thread: Keyboards

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Keyboards

    So I need a new keyboard.

    I have looked at mechanical ones, which seem great but I've only used them a few times overall. I'm open to something else which may be more suitable.

    I'm currently using an old membrane keyboard so I do hit the keys quite hard. One criteria I need is to have something that will not be prone to switch issues later on due to damage for over use. In saying this, I also want something that will last me for a good 5 years at the least. Hoping for more, but not really sure as it does depend on the type of keyboard architecture considered. At least with some mechanical keyboards I can replace individual switches, but that defeats the purpose of reliability in the long term.

    Also, would prefer something that still allows me to type at quite an adequate speed because currently with membrane my speed suffers a bit.

    Do not want ghosting issues later on. Polling rates in excess of 50 Hz should be fine in my opinion. Otherwise, interrupts would work even better.

    One big criteria also is having software control over the keyboard operation. In the case that my keyboard starts ghosting, I want to be able to control the debouncing delays myself without having to modify the keyboard. Is this something that can be commonly found in every day keyboards?

    I'm not really accustomed to the market of keyboards; all I know is how they work and possible failures of them as I have done failure analysis before on similar equipment.

    My criteria:

    - Cost less than $100. Willing to go up to $150 if I am certain that it will last a very long time.

    - Last me for a long time (at least 5 years) with minimal need to repair.

    - Can withstand considerable force applied to the keys with no damage.

    - Have the back elevators.

    - Can trial the keyboard before buying.

    - Must make sure that ghosting never ever becomes an issue.

    - Preferred to be interrupt based (PS/2 ?) as then multiple keys can be registered and also key presses can be queued up.

    - Software access can allow for changes in key delay/debouncing method. Preferably, a good debouncing design to prevent ghosting will have key trigger once the key is let go, or if over a certain amount of time (for example 400 ms of holding it down) it will start registering multiple presses (kinda like "thiiiiiiiiiissssssssssssss" after 400 ms).


    This might seem pretty technical and specific, but as always I'm specific with my technical requirements

    Cheers in advance.

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Also one more thing to add, 6KRO is preferred in the criteria as there are times when I do need about 3 or 4 simultaneous key presses at a time.

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    Webmaster brent012's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    If you want nkro you'll need PS/2 rather than USB. I doubt you'll be able to find a keyboard that meets all your requirements AND you can try in person before buying.

    I think one of the IBM Model M buckling spring keyboards might fit all your requirements, either a used IBM one or a new Unicomp one. People are still using 20 year old IBM ones. Looks like there are new old stock Lexmark ones on eBay too.

    The other option is a more modern mechanical keyboard, but if you want it to last a long time you'd probably want to make sure you got one with real cherry MX switches - market is moving towards cheap copies now.

    But tbh, I think keyboards are so cheap that its unreasonable to demand a very long life out of them.
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    Rambling Spirit astroman's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    get a cherry mx brown from duck shine, relatively quiet with still satisfying actuation point feel, the cheapest full sized is $129 at pccasegear.com

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    Re: Keyboards

    Razer blackwidow
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    Re: Keyboards

    I think razer use cherry mx clones in all their keyboards now.
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    Re: Keyboards

    wtf you have some hectic keyboard requirements... is this for gaming or something?

    I don't think I've ever been that fussy with keyboards but I do enjoy a nice Lenovo keybaord (I'm still using an old Lenovo USB keyboard with trackpad which is a replica of the old Lenovo/Thinkpad laptop keyboards from generations ago) as it's the one I feel most comfortable typing with... it doesn't even have a Windows key!

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    Re: Keyboards

    coolermaster quickfire rapid tk reds

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    B.Information Systems @ UNSW

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by brent012 View Post
    If you want nkro you'll need PS/2 rather than USB. I doubt you'll be able to find a keyboard that meets all your requirements AND you can try in person before buying.

    I think one of the IBM Model M buckling spring keyboards might fit all your requirements, either a used IBM one or a new Unicomp one. People are still using 20 year old IBM ones. Looks like there are new old stock Lexmark ones on eBay too.

    The other option is a more modern mechanical keyboard, but if you want it to last a long time you'd probably want to make sure you got one with real cherry MX switches - market is moving towards cheap copies now.

    But tbh, I think keyboards are so cheap that its unreasonable to demand a very long life out of them.
    Reading through this and realising the life requirement I wanted was a bit extreme, I think I might look at something more based upon comfort and typing performance. So maybe not buckling spring based.

    Quote Originally Posted by seremify007 View Post
    wtf you have some hectic keyboard requirements... is this for gaming or something?

    I don't think I've ever been that fussy with keyboards but I do enjoy a nice Lenovo keybaord (I'm still using an old Lenovo USB keyboard with trackpad which is a replica of the old Lenovo/Thinkpad laptop keyboards from generations ago) as it's the one I feel most comfortable typing with... it doesn't even have a Windows key!
    Nah not gaming. Just for a better experience while also being able to keep the technology with me forever until a better alternative and even better technology pops up. I've been one to get things right on the first go, so I do want to make sure that I make a good choice.

    Also I realised that a hall effect keyboard would solve all my problems, but being hall effect triggered, the price is too high to manufacture so they are well out of my budget.

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    Webmaster brent012's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Why not buckling spring/model m if not for gaming? They are widely considered the best typing keyboard.

    For comfort, I think the best you can get without having something radical are the Microsoft ergonomic keyboards. But they don't sell a mechanical version and a lot of people don't like the layout.

    Probably just go with something with Cherry MX Browns like astro suggested. I think the ducky shine is a bit of a novelty, but the ducky keyboards are supposedly good. Check out MechKB, they have a big range - can always shop around afterwards. I'd stay away from any of the gaming focussed keyboards, like the Razer and Corsair keyboards. They seem to have a lot of novelty features and cut costs on the switches (I.e. Razer use cherry copies, some Corsair keyboards use rubber domes on certain keys)
    ~

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    Junior Member seremify007's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    All this terminology in the keyboard space is far outside my realm of knowledge lol... is this just aimed at making the typing experience more pleasant? More comfortable? Improve speed/accuracy?

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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by brent012 View Post
    I think razer use cherry mx clones in all their keyboards now.
    ;(, so what companies do not use clones nowadays?

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    Rambling Spirit astroman's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by seremify007 View Post
    All this terminology in the keyboard space is far outside my realm of knowledge lol... is this just aimed at making the typing experience more pleasant? More comfortable? Improve speed/accuracy?
    all, have u ever touched a mechanical keyboard? It is an orgasm for your fingers.

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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by Flop21 View Post
    Get a keyboard with one of those circle volume things. Where you can move it clock wise or anti-clockwise to turn your volume up or down respectively.

    Seriously the best thing ever.
    Is that for when someone walks in on you
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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by obliviousninja View Post
    Is that for when someone walks in on you
    No? She just likes playing with the knobs.

    trollface.jpg

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by brent012 View Post
    Why not buckling spring/model m if not for gaming? They are widely considered the best typing keyboard.

    For comfort, I think the best you can get without having something radical are the Microsoft ergonomic keyboards. But they don't sell a mechanical version and a lot of people don't like the layout.

    Probably just go with something with Cherry MX Browns like astro suggested. I think the ducky shine is a bit of a novelty, but the ducky keyboards are supposedly good. Check out MechKB, they have a big range - can always shop around afterwards. I'd stay away from any of the gaming focussed keyboards, like the Razer and Corsair keyboards. They seem to have a lot of novelty features and cut costs on the switches (I.e. Razer use cherry copies, some Corsair keyboards use rubber domes on certain keys)
    Do the buckling spring keys require a lot of force to be applied to them? I find that the most annoying actually in terms of comfort.

    I'm also not sure of what to expect with a buckling as I've never tried one before. I really want to demo one out though.

    Brown switch seems a bit too soft when I tried it. Might go for blue/white/green.

    Quote Originally Posted by seremify007 View Post
    All this terminology in the keyboard space is far outside my realm of knowledge lol... is this just aimed at making the typing experience more pleasant? More comfortable? Improve speed/accuracy?
    Pretty much all. I've come across a few issues with my current membrane keyboard with key rollover and it isn't all that comfortable either.. Also, my reason behind PS/2 is that it comes in handy when experiencing lag (which won't be something that will occur on my current machine, but I'm saving it for a rainy day when I may need it for a different computer.

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    Rambling Spirit astroman's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    ad look here, ur life will be much simpler and post ur questions here too, they are all much more experienced and can provide for ur specific needs
    https://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalK...oard_overviews

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    Re: Keyboards

    What's your WPM? Do you want to increase it or are you content with what it is at the moment? Something I was thinking about last time I bought a new keyboard.

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Quote Originally Posted by AAEldar View Post
    What's your WPM? Do you want to increase it or are you content with what it is at the moment? Something I was thinking about last time I bought a new keyboard.
    Currently around 50 to 60 because I don't use my right hand properly (in a process of refining how I use my right hand to type right now). I am looking to increase it a bit but I still want comfort to take a higher priority.

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Ended up with strix tactic cherry mx brown switch almost 6 months later.

    I thought I would have loved the red switch in theory but found the brown switch to give the appropriate feedback for typing and determining between missed key strokes when I was trying it out.

    After a day of use I increased my WPM by about 20% lol.

    As for the requirements, I satisfied most of them and I got it at a bargain.

    They claim NKRO use through USB. I think it possibly uses an in built microcontroller to activate all the keys by interrupt internally, which then sends it over via USB until the computer acknowledges the transfer. That's one way I can think of getting NKRO with USB.
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    Re: Keyboards

    Is the red switch the clicky one. If so I can imagine it would get annoying.
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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Junior Member seremify007's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    Old thread but I wonder how you are finding your mechanical keyboard a few months later. I keep looking at these but think I can't figure out when I'd use it- the office would complain because it's noisy (i don't like the quiet ones anyway) and at home I don't do much typing... but what can I say, I game using a Surface pro type cover.

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    Premium Member anomalousdecay's Avatar
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    Re: Keyboards

    It's alright. My WPM improved a tiny bit.

    Ergonomics are awesome.

    I still bash the keys though which is bad.

    Most annoying thing is that it's keys end up roughly one column thinner in total compared to most keyboards publically used so as soon as I use a different keyboard, all my typing is incorrect for the first 5 minutes of use.

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