Mecanical switch keyboards.
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  1. #1
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    Mechanical switch keyboards.

    For a couple of years I have been using a clone keyboard with dome membrane keys. Is any one on this forum using the mechanical keyboard devices?

    Many years ago I started out with an IBMPC mechanical keyboard back in the "DOS" days. Unfortunately, that keyboard's plug was incompatible with either ps2 or usb. However, i considered it an ideal keyboard as I touchtype.

    Mechanical keyboard prices are are competing with dome membrane based keyboards. I am considering the purchase of the former. Is it worth doing? The plus side -- keytops are lit, the negative side, typing is noisy. I read that some purchasers put a small elastic donut around the keytop to deaden the sound.

    Big Box stores around here do not carry those mechanical keyboards. I would obtain one from Amazon or Newegg.
    Last edited by lsatenstein; 3rd February 2018 at 03:11 AM. Reason: lite ->lit,
    Leslie in Montreal

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  2. #2
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    Big Box stores around here do not carry those mechanical keyboards. I would obtain one from Amazon or Newegg.
    If you are Canadian you shouldn't be buying your hardware in Big Box stores such as Best Buy. The Canada Computers chain of computer hardware dealers has a good selection of mechanical keyboards, at least the ones located in Ottawa. One of the locations has a great display where you can type on several mechanical keyboards to test the feel and noise. There are four locations in the Montreal area. I remember from other posts your referring to Big Box stores. There are much better places to buy hardware.

    The following page shows 33 mechanical gaming keyboards made by Corsair. These are just the Corsair models.

    http://www.canadacomputers.com/searc...ds&mfr=CORSAIR

    The plus side -- keytops are lite, the negative side, typing is noisy. I read that some purchasers put a small elastic donut around the keytop to deaden the sound.
    There is actually a full range of tactile feel and noisiness. There are different types of Cherry MX switches such as Brown, Red, Blue.

    http://www.keyboardco.com/blog/index...ical-switches/

    Silent Red (Pink) switches are quieter variants of the linear MX Red switch, with rubber pieces inside that dampen the sound of the switch returning to its default position. The actuation force remains 45 cN.

  3. #3
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    The mechanical keyboards that are priced near the same as membrane usually use clones of Cherry MX switches instead of the genuine article. Some people cannot tell the difference but I'd second doing what Amiga recommends and going to one of the Canada Computer stores to try out different keyboards if they allow that in your nearest store. Phone them first rather than having a wasted trip.

  4. #4
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    On Amazon, the reviews of "these" keyboards were numerous and very positive. The Canadian Amazon price is $48.00 vs CC's price of $140.00

    By the way, Amiga, thanks for the reminder. My most recent purchase of a 1 terrabyte drive was from CC.

    When I was twelve or thirteen, someone gave me an old Remington Typewriter. I got a "Teach your self to type" book along with it.
    I spent the summer teaching my self to type using that book and that Remington.

    What I like with the Remington, was the keytop row hight. There appeared to be almost one/half inch elevation difference between rows. That made it very easy to find the home keys (F and J), and to type with few errors. Current technology has the keyboard at an angle. but all keys are of the same height. Its just not the same.
    Leslie in Montreal

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  5. #5
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    On Amazon, the reviews of "these" keyboards were numerous and very positive. The Canadian Amazon price is $48.00 vs CC's price of $140.00
    I doubt the $48 was for a Corsair keyboard. The link I gave was for Corsair models only. I had a look at Canadian Amazon and it was filled with no name brands. The two Corsairs were $100 and $115.

  6. #6
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    My experience is that what you get is "the luck of the draw". I bought Logitech wireless pair and the keyboard was awful. The keys were rubbing in their channel. I currently use a wired keyboard (membrane), and I am looking for the "Canadian English/Canadian French" layout device.
    True Canadian keyboards are known as PC105, and they have one additional key between the Z and the left shift key as shown.
    French « »° « Français » quotations.
    English« »°
    Leslie in Montreal

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  7. #7
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    My experience is that what you get is "the luck of the draw". I bought Logitech wireless pair and the keyboard was awful. The keys were rubbing in their channel.
    It is not "the luck of the draw". It is you get what you pay for. A $150-200 mechanical keyboard from Corsair or CoolerMaster is in another class mechanically and in build quality than a cheap Logitech wireless pair. Until you have owned something like that your experience is incomplete. I have a Logitech wireless solo keyboard and have tried out mechanical ones at CC. There is no comparison in feel.

    but I'd second doing what Amiga recommends and going to one of the Canada Computer stores to try out different keyboards if they allow that in your nearest store.
    If the keyboards are open out on display you can "type" on them as you wish. However they are usually not connected to anything. Occasionally a mechanical keyboard is connected to a display computer so you can actually test type and see results on screen. There was one Cherry MX model connected at a CC location which I tried out. If there was an open display model you were interested in you could ask to have it connected to a display computer to test it out. You couldn't do this online.

  8. #8
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    Hi amiga
    I removed my French Canadian Keyboard and put in a US layout one that I had hanging around. I know that CC opened a store in downtown Montreal. Store prices are higher then their web store prices. However, if I can test a keyboard and find one to my liking, I will buy one from their website.
    Leslie in Montreal

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  9. #9
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    I am wanting a longer travel keypress for a mechanical keyboard. I found a company that makes an IBM PC clone with buckling spring keyswitches. All other mechanical keyboards use Cherry Switches. One keyboard company uses a photocell switch. The light path is toggled with this design.

    One advantage of a mechanical keyboard is the character registration. With a membrane switch, the dimple of the membrane collapses before the key hits bottom, but the key is registered only when the key hits bottom.

    If you touch type, the result can be (as happens to me) dropped characters.
    So far, for North America, I have not seen PC105 keyboards being marketed. PC105 is for the Canadian dual English/Canadian French layouts. Missing is the keytop between the left shift and the Z key. Refer to the attached pdf file for the layout.

    Re costs. Gaming keyboards in Montreal as mentioned are available, run to two hundred plus Canadian dollars. The Chinese alternatives are a quarter to one third of that Canadian price. The decision is just one of trust.
    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by lsatenstein; 3rd February 2018 at 03:19 AM.
    Leslie in Montreal

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  10. #10
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    I just mail-ordered a clickety-clack Mechanical Keyboard. It is the successor to the IBM keyboard which I loved. Unfortunately, I won't be using this keyboard near the bedroom. It noisy and it uses a buckling spring action.

    Dome action keyboards, by design, have the dome click before the key hits the the contacts to register the keypress. If you are a moderate to fast touch-typist, you are quite likely to occasionally miss a character due to rapid typing. With the mechanical keyboard, the noise is the sound of the contact being made. Missing a character is less likely.

    Furthermore, the key travel distance for the IBM mechanical keyboard clone is about 60 millimeters (1/4th of an inch) before registering. With my dome keyboard, I noticed that travel distance is less, which results in my occasional entry of random characters. The random character is usually the entry of an adjacent key. Perhaps that's just me. I will post my experience with the new purchase when I have a few days of use.
    Leslie in Montreal

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  11. #11
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    Re: Mecanical switch keyboards.

    Well, my IBM-PC type keyboard with the buckling key switches arrived. I am swooning .

    Its a great Mechanical keyboard. Some differences I noticed.
    1) There is a gap between each key,
    2) each key is truly independent, and individual.
    3)The keytops are deep dish shaped, as opposed to been flat.
    4) Your fingers rest inside the keytop, as opposed to being on top.
    5) The key "click" (toggle) is both the tactile feedback and the sound of the contact being made,
    6 It's heavy. The base is solid metal, with a fibre type plastic on the top.
    7) Its based on the buckling spring action.

    Dome keyboard.
    1) On most keyboards, the dome/membrane keyboard toggles before the key arrives down to the contacts. There is no guarantee of character registration unless you press firmly.
    2) If you touch-type, your fingers normally stop pressing when you detect the key's toggle feedback. Again, that does not guarantee a character is registered.
    3) I various brands of membrane keyboards and I have not had one where the surface of the keytop was concave and you fingers rested therein.

    I am already noticing fewer typing errors. Am I being extra cautious or is it the design, based on ergonomic studies.

    Mechanical keyboards are being promoted for gamers. Who says that programmers and bloggers are not entitled to own one too. This is where there is a gif showing the key action. I bought my keyboard direct from the manufacturer, but you can get that brand of keyboard from the better computer stores or Amazon/Newegg.

    https://kotaku.com/unicomp-ultra-classic-keyboard-review-the-good-old-key-1793810059
    .
    .
    Leslie in Montreal

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