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17/8/2015 4:38:41
Home away from home

So I bought a couple of mechanical keyboards...

I've wanted a mechanical keyboard for ages (specifically, a tenkeyless design without the number pad, as both my home and work desks are small).

But they are pretty hard to get in Thailand, so I ended up buying a Ducky Zero online (red switches, for gaming) and a CM Storm Rapid-i (blue switches) for work (I actually wanted brown switches but you sometimes you just have to take what you can get in Thailand). Overall I prefer the red switches for gaming and general use, these are the smooth 'non clicky' ones.

The blue switches are meant to be better for typing, as they have an audible 'click' when activated and a point of resistance, so you know if a key has been actuated or not. But frankly if you can touch type at a reasonable speed this is pointless, as you'll have two or three fingers coming down at any point in time so it doesn't help, and actually I find the extra resistance of the keys fatiguing.

But where it *does* help, and the reason I am writing this apparently otherwise random post, is in programming. You aren't typing full tilt when programming and have to stretch to hit keys you don't normally use much in general typing. Here the blue switch feedback is actually useful. I am finding I make fewer errors (because I am more aware of errors) using the blue keys.

A mechanical keyboard feels nice but it doesn't help you type faster by the way. I actually type a lot faster on laptop style and chicklet keyboards, because the keys have very little distance to travel.

17/8/2015 4:50:05

Re: So I bought a couple of mechanical keyboards...

I already noticed that there are large differences in keyboards, but never thought about going in such details about the technology behind the keys (switches, what is better and what isn't - great stuff). Outside of Thailand, what would you recommend (best and perhaps an affordable - not necessarily cheap - is be appreciated?


Me on Ohloh

17/8/2015 19:54:34
Home away from home

Re: So I bought a couple of mechanical keyboards...

I think I like the CM Storm Rapid-i slightly better, but really they are very similar in construction quality and you'll be happy with either of them (you could beat off a zombie attack with these things, they are that solid).

For programming or slow typing, I would say get brown switches (like a blue but without the noise). If you want a keyboard to do fast typing or a bit of everything (especially gaming) red switches are easier on the fingers.

There is also a CM Storm Rapid, which doesn't have LEDs under the keys (which makes it a lot cheaper). You don't need LEDs, but if you do get them pick white ones - it does help to highlight the lettering on the keyboard without being obtrusive. My Ducky has blue LEDs and I find them hard to look at / a bit annoying so I just turn them off.

If you do get a mechanical keyboard I suggest to make sure it comes with Cherry switches. Apparently the patent recently expired so a lot of inferior copies are starting to appear - from what I've read they don't have the same quality control so the force needed to actuate each key varies a bit, which can be annoying.

27/8/2015 14:52:29
Home away from home

Re: So I bought a couple of mechanical keyboards...

I've just got a nice Corsair K65 led keyboard. Flashy effects, but a very nice keyboard to use compared to my laptops keyboard.

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