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IBM Input Devices Hardware

Cherry's New Keyboard Switches Emulate IBM Model M Feel 298

Posted by timothy
from the color-me-green-with-skepticism dept.
crookedvulture writes "Slashdot has already covered the four main flavors of Cherry MX mechanical key switches: red, black, blue, and brown. Now, there's a green MX variant that emulates the feel of the buckling spring switches in old-school IBM Model M keyboards. The green switches combine tactile feedback, an audible click, and a stiff spring that requires 80g of actuation force. They're a stiffer version of the MX blues that more closely matches the characteristics of IBM's buckling spring design. Previously reserved for use with space bars, the green switches have now taken over an entire Cooler Master keyboard. And, unlike the old Model M and contemporary copycats, the new CM Storm Trigger has modern conveniences like an integrated USB hub, LED backlighting, and programmable macros." I've had my hopes raised and then dashed by some other keyboards whose makers promised Model M feel, so I'll believe it when I feel and hear it.
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Cherry's New Keyboard Switches Emulate IBM Model M Feel

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  • by dickens (31040) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:19PM (#43109283) Homepage

    I would dearly love buckling spring keys but still the "bend" of my MS "natural" that I have gotten so used to. I can still type faster on a model M - I have several, but the ergo keyboards are so much better for my beat up wrists.

    • by EvanED (569694) <evaned@ g m a i l.com> on Thursday March 07, 2013 @06:02PM (#43109853)

      Also "reverse tilt" please! That's being able to prop up the front of the keyboard. The only remotely normal keyboard (e.g. not one of those Kinesis things) that I know that has that built in is the MS Natural 4000. I've bought a few of those and they're good, but it'd be nice to have more options. The reverse tilt is basically a killer feature for me.

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Here you go [kinesis-ergo.com]

      They even have two different styles of mechanical keys to choose between, Cherry Red or Cherry Brown.

    • by MasseKid (1294554)
      Am I the only one who read that as "Ok now how about an Ego version"?
    • You want low activation force on an ergonomic keyboard. Hence rubber dome, low force cherry switches, scissor switches, that sort of thing. High force click switches are bad for ergonomic because of how hard you have to punch the keys. They may be "geek cool" but ergonomic they are not.

      If you want a mechanical ergonomic keyboard look at Kinesis or TrulyErgo. Personally I like Kinesis' Freestyle 2, though it is not mechanical switches.

      They are all low force switches though, since that is what is good for erg

      • by fyngyrz (762201) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @09:29PM (#43111997) Homepage Journal

        Low force may be good for ergonomics -- basically coddling a damaged wrist -- but it's terrible for healthy people actually trying to type well. Modern squishy keyboards create terrible typists. The worst are laptop keyboards (for instance, first thing I do with my macbook pro when I set it up for use is plug a Matias tactile pro 3 into it.) Apple makes the absolute worst keyboards out there, nightmares from the chiclet age.

        If you write for a living, as I do, you need a decent keyboard, and by that, I do not mean an "ergonomic" one. If your wrists are that bad, I'm sorry for you, but you'll never be a really effective typist. With squish comes missed keys, double presses, constant backing up for errors and overall low typing speeds. If one is a "hunt and pecker", who mostly lives by the mouse (as many are) that's fine, but if you write all day, every day... it's just not.

        • by Sycraft-fu (314770) on Friday March 08, 2013 @03:39AM (#43113681)

          As Wikipedia likes to say [citation needed]. I can full well understand wanting a good keyboard, but I'd need some actual evidence that high activation force means good. Cherry switches can do a nice mechanical action with a positive bump AND low activation force.

          Also you may want to be a little careful. Perhaps your body is structured such that no form of RSI will ever affect you, but probably not. Most people have a threshold where repetitive motion in an unergonomic form will cause a problem at some point. If you spend all your time typing and do so on a straight, high force, clickey keyboard, well you may discover that you no longer have that option later in life. You'll get some pain and numbness, then it'll get worse, then you'll start to lose range of motion and so on and it'll get worse, and worse until you either deal with it, or you are disabled.

          Ergonomics aren't about "coddling", as though if you just toughened up and dealt wit it things would get better, they are about preventing problems. You ignore proper ergonomics at your own risk.

          I'd suggest you pick up Dr. Emil Pascarelli's book "Repetitive Strain Injury" and educate yourself on it if you do indeed type "all day, every day" as you say. It is good information, and has several pages of references to journal articles on the subject.

          My concern with good keyboards, desks, chairs, etc is not if I can be an "effective" typist by whatever artificial standard you've set in your head. It is if I can continue to use computers regularly for my whole career without becoming disabled. I already have had the problems of basic RSI so it is something I'm quite aware of. You should get yourself aware of it, given that your use sounds pretty intense, and deal with it BEFORE it is a problem.

          Or, you can try and be a tough guy, and then end up at 40 or 50 crying because you can't work, have difficulty lifting a cup to your mouth, etc (it really can get that bad) because you thought you knew the One True Way(tm) to be a typist.

        • If you write for a living, as I do, you need a decent keyboard, and by that, I do not mean an "ergonomic" one. If your wrists are that bad, I'm sorry for you, but you'll never be a really effective typist. With squish comes missed keys, double presses, constant backing up for errors and overall low typing speeds.

          I've seen a few surveys that indicate that most writers use standard keyboards; just because you weren't able to transition from the old mechanical style well enough to type effectively doesn't mean that most people have that problem. It's all a matter of what the individual is used to: I can only type a fraction as quickly or accurately on my old mechanical keyboards (Apple IIgs ADB & IBM Model M) as I do on the newer technology despite having spent the second half of my teens on those older keyboards

  • by maztuhblastah (745586) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:20PM (#43109293) Journal

    As opposed to actual Model Ms which are still made. With the same switch design. By many of the same workers. On the same machines.

    http://www.unicomp.com/ [unicomp.com]

    Why bother "emulating" the buckling spring feel when you can get a brand new keyboard with real buckling springs. Oh, and it's made in the USA too!

    (Also, they have keyboard layouts that offer the Ctrl key in the correct location. 'cause it's about damn time...)

    • by h4rr4r (612664) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:22PM (#43109323)

      1000 fake modpoints to you sir. You win an internet.

      Or just buy a used model M. All the ones ever made likely still work. Some of them might be in the dump but even those likely still work.

      Typed on a keyboard born on 1990-07-17.

      • by anagama (611277)

        Ha. Gotcha beat: 06Nov1989

        • by Nimey (114278)

          12 Feb 1988, sonny.

          • by Mashiki (184564)

            Jan 04 1986, plus I've got an old 83 key F series from June 10 1981 with the buckling spring. Yeah they last forever, sadly the F series just won't work even with an adapter anymore and has been retired to my machine shop. Which is okay, since my shop is a rather nasty place for computer hardware and the more durable the better, I used to wear out standard keyboards every few months.

      • Indeed, my current keyboard is dated from '85. They really do just never wear out, although skins on the esc and F12 keys seem to have gone AWOL...

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          I have two F8s and no F7 because of that.

        • by Nadaka (224565)

          I beg to differ, I replaced my model M recently because the WASD keys were worn enough to have holes through their surface. I doubt that the sidewinder with cherry mx blues will last as long, but its not a bad feel, and unlike any of the new Model M's it has back lighting which is a feature that I also wanted.

      • by nebular (76369)

        I have a hell of a time finding Model M keyboards. The dump is not an option, one something hits their dumpsters they are not legally allowed to let anyone have it back, or even touch it. Liability stuff. Electronic waste is a bit better, but since I've started speaking with them, they haven't shown up. Computer junk shops don't exist in my area anymore, they've either folded, or got rid of the old and focused on new systems and repair. On ebay they regularly end up going for $50-$100 and shipping for me bu

      • by jjeffries (17675)

        I actually have a broken one--it fell off of my desk and whacked into a leg of my chair, and after that a cluster of keys stopped working.

        That's ok though, I just went and got another one out of my hoard, and will get around to opening up that fallen one some day... I have several more spares so that should be a lifetime supply, even if I live for a very long time.

        Typed on a model M, 1992-07-31.

      • by AdamWill (604569)

        "Or just buy a used model M. All the ones ever made likely still work. Some of them might be in the dump but even those likely still work."

        Not the one I spilled a Coke on. If the Model M's ever rise up against their human masters, bring a fridge pack with you.

    • by Anonymous Coward

      I bought one of those Unicomp keyboards and I was very disappointed with the build quality. It looks like they just made a cheap plastic housing for the keyboard but there was none of the heft of an original IBM model M.

      • This evangelized "IBM Model M" keyboard is something like "Gibson Les Paul Custom 1968" guitar for typists and developers.. huh?
        • by Nadaka (224565) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @06:09PM (#43110003)

          Its a keyboard you can beat a man to death with, and still be perfectly usable as a keyboard.

        • by Molochi (555357)

          Yeah pretty much. I think they mostly mentioned because of their relatively indestructible construction. People that had other keyboards that they maybe liked better than anything newer were forced to buy, use, and adapt to the new crap eventually.

          I don't know about old vs new guitar quality, but the Model M holds alot of the same reverence as a pre-'64 Winchester 70 for many of the same reasons

           

      • The innards are identical (ok, except for the mcu since I guess they had to swap that out to get usb support). It's just less heavy because they reduced the size of the case and removed some excess material.

        The only dodgy unicomp thing is the one with the built in pointing stick. It's a first or second gen trackpoint, or a clone, and really not very useful. And the mouse buttons are simple contact foil things, so they wear out after 2-3 years and you can't replace them without taking the keyboard completely

      • by draconx (1643235)

        I bought one of those Unicomp keyboards and I was very disappointed with the build quality. It looks like they just made a cheap plastic housing for the keyboard but there was none of the heft of an original IBM model M.

        I have a Unicomp SpaceSaver 104 and a Customizer 104. I would not buy the Customizer again; it has all of the bulk of the classic Model M without the same build quality. On the other hand, I love the SpaceSaver -- while it's likely not as effective for self-defense as the classic Model M is, I love typing on this as much as my ~30yr old IBM keyboard (which still works great!), and it uses less desk space, and is natively USB. It also doesn't feel as flimsy as the Customizer does, probably simply due to t

    • by Elbereth (58257)

      I was actually pleasantly surprised by their prices. $79 really isn't all that bad. I remember these keyboards costing more than that, back in the 1980s, and inflation means that this is actually a huge bargain. Then again, everything but the Commodore 64 was overpriced as hell, back in those days.

      • by drinkypoo (153816)

        I remember these keyboards costing more than that, back in the 1980s, and inflation means that this is actually a huge bargain.

        It could mean that, or it could mean that the IBM logo sticker cost you eighty bucks.

    • by X0563511 (793323) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:32PM (#43109457) Homepage Journal

      Worst. Site. Ever.

      I can't even see what the thing looks like from those thumbnails, and nowhere is there an explanation as to what "Classic 104" is vs "Ultra 104" and the like.

      Thanks, I'll stick with my Das Keyboard.

    • They're rather good but not the same as a vintage M, even the lexmark ones. The caps aren't finished as nice, the plastic feels cheaper and, the ones I've tried anyway, have a lighter touch.
    • by Zobeid (314469)

      If you RTFA, it does mention the Unicomps and give a reason for preferring the CM Storm Trigger. To wit: "Because, let's be honest: the Model M is not a pretty keyboard, and its Unicomp successors also won't be winning any beauty pageants. None of those keyboards have the same array of gamer-friendly features, like macro keys, as Cooler Master's offering, either."

      I have a recent Model M here (in the black, Mac-optimized version) and I like it a lot. I'm no die-hard gamer, don't need macros, and I don't ent

    • I purchased a Unicomp "Linux" keyboard. I stopped using it after a few months. It's PS2 not USB and I had roll-over issues.

      I replaced it with the Newegg Rosewill model. I'm happy with it but I'd like back-lighting in my next "Model M clone".

      Does anyone know of a Bluetooth Model M clone?

      • by Cinder6 (894572)

        The best-seeming Bluetooth mechanical keyboard I've found is the KBtalKing Pro [kbtalkingusa.com]. There are a few caveats:

        1. $179.
        2. At least when they first came out, they only had red switches, which I dislike. At the moment, you can choose blue, brown, and red, though; not sure if that is permanent.
        3. I haven't been able to confirm rollover. I read that a different Bluetooth keyboard only had 2KRO (which I believe matches the Model M, incidentally); I'm not sure if that's a limitation of going wireless or if it was just a

    • by mwvdlee (775178)

      The only thing against this is that Unicomp seems to try it's best to make the keyboard look as ugly and cheap as possible.
      They are quite successful at it.

    • by hairyfeet (841228)
      Or hell if you want a classic Model M just go to your local mom & pop PC shop, we usually have a couple stashed and are pretty reasonable about the prices, especially if you BS with us a little while because we love having someone that can talk shop. I got a couple guys that work maintenance in all the local government and small office buildings and they are under strict orders to make sure any "clicky clack" keyboards end up coming my way. Both myself and my boys are all using classic clicky clacks, th
    • by countach (534280)

      I don't understand the attraction of those old IBMish keyboards. You wore out your fingers with all the pressure they take to type on, and you feel self conscious typing on them because they're so noisy. What really is the attraction?

      • by vux984 (928602)

        I don't understand the attraction of those old IBMish keyboards. You wore out your fingers with all the pressure they take to type on, and you feel self conscious typing on them because they're so noisy. What really is the attraction?

        Well, they were built like tanks which is good. And the keyboard typing doesn't have a "mushy" feel to it, which is also good.

        But beyond that I agree with you. They are too noisy and heavy for my taste. I guess they appeal to the guy who drives around an old 1970s small block c

      • by Joce640k (829181)

        I don't understand the attraction of those old IBMish keyboards. You wore out your fingers with all the pressure they take to type on, and you feel self conscious typing on them because they're so noisy. What really is the attraction?

        You probably think Apple makes nice computers.

    • I have two of them. One is USB, all black, with Unix layout (ctrl and esc in the right places). With *blank* keys except for 4 green keys where HJKL go.
      Das Keyboard looks like a poor imitation of my new keyboard.

      I think the only real thing I want from Unicomp is a Model M style keyboard but with the layout and size of the Happy Hacker.

  • We're trying to emulate keyboards from the 80s now?

    • Re:So... (Score:5, Insightful)

      by h4rr4r (612664) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:24PM (#43109349)

      Yes, because they are the best ever made.

      Things that are good people still want. I also have a cast iron pan in my kitchen, am I emulating the second century BC or just using a good tool?

      • Re:So... (Score:5, Informative)

        by K. S. Kyosuke (729550) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:34PM (#43109503)

        I also have a cast iron pan in my kitchen, am I emulating the second century BC or just using a good tool?

        No, you're not, unless you're Chinese. Only the Chinese had cast iron in the second century BCE.

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          So maybe I am white but emulating a second century BC chinese person?

          BCE makes me a sad Atheist.

          • BCE makes me a sad Atheist.

            It's a simple matter of historical accuracy. BCE/CE makes perfect sense, because Dionysius Exiguus miscounted. We have 2013 CE now, and the most likely AD date seems to be 2020. I would feel stupid if someone forced me to say "Christ was born five/six/seven [choose according to your preferences] years Before Christ". Wouldn't you?

            • by h4rr4r (612664)

              Still sounds wrong.

              Besides that seems like an even crappier way to start a calendar. Because some old idiot screwed up.

              We should just switch to 64bit unix time.

              • Still sounds wrong.

                Why?

                Besides that seems like an even crappier way to start a calendar. Because some old idiot screwed up.

                As far as I can tell, most calendars started counting from either a nonsensical or otherwise meaningless date. How does that differentiate them from the Western calendar?

                • by h4rr4r (612664)

                  Because it seems wrong. BCE sounds like tacking an E on keep some idiot happy.

                  Unix time fits that while being a given time. Using some date that is a mistake without admitting it seems wrong.

        • by istartedi (132515)

          Only the Chinese had cast iron in the second century BCE.

          Not so fast [wikipedia.org]

      • by Synerg1y (2169962)

        but why not just get the original? All that's going on here is cooler master is trying to emulate IBM's model M, which btw is still available. I've typed on the M before, and while it's not bad and has a good feel, I'll take the technology of my g19 over that any day. In fact, I almost feel like modern mechanical keyboards are being dumbed down in features and raised in price. I can't discern why besides marketing / hype.

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          I have no idea. I only have original Model Ms.

          Is that contraption even mechanical?

        • Logitech G19? As far as membrane keyboards go, that's one of the worst I've tried, on par with sub-20 buck bargain bin crap.

          There're plenty of mechanical keyboards with modern features (the extra screen that I think the G19 has is a gimmick, and software support never got far). The price is higher because Cherry MX switches are inevitably more expensive because they're more complex than a simple scissor switch and membrane, plus the premium that can be charged for a better keyboard.

          Besides, using Cherry MX

          • by Synerg1y (2169962)

            It's beyond me why you'd buy a keyboard just to changes the switches later, especially since with a mechanical keyboard as far as marketing goes, you're paying for more expensive switches... much more.

            If you're comparing a g19 to a $20 keyboard, you obviously aren't fast enough to encounter ghosting, so my needs for a keyboard are more advanced than yours.

            The g19's screen is mainly for gaming, or a glorified cpu monitor, or clock.

            Outside of the look and feel, I've always understood mechanical keyboards to b

      • Re:So... (Score:5, Interesting)

        by Giant Electronic Bra (1229876) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:56PM (#43109757)

        So true, 8" cast iron skillet belonged to my grandmother, it really shows no signs of wear that a good wire brushing of the outside surface won't fix. Probably good for a couple hundred years of use, easily. No stickier than your average 'no-stick' thing that even if you pay $100 bucks for it will last 2 years tops.

        Older ain't better, but it ain't worse either.

        • by h4rr4r (612664)

          I have some enameled pans that are pretty no stick as well. Better suited to some tasks since cast stays hot once its hot and hates to change temp. I guess I could try carbon steel as well.

  • Backlit keyboard? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by h4rr4r (612664) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:27PM (#43109389)

    Why would a keyboard need lights?

    Who looks at them? You look at the monitor and type on the keyboard.

    • I run ledd on my Linux box and have it blink whenever I need to compile something, you insensitive clod!

    • And occasionally need to re-home your fingers after taking them off the keyboard. I find a quick glance down more effective than feeling around for the little home-row bumps.

    • by Synerg1y (2169962)

      Backlight is absolutely mandatory for me so i can find my asdf's from improper form, which is anything except when I'm sitting staring directly at the computer.... the original goal however was that I couldn't find the asdf keys in the dark, also sometimes from improper form. It's been years since I've had that problem, but I actually attribute the backlighting to the muscle memory I've developed since to finding those keys.

  • by Coopjust (872796)
    MX Greens have been used with MX Blue switches for a while. Usually the only green switch on the keyboard is the spacebar, it's meant to be a stronger (heavier, requiring more actuation force) version of the blue for that purpose.

    The use of MX Greens for an entire keyboard is new though.

    As others indicated, you can buy a Unicomp if you want a "real Model M" anyways. The click is not as tactile and the feel from the tactility is different between buckling springs and MX switches (a click leaf is differ
  • by Grumpinuts (1272216) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:33PM (#43109471)
    .......This was the best keyboard they ever made... http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:IBM-3279.jpg [wikimedia.org] One of the first products I ever worked on, over 30 years ago.
    • . . . and that keyboard was made out of metal! If you look at the picture closely, you will see small black button underneath the space bar in the middle. That opened up a flap with a flip book of secret decoder instructions for the keyboard . . .

    • by Misagon (1135) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @06:04PM (#43109895)
      I would love to try one of these beam-spring keyboards sometime. I have heard that they are awesome.

      Apparently, the beam-spring was designed to emulate the feel of the IBM Selectric typewriter.
      ... and the buckling spring switches in the Model M were designed to be a lower-cost version that achieved the same feel, except that they weren't as good.
      ... and the clicky Cherry MX switches were made to emulate the feel of the buckling springs, except that they weren't as good.
      ...
  • Why buy a copycat? (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TubeSteak (669689) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:33PM (#43109473) Journal

    Why purchase an imitator when you can buy the original âoeModel Mâ. We have produced the buckling spring âoeClickâ keyboard for IBM and thousands of discriminating users worldwide for 15 yearsâ¦. Join the many that have made the switch to a much more accurate data entry alternative.

    http://www.pckeyboard.com/ [pckeyboard.com]

    IBM originally contracted out their keyboards to Lexmark and, when the contract ran out, Lexmark employees bought the rights and formed Unicomp.

  • by Leslie43 (1592315) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:34PM (#43109489)
    It's been used in spacebars on Cherry Mx Blue keyboards for a while, just not an entire keyboard.

    This is a Cherry Mx Blue switch with a stiffer spring, nothing more. Enthusiasts have been making keyboards like this for a while now (which is where Cooler Master got the idea), and it most definitely does not replicate a model M feel or sound.

    If you want a Model M, buy a Model M or a Unicomp.
  • as others likely know, the model M was virtually indestructible.

    I have one from my old PS/2 model 50 that still gets 8+ hours a day of pounding.

  • by Misagon (1135) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @05:58PM (#43109787)

    Marketing on Slashdot again, huh... *sigh*

    The Cherry MX Green [deskthority.net] does not feel like a buckling spring from the Model F or Model M keyboards, really.
    While it is a stiff clicky switch, it is far less tactile, and the tactile point is different.
    The Buckling Spring [deskthority.net] on a IBM Model M or Model F has a slow progression in resistance followed by a sharp drop at the actuation point at around 2/3 - 3/4 way down the stroke.
    The Cherry MX Blue and Green have a small bump at the actuation point, which is higher up, at about 1/2-way down the stroke.

    As other posters have already written, the MX Green is just like a MX Blue [deskthority.net] with a stiffer spring. It was made to be used for the Space Bar on a keyboard that is otherwise populated with MX Blue.
    Compared to the Blue, with the Green's stiffer spring you tend to press harder on it and that diminishes the feel of the tactile bump somewhat.
    The Green has always been used as the space bar switch on Cherry's own keyboards with Blue switches. The only new thing is that it is used on a whole keyboard.
    Having a stiffer switch on the space bar is common. Ordinary rubber dome keyboards often come with coiled springs under the space bar to make it stiffer.

    If you want a Buckling Spring keyboard, you could buy a new Model M from Unicomp [pckeyboard.com]. They are built using the same machines and tooling that the old IBM keyboards were. They even cost less than many gaming keyboards with Cherry MX switches.

    BTW. This post was typed on a Dolch keyboard (Cherry G80-1813HFX) with Cherry MX Blue switches, except for the Green switch on the space bar.

  • by kimgkimg (957949) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @06:37PM (#43110357)
    Nothing beats the original... I said, 'NOTHING BEATS THE ORIGINAL!' (needed to shout over the keyclick noise...) ;-)
  • Do tell...

  • by Grayhand (2610049) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @07:04PM (#43110703)
    It's the main reason even on my Macs I use Microsoft or Logitech keyboards. Mac keyboards are like typing on a desktop. They actually keep getting worse over the years. I love the old feel of an IBM keyboard and miss the rock solid metal feel. I wear out a keyboard in about three months these days while the old IBMs would last years if not decades. I do agree with the I'll believe it when I feel it crowd but it does sound promising. For text typing there's nothing that beats a good ole stiff keyboard. My biggest complain over feel is the the cheapie printed keys. After three months the "A" is completely gone and several others are fading. After six months a third of the keys are hard to read. My touch typing skills are basic and they don't apply when you are doing graphics since I don't hold my hands in a typing position.
  • Model F (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Lemming Mark (849014)

    A couple of mentions of the Model F already but I think it's worth a dedicated post! My understanding is that the Model M (a keyboard before whose build quality, longevity and tactility modern keyboards quake in fear) originated as the cheaper, mass-market version of the older Model F keyboard. I have both a Model M and a Model F; I do find the key feel of the latter to be even nicer. It's also even louder and heavier - and I don't have one of the really big 122 key terminal variants.

    The Model M does act

  • Now all they need is a "natural" arrangement, and it'd be the perfect keyboard.

  • by unics (741003) on Thursday March 07, 2013 @08:08PM (#43111273)

    Good news! The Unicomp Keyboard uses the type-m switches. They bought the mfg rights to the type-m keyboard and they're proudly made right here in the United States of America! I am typing on my Unicomp Type-M keyboard right now and I love it.

    http://www.pckeyboard.com/ [pckeyboard.com]

    **Highly recommended for the type-m keyboard fan**

    • I have a customized Unicomp myself. Worth every penny and it is not made cheaply in China. It makes noise but so did the model M... I can't see this thing wearing out, but those cherry switches look like they would go before my springs. (I've heard claims of millions of clicks before... I've got two worn out mice to prove the numbers are not high enough.)

      Also, the springs in mine look like normal springs you could buy online somewhere (naturally, I took it apart upon getting it!) It'll be easy for the next

  • by RR (64484) on Friday March 08, 2013 @02:06AM (#43113367)

    You might get a good keyboard, but you're very likely to get something that doesn't work properly.

    Last week, I got a coupon for a Cooler Master keyboard with Cherry MX Blue switches. [newegg.com] It was a very good price, but then I looked at the reviews. Concentrating on the negative reviews, I saw mention of keyboards with one or two broken keys, and keyboards with delicate USB connectors that break, and keyboards that stop working entirely after one year, after one month, after one week. Sometimes the customer would RMA keyboards several times before getting a keyboard that worked reliably. This is not what I imagine when I read claims of "50 million life cycle."

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