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Hi,

I currently use a laptop, but recently purchased an external monitor.

It's pretty weird looking at a different screen most of the time but still using my laptop's chiclet keyboard, so I'm looking into getting a new keyboard.

First thing, I have never used a mechanical keyboard before.

From what I understand, I do not want Cherry MX Blacks, since they are really stiff, nor blues, since they are more intended for solely typing than for gaming too.

However, I do type a lot too, since I also am learning to program and will be using this keyboard for work purposes too.

Therefore, my initial thought was that I would want browns, since they are supposed to be a kind of inbetween option. However, I have also been told that reds are just as suitable for typing, but do not offer as much "tactile feedback" as browns - a term which I see thrown around a lot when talking about keyboards, but, frankly, I have no idea what it actually means.

Coming from a chiclet keyboard, I don't know if I'm used to having "tactile feedback" or not currently, lol - but I can currently touchtype at about 80-100wpm. 

 

I have found a non-mechanical keyboard I like the look of, namely the Razer DeathStalker. This is almost definitely what I'll get if I don't bother with going mechanical.

Otherwise, what kind of switch should I look for (red/brown are mainly what I'm thinking rn) and can you recommend any keyboards? Budget maximum probably around £90-100, but the lower the better. Currently, I'm looking at the Cooler Master Quick Fire XTI, the Corsair K70, Razer BlackWidow and Corsair Strafe.

I know that switches are very subjective, but I don't want to spend money on testing them or buying the wrong kind for me. Later this week/month I'll test Razer's own green switch (which I have seen, confusingly, compared to both Cherry MX blues and reds? o_O) on a friend's keyboard, to see if I like them.

 

I really want programmable keys and preferably the US layout (despite being from the UK :P), macro keys are a good extra and when it comes to lighting I don't really care since I'll be looking at the monitor not the keyboard.

 

Thanks

 

 

Edited by Sommanker

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

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1 hour ago, Sommanker said:

 

I have found a non-mechanical keyboard I like the look of, namely the Razer DeathStalker. This is almost definitely what I'll get if I don't bother with going mechanical.

 

Now tell me why I should get that over a mechanical keyboard? :P

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

Add me on steam (Sommanker) and Battle.net (Sommanker#2834) and Discord (Sommanker#1592). I play a multitude of other games.

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Using mechanical keyboard is either true love from first typing or true hate, u need to try it yourself first.

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Mhm

Ok, I'll wait to test that razer green switch keyboard I mentioned.

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

Add me on steam (Sommanker) and Battle.net (Sommanker#2834) and Discord (Sommanker#1592). I play a multitude of other games.

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I don't know about the UK, but at least in the US a lot of tech shops (Best Buy, Frys, etc.) have floor models of mechanical keyboards that you can try out.

 

There are several options for mechanical keyboards such as the old-school Model M(uses buckling springs) that is still considered the king by many.  The Compaq MX 11800 is an older Cherry MX Brown switch keyboard that can be had for cheap.  Those tend to be used, but mechanical keyboards last 50 million keystrokes, so longer than your lifetime in normal use.  Since red switches aren't tactile, a lot of people say they take some getting used to to understand the actuation point.

 

Macro keys are usually useful in games and professional programs like photoshop, but if you really want them, a lot of keyboard have them built in, but you can look into other solutions like AutoHotKey, a dedicated macro keyboard, or a DIY solution.  I personally find macro keys on a mouse more useful since I do a lot of web browsing- I have forward, back, refresh page, unclose closed tab, show all windows, make full screen, snap left, snap right.

 

As for the keys themselves, Cherry is the brand that has owned the patent for mechanical switches for years.  The patent recently expired so a lot of Chinese companies made knock-offs or their own version- Logitech's RomerG, Razer's Kailh, etc.  Generally, Cherry-branded switches are the most reliable and reputable, but a knock-off known as Gateron switches seem to have the originals beat.

 

Then there's the matter of o-rings.  These are optional accessories you can add to your KB for like a buck that makes it quieter to type on and changes the feel slightly.  I don't really like the feel of them on linear(non-tactile) keyboards like reds.

 

Head over to /r/mechanicalkeyboards for more help and opinions

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http://www.wasdkeyboards.com/index.php/wasd-6-key-cherry-mx-switch-tester.html

Buy this ok

 

But yes, it's worth the switch to mechanical, the feeling alone is so so good. Cherry browns are my go-to, I alternate between a Das Keyboard 4 and a Ducky Shine 4 and absolutely love both. If you want music controls on your board especially, go for the Das Keyboard 4 over anything else (it's also built like a tank, for bonus points).

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I have the Razer Dealthstalker Stealth edition, it's really nice if you don't like the 'clicky' noise a mechanical keyboard makes. I play LOTS of FPS games, which makes this keyboard more preferable since I don't have to hear the constant clicking when I maneuver around. In terms of life span, I purchased it at BestBuy back in 2012 and it still works perfectly

Edited by Iamthenumberonenub
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[06:59] (/p) Masive: Desire is a funny thing
[06:59] (/p) Masive: You'll want something, work for it
[06:59] (/p) Masive: But once you get it, you'll want more, or want something else
[06:59] (/p) Masive: You won't be satisfied

 

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I have the Razer Blackwidow ultimate, which was extremely clicky when i got it, but i O-ringed my caps to dampen noise. I love this thing, but regret not getting the chroma version

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5 minutes ago, CAFATT said:

I have the Razer Blackwidow ultimate, which was extremely clicky when i got it, but i O-ringed my caps to dampen noise. I love this thing, but regret not getting the chroma version

 

Sounds like you need some poor man's RGB

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I would advice against going with Razer/Logitech/Corsair/anything with the price of a "gaming" keyboard and a non-standard bottom row, in case you ever want to customize your keyboard further or just pay less for it. In case you don't care about either of those things, you're fine with any of them.

 

Hardware with those brands is not bad, it's just that you can get comparable/easier to upgrade hardware for a lower price. Non-standard bottom row refers to anything where the modifier buttons aren't all equal in size and 1,25u compared to regular button (which is 1u) and spacebar isn't 6,25u long. 

 

You mentioned looking at cooler master, which is a good brand. I know you can get new tenkeyless quickfires for like 70 USD, in that american ANSI layout that you are looking for. I don't know about the price of the fullsized variants.

 

You sound like you'd probably enjoy browns, as they are the most common go-to Cherry MX switch. You could also look at cheaper options online (like MagicForce keyboards) which are still great build quality but have the Gateron switches. Gateron is not only cheaper than Cherry, they feel smoother and are typically preferred over Cherry MX switches by those who have tried them. Gateron Brown = smoother Cherry MX brown with more noticeable tactile bump. I personally also enjoy using red switches, which are completely linear, but I find them harder to type on than browns. 

 

 

If you don't mind paying a similar price for an (imo) better quality product, go with a Ducky board. KUL, DASkeyboard, Varmilo and Filco are also great brands. WASDkeyboards have nice quality boards, and you get to order them with fully customizable keycap colors/printing but the keycaps themselves are not great quality. I don't know about the programming availability of all those products, but I do know you can easily (and affordably) modify a Cooler Master QFR to be fully programmable.

 

 

Personally I'm currently using a Vortex Pok3r, which is fully programmable and 60% size. But I get that you might want to have dedicated arrow keys or a numpad.

 

 

 

 

 

Edited by Sugared
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The razor deathstalker is pretty nice since it has low profile keys and hits the actuation point pretty fast. I use it for over 4years but decided to go mechanical as well. 

I now own a Corsair K70 which is built like a tank with its aluminum body, types great (I have cherry browns), has a ton of controls and even has a USB pass through. (A downside is if you don't have USB3 you need to feed it off 2 USB headers, but that's not a common problem since everything has USB3 nowadays anyways)

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Try not to overthink things as you're most likely to find more than one keyboard that suits you perfectly, opinions will always differ and you'll end up with different choices that you were told they work best, making the choice even harder to make imo just check some good reviews of the suggestions mentioned above on youtube and see which one works best for you and if you end up with more than 1 keyboard that you really want then all the more reason not to worry and just go with whichever.

 I tried both Corsair strafe and Razer black widow and imo the corsair strafe doesn't come any close to the razer one but that's the case for me, I also found this very helpful before I went for the black widow, good luck!

 

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16 hours ago, PieForFun said:

 

Sounds like you need some poor man's RGB

LMFAO wow that looks super promising.

 

Going off of people saying Razer/Logitech are expensive....You can often find the keyboards pretty cheap on ebay. I got my razor keyboard for like 1/3 the price when i bought it (it was a new unit not used). Razer software is kinda limited and has a learning curve on how to use it, but it works once you understand it.

 

Just look around for prices, Razer has christmas sales going on now, which is offering some pretty kickass deals on some nice boards

Edited by CAFATT

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On 12/5/2016 at 7:41 AM, Sommanker said:

 

I really want programmable keys and preferably the US layout (despite being from the UK :P), macro keys are a good extra and when it comes to lighting I don't really care since I'll be looking at the monitor not the keyboard.

 

 

Programmable keys are usually found on the more expensive keyboards with in-house software, but aren't really necessary when you have key remappers like AutoHotKey 

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32 minutes ago, CAFATT said:

LMFAO wow that looks super promising.

 

 

I ordered a set for my G710.  It takes 2-4 weeks to ship from China, but I'll update you on how it goes

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On December 5, 2016 at 9:41 AM, Sommanker said:

I really want programmable keys and preferably the US layout (despite being from the UK :P), macro keys are a good extra and when it comes to lighting I don't really care since I'll be looking at the monitor not the keyboard.

 

Keyboard, case, and mousepad lights directly correlate with the amount of ladies you can pick up tho.....so i've heard.

 

Most razer keyboards have a macro button which you then can either program to one of the extra keys or on a key on your keyboard. I made a macro back when i was playing pokemon uranium to auto rare candy level my pokemon without my physical input. Im a lazy bitch

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Linnaeus: The worst ecaflip on Rushu (now) (Unless Boltrak makes an ecaflip). 

 

Chargaff: The guy who doesn't know how to play a Pandawa. 

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Now can you make it strobe different colors? ;P

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Linnaeus: The worst ecaflip on Rushu (now) (Unless Boltrak makes an ecaflip). 

 

Chargaff: The guy who doesn't know how to play a Pandawa. 

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Ok.

I've now tried:

Cherry MX Red (disliked)

Razer Green (indifferent)

Romer-G (Liked)

 

All that's left to try are browns and clears really, then I'll make a decision. At the moment, I think I'll probably get Romer-Gs.

 

EDIT:

Full size vs tenkeyless - do tenkeyless keyboards have smaller keys?

 

 

Edited by Sommanker

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

Add me on steam (Sommanker) and Battle.net (Sommanker#2834) and Discord (Sommanker#1592). I play a multitude of other games.

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Okay, so since I couldn't find anywhere to try browns/clears, I went ahead and bought the Atlas Spectrum G410 for only £62, with Romer-Gs.

Hopefully I like it, I'll update thread when it arrives :)

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

Add me on steam (Sommanker) and Battle.net (Sommanker#2834) and Discord (Sommanker#1592). I play a multitude of other games.

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Well, it's here.

 

It doesn't support macros (but ahk) and it can't be programmed, but it's still nice.

It feels nice for typing, I like it for gaming and the rgb is really cool. Wish it had a bigger wrist-wrest though.

Pretty happy with it, especially for how cheap I got it.

 

Thanks for all of your advice guys :D

Lvl 200 (Omega 4x) osa.  Guild: Sunrising (probably relatively temporary?) kicked. -I'm currently inactive. - Alliance: Idk, but usually ends up being CYGNI/Cygnus. rip doesn't exist anymore lol 

With lv 140 rogue as an alt. On Echo (was Shika). Also a noob lv 8x Iop on Wakfu, member of Storm Troopers on Remington (if it still exists, haven't checked in a while)  kicked

Add me on steam (Sommanker) and Battle.net (Sommanker#2834) and Discord (Sommanker#1592). I play a multitude of other games.

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Aftermarket wrist wrests are pretty easy to come by.  Of course, you shouldn't be resting your writs while typing and your hand should be 'floating' over the keyboard

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  • 1 month later...

Hi everyone...i am a new user here. As per my knowledge there are several options for mechanical keyboards such as the old-school Model M(uses buckling springs) that is still considered the king by many.  The Compaq MX 11800 is an older Cherry MX Brown switch keyboard that can be had for cheap.  Those tend to be used, but mechanical keyboards last 50 million keystrokes, so longer than your lifetime in normal use. 

 

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