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As I'm doing a lot of typing nowadays I find myself in need of a better keyboard, and I was wondering if any of you guys have any suggestions.

Right now I'm using an ASUS Cerberus Keyboard, which is OK I guess, but it has a couple of issues. The main one being that you have to hit the keys dead on or they will sort of stick. The plunger part of the key cap is fairly tall and catches on the shaft if you hit the key at an angle, and forces you to press it down harder to make it register. This is very annoying when gaming and leads to a clunky typing experience. It's also not particularly pretty with its stealth fighter aesthetics.

I also have a Logitech G105. This one feels better to type on, but the location of the macro buttons to the left makes it nigh unusable since I keep hitting those when going for the Esc or Ctrl keys. It also suffers from very dim backlighting only in blue.

My requirements are as follows:

  1. NOT a mechanical keyboard. I've always used rubber domes and I actually prefer them because they're quieter. I know there are quiet mechanical switches, but I can't motivate spending $100-200 on a keyboard anwyay.
  2. Good [strong] backlighting that allows you to set a single color all across the keyboard (i.e. no "unicorn barf" keyboards with differently colored areas).
  3. Visually fairly simplistic and traditional, not the keyboard equivalent of the Batmobile.
  4. A numeric keypad, since I use it a lot for DAW work.
Tips on anything that might fit the bill are welcome.
I have been using a Kinesis Freestyle2 for more than five years and it's been a really good for me. Yes, the split design is kind of weird at first, but I really like that allows independently adjustment of each side, instead of having both hands locked in at an unnatural angle that almost every other keyboard forces.

Before buying it, I would regularly get a pain that would shoot up my right arm from the wrist to the elbow, but that is gone now. To be fair, I also switched to using a Logitech M570 trackball at the same time, so that is a confounding factor.
Thanks for the suggestion Michael! However, a keyboard like that would not work for me for a number of reasons. First of all, I'm not a touch typist. I have some weird naturally evolved typing thing going on that is pretty fast, but doesn't adhere to traditional typing methods. Splitting the keyboard in two would send me back to square one and it'd be years before I'd get used to it. Secondly, it doesn't have a numpad. Thirdly, it doesn't have backlighting. And fourthly, it claims to require 25% LESS key force than other membrane keyboards, which isn't exactly what I'm looking for. I don't mind a chunky-feeling keyboard, I just don't want it to sound CLICKETY-CLICKETY-CLICKETY, which rules out a large part of mechanical keyboards. I like a fair bit of key travel and tactile feel, I simply don't want to wake the entire family up when typing away at something in the middle of the night.

Still, that's a cool piece of hardware and I can definitely see that it might be right for some people!
I've been doing some research and so far I have two candidates, namely:

Corsair K55 RGB Gaming Keyboard

+ Nice straightforward look to it.

- Macro keys on the left. Still, they're not as close to the main keys as on the G105.

Logitech G213 Prodigy RGB Gaming Keyboard

+ Nice straightforward look to it.
+ Very configurable (through software)

- Non-removable wrist rest, might be too big.
- Some reviewers have commented on it having dim backlighting.

Both are available from local resellers as well, so I'm going to go demo them if possible (I should probably bring hand sanitizer though).
I don't have any practical advice because every keyboard I've ever owned has been a hand-me-down. Each one is weird in its own way, and I just get used to it. I do most of my typing-heavy projects on a laptop anyway. Currently using a cheap 15" Acer that is surprisingly comfortable.

My current desktop keyboard is a Logitech that doesn't appear to have a model number that I can easily descry. What's cool about it, though, is that it has three levels of backlighting brightness (four if you include "off"). It's a nice feature I've found useful, and it's not "unicorn barf," just standard white LED.

I look at Logitech or Corsair first for most things, too, so you're probably on the right track. Their products always seem to be reasonably durable and cost effective.
(04-09-2020, 03:16 PM)Nayrb Wrote: [ -> ]I look at Logitech or Corsair first for most things, too, so you're probably on the right track. Their products always seem to be reasonably durable and cost effective.

Since posting the above, I have added this to my list of potential candidates:

HyperX Alloy Core RGB

+ No macro keys on the left

- No extra features at all except for multimedia keys

Leaning toward the K55 though. Of gaming keyboards in this price range, it seems the most popular and has some really good reviews. As for Logitech, I was a big fan of their products in the early/mid 00's, but after I went through three of their low profile keyboards and two mice (they just kept breaking on me) around 2008, I stopped buying their stuff. Maybe their quailty is better nowadays, I dunno.
I went with the HyperX Alloy Core RGB!

[Image: IMG_20200414_152224.jpg]

Tried the Corsair K55 as well, but there was simply no competition. While the typing feel of both keyboards is similar, the HyperX is sturdy and has some serious heft to it whereas the K55 felt flimsy and cheap, much like a typical OEM keyboard you get with a prebuilt PC. At $49, it's simply terrible value for money considering you can get the Alloy Core for the same price.

So if you happen to be looking for a premium membrane keyboard, the Alloy Core is great.
I always used Logitech andnever had any complaints. So maybe look for a keyboard from this company.
(04-28-2020, 02:29 PM)Gerfow Wrote: [ -> ]I always used Logitech andnever had any complaints. So maybe look for a keyboard from this company.

As mentioned above, I got the HyperX. Never even tried the Logitech board since it was too bulky.
It's been almost two years since I got the HyperX Alloy Core RGB, and overall I've been super happy with it. Easily the nicest rubber dome keyboard I've ever used. However... as you know I've been doing a TON of typing on it and it's starting to show. Most keys, originally a nice matte texture, are now shiny from wear and feel unpleasantly slippery to the touch. Also, it's like the response of certain keys have changed somewhat (the spacebar in particular) which gives the keyboard a kind of uneven feel. Some keys are looser and others are stiffer, sort of. It's subtle, but noticable.

Again, I have no doubt this is due to the punishment I've put the poor thing through. Under more normal use conditions it would probably have taken several more years for it to reach this stage, so I'm not knocking HyperX's quality or anything. Nonetheless... I found myself looking for a new keyboard.

About a year ago I picked up a used HyperX Alloy Elite RGB for cheap -- a mechanical keyboard with Cherry MX Red switches. As mentioned I'm not really into mechanical keyboards at all, but to my surprise I found myself liking this one except for one thing: NOISE. The clackety-clack of the keys was driving both me and my girlfriend nuts, and after a few days I went back to the Alloy Core again. This got me thinking that maybe I should try a mechanical keyboard this time around -- a quieter one. Yeah, they're more expensive, but also last far longer.

Since I already have a Razer mouse and mouse pad, I figured hey, why not try a Razer keyboard as well. My choice fell on the BlackWidow V3 with Razer's "silent" yellow switches.

[Image: IMG_20220304_234550.jpg]

I say "silent" because the keyboard isn't silent at all Big Grin Still, compared to the hollow clatter of the Alloy Elite, it's a lot quieter and it doesn't make any more noise than the Alloy Core. I've only had it for a few hours so I haven't used it much yet, only for typing this and playing a bit of Guild Wars 2. So far I really like it, though the feel of it is going to take a little getting used to. Due to the yellow switches being linear and having no tactile bump, the keys feel very sensitive compared to the Alloy Core.

Only negative I can think of is that the included wrist rest doesn't attach to the keyboard. Some reviews I watched mentioned the wrist rest being magnetic, but mine clearly isn't. I don't know if this is a feature that has been removed since the BlackWidow V3 was launched, or if mine simply has been demagnetized after sitting in a warehouse for long time. No biggie though.

So, in conclusion, if you're in the market for a nice mechanical keyboard that's good for both gaming and typing, and doesn't make a hellish racket, this is certainly a good option. A nice clean look to it, too.
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