5, 4, 3, 2, 1: KEYBOARD
I always had a soft spot for Mito's godspeed color scheme and when I had a chance to buy some tall profile keycaps that were coming out with this theme, well it turned into a keyboard project!
- MCU: AT90USB
- Firmware: QMK
- Format: TKL
- Backlighting: Per Switch THT LED
- Underlighting: Addressable RGB LEDS
- Audio: Piezo Speaker On PCB
The PCB comes from LFKeyboards and is their MX-TKL footprint keyboard, They're a little pricier than 60% pcbs and a phantom diy pcb but they come assembled and are a good build quality. There's options for underlighting, and even a piezo speaker which is all supported by default with the provided QMK firmware. If I want a non bare-bones TKL I like to look here first. Nice touches include the color addressable status lights to let you know if you're on another layer. The pcb has an internal 5pin 1.00mm pitch header for the usb connection allowing for the use of a cable with that connection or a daughter card. (cable would connect to a small pcb with a usb breakout on it). In my case I made a custom daughter card using a SparkFun usb-c breakout board, some JST pre-assembled wires, and some very sturdy mounting tape. Works like a charm!
- NovelKeys x Kailh Box Heavy Navy Thick Clicks
- Clicky (clickbar)
- Travel: 3.6mm
- Activation Force: 60g
- Bottom out Force: 90g
- Links: Spec Sheet
Have I talked about Box Navy thick clicks before? Novelkeys comes out with some great switches, I feel like they really set the bar for mx foot-print switches. These are some of my favorite switches on the market right now. They're not for the light handed and require a good punch but the tactile feedback is what I like to describe as a pleasant kind of crunch. If you're typing all day on these you'll probably be feeling it, but I love them none the less. Probably not the optimum switch for gaming and long typing sessions but that doesn't stop me from doing either with this! If you like heavy hitting switches that make some noise these are definitely worth a try!
- Material: PBT
- Profile: MT3
These are interesting keycaps, i'm generally a fan of pbt caps for their texture and shine resistance which these definitely provide. The quality is nice and the profile is a unique which I believe is owned (I could be wrong about this) by Drop. It is a tall profile, similiar to signature plastics' SA, however was designed to be cup the fingers more and as a result have a narrower taper at the top. I prefer SA caps but these aren't bad and definitely unique enough to warrant their own consideration. One of my biggest problems with them is finding the homing buttons ( I tend to touch type the majority of the time at least on the main rows of keys) and with the pronounced scoop on all of the keys it can be harder to find the deeper dish H and J caps sometimes.
Case and Plate:
- Case Material: Aluminum
- Feet/Stands: Aluminum Feet with bumpons
- Plate Material: Stainless Steel
The case and plate I bought through Mechanical Keyboards and are nice and heavy duty. The case is solid aluminum in two parts, the pcb is more or less sandwiched between the two and in my case isn't a perfect fit but is good enough. The plate is a solid heavy stainless still and increase the firmness of the typing feel even more with the already heavy handy switches.
Bom and Cost:
|Qty||Part||Total Price (not x qty)||Link|
|1||LFK TKL PCB||$70.00||LFK Store Page|
|100||Old Stock Box Navy||$25.00||Novelkeys Store Page|
|1||Godspeed PBT Mt3 Groupbuy Alphas + Modifiers||$95.00||GodSpeed MT3 Drop Page|
|1||Stainless Steel Plate||$55.00||Store Page|
|1||Tex Aluminum Case||$150.00||Store Page|
|1||Custom USB-C Cable||$28.00||Custom Cable Drop Page|
I like this keyboard, it's a fun solid heavy keyboard that makes you work for those keystrokes! I think the overall theme came out well. The default firmware is supported in qmk and makes it very easy to reconfigure should you need so while keeping the nice features like the status lights and beepy boopies. It also would double as a pretty deadly weapon should the need arise! It's a unique keyboard and I enjoy it, however the price in retrospect is quite staggering! I was gifted the the aluminum case which cut my personal costs substantiallyl $300 is about as much as I'd feel ok with spending on a keyboard, any more than that I'd probably feel very guilty about.