Author Topic: The "Frigate" Layout - A novel "77%" keyboard layout (not quite a 75%)  (Read 1062 times)

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Offline linuxleah

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So, I've been doing some thinking about what my dream keyboard layout would be, and I've come to the conclusion that, while some have come very close, none have quite gotten there.

I like the concept of a 65% keyboard, but most of them are rather cramped (in particular, the inverted arrows are usually not detached from the rest of the keyboard), and all of them omit the F-key row, which is a bit too useful.

A 75% keyboard seems pretty nice too, but they tend to be even MORE cramped.

And none of these tend to have media keysó which I like. (A few 65% layouts do have a volume knob, but no play/pause, forward, or backwards keys.)

So, first, I built the 65% layout of my dreams. Then I added the F-key row. Finally, I expanded upward again, adding a seventh row at the top for media keys, a volume knob, and macro keys. (I envision the macro keys as, by default, sending something like Shift+Ctrl+GUI+Alt+F1 through Shift+Ctrl+GUI+Alt+F6. The end-user could either program their OS to respond to those key combos, or reprogram the macro keys via a firmware flash.)

I call the resulting chonker of a layout the "Frigate" layout. Why a "Frigate"? Because, like the IBM "Battleship" layout, it has two rows of keys above the numbers row... but a frigate is far smaller than a battleship.  ;D

Personally, this layout is basically my dream. It'd have all the functionality I want, in a layout that wouldn't require lots of brain remapping or fighting with muscle memory, and with everything reasonably spaced out. But I fully recognise that I'm a weirdo.

Any thoughts? Has anyone else been seeking out a keyboard like thisó something horizontally compact like a 60/65/75% keyboard, but with media keys and a little less cramping?

Keyboard-layout-editor link (missing the volume knob, and without the slight tweaking I did to the positioning of the media keys): http://www.keyboard-layout-editor.com/#/gists/70445aef1ba32d6d9ea01f7a6c2f7f33
« Last Edit: Mon, 31 May 2021, 17:58:31 by linuxleah »

Offline MIGHTY CHICKEN

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I can't exactly imagine this looking good when actually made into a board, I feel like all the blockers wouldn't look the most well, gotta remove the blocker between alt and control, and combine M keys into groups or rows. Think that would make it better

Offline linuxleah

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Good feedback. As it turns out, I was tweaking the layout as it is; will respond with updates.

Offline linuxleah

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Updated layout at the top!

Old and new attached.

Changes:

1) Reworked modifier keys to eliminate the ugly blocker.
2) Reworked widths of modifier keys. Ctrl is now 1.5u, Win is 1u, Alt is 1.25u. (A Mac variant would have Ctrl as 1.25u, Option as 1u, Cmd as 1.5u.)
3) Spacebar is now 6.25u as apparently 6u spacebars and stabilisers are unicorns.
4) There are now 8 M-keys and they are directly above F1 through F8.
« Last Edit: Mon, 31 May 2021, 17:03:50 by linuxleah »

Offline MIGHTY CHICKEN

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Updated layout at the top!

Old and new attached.

Changes:

1) Reworked modifier keys to eliminate the ugly blocker.
2) Reworked widths of modifier keys. Ctrl is now 1.5u, Win is 1u, Alt is 1.25u. (A Mac variant would have Ctrl as 1.25u, Option as 1u, Cmd as 1.5u.)
3) Spacebar is now 6.25u as apparently 6u spacebars and stabilisers are unicorns.
4) There are now 8 M-keys and they are directly above F1 through F8.

New one def fits better

Offline linuxleah

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Offline suicidal_orange

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It's a good idea - more space for the mouse and more keys is always good.

I would probably split the F row into it's traditional 3 sections, looks like you could have 4x 0.25 gaps instead of 2x 0.5 in that row which would match the gaps elsewhere below and make F5 (my most, if not only, used F key) easier to find.  I nearly complained that delete was hard to find but seems I've been on my 1800 too long and that's where it normally is, so I wont :-[
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Offline linuxleah

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Good call suicidal_orange!

Updated to include 0.25u spacing between the traditional three clusters of F-keys.

Offline linuxleah

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I've started to build myself a prototype of a slightly altered layout for my own personal use, which uses AEK II keycaps. :) Having fun with this!

(And yes, I chose for my own personal keeb to have only the six macro keys. I guess I like them spaced out.)

Here it is, with mommy AEK II for scale.


Offline Cosmin

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Me likey :)

Offline linuxleah

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Re: The "Frigate" Layout - A novel "77%" keyboard layout (not quite a 75%)
« Reply #10 on: Tue, 08 June 2021, 11:27:29 »
Thanks! I'll post more photos when I get all the final keys in, as opposed to the placeholders it has now.

Offline linuxleah

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Re: The "Frigate" Layout - A novel "77%" keyboard layout (not quite a 75%)
« Reply #11 on: Thu, 10 June 2021, 17:07:25 »
things are coming along nicely! Even adding an aluminium plate in the base for weight.