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Long time enthusiast; New hobbyist.


Hey All!

I've long been interested in keyboards, but only recently stumbled on the mechanical keyboards as a hobby. I've always loved a nice chunky clickity-clack keyboard - I started doing work seriously on a Mac IIcx for my high school newspaper - and taught myself how to type on that. My favorite key experience was from the Apple IIgs keyboard. I never had a IIgs, but somewhere I managed to find one (probably swiped from another classroom) - and while I wasn't crazy about the layout (the linear layout of the arrow keys being a headache for one), I loved the shape of the keys, and the responsiveness. Since then I've had all manner of keyboards, but I'd love to build my own.

Once I stumbled down the rabbit hole, I became pretty overwhelmed with just how much there is out there, and I've been slowly feeling everything out. To scratch the initial itch, I sprang for an ENTR from Drop with the Skylight series caps during their recent sale. But I'm finding that I do want to get something that uses a wireless connection and is somewhat programmable, so I know there is more for me in store.

Welcome to the hobby eightysixagents!

I think you might like the QMK powered boards, they're really customizable and you can make it do pretty much anything you can think of, ZMK is also a good one with really good wireless support if you want to go that route.

There's always a ton of inspiration here and on reddit, but you should grab a switch tester with a bunch of different switches to see which sticks out to you before settling on a board (unless the board has hotswap) so you're that much more comfortable with it right off the bat.

A lot of boards run QMK- there are a bunch of keyboard firmwares but that's the one I'm most familiar with so I'm a bit biased but I love it!

Thank you so much for the tips!!!


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