Author Topic: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!  (Read 34486 times)

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Offline Nizkeyboard

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[GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« on: Mon, 30 December 2019, 12:34:16 »






Atom68 Alu is a keyboard housing designed by Niz in collaboration with several keyboard enthusiasts. The goal is to make a keyboard case which has the following features:
  • Both MX and Capacitive compatible. The MX version is powered by QMK. The capacitive version is powered by Niz/Plum Atom68 parts.
  • Seamless from side views
  • Vertical front&back.

Capacitive: In order to coordinate both MX switches and Electro-Capacitive switches, the inner space has been meticulously designed. There are mounting points for USB C female connector daughter boards, capacitive controller boards, and batteries(for Bluetooth version).

Seamless : To make the case seamless, we didn't use the regular and cheap solution that just adding a flat bottom plate. In that way, the case will be light and hollow. Instead, the bottom case is also milled from a large thick aluminum block and is crafted to just the inner space we need.

Vertical: The vertical front and back walls look cleaner than most regular keyboard designs. To achieve this goal, the aluminum bars need to be re-adjusted for more times during the CNC milling, which significantly adds the costs.

To make this case perfect, we make no compromise.



Specs:
  • Typing angle: 7
  • Colors: Silver, Black, Grey, White
  • Mounting method: sandwich mounting with thin rubber pads
  • Weight: 1.5kg fully built without keycaps









Sliders and switch housings

Niz is improving the sliders and switches housings continuously. The sliders and switch housings on Atom68 are made from Polyplastics's POM material imported from Japan. The newest 2019 versions are much smoother than before. The sliders come with silencing rings by default. As a side note, the sliders can also benefit a lot from lubing in terms of sound.




Stabilizers

The original Atom68 uses Costar stabs. It's not possible to add regular PCB-mount Cherry stabs on it because there's no room.
We designed new plate-mount Cherry-style stabilizers that can fit the plate perfectly. The sound and feel of the stabs are on-par with PCB-mount stabs.





Dome compatibility
  • Niz domes: Best for compatibility. There are 35g, 45g, and 50g versions. For the 50g version, you need to cut an 80% sheet to fit the 65% layout.
  • BKE Redux domes: Good for compatibility. You may need to adjust the positioning of the domes several times to make them work perfectly. The RGB backlit won't go through the domes.
  • Topre domes: Compatible but not really good. You may need to adjust the positioning of the domes MANY times to make them work perfectly. The RGB backlit won't go through the domes.
  • Topre domes + housing + springs: Compatible with the Atom68 PCB but you need to make a custom plate.

Bluetooth

In order to make the full aluminum case compatible with the BLE version controller, we added an external antenna on the controller and led it to the rubber feet. The Bluetooth signals can pass the case through the rubber feet holes at the bottom of the case. This solution has been tested to be very well.
In the Bluetooth+business mode, the battery life of Atom68 is around 126 hours with continuous use. In the Bluetooth+gaming mode, the battery life of Atom68 is around 78 hours with continuous use.


Firmware

Atom68 is fully programmable with a Windows OS software.
The actuation travel can be changed. We developed this function before Topre's APC.



Front Badge

There is a custom brass badge in the front. It will be PVD coated.
The default legends are engraved as "Atom".
Pm or email me if you need custom legends.



MX version

The MX PCB is powered by QMK. It supports PCB mount stabilizers. No Bluetooth support.





Shoutouts
Thanks to Fox-lab for providing general guidance on the design.
Thanks to Ramiel for providing feedback.
Thanks to Pitta key for designing the MX PCB and the daughterboard.

If you're not familiar with Niz keyboards, please read this post written by senter:
https://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalKeyboards/comments/7zx89n/niz_keyboard_bke_mod_interview_with_the_head_of/
He interviewed our founder Ke Miu one year ago.



Pre-order

The preorder page is online now. https://www.nizkeyboard.com/collections/groups-1

Pre-order opens until 01/09/2020.
The estimated fulfillment date is by the end of March.
Due to the COVID-19, the new estimation for the shipping date is May 10 or earlier.
For the influence of COVID-19,the Con-board used on the NIZ keyboard  seriously out of stock(Niz keyboard is also out of stock), expected delay to June15.
On behalf of my team,i would like to extend my sincere apologies to everyone.
CNC update:
« Last Edit: Sun, 19 April 2020, 22:25:27 by Nizkeyboard »

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #1 on: Mon, 30 December 2019, 12:34:32 »
Q&A

Q: What should I buy?
A:
  • If you already have an Atom68 EC keyboard, you still need to order the Atom68 Alu EC plateand the corresponding supplement bundles.
  • If you donít own an Atom68 yet and want to build a fully functional capacitive keyboard, you need to order the case, EC plate, one of the three EC PCB bundles, capacitive switch bundle, and rubber sheet.
  • If you donít own an Atom68 yet and want to build a fully functional keyboard with MX switches, you need to order the case, MX plate, and Atom68 MX PCB bundle. Switches, stabilizers, and keycaps are not included.

Q: What's the difference between the PCB bundle and the supplement bundle?
A: PCB bundle + switch bundle is for those who don't own an Atom68.
The supplement bundles are for those who already own an Atom68.

Q: What is a supplement bundle?
A: That's the extra parts you need for your build if you already have one Atom68. For example, if you already have an Atom68 EC-S, the supplement bundle is just the USB daughter board. If you already own an Atom68 EC-BLE, the bundle also includes a pre-modded controller board which includes an external antenna. The external antenna will enable great Bluetooth signal strength even with the aluminum case.

Q: Is it possible to use other layouts?
A: No.

Q: Atom68's English manual sucks. Can you compile a better version?
A: Yes.

Q: Can it support QMK?
A: No native support but you can always use a U2U converter if you want.

Q: What's your experiences on CNC milling and anodizing?
A: We outsourced the CNC milling and anodizing service from two other companies. They are both professional large companies. We had collaboration with them for some drone products before so we know their abilities well.

Q: What's the quality we can expect?
A: Top notch.


Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 04 January 2020, 15:34:25 »
The GB post finally gets approved.

Offline tunadesu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 04 January 2020, 18:25:03 »
Could we expect a sound test before the pre orders end on 1/9?

Offline neutralstate

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #4 on: Sun, 05 January 2020, 02:12:16 »
what color case is being shown in the pictures?

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #5 on: Tue, 07 January 2020, 18:15:48 »
Could we expect a sound test before the pre orders end on 1/9?

Here are the recordings: https://drive.google.com/drive/folders/1nZ91CVE6AiMyM_n-_h0AtBZ-lKBH9xzC?usp=sharing

The 4 recordings are:
  • Atom68: Realforce 45g domes, GMK keycaps, lubed with 3204
  • Niz 87: 65g Niz domes, stock keycaps, lubed with 3204
  • FC660C: everything stock
  • Realforce R2 TKL: everything stock

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 07 January 2020, 18:16:08 »
what color case is being shown in the pictures?

it's a grey case

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #7 on: Wed, 15 January 2020, 14:39:25 »
GB is closed.

We plan to pre-lube the sliders and housings for those who ordered complete kits.
The lubricant will be Krytox GPL 205 or 106.
The boards can be pre-assembled before shipping out.
Please let me know your opinions on this if you ordered one.

Offline joe405

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #8 on: Wed, 15 January 2020, 19:38:13 »
Will you open another round of orders? I think many people missed this entirely, considering it was near the holiday period and only open for about a week.

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #9 on: Wed, 15 January 2020, 20:38:20 »
Will you open another round of orders? I think many people missed this entirely, considering it was near the holiday period and only open for about a week.

No, but there are extras. PM if you're interested.

Offline clickstops

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #10 on: Wed, 15 January 2020, 23:08:58 »
Is there any chance you made any videos of typing on this thing with EC switches?

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #11 on: Sat, 07 March 2020, 21:02:30 »
Is there any chance you made any videos of typing on this thing with EC switches?

No typing videos but there were typing recordings in the IC thread.

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #12 on: Mon, 09 March 2020, 20:14:22 »
No pre-lubing, please.

As for pre-assembling the boards, I would pick whatever method keeps everything the safest from damage during shipping.
« Last Edit: Wed, 11 March 2020, 18:14:10 by bakuretsu »

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #13 on: Tue, 10 March 2020, 18:19:47 »
I own a Micro 82, but I haven't been able to find the software for it or the Atom 68. I'd like to try the software with the Atom 68 Alu. Is there a link I'm missing on the Niz website?

Offline thornkin

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #14 on: Tue, 10 March 2020, 23:18:44 »
Would these sliders work in a topre board?

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #15 on: Wed, 11 March 2020, 05:52:07 »
Would these sliders work in a topre board?

According to their product page, I think so. Unless it's saying you would need to swap out the entire Topre housings, not just the sliders.

https://www.nizkeyboard.com/collections/ornaments/products/2019-new-niz-ec-switch

Offline katotaka

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #16 on: Wed, 11 March 2020, 06:11:04 »
the stabs look interesting.......... can I get them alone?

Offline bunanapeel

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #17 on: Wed, 11 March 2020, 13:26:39 »
GB is closed.

We plan to pre-lube the sliders and housings for those who ordered complete kits.
The lubricant will be Krytox GPL 205 or 106.
The boards can be pre-assembled before shipping out.
Please let me know your opinions on this if you ordered one.

I would prefer to have mine unlubed so that I can lube it with my personal preference of lube.  Cleaning lube off these parts would be a nightmare, but for people not wanting to get their hands dirty I think it's really cool that you would lube them in house.

Offline tehfrawg

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #18 on: Thu, 12 March 2020, 01:16:44 »
I own a Micro 82, but I haven't been able to find the software for it or the Atom 68. I'd like to try the software with the Atom 68 Alu. Is there a link I'm missing on the Niz website?

You can find the manuals and software in the Google Drive, via the link in the Firmware and Upgrades section. Micro82 software should work great, though when I tried playing with the Atom68 it wouldn't let me open the program without the keyboard connected, and we won't have that until the GB ships.

Offline skidude9678

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #19 on: Sat, 21 March 2020, 14:37:50 »
Just bought one off the Niz website, can't wait for this.
« Last Edit: Sat, 21 March 2020, 17:58:30 by skidude9678 »

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #20 on: Fri, 27 March 2020, 19:12:00 »
Will it be safe to use GMK keycaps on these new sliders? I don't want to damage their stems like with Kailh BOX switches.

Also, is there any significance to the pink color on the stabilized keys (shift, space, backspace, enter)?

Offline tehfrawg

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #21 on: Sun, 29 March 2020, 15:01:22 »
I tried out some GMK arrow keys on my Micro82 and none if the keycaps/stems broke. That was only 4 keys though so perhaps not the most extensive test

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #22 on: Tue, 14 April 2020, 07:08:37 »
Is the estimated shipping date of May 10 still possible?

Offline Nizkeyboard

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #23 on: Sun, 19 April 2020, 22:28:59 »
Is the estimated shipping date of May 10 still possible?
For the influence of COVID-19,the Con-board used on the NIZ keyboard  seriously out of stock(Niz keyboard is also out of stock), expected delay to June15.
On behalf of my team,i would like to extend my sincere apologies to everyone.

Offline skidude9678

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #24 on: Mon, 20 April 2020, 05:13:51 »
Thanks for posting the video update in the original post!

Offline CrazyAssMonkey

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #25 on: Mon, 20 April 2020, 09:45:20 »
Is there any chance this will run again some time in the future?  :thumb:
-------------------------------------------------------------
The Constitution of the Sovereign States of The Jungle is currently being written...
-------------------------------------------------------------

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #26 on: Thu, 30 April 2020, 22:28:42 »
I can't decide what I want the logo to be for the little nameplate on the front. The pictures in the feedback email they sent out show the options are the NiZ logo (also visible in the photos at the top of this thread), or just "Atom". Does anyone else who ordered one have an opinion?

I'm leaning toward "Atom", but only if it's also engraved into the surface like the NiZ logo in the photos shown in this thread. The mockup image in the email made it look like if "Atom" was chosen, it would just be printed on the surface.

Also, they said that there won't be any screw holes on the nameplate, so how is it attached? Is it just glued on?

P.S. I know it's not possible due to the limited space, but it'd be cool if they could instead engrave a simple Bohr model of an atom of Erbium (since its atomic number is 68).
Something like this (but without any text or numbers): https://en.intl.chemicalaid.com/assets/img/bohr-enhanced.php?symbol=Er
That would require a much bigger (or at least more circular) nameplate, though.
« Last Edit: Thu, 30 April 2020, 22:42:55 by bakuretsu »

Offline skidude9678

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #27 on: Fri, 01 May 2020, 05:07:07 »
NiZ logo for me 100%, I think that will look great on this board

Online gordonderp

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #28 on: Sun, 03 May 2020, 02:02:42 »
Yeah could we get the file for the front plate so we know the size parameters and stuff?

Offline tehfrawg

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #29 on: Mon, 04 May 2020, 15:23:18 »
I went with the NiZ logo. The Atom label didn't look as refined. I also would like to support NiZ and help grow the brand recognition since they're making great products, and having their name on it will help with that.

Offline radsan

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #30 on: Tue, 12 May 2020, 10:25:27 »
I went with the NiZ logo. The Atom label didn't look as refined. I also would like to support NiZ and help grow the brand recognition since they're making great products, and having their name on it will help with that.

I actually went with the "Atom" originally but after seeing your post it made me change my mind. Want Niz to grow as well. :)

Offline cloudzeng980

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #31 on: Wed, 13 May 2020, 23:28:50 »
any plans on bringing this to the X87 in the future?

Offline bakuretsu

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #32 on: Wed, 27 May 2020, 02:24:28 »
I just saw the email about keyboards being back in stock on your website. Does this mean the part shortage that was affecting production of the Atom68 Alu is also over? If so, that's good to hear.

Online gordonderp

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #33 on: Sat, 06 June 2020, 23:44:00 »
Any updates guys?

Offline fsosa

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #34 on: Mon, 15 June 2020, 08:27:51 »
Any updates? The original arrival date was for today. Haven't heard much.

Offline radsan

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #35 on: Mon, 15 June 2020, 10:10:23 »
I got this email from them.

Quote
Reluctantly as we are, we can only delay the shipment of 68 aluminum cases.
There is no excuse. The objective reason is that the electroplating and anodic oxidation processes have not been able to achieve the desired results. For this reason, we have made materials for aluminum and copper plates again. The replating and oxidation have been done six times,So, we ask you to give us another 10 days and we will do the best we can

Personally I don't mind. 10 more days don't make that much of a difference to me plus I want the product to be as perfect as can be.

Offline fsosa

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #36 on: Sat, 27 June 2020, 11:23:55 »
Hear anything since the last email?

Offline radsan

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Re: [GB] Atom68 Alu | MX and capacitive compatible!
« Reply #37 on: Tue, 30 June 2020, 20:13:49 »
I messaged them again and they said all the accessories have arrived and theyíre doing final assembly. Should be shipped soon by express delivery.