Author Topic: Why do people hate hotswap?  (Read 6234 times)

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Offline Void225

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Why do people hate hotswap?
« on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 10:51:44 »
As far as I am concerned, hotswap is a FEATURE. but throughout the keyboard community, here and elsewhere, it seems like people consider it to be a detriment. I see tons of board I would love to have, but on every one people are listing LACK of hotswap as a feature. I am walking away from boards I would otherwise love to have because they are touting not having this as a good thing, and acting as if I have committed a crime when I even suggest having them as an improvement in my eyes. I've literally been harassed out of conversations on other sites for daring to suggest hotswap.

I can solder, I enjoy soldering, but it has one big issue: inflexibility. Get a bad switch, want to change a switch, or just want to play around? Disassemble everything and desolder. There goes an hour between disassembly (including pulling off at least some caps to access screws), actual solder work, and reassembly.  And lets not forget that there is always some risk to any solder work; it is always possible to screw up and ruin either the particular socket or the entire board when you start heating things.

With hotswap, it's minutes to change with almost 0 risk of damage. Experiment to your heart's content, or just easy maintenance if a switch breaks. I see hotswapping on almost any board as a 100% improvement in usability. Why does everyone treat this as a something to be avoided instead of lauded?

Offline Henrythewound

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #1 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 12:45:11 »
I like hotswap because I am still new and like the option to change switches sometime down the road if I choose to. I just added mill-max sockets to my last build to make it hotswappable. It seems one reason people dislike hotswap is because producing a swap board locks in the layout and takes that choice away from the builder.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #2 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 13:00:41 »
I prefer it if available. If what you say is true some people are so anal hey thinks soldering makes a more reliable connection. Actually MX type boards have so many solder joints often one or more on any given PLATE/PCB are cold and will fail. Now 1+ hours to fix Vs. 3 minutes. Plus try new switches ETC. I actually feel solderless connections for this purpose are in fact more reliable. Due to the constant pressure/vibration applied to them. In 2020 I would also like to see a detachable USB "C" cable but 480mbps is fine. Make anything that regularly fails easier to replace. Not to mention many people cannot solder properly. Oh, controller IC in a DIP socket.

Those that critique these things are probably those that critique my Grammar as well. So pay them no mind. Now give them 10 minutes they will be here shortly. They cannot go undefended by themselves or without insult to myself. Anyways, I feel if there is a board you like that is solderless I would say most certainly get that one. Even if switches fail due to inferior quality it is not any issue to replace them. Keep in mind depending on the switch do not pay more than 10 cents to $2.50 each. people charging $35 per switch are financial rapists too. I am kind of disappointed no one else even answered your post either. It is your money. don't listen to them.

I am going to tell you, my second most expensive board that in fact would actually sell for a price is hot swap. My first expensive board, my grail is just because I dumped a ton of money into something I personally wanted but it would fetch but a pittance in WTS. I hope I have helped you, and no I am not good with Grammar. My bad. Meanwhile, go buy yourself a nice hot swap board. BTW, you see how long I have been here and can read all my posts to see what level of knowledge you feel I may or may not have. Plus what boards I own. then you can decide for yourself if you trust my advice since thus far I am your sole poster. This honestly upsets me. There is absolutely nothing wrong with it. IMO quite frankly you are correct, it is superior. which were you thinking of getting? I imagine a custom or kit since AFAIK there are none off the shelf? Good luck!(I mean that honestly)

Offline pixelpusher

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #3 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 13:01:00 »
I love hotswap boards... I have 7 of them.  But every single one has had an issue at some point.  Sometimes the hotswap arms come off the solder pads on the back (easy fix, just resolder).  Sometimes the contacts that grasp the switch pins get too bent out and no longer work (easy fix, just bend them back with some sharp tweezers).  I get chatter on some switches in hotswap boards.  Not sure if it's the looser connection or firmware.  Layouts are not ideal.  My favorite layout is 60% with 7u bottom row, split right shift, and full backspace.  Not possible on any existing hotswap boards.

Some cases have very low clearance under the PCB and cannot accommodate hotswap sockets.

Like pretty much anything in this world, there are pros and cons.  I would absolutely never recommend a hotswap board to someone without soldering equipment or know-how to troubleshoot.   Yes, quite ironic, right.  Hotswap socket comes off?... board useless.

What I do... use the hotswap board to extensively test out freshly lubed sets of switches.  Remove lube here, add lube there... solder them into something premium. 

« Last Edit: Fri, 21 February 2020, 13:03:05 by pixelpusher »

Offline Void225

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #4 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 14:04:41 »
My favorite layout is 60% with 7u bottom row, split right shift, and full backspace.  Not possible on any existing hotswap boards.

This is exactly why I made this post. I want a 75% broken layout, but every board like that makes a big deal about how of course they are not hotswap because they are "premium".

Offline Kavik

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #5 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 14:20:25 »
I've wondered this as well, but it seems Pixelpusher's answer covers it.

I somewhat enjoy soldering, but I hate that my initial choice of switches is locked in. Every board I have has different switches because each one was an experiment. The couple of times I've desoldered an entire board, I've ruined a pad. Desoldering isn't very hard, but when you do it to 120-208 pins, you're bound to screw one of them up. It's possible to buy a spare PCB and a spare plate, but that's expensive, and it's really not very convenient to switch out the PCB/Plate assembly in most keyboards.

Basically the only reason I joined the Rama U80-A GB was to have a nice TKL that I could try different stuff on, not because I particularly liked the design itself.
Maybe they're waiting for gasmasks and latex to get sexy again.

The world has become a weird place.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #6 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 14:36:27 »
I do not yet own any hotswap boards, partly because I haven't really bought/built any of the fancy hipster boards to begin with. I see their utility in testing switch types, and especially mixed switch configurations between types and weightings. I very much want at least one for these purposes in the future, although it appears that box jades and navies will do it for me anyway, as far as modern switches are concerned. They're at least good enough to have 4+ boards configured with them and ready for use.

With these boards, I want them all to be bomb proof. With all 5 (so far) I used existing boards that at least had thick aluminum or steel plates, many of which had additional metal reinforcements to the casing of some kind, then 3 of the 5 even had either aviator jacks or 5-pin din jacks modded directly into the casing as well (one is a Unitek K-151L, which already came with beefy 5-pin cables). I desoldered the original useless (to me) switches and soldered the box switches in, because I want them to work for the next 20+ years without any repairs. I'm not sure what concern there would be for cold solder joints ... if you use good quality solder, and solder properly to begin with. I learned early on, with the unpredictability of solder-less original Xbox mod chips, that anything socketed can be toppled by either corrosion over time that eventually impedes electrical conduction, or whatever is connected shifting in its mount in use/transport.

If you know how to properly solder, and have a decent temperature-controlled iron/station and good tips, damaging components should be practically impossible. I can't think of a single time that I have damaged anything by way of heat when soldering, and I have done quite a bit of soldering, for quite a few years before I even got into modding keyboards.

That's it, just clearing the misconceptions/fallacies. Both have their obvious advantages/purposes, and soldering isn't for everyone (although keyboards are amongst the easiest places to start, that are still relevant). If I want something to last, however, and don't plan on ever swapping the switches, I go soldered all the way.

I've wondered this as well, but it seems Pixelpusher's answer covers it.

I somewhat enjoy soldering, but I hate that my initial choice of switches is locked in. Every board I have has different switches because each one was an experiment. The couple of times I've desoldered an entire board, I've ruined a pad. Desoldering isn't very hard, but when you do it to 120-208 pins, you're bound to screw one of them up. It's possible to buy a spare PCB and a spare plate, but that's expensive, and it's really not very convenient to switch out the PCB/Plate assembly in most keyboards.

Basically the only reason I joined the Rama U80-A GB was to have a nice TKL that I could try different stuff on, not because I particularly liked the design itself.

120-208, or 1,000, you should not be lifting pads with the proper technique. Keep any pressure when the solder is not 100% melted to a minimum, and make sure that all solder still fused with both the pins and the pads on the board simultaneously is removed before even attempting to pull the switch. Moderate temperature, you want just enough heat to do the job, and apply it only as long as is necessary. In 5 keyboards, I have lifted a single pad so far. That was with the K-151L, because the Taiwanese board is of the lowest quality I have ever yet seen in a keyboard, even down to the original soldering quality control. I don't think that pad even left the factory fastened at all to anything other than the trace itself.
« Last Edit: Fri, 21 February 2020, 14:46:15 by Maledicted »

Offline Sup

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #7 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 20:06:50 »
I don't hate it but it's gonna remove the craftsmanship from this hobby what makes me sad:(, also it removes the layout most enthusiast want.


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Offline mounds

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #8 on: Fri, 21 February 2020, 20:44:05 »
Kailh sockets are flimsy, that's all imo.

Holtites and Millmax are ok in my book - way more user-friendly. PLUS the whole PCB doesn't look like swish cheese to support the goonish Kailh design.
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Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 22 February 2020, 01:17:13 »
I don't hate it but it's gonna remove the craftsmanship from this hobby what makes me sad:(, also it removes the layout most enthusiast want.
On the other hand, easier experimentation means people spending more money, which means will bring more designs/options.
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Offline Findecanor

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 22 February 2020, 05:15:27 »
I get chatter on some switches in hotswap boards.  Not sure if it's the looser connection or firmware.
I wonder if there could be a third reason: If switch pins could have been pushed into the switch from repeated insertions into sockets then the internals would be out of precise alignment.

... Just a hypothesis.
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Offline treeleaf64

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #11 on: Sat, 22 February 2020, 09:02:51 »
I only use the default ANSI layout, so I don't mind hotswap. If I was building a keyboard over 300 dollars for myself, I would not use hotswap, just because things can break easily if you are not careful.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #12 on: Sat, 22 February 2020, 19:51:53 »
I think as long s you do not keep swapping them usually they are okay. Save for bad luck. I would say each socket lifetime 5 times maximum. It does make things much easier if a switch breaks or a LED blows. I have some very expensive Korean boards with hot swap. I kind of think it is peace of mind. Not a detriment like most of you. Mine all work fine many hours. Honestly solder is worse than a mechanical connection. More likely to fail and that is a lot of solder joints. I have had many soldered boards fail. It also depends on the quality of the board. usually hot swap are higher end boards. Well I like it. YMMV I Guess.

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #13 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 03:38:57 »
Honestly solder is worse than a mechanical connection.
There is no way I can emphasize how wrong that is without getting banned.
 
I cannot tell you how many connectors I've bypassed in my life with hardwiring because the connector failed. In fact, writing this actually turned me against hot swap. I'm not saying they don't have their place, but once you settle on a switch, expect to be soldering at some point or plan on fighting lots of random issues thanks to all that repeated vibration from hammering the keys.


By the way, if your solder joints fail, you or whoever did them screwed up.
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Offline Harke

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #14 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 04:17:41 »
People mainly don't like hotswap because hotswap restricts the number of available layouts down to 1. Ease of building isn't a concern for people who are spending $200+ on a keyboard, so the cons outweigh the pros. If you have a hotswap PCB as a side option (Like RAMA does) that isn't a problem because you don't have to get it if you don't want it. Hotswap sockets have more components so there are more points of possible failure when compared to soldered joints or membranes. Pixelpusher also has some good points on the subject.

Offline Sup

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #15 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 13:52:15 »
Honestly solder is worse than a mechanical connection.
There is no way I can emphasize how wrong that is without getting banned.
 
I cannot tell you how many connectors I've bypassed in my life with hardwiring because the connector failed. In fact, writing this actually turned me against hot swap. I'm not saying they don't have their place, but once you settle on a switch, expect to be soldering at some point or plan on fighting lots of random issues thanks to all that repeated vibration from hammering the keys.


By the way, if your solder joints fail, you or whoever did them screwed up.

Yeah pretty much i never had my boards fail ever.
Https://Supkbd.nl

Filco Zero -  NOS Yellow Alps | Canoe R1 Gateron Red | AEK II JP Cream dampend |Filco Majestouch 2 Tex case Gateron Yellow | HHKB Pro 1 2003 Rev AO Serial 000171 | HHKB Pro 1 2003 Rev A1s|DZ60 OG Panda's with Fei spring and stem. | Sentraq S65_Plus OG Invyr Panda's | A17 Gateron Black TX 65G 3204 | Lubrigrante Wildcard Cherry MX silent blacks 3204 58.5G Springs |
Coming soon Rukia.

Rest in peace Billy

Offline rxc92

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #16 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 18:42:49 »
expensive Korean boards with hot swap.
 
 
Just like the several thousand dollar Topre board that you've never explained or photographed besides it happening to be 'far superior' to anything else, right? Completely fictional.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #17 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 19:36:56 »
First of all I do not feel my custom RGB Topre is my best board by any stretch. I like it. Honestly I do not know about keyboards. I mean soldering. I was speaking with knowledge of high end audio The preferred connections are "cold welded" or rather clamped or compression screwed terminations on the conductors(wires). Audiophiles generally shun soldered terminations. That is where I got this knowledge. If I am completely wrong in regard to keyboards I apologize. Although my for real best board I am using right now is in fact hot swap. I have thousands of hours on it and no issue. However I have never pulled one switch. Just inserted them to build the kit. I crimped the "legs" after each switch was in. Which may have added to it's reliability but also may in fact may have made it impossible to swap. I do not care because I love these switches, I will not explain them because I will just get insulted again. This is actually my best board not the Topre. The Topre just cost a lot because I made them break the dies. Which is exactly why I will not publish it. Calling it fake does not hurt my feelings.

So I was wrong about soldering keyboards in most instances, I will admit that. I was applying a completely different hobby to it and figuring it was the same. Apparently not. My apologies for spreading misinformation. Mine works fine but I suppose it could fail. Although as said soldering depends on whom is doing it. All these Chinese boards often have multiple cold solder joints. It is a lottery. Even on a $250 Chinese board right down to a $20 one. I had a bunch of USA TG3 fail on me though. German cherry as well. So unless it is a Korean kit that is up to you, you are at the mercy of whoever soldered it. There are so many joints in an MX board you hope they are good but very often not. So honestly given this scenario I would say it is 50/50 lottery solder/swap. YMMV. Plus if the solder does fail it is a few hours Vs, a few minutes. Of course Topre does not have nearly as much of a problem. All I am going to say is I actually like these switches better than Topre but I am not going to explain them here. If you want to look into them though they are Drop Halo True. Come to your own conclusion but I would at least try them. Anyways, I am sorry I misspoke. I do not intend to be a jerk. I make mistakes, okay.

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #18 on: Sun, 23 February 2020, 22:41:26 »
Think of it another way, a hot swap is basically two cold joints in every spot.
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Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #19 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 02:27:03 »
I have no clue why the audio guy's insist on it. well, hey think the solder changes the sound. if you knew any they are pretty strange, They do things average people just would not even understand. so I am sure you are correct. Luckily no problems with my flagship bard because I would be really deflated then. although it only takes a few minutes at least. I wanted the whole board and this is the only it came. Otherwise it is once heck of a board. I can't tell you what it is because I do not even know who makes it. there were 24 bidders. I had to pay $3,250 to win the unassembled kit. I guess it is so expensive because for a 67 key it weighs 12.2 pounds and Titanium is light. I think the brass plate is adding all the weight. I am just saying if I had a choice I would have taken DIY solder because I know my soldering is good. I have a regulated temp controlled readout solder station from Hitachi. I have a desolderer and a vent hood too. I used to solder seriously. so, yes I too prefer it. I was honestly just defending this board. I had a motive. I apologize.

Offline bananasplit_00

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #20 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 03:46:44 »
I dont hate hotswap, but it locks the board to one layout and that layout is generally one i dont want to use(some kind of ANSI). Id rather solder if i get lots of layouts supported

Offline yui

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #21 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 04:08:39 »
I think both hot swap and soldered have their place, soldered is cheaper, allows for more options, can be more reliable if done properly (hs has the same number of solder joints, same problems but add contacts problems) and if one knows how to solder as fast/faster to fix cold joints.
HS shines when ones want to test switches or likes to change often enough that buying new boards becomes a problem, or when one does not know how to solder and does not want to learn (really it is not hard, watch EVVblog tutorial and buy a cheap board, when you have soldered the 404 joints (202 if no LEDs) you will know how to solder good enough).

and yeah in theory solder could make a difference in sound (bimetallic stuff, physics lessons are too far) but to get to that level, you need to not have any parasitic resistances anywhere else, and kb controllers are not that fussy about resistances.

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Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #22 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 04:54:51 »
HS shines when ones want to test switches or likes to change often enough that buying new boards becomes a problem

To my knowledge, all of these have a VERY short insertion lifespan, as few as 5 insertions.

Using it as a tester isn't going to last very long at that rate.
Filco MJ2 L.E. w/Vortex case, hand milled case, custom feet, custom paint, Klaxxon key caps, lubed and o-ringed Jailhouse Blues made from vintage Cherry MX Blues, HID Liberator, stainless steel universal plate, 3d printed adapters, removable cord, sound dampened. Winkey blockoff plate | Magicforce 68 w/Outemu Blues |KBT Race S L.E. w/Ergo-Clears, custom WASD keyset | Das Pro w/browns (Costar model) | IBM Model M (x2)

Offline yui

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #23 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 07:08:50 »
HS shines when ones want to test switches or likes to change often enough that buying new boards becomes a problem

To my knowledge, all of these have a VERY short insertion lifespan, as few as 5 insertions.

Using it as a tester isn't going to last very long at that rate.

Kailh sockets are rated at 100 insertions so should be plenty good enough for most peoples, and even at 5 it is plenty more than soldering, which is pretty much rated at one insertion.
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Offline Maledicted

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #24 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 07:36:47 »
My apologies for spreading misinformation.

This is a constructive conversation. I don't see any reason to apologize. Things like this are the point of a forum.

Plus if the solder does fail it is a few hours Vs, a few minutes.


I'm not sure how you solder, but fixing a bad solder job, on a keyboard, should take only a few minutes. It usually takes longer for the iron to heat up, and to get to the solder pads, than to fix any cold/broken joints.


and yeah in theory solder could make a difference in sound (bimetallic stuff, physics lessons are too far) but to get to that level, you need to not have any parasitic resistances anywhere else, and kb controllers are not that fussy about resistances.

Could it be any worse than oxidation that forms on the wire and/or terminal when clamped/screwed into place? Either way, I would rather it just work. I wonder if any of those audiophiles take a look inside of their components to see all of the solder joints that aren't visible, especially on the speaker/driver itself. I have never seen the guts of an audio device that that exclusively uses terminals for audio signals, but maybe they exist?


Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #25 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 09:35:01 »
Taking it apart could take me an hour because I am too careful.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #26 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 09:56:01 »
Taking it apart could take me an hour because I am too careful.

I'm used to ripping apart $150 Chromebooks. Most keyboards are pretty sturdy by comparison. I wouldn't think it would be too easy to accidentally damage one during disassembly, unless there are are some fiddly/stupid ribbon cables in terrible places.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #27 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 13:27:09 »
For instance if you force open a Realforce the "clips" will snap off. Than the case and entire board is ruined. Same if you force open something screwed without unscrewing it. Of course this is common sense. Not knowing every board I like to take my time and make sure I did it right. Instead of the brute force approach. I might spend 20 minutes looking for one screw or latch. I do not force things. Of course I do not have too many $150 boards, My least expensive are maybe twice that, Some thousands, Not being a jerk I am just saying why I might be more careful. That is just me though. I would rip apart a Chromebook too. Those are a dime a dozen. I never even paid $150. I know people so I paid maybe $60. Just for friends.  Anyways I do not think you would tear into a 4 grand keyboard so fast either? I am not inept. I am very careful. I lay it on velvet and wear white gloves. I am talking about some Korean sold out boards.

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #28 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 14:53:10 »
For instance if you force open a Realforce the "clips" will snap off. Than the case and entire board is ruined. Same if you force open something screwed without unscrewing it. Of course this is common sense. Not knowing every board I like to take my time and make sure I did it right. Instead of the brute force approach. I might spend 20 minutes looking for one screw or latch. I do not force things. Of course I do not have too many $150 boards, My least expensive are maybe twice that, Some thousands, Not being a jerk I am just saying why I might be more careful. That is just me though. I would rip apart a Chromebook too. Those are a dime a dozen. I never even paid $150. I know people so I paid maybe $60. Just for friends.  Anyways I do not think you would tear into a 4 grand keyboard so fast either? I am not inept. I am very careful. I lay it on velvet and wear white gloves. I am talking about some Korean sold out boards.

I would rip anything apart fast, although still carefully, because I have literally taken apart unknown thousands of electronic devices, from laptops, to desktops, to av receivers. There's only so many ways they can put them together. I can usually have just about anything I have never seen before stripped down in a few minutes, besides phones/tablets. Those things are the devil. That's pretty sad if something as overpriced as a Realforce would break so easily due to cheapo plastic clips. Not a problem on keyboards that cost less than half as much.

I work on $150 Chromebooks because it is my job. I would love to just be working on custom-built gaming rigs or something instead.

I have an $1,800 Colt waiting for me to pick up as we speak. I see value in that, not so much a keyboard that costs as much as a decent used car. I imagine they're not built half as well as a $400 new production Zinc Model F either. To each their own though.
« Last Edit: Mon, 24 February 2020, 15:18:39 by Maledicted »

Offline kchan88

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #29 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 15:11:19 »
I opted for a non-hotswap board because the particular board I bought required me to pick a fixed hotswap layout and I wanted the flexibility. Sure, I'd have to desolder a switch if I wanted to change it up, but that's not really an issue for me (other than possibly having to buy more switches).

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #30 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 15:21:17 »
Id rather have the car too given the choice. I guess you are just more skilled. I am afraid so I go slow. Yeah Topre it is easy to break those clips if you pull hard. You have to gently pull them forward a bit. I would not touch a phone. I simply could not do that. Building high end computers is a nice job. I do not think it pays a ton but it is fun. Some guys I will not mention screwed me on a very high end machine DOA, I did a chargeback and they never even responded! I am going to bring it to a computer store and see if they can fix it. If they can that was the deal of the century. I am very surprised they did not want it back. Right now I am just using a NUC but it is a nice one. I got it for nothing at CDW outlet. I try to get bargains. I did really steal a Korean kit a week ago. Kid only wanted $250 with shipping. Going rate was $1300. The Korean board prices are dumb. People keep driving them up.

Offline Rob27shred

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #31 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 15:34:42 »
I think hotswap PCBs are an awesome thing for beginners so they can figure out their taste in switches without having to do multiple builds. Even for people like me who have been into MKBs for a few years it's nice to have a HS board to try out new switches. Although when it comes to my high end boards I'd much rather have it soldered than HS. I'm at the point where I got my tastes in switches fairly sussed out & know roughly what each switch type will feel like in a certain type of build. So I'd rather have a solid permanent connection between the switches & PCB with something like that. If it's just a low to middle end build I'm not super opposed to HS in them, I just feel like for the higher end a permanent connection is much better for the long run. HS sockets will wear out afterwhile from repeated switch insertion/removal & (in the case of the most used Kailh HS sockets) already come barely soldered onto the PCBs. So it's definitely not a feature & more of a detriment when it comes to high end boards that you do not want to be taking back apart after building them IMO. The same drawbacks apply to low/middle end builds, but with those they are usual simple tray mount builds which are easier to take apart & there is much less worry scratching a $100 case vs a $500 one.

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #32 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 20:31:04 »
Kailh sockets are rated at 100 insertions so should be plenty good enough for most peoples, and even at 5 it is plenty more than soldering, which is pretty much rated at one insertion.
And those fit how many boards?
Also there are reports of them lasting as few as 5-10 before getting loose. Again, I'd still be concerned with long term due to vibration.


I'm not sure where you got the idea that solder is a one time thing, how do you think people harvest old switches. I've done multiple swaps on multiple boards.
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Offline treeleaf64

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #33 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 21:34:01 »
Kailh sockets are rated at 100 insertions so should be plenty good enough for most peoples, and even at 5 it is plenty more than soldering, which is pretty much rated at one insertion.
And those fit how many boards?
Also there are reports of them lasting as few as 5-10 before getting loose. Again, I'd still be concerned with long term due to vibration.


I'm not sure where you got the idea that solder is a one time thing, how do you think people harvest old switches. I've done multiple swaps on multiple boards.

Hotswap are just more convenient. Takes me a lot longer to solder and replace all the switches compared to hotswap.

Offline bwolmarans

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #34 on: Mon, 24 February 2020, 21:48:17 »
I have a mid 300s hotswap board because I like my board, and I like to try different switches in different positions from time to time, not because I am experimenting to find the one single kind of switch I like forever. 
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Offline yui

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #35 on: Tue, 25 February 2020, 01:11:24 »
Kailh sockets are rated at 100 insertions so should be plenty good enough for most peoples, and even at 5 it is plenty more than soldering, which is pretty much rated at one insertion.
And those fit how many boards?
Also there are reports of them lasting as few as 5-10 before getting loose. Again, I'd still be concerned with long term due to vibration.


I'm not sure where you got the idea that solder is a one time thing, how do you think people harvest old switches. I've done multiple swaps on multiple boards.

when i say a solder join is rated at one insersion i mean that after you solder your switch you have to take apart the board and remove the solder join if you want to change that switch, it is more involved that just swapping a switch in a socket where you may only need to replace after 10 switches if your sources are correct (i wonder if it has something to do with the shape of the switch pin also).
i did plenty of de-soldering when i learnt electronic, and i went through 3 solder pump, 5 soldering tips and tons of wick during that time, there is still a cost to it as well.
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Offline phinix

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #36 on: Tue, 25 February 2020, 03:49:28 »
I really like hotswap.
Only one I had so far was GMMK board - however I had problem with it as every time I was Swapping caps, pulling a cap also pulled out a switch. Maybe it was this board related issue, I don't know.
I'm waiting for my hotswap Rama U80-A - will see if this is a "hidden" feature of hotswaps, or I just had bad luck with GMMK.
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Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #37 on: Tue, 25 February 2020, 16:11:38 »
You guy's make me feel bad because by far my best Korean board is HS. Although after the build I have never swapped. Nor do I intend to. I love these switches. Maybe even more than Topre!

Offline treeleaf64

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #38 on: Tue, 25 February 2020, 18:50:48 »
You guy's make me feel bad because by far my best Korean board is HS. Although after the build I have never swapped. Nor do I intend to. I love these switches. Maybe even more than Topre!

Hotswap isn't bad, necessarily. I would use it as a test board because I would not want solder and desolder switches onto a pcb. However, for a Korean board, I would use a through hole pcb, just because I do not want to change the switches once it is built.

Offline shadowku

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #39 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 12:23:56 »
I love hotswap boards... I have 7 of them.  But every single one has had an issue at some point.

This.

While I'm not against hot-swap, if I'm building out a board and I know exactly what switch I want, then I rather not have hot-swap. I appreciate hot-swap for boards that I'd use as a test board for different switches.

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Offline HighKey

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #40 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 14:28:16 »
There is obviously no supportive data on how many solder cycles for a single switch a PCB can go through, but is there some rough estimate? I found an article on this that mentioned 6 cycles as a rule of thumb, but this was for surface mounts. That seems a little low number to me.

I also wonder if you can reuse a desoldered switch on a HS? Since it usually has some solder residue on its pins...

Offline treeleaf64

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #41 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 17:29:45 »
There is obviously no supportive data on how many solder cycles for a single switch a PCB can go through, but is there some rough estimate? I found an article on this that mentioned 6 cycles as a rule of thumb, but this was for surface mounts. That seems a little low number to me.

I also wonder if you can reuse a desoldered switch on a HS? Since it usually has some solder residue on its pins...

I have used desoldered switches with no problem, to answer your question :)

Offline Maledicted

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #42 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 17:34:31 »
There is obviously no supportive data on how many solder cycles for a single switch a PCB can go through, but is there some rough estimate? I found an article on this that mentioned 6 cycles as a rule of thumb, but this was for surface mounts. That seems a little low number to me.

I also wonder if you can reuse a desoldered switch on a HS? Since it usually has some solder residue on its pins...

Clean the excess solder off with some de-soldering braid or something if it ends up being on there too thick. A good electronic desoldering pump should take practically all of it off though.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #43 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 18:42:55 »
You guy's did not exactly make me feel any better LOL. This kit and I do not even know the maker cost me $3,250. I love it and it works fine. It has for almost 2 years nonstop. It is HS though. Why would they put HS as a "feature" on a flagship board? BTW, it is not an unknown maker. It was in Korean and I do not speak. I knew it was worth it because there were 24 other bidders and it took that much to win. I am not sure why it is featuring HS. Maybe in Korea that is something. No clue. I do agree a "proper" solder job is way better. The key word is proper. I only find proper in good DIY. Hardly on off the shelf. The only thing about this board is I use static white. It has a heavy green tint. See RGB is not perfect. If you want White get White. I am a very good touch typist. I lack self confidence. Therefore I must see the board. I prefer white. Anal about that too. Unfortunately also OCD. I am all screwed up. Try not to make me feel bad about my board please. Thank you

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #44 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 20:23:06 »
You spent $3200 on a keyboard based on other people's bids and us ranting about hot swap is what's making you feel bad about the purchase?

I have no words, at least none that wouldn't get me banned for saying them.


By the way, soldering is not difficult, you can learn to do a "proper" solder job in about 5 minutes and doesn't require expensive equipment (or hardly any if you are desperate enough). I don't understand this irrational fear of solder joints, I get the time and effort complaints about swapping but the joints themselves is completely irrational in my mind. Not to mention, for a fraction of that you could pay someone to do a switch swap and lube multiple times over.
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Offline tp4tissue

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #45 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 22:53:10 »
U don't understand our long time friend -typo- Llann,   typo = mega rich..   He can buy 10x $3200 boards anytime.

Offline typo

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #46 on: Wed, 26 February 2020, 22:54:30 »
I completely understand. I actually have rather high end soldering equipment. I used to do it daily. I am/was very good at it and fast. Nothing wrong with soldering to me.

It just so happens my best board is HS. The only way I can change that is to have a custom plate made for it. I think you and I can both agree I have put enough money into it. Honestly given what is out there it is worth $1,000. Simply due to the build quality, save for HS. Although, Koreans might like that? It was not worth $3250 and $80 shipping. You know these Korean boards command crazy prices. If it is not your thing, so be it. I never did that before and never since. I normally drive a HHKB Pro S. Even though I have the fancy keyboard I had made at the end of the day it is still a Topre RGB at heart. So I grew tired of it. Plus I prefer mini keyboards again. Why would you want to insult me? I spent my own money. I did nothing wrong.

I am just upset that the consensus is that hot swap boards stink. Since my best board is in fact. I can't really complain though I have never had an issue. Most likely due to the fact that I have never swapped any. I have no idea why they would build such an expensive board that way. Unless like I mentioned perhaps in Korea it is appreciated. I do not know. There is obviously some reason this is listed as a "feature" on such an expensive board. For the record the monetary translation on the board is "only" $1800USD. Although I am not sure if anyone in the US ever got it for that. I am fully aware that it is absurd. I just happen to really like it regardless of price. Please do not say something so strong as to you would get banned. It is hardly worth that for you. I just really enjoy it. As to why it is HS I have no clue. I just really hope it does not fail but I have extra switches anyways. This is my favorite keyboard and I guess that is all that matters. It is not like it is failing on me.

Offline rxc92

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #47 on: Thu, 27 February 2020, 00:09:34 »
Is typo just Donald Trump if he were actually too poor to afford a keyboard, and could only brag about nonexistent boards online?

Offline Leslieann

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #48 on: Thu, 27 February 2020, 02:20:15 »
Why would you want to insult me? I spent my own money. I did nothing wrong.

I am just upset that the consensus is that hot swap boards stink.

I don't think anyone said they stink, just that we question the long term reliability.


As for insulting you,
I didn't insult you, I merely questioned the wisdom of buying something so insanely priced (compared to even a high end custom), especially when you didn't even know what you were actually getting, for all you know you stepped into a money laundering scheme (which has happened) and overpaid. More than that, you yourself say it's absurd so why are you upset when someone else says it is.

It is your money, and you are free to do what you want with it, that doesn't mean we can't question the wisdom of it.
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Offline Sup

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Re: Why do people hate hotswap?
« Reply #49 on: Thu, 27 February 2020, 05:26:29 »
Is typo just Donald Trump if he were actually too poor to afford a keyboard, and could only brag about nonexistent boards online?

Yeah i don't think he has a board. Well since he said he bought a kit from a Korean for 200-300 dollars don't remember anymore but he said that it goes for 1k+ aftermarket.

If it goes for 1k aftermarket it's a board probably we all know somewhat otherwise it wouldn't have that aftermarket value. And he doesn't say the name he just says Korean keyboard what makes it suspiciously fake.

He will probably write a other essay about how he doesn't want to show it to protect his property from the scary Chinese cloners.
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