Author Topic: Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)  (Read 89127 times)

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Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 13:07:18 »
First discussion point:  I can't find an antonym for Phantom, so I was looking at synonyms for light.  I couldn't even name my own children if not for my wife, so I'll leave the discussion to you, the interested.

2nd point:  Back in July/August I saw this mod here on GH and endeavored to duplicate it as a clean PCB design for the Filco 87 case.  siberx had plans for his design so I had to go it mostly alone with a little component choice assistance from him.  I have the PCB design fab ready, and have a small LED test board to test software design.  Never got around to the software to validate my components, so that's where it stands.

I got in touch with siberx and it turns out he's pretty close to open-sourcing the project which means we'll be able to piggy-back his hard work on the software side (and maybe even invalidate my component choices).  Either way it looks like this is a good candidate for the next KB kit to be available here.  Perhaps we can lean on litster's acrylic case designs for even more LED goodness.

Consider this an ADVANCED soldering project as the LED controller chips and the diodes I've chosen are surface mount devices (SMD).  It would likely be impossible to do this type of design without surface mount parts as there is a huge amount of traces and both sides of the board are well used for this.  I'm also interested in moving to integrating the MCU into the keyboard.  My biggest issue with that is losing the rather awesome halfkay bootloader that is only available with the teensy.

I'm also interested in including the CMStorm case design, if there are any owners that are willing to take certain measurements inside their KB that would help.


tl;dr -  87 key backlit design with individually controllable LEDs using SMD components.



Things people are interested in:
104 key design
87 key design
fit into a 'cheap' case  (g80-3000 for instance)
individually controlled LEDs
no SMD OR SMD done by the PCB factory
integrated MCU
N-key diodes (isn't this a given?)
plate not required (PCB mount switch holes)

the ever-requested trackpoint
« Last Edit: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:10:05 by alaricljs »
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #1 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 13:18:54 »
Ok. I think we should name it Hazeluff. Just cos I'm so awesome.

Edit: Name ideas - Lux?

Anyway, quick things I wanna put down (since I should just finishg my lab and go home).

I think the basic concept is a TKL/7Bit layout with fully controllable LEDs.

I understand that to get everything on one board, we're going to need to do surface mount components (I hate them). But I think we can make a compromise and use discrete components. What I have on my mind right now is to have something like the Phantom board and then just put holes/mounts on the PCB just so the LEDs go through to the other side. And then wire them up using copper wire (less elegant, but is easier to solder and would allow for way more people to participate). Then use the larger Teensy so we control the Keyboard and LEDs off the same controller. (I think it might still need an extra circuitry to control the 100 or so LEDs, but the phantom on the smaller controller uses all the pins already)

Offline Parak

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« Reply #2 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 13:45:59 »
I did something of possible interest in my design - the diodes are SMD as you mentioned, but so are the LEDs. Because it's a matrix design, I threw an LED into the intersection of each 4 key cluster, and wired it together with the LEDs inside the switch. The wiring is such that I can control with a series of simple dip switches as to which LEDs the current goes, the in-switch or SMD intersection. The reason as to why I did this is that the SMD LEDs would provide good backlight even if one uses caps that are entirely not intended for backlight purposes.

Offline digitalleftovers

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« Reply #3 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 14:04:42 »
I was thinking that a design like this would benefit from a special keycap.  Something that would allow light pass up from the diode, but diffuse across the whole top of the cap.  If only these Cherry caps were translucent instead of just glow-in-the-dark.

[ Attachment Invalid Or Does Not Exist ] 39043[/ATTACH]
Keyboards:
Filco 104 MX Brown (Otaku) - FKBN104M/NPEK 黒い空
Ducky TKL MX Brown/Blue 80% (White) - 1087-F 白の空
KBC Poker MX Red with PBT Key Caps - PFCN6000


"Consumers use touch screens.  Producers use keyboards."

Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #4 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 14:08:49 »
Quote from: Parak;503366
The reason as to why I did this is that the SMD LEDs would provide good backlight even if one uses caps that are entirely not intended for backlight purposes.

Nice, but not compatible with a plate, I and others are somewhat partial to plates.

Quote from: digitalleftovers;503385
I was thinking that a design like this would benefit from a special keycap.  Something that would allow light pass up from the diode, but diffuse across the whole top of the cap.  If only these Cherry caps were translucent instead of just glow-in-the-dark.

(Attachment Link) 39043[/ATTACH]

It would be rather awesome if DS keys were done such that the symbol was clear and had a sufficient amount of under-key exposure.... it doesn't seem that anyone is going in that direction tho.

Those particular keys look like the ones with paper legends under plastic caps and they just used non-clear caps.
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Offline digitalleftovers

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« Reply #5 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 14:19:01 »
Quote from: alaricljs;503389

Those particular keys look like the ones with paper legends under plastic caps and they just used non-clear caps.

The key article I pulled them from said that part of it was rubber, so I think it is just a glow rubber topper to the standard 2 piece cherry caps.
Keyboards:
Filco 104 MX Brown (Otaku) - FKBN104M/NPEK 黒い空
Ducky TKL MX Brown/Blue 80% (White) - 1087-F 白の空
KBC Poker MX Red with PBT Key Caps - PFCN6000


"Consumers use touch screens.  Producers use keyboards."

Offline Parak

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« Reply #6 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 14:52:24 »
Quote from: hazeluff;503334

Edit: Name ideas - Lux?


GeeLux?

:rofl:

Offline digitalleftovers

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« Reply #7 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 15:33:26 »
Quote from: Parak;503442
GeeLux?

:rofl:

+1
Keyboards:
Filco 104 MX Brown (Otaku) - FKBN104M/NPEK 黒い空
Ducky TKL MX Brown/Blue 80% (White) - 1087-F 白の空
KBC Poker MX Red with PBT Key Caps - PFCN6000


"Consumers use touch screens.  Producers use keyboards."

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #8 on: Mon, 30 January 2012, 17:53:33 »
Quote from: Parak;503442
GeeLux?

:rofl:

Why the Gee?

GEEkhack?

In which case GLux would be better imo. So Ghetto.

Offline TheProfosist

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« Reply #9 on: Tue, 31 January 2012, 00:47:36 »
I want a backlight phantom with full numpad on right and possible a trackpoint. And lets try to come up with a layout that pleases as many people as possible and one or two other variants to cove 90%+.  Also a cheap cost effective but nice looking case for it.

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #10 on: Tue, 31 January 2012, 05:27:35 »
Quote from: TheProfosist;503973
I want a backlight phantom with full numpad on right and possible a trackpoint. And lets try to come up with a layout that pleases as many people as possible and one or two other variants to cove 90%+.  Also a cheap cost effective but nice looking case for it.

Yeah, maybe we should poll people's opinion on functions/requirements.

Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #11 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 00:27:08 »
full 104 keys
fits in cheap g80-3000 cases
LEDs - inside the switches
n-key rollover - diodes next to the switches
PCB mount holes - for if no plate is wanted

This should cover all but the tenkeyless crowd right? But then they already have a phantom.
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #12 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 14:00:53 »
Quote from: The_Ed;504992
full 104 keys
fits in cheap g80-3000 cases
LEDs - inside the switches
n-key rollover - diodes next to the switches
PCB mount holes - for if no plate is wanted

This should cover all but the tenkeyless crowd right? But then they already have a phantom.

LED in the switches? you mean a LED per switch as in awesome awesome lighting LEDs.

Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #13 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 16:46:03 »
The PCB should have the traces for you to put LEDs inside of the switches.
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #14 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 20:41:19 »
Quote from: The_Ed;505606
The PCB should have the traces for you to put LEDs inside of the switches.

You mean where theres a slot on the switch for the LEDs. Not physically inside the switch compartment...right?

If so, Agreed.

Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #15 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 20:46:27 »
I mean you open up the switch and put a 3mm LED inside. The PCB has the traces to give it power.
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Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #16 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 20:48:20 »
Er, classically speaking a properly installed Cherry keyswitch LED is not inside the switch.  There is a pass through hole in the switch that you seat the LED into and solder it to the PCB.  But now we're just flogging semantics.  It would be interesting tho to have a clear switch housing/stem assembly to make the light more even across the keycap.
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Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #17 on: Wed, 01 February 2012, 20:51:56 »
Yeah, I just looked at a housing now. It is 2 thirds blocked by plastic so the LED would be on top with the wires through the switch. Guess I was thinking of diodes when I said to open it up and put it inside.
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #18 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 10:40:49 »
Quote from: The_Ed;505835
Yeah, I just looked at a housing now. It is 2 thirds blocked by plastic so the LED would be on top with the wires through the switch. Guess I was thinking of diodes when I said to open it up and put it inside.

okok. Now that is cleared. Yeah. Just have the holes to mount the LEDs on the backside (no routing, since you probably couldn't route LED power and switch matrix on one PCB).

Offline Parak

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« Reply #19 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:32:26 »
There should be no problems at all with routing both the switch and the led matrix, even when diodes and pcb mounted switches are taken into account. Granted, the diodes might need to be smd mounted. Additionally, there's little reason for thick traces (that I know of) which obviously hamper routing severely. Signal traces, which is what the switch matrix uses, can be 8 or even 6/4 mil (depending on fab capability/pricing). Even relatively higher current LED traces don't need to be thick, depending on total length of the trace.

One would want a thick trace if there is a possible need to solder directly to the trace or for high currents, where the required width can be easily calculated. I'd rather have thin traces in this scenario, and if I ever happen to lift a pad while soldering, I'd just run a regular wire to the destination.

Anyway, as far as the layout is concerned, I do have a few ideas to throw around, but I can't find what people use to create the layout examples for visualization purposes..
« Last Edit: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:35:15 by Parak »

Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #20 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:39:26 »
I'm working on producing a nice looking render of the PCB, but as I mentioned I have an 87key backlit PCB design already completed.  With full trace routing for all the parts involved.
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #21 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:44:47 »
Quote from: Parak;506414
There should be no problems at all with routing both the switch and the led matrix, even when diodes and pcb mounted switches are taken into account. Granted, the diodes might need to be smd mounted. Additionally, there's little reason for thick traces (that I know of) which obviously hamper routing severely. Signal traces, which is what the switch matrix uses, can be 8 or even 6/4 mil (depending on fab capability/pricing). Even relatively higher current LED traces don't need to be thick, depending on total length of the trace.

One would want a thick trace if there is a possible need to solder directly to the trace or for high currents, where the required width can be easily calculated. I'd rather have thin traces in this scenario, and if I ever happen to lift a pad while soldering, I'd just run a regular wire to the destination.

Anyway, as far as the layout is concerned, I do have a few ideas to throw around, but I can't find what people use to create the layout examples for visualization purposes..

I would prefer not to use surface mount components. They are a pain to solder (turns away the soldering-noobies, which I think should be cattered for).

I was worried about the number or traces needed, but perhaps you could do it still.

I'll have a look and see what people are using for board layout

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #22 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:47:45 »
Quote from: alaricljs;506416
I'm working on producing a nice looking render of the PCB, but as I mentioned I have an 87key backlit PCB design already completed.  With full trace routing for all the parts involved.

Is that with a teensy as the controller and could it cater a 7bit layout? (I love 7bit layout or at least the arrow/home cluster).

Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #23 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 11:56:25 »
Yes on the teensy, no on the 7bit.  The teensy is located in the area above the arrow cluster.  If the MCU were integrated to the PCB then it could get stuffed either under the spacebar or possibly by the F-keys.  The F-Key area is stuffed with traces and the LED control components.

The issue with using through-hole for all the diodes is all those holes disrupting trace layout.  I haven't tried it, so it may work.
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Offline Parak

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« Reply #24 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 12:06:31 »
Quote from: hazeluff;506421
I would prefer not to use surface mount components. They are a pain to solder (turns away the soldering-noobies, which I think should be cattered for).

I was worried about the number or traces needed, but perhaps you could do it still.

I mentioned this in another thread previously, but there are PCB shops which will quite happily do SMD assembly for you at very reasonable prices, including component sourcing, and then you just need to solder the through hole stuff yourself. So, I'm not particularly worried about SMD components in that regard, especially if we do the controller onboard.

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #25 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 13:50:58 »
Quote from: Parak;506432
I mentioned this in another thread previously, but there are PCB shops which will quite happily do SMD assembly for you at very reasonable prices, including component sourcing, and then you just need to solder the through hole stuff yourself. So, I'm not particularly worried about SMD components in that regard, especially if we do the controller onboard.

That sounds amazing.

So I am now in a agreement with surface mount things if the sellers of the PCB will assemble the diodes.

If so, I dont' think it'd be hard to remake alaricljs design to fit a "7bit" layout? Or maybe we should go for a full layout since we have DOX (small layout) and PHANTOM (TKL/7Bit layout) already. If so, we should have plenty of room to put down the teensy right above the number pad?

Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #26 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 14:36:30 »
So if I have this straight these are the new specifications:

full 104 key layout
fits in cheap cases - possibly g80-3000
LEDs - leads go through the switches and solder to the board
n-key rollover - diodes next to the switches - possibly SMD and possibly already installed (that would be awesome)
PCB mount switch holes - for if no plate is wanted
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #27 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 14:44:50 »
Quote from: The_Ed;506556
So if I have this straight these are the new specifications:

full 104 key layout
fits in cheap cases - possibly g80-3000
LEDs - leads go through the switches and solder to the board
n-key rollover - diodes next to the switches - possibly SMD and possibly already installed (that would be awesome)
PCB mount switch holes - for if no plate is wanted

Yeah sounds pretty much like what I want. Not sure about fitting in cheap cases if we have some LED drivers. But yeah, sounds about right.

Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #28 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 14:46:53 »
Well the only thing that has been agreed on in general is that it be a backlit KB and that the LEDs be individually controlled.  Everything else is being discussed.  

I do know that whatever anyone else wants to do I'll be moving forward with an 87 key version that will fit in a Filco case and likely put in the work to make it compatible with the CMStorm cases as well.
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Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #29 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 14:57:52 »
Quote from: alaricljs;506563
Well the only thing that has been agreed on in general is that it be a backlit KB and that the LEDs be individually controlled.  Everything else is being discussed.  

I do know that whatever anyone else wants to do I'll be moving forward with an 87 key version that will fit in a Filco case and likely put in the work to make it compatible with the CMStorm cases as well.

Why would everybody want to pay for the circuitry to INDIVIDUALLY control the LEDs? The Phantom was tenkeyless, I need my tenkey. This should be the first full 104 customizable keyboard. And I will never buy a filco or CMStorm. The g80-3000 cases are cheap, nice to look at, and have a LOT of extra room inside for the extra circuitry to fit.
Reaper "frelled" me... Twice... Did he "frell" you too?... *brohug*
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Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #30 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 14:58:03 »
Quote from: The_Ed;506556
So if I have this straight these are the new specifications:

full 104 key layout
fits in cheap cases - possibly g80-3000
LEDs - leads go through the switches and solder to the board
n-key rollover - diodes next to the switches - possibly SMD and possibly already installed (that would be awesome)
PCB mount switch holes - for if no plate is wanted

Yeah sounds pretty much like what I want. Not sure about fitting in cheap cases if we have some LED drivers (not sure how much extra needed for the LED control circuit). But yeah, sounds about right.

Offline alaricljs

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« Reply #31 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 15:05:36 »
Quote from: The_Ed;506572
Why would everybody want to pay for the circuitry to INDIVIDUALLY control the LEDs? The Phantom was tenkeyless, I need my tenkey. This should be the first full 104 customizable keyboard. And I will never buy a filco or CMStorm. The g80-3000 cases are cheap, nice to look at, and have a LOT of extra room inside for the extra circuitry to fit.


Well, you could watch the vid in the link in the first post and decide whether that's cool to you.  There's plenty of 'normal' backlit 104 key boards you could go for instead.  What is it you want in a custom board that's unique from what's readily available?  Good for you on whatever opinion you have of Filco/CMStorm/Costar.  Personally I don't like full size keyboards and don't like cases that have a ton of extra room in them.  Over in the Phantom thread it was brought up that people were interested in a backlit model I mentioned I had a nearly complete design and this is the discussion thread that came of it.  I was already prepared to do the 87key for myself and if it stays that way, I don't care.  

Quote from: hazeluff;506573
Yeah sounds pretty much like what I want. Not sure about fitting in cheap cases if we have some LED drivers (not sure how much extra needed for the LED control circuit). But yeah, sounds about right.


As the design I have stands it's a tiny bit of SMD circuitry that fits on top of the PCB getting in the way of nothing at all.  The plate could be half the standard distance from the PCB and it would still fit.
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Offline The_Ed

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« Reply #32 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 15:24:23 »
awww... why can't someone do a full 104?... So you're basically just doing a controllable backlit phantom?
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Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #33 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 15:42:36 »
There's nothing stopping someone, it's just that it won't be me.  An enterprising individual can take the files that I'll be releasing and expanding them to 104 keys.  It's dead easy.  I haven't released any files yet since I have no proof that my backlight design works.  I have been unable to work on the software to drive it and we are fortunate enough that the individual that inspired my design is planning on releasing his work in  a few weeks or so.  Just given that much it wouldn't be difficult to put together a brand new design.
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Offline The_Ed

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #34 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 15:55:48 »
I hope someone does expand to a full 104. I reserve the name "Lux Aeterna" for a full 104 version. The 87 could be "Lux Mortalis".
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Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #35 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 15:58:45 »
So either way, this is mostly a discussion about what people would like to see in a 'kit'.  So some are interested in 104keys.  Some are interested in a design that will fit into a 'cheap' case.  You still haven't explained what you have for/against individually controlled LEDs, I am interested in hearing that.
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Offline The_Ed

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #36 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:00:44 »
I think it would be cool, but I don't really want to pay for that.
Reaper "frelled" me... Twice... Did he "frell" you too?... *brohug*
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Offline hazeluff

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #37 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:06:36 »
Quote from: The_Ed;506643
I think it would be cool, but I don't really want to pay for that.

If it can all be done on the PCB it shouldn't mean you'd have to pay for it. The difference between all lit and indivitually controlled is just the routing to the LEDs on the boards.

I'd assume you'd need to drive a ton of LEDs using FETs/Transitors for both cases.

Offline The_Ed

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #38 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:09:41 »
Oh, in that case I redact my complaints about extra cost. But space inside the case is still a concern right?
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Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #39 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:13:12 »
Here's the thing Ed... the 'expensive' part is the design.  In terms of additional component cost it's 2 resistors, 5 diodes and 2 shift registers.  Straight from Mouser in that quantity they cost $4.02.  There's going to be some incremental cost if the fab mounts the SMD components tho.

Besides which, there are additional components required to do a design for 'whole-board' lighting.  I don't have a design like that handy so I don't know what they are, but it would be subtracted from the $4.02.

Is that a reasonable cost for something you're not interested in having?  As a percentage of a Phantom it's <3% added to the cheapest board kit.
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Offline The_Ed

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #40 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:31:58 »
<3% is fine I guess. Maybe I was just thinking of that guy who drilled holes in a regular mech board and had what looked like 2 wires to each LED. He had a HUGE controller PCB addon on the back and had to mod the case for it to fit. The LED mod has been done quite a few ways over the years. Sadly I can't find a picture of that board though... Google has failed me...

Found it!



This is why I was hesitant.
« Last Edit: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:46:32 by The_Ed »
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Offline Parak

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #41 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 16:57:25 »
That... that's one way of doing it I suppose... when all you have are dip components and no firmware that can do multiplexing...

Offline IvanIvanovich

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #42 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:05:19 »
My personal wish list...
PCB mount, I don't want to have to deal with a plate.
Layout similar to the Apple IIgs keyboard. Or essentially a Poker with a tenkey. Board designed in such a way I can just mount it straight onto acrylic, sort of like the Neo Zelia.
For LED I would like the ability to use RGB led, so I can change color on any key or groups.

I doubt many people would also want this, but there is my 2 cents.

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #43 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:08:39 »
Theres a better way of doign it. Have you seen LED CUBE mod?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mXM-oGggrM

For 8 x 8 x 8 = 512 LEDs. It is controlled with 64 + 8 = 72 Leads.

What it does is it abuses human perception by lighting them plane by plane really fast. In our case we can light them row by row really fast.
~25? , not 100. We may need to use a demux external to teensy.

So given that we form the matrix on the PCB we only need like 'row + col' number of lines.

Quote from: lysol;506683
My personal wish list...
PCB mount, I don't want to have to deal with a plate.
Layout similar to the Apple IIgs keyboard. Or essentially a Poker with a tenkey. Board designed in such a way I can just mount it straight onto acrylic, sort of like the Neo Zelia.
For LED I would like the ability to use RGB led, so I can change color on any key or groups.

I doubt many people would also want this, but there is my 2 cents.

Whats wrong with the plate? I don't see what you have to "deal" with. (just asking, not shooting down the idea).

As for RGB LEDs. It will be very complex (3 x the routing/wires). They are 4 pin devices...1 pin per color + gnd. Probably not a good idea for what we're doing. But Would be cool xD
« Last Edit: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:16:59 by hazeluff »

Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #44 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:12:49 »
Quote from: lysol;506683
My personal wish list...
PCB mount, I don't want to have to deal with a plate.
Layout similar to the Apple IIgs keyboard. Or essentially a Poker with a tenkey. Board designed in such a way I can just mount it straight onto acrylic, sort of like the Neo Zelia.
For LED I would like the ability to use RGB led, so I can change color on any key or groups.

I doubt many people would also want this, but there is my 2 cents.

Having nothing on the bottom of the PCB will let you mount it easily on/in acrylic.  My design has nothing on the bottom, all components are top-mount.  RGB LED is impossible since they don't make 3mm RGBs.

Quote from: hazeluff;506689
Theres a better way of doign it. Have you seen LED CUBE mod?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6mXM-oGggrM

For 8 x 8 x 8 = 512 LEDs. It is controlled with 64 + 8 = 72 Leads.

What it does is it abuses human perception by lighting them one by one really fast.

So given that we form the matrix on the PCB we only need like 'row + col' number of lines.

That is the method that my design uses.
Filco w/ Imsto thick PBT
Ducky 1087XM PCB+Plate, w/ Matias "Quiet Click" spring-swapped w/ XM Greens

Offline IvanIvanovich

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #45 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:17:53 »
RGB are all 4 pin leds and wouldn't work in MX switch anyway. I wasn't really thinking about it... lol. So I suppose some sort of tricks would have to be used. Or be forced to place the led outside the switch which would be somewhat stupid.

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #46 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:21:13 »
Quote from: alaricljs;506695
Having nothing on the bottom of the PCB will let you mount it easily on/in acrylic. My design has nothing on the bottom, all components are top-mount. RGB LED is impossible since they don't make 3mm RGBs.

Maybe we implement the RGB for the capslock/numlock indicators. But I can't see it going further than that.

Quote from: alaricljs;506695

That is the method that my design uses.

Perfect.

Offline hazeluff

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« Reply #47 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:25:38 »
Quote from: lysol;506698
RGB are all 4 pin leds and wouldn't work in MX switch anyway. I wasn't really thinking about it... lol. So I suppose some sort of tricks would have to be used. Or be forced to place the led outside the switch which would be somewhat stupid.

It would have to be on the side. but to control them all, it would take up a lot of wire/routing. It's a ok idea if you try to use a few and light up thje whole board with them.

Offline Barn

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« Reply #48 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:26:27 »
What about RGB LEDs and a micro controller allowing each key's colour to be customised?


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Offline alaricljs

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Next GH-brewed KB design - 'The Light' (open for discussion)
« Reply #49 on: Thu, 02 February 2012, 17:32:27 »
Deja vu?
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