Author Topic: SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?  (Read 8227 times)

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Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 03:15:03 »
has anyone ever used one of these? They are supposed to use Alps switches, which are my current favs.

http://onlinestore.siig.com/shopexd.asp?id=714

And it's only $50, I may hve to pick one of these bad boys up.

Offline iMav

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Re: SIIG keyboards
« Reply #1 on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 04:06:15 »
Quote from: xsphat
has anyone ever used one of these? They are supposed to use Alps switches, which are my current favs.

http://onlinestore.siig.com/shopexd.asp?id=714

And it's only $50, I may have to pick one of these bad boys up.

If you DO pick one up, we'd love to hear about it.

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #2 on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 04:17:43 »
I'm going to call them this week and find out for sure if they use Alps switches. I like the looks of thing a lot, so if they do use the Alps, I will buy one.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #3 on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 04:45:46 »
Those DO look nice.  I am anxious to get a review from someone.  :)

SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #4 on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 05:25:30 »
Well it does say on the details page: Switch activation mechanism: Conductive rubber. BTW, correct  me if I am wrong, but aren't Alps switches no longer produced? I believe Matias Tactile had to switch from Alps to Cherry for version 2.0 model because of this.

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #5 on: Mon, 03 September 2007, 13:04:58 »
And what is conductive rubber? are they saying that they have high quality membrane switches?

Alps is still in business, but they stopped making the switches that were used in the Omnikey keyboards.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #6 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 00:36:34 »
Quote from: Whiskey in the Jar-o
Well it does say on the details page: Switch activation mechanism: Conductive rubber. BTW, correct  me if I am wrong, but aren't Alps switches no longer produced? I believe Matias Tactile had to switch from Alps to Cherry for version 2.0 model because of this.

I've been told that the v.2.0 of the Matias Tactile Pro feels EXACTLY the same as the original.  And that was from someone who is VERY anal about their keyboards (he's done an extensive review of the original and is in the process of doing a review of the v.2.0).

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #7 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 00:53:35 »
I know I'm alone in this, but I have never liked the looks of the Matias Tactile Pro. It looks looks just like Apple keyboards I loath, with their mashed potato keys and ugly exterior. I'd rather spend my buck fifty on an Avant Prime, which still uses the same Alps switches that the Northgate Omnikey AT keyboards use.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #8 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:12:42 »
Quote from: xsphat
I know I'm alone in this, but I have never liked the looks of the Matias Tactile Pro. It looks looks just like Apple keyboards I loath, with their mashed potato keys and ugly exterior. I'd rather spend my buck fifty on an Avant Prime, which still uses the same Alps switches that the Northgate Omnikey AT keyboards use.

I don't particularly like the look of the Matias keyboards either.  Primarily, I dislike the clear housing.

I don't think I'd buy another keyboard with a numpad...so I wouldn't seriously consider the Avant line of keyboards.

Did some reading on the conductive rubber switches and I don't think I'd like those at all...so the SIIG keyboards are out too.

I think I'd like the tactile cherry keyswitches (the BLUE ones!).  I also think I'd really like the strongman mechanical switches (as used in the SMK-85 Compact keyboard).

*Note* It appears that the original SMK-85 compact keyboard used Alps switches.  See here.  Might be worth investigating with the company if you are really wanting a compact alps switch keyboard.

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #9 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:15:16 »
I think that keyboard is kind of ugly though. I would have to paint the case at least.

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #10 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:21:35 »
I just read up on them to, and I am not impressed either. Doesn't the HHKB use capacitive switches? If that is the case, is it just the spring that makes them good?

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #11 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:23:05 »
Quote from: xsphat
I think that keyboard is kind of ugly though. I would have to paint the case at least.

As I mentioned above, maybe you'd be interested in this one (which has alps switches):


Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #12 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:28:53 »
Quote from: xsphat
I just read up on them to, and I am not impressed either. Doesn't the HHKB use capacitive switches? If that is the case, is it just the spring that makes them good?

The HHKB Pro's use electric capacitive switches.  Those are totally different than conductive rubber switches.

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #13 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:50:35 »
Quote from: iMav
Quote from: xsphat
I think that keyboard is kind of ugly though. I would have to paint the case at least.

As I mentioned above, maybe you'd be interested in this one (which has alps switches):

Show Image


Where did you find that one? it looks way better than the one with the black keys.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #14 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:53:52 »
Quote from: xsphat
Where did you find that one? it looks way better than the one with the black keys.

See above post. (it's the original SMK-85 from DS International)

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #15 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 01:57:18 »
I have to decide on $350 worth of keyboards, as that is my *stupid* hobby budget for this time around. I'd like to get the HHKB and one more keyboard, which is fueling this debate. I'd love to blow a grand on 'boards, but with a baby on the way, my chick would blow one of her considerably sized t*ts, and I would have to be committed.

I need to decide on one more 'board. I have the Cherry, the Alps and the buckling springs covered, but I am open to anything under a bill at this point.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #16 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 02:01:18 »
Quote from: xsphat
I have the Cherry, the Alps and the buckling springs covered, but I am open to anything under a bill at this point.

You mentioned that, like me, you very much dislike the numpads.  So...you only have the Cherry keyswitches covered in a keyboard with a proper footprint.  So go for an alps and/or buckling-spring keyboard that is numpad-less.

Or, you might just wait until your HHKB Pro arrives and see just how much you like it.  You may like it SO much, that you want a carrying case, some extra cables, etc...so that you can easily carry it around as your ONLY keyboard.   8)

Offline xsphat

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #17 on: Tue, 04 September 2007, 02:08:05 »
Quote from: iMav
You mentioned that, like me, you very much dislike the numpads.  So...you only have the Cherry keyswitches covered in a keyboard with a proper footprint.  So go for an alps and/or buckling-spring keyboard that is numpad-less.

Or, you might just wait until your HHKB Pro arrives and see just how much you like it.  You may like it SO much, that you want a carrying case, some extra cables, etc...so that you can easily carry it around as your ONLY keyboard.   8)


You have a good point, iMav. You say that your HHKB Pro is your favorite keyboard, don't you? I don't know about that case though, but a USB keyboard would be nice to have (I don't even own one anymore). The Cherry is the one I'd carry if I chose to - when I am in a hurry to get done at work, I take the Cherry in with me and it cuts my work day down by about an hour if you can believe that.

SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #18 on: Wed, 05 September 2007, 04:01:08 »
Another one to consider is the Cherry G81 series. It's supposedly a lot like the Cymotion, but the key travel is longer and it feels more "mechanical". From what I can tell, it uses rubber-domes to register key strokes, but the return mechanism is a mechanical spring. Haven't used one myself, unfortunately.

http://www.cherry.de/english/products/keyboards_g81-3000.htm

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #19 on: Wed, 05 September 2007, 04:09:11 »
Due to my numpad phobia I'll leave the review of this keyboard to someone else.  :)

SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #20 on: Wed, 05 September 2007, 04:23:57 »
Quote from: iMav
Due to my numpad phobia I'll leave the review of this keyboard to someone else.  :)


Yeah, I don't use my numpad at all. Really it should be on the left, if at all, to make the mouse closer. For that reason, I use the mouse with my left hand. Anyway, Cherry do have a "compact" version, but it still has a numpad and looks kinda stupid:

http://www.cherry.de/english/products/keyboards_g81-1800.htm

I can see where they are coming from. These heavy duty keyboards are often used in offices, banks, where rapid entry of numbers is important. That's why virtually all of their keyboards have numpads.

Offline iMav

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SIIG keyboards / which keyboard should xsphat buy?
« Reply #21 on: Wed, 05 September 2007, 04:59:01 »
Personally, I think they should do away with the integrated numpads all together.  Those that need them can use one of these.

Pull it out when you need it, save the desk space and move the mouse/trackball/etc back close to your keyboard when you don't need it.