Author Topic: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge  (Read 25965 times)

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Offline Binge

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New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 13:07:42 »
http://uniquekeyboard.com/index.php?route=product/product&path=64&product_id=135

Quote
Description

The Diverge Keyboard is blahlicus' entry to the split keyboard market, the diverge offers a better experience at a lower price compared to copetitors such as the ergoDox.

The Diverge uses a non-staggered layout, meaning vertical traverse of the finger become much more intuitive, the keyboard's layout is mapped based on the average hand size and is extremely comfortable to the hand when resting in the neutral position.

Do note that this product is an assembly kit, the user need to be good at tinkering and soldering if they wish to assemble it themselves, alternatively, the user could purchase the keyboard preassembled with a $20 premium

I'm buying one to check it out :)
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Offline Findecanor

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #1 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 13:29:03 »
Quote
The Diverge uses a non-staggered layout, meaning vertical traverse of the finger become much more intuitive...
Actually, this keyboard's layout is mostly like a "symmetric stagger" layout with the keycaps rotated. Only the index finger columns diverge from that pattern.
I don't like the look of the case having gaps that expose large parts of the acrylic plate.
The "split keyboard" is apparently two individual half-keyboards, each with its own controller and USB cable to the host. There is no information about which firmware it uses ...

The keyboard has a different name on it in the pictures than the final product ...
Lots of spelling errors in the page. Also, naming a competitor by name is a big No-No.
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Offline SpAmRaY

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #2 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 13:53:55 »
Binge you'll have to do a review. :)

Offline Binge

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #3 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 14:56:03 »
Binge you'll have to do a review. :)

Just had an emergency flat tire... now I can not buy this.  Le sigh.
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Offline Binge

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #4 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 14:58:05 »
Quote
The Diverge uses a non-staggered layout, meaning vertical traverse of the finger become much more intuitive...
Actually, this keyboard's layout is mostly like a "symmetric stagger" layout with the keycaps rotated. Only the index finger columns diverge from that pattern.
I don't like the look of the case having gaps that expose large parts of the acrylic plate.
The "split keyboard" is apparently two individual half-keyboards, each with its own controller and USB cable to the host. There is no information about which firmware it uses ...

The keyboard has a different name on it in the pictures than the final product ...
Lots of spelling errors in the page. Also, naming a competitor by name is a big No-No.

The project dev seems to be very responsive to questions and provides a lot of information if you ask.  He is not a native english speaker.  Oh well.  It's still interesting as this could be used as a left handed controller.
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Offline vivalarevolución

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #5 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 16:21:42 »
Interesting.  I would be interested to know why they decided upon that shape and layout.
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Offline jacobolus

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #6 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 17:24:28 »
Interesting.  I would be interested to know why they decided upon that shape and layout.
Here was his thread explaining:
http://www.reddit.com/r/MechanicalKeyboards/comments/2ahkq2/photosi_diyd_my_own_split_keyboard_design_because/

I think the concept is “like an ergodox but with all 1u keys”. Most of his specific layout choices aren’t explained anywhere in detail.

Offline Glod

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #7 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 18:52:40 »
i think one of things the ergodox got right was it took into account that your middle finger is longer than your index finger, this layout looks to force you to stretch your index fingers, it looks painful now that i look at it more it doesn't appear to be that painful but it does tilt your hand slighty, it may feel off. Id rather just get a GH36x2 instead if i wanted a all 1x layout.
« Last Edit: Sun, 16 November 2014, 18:59:51 by Glod »

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #8 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 19:14:07 »
i think one of things the ergodox got right was it took into account that your middle finger is longer than your index finger, this layout looks to force you to stretch your index fingers, it looks painful now that i look at it more it doesn't appear to be that painful but it does tilt your hand slighty, it may feel off. Id rather just get a GH36x2 instead if i wanted a all 1x layout.

Pretty sure he said somewhere that the layout is based on what works for him personally so it may or may not work as well for other people.  The all 1x layout was purely a cost-saving measure.

I'm seriously considering ordering one of these.  I love the split-design style keyboard projects and this is a little less expensive than the others out there that I've seen.  Ultimately I want the Axios, but I'm not sure if/when it'll happen.

Offline byker

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #9 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 19:14:28 »
This is an interesting keyboard! One of the things that deters me is the lack of software to customize the layout, although the dev does say he will be making a program in the future.

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #10 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 19:19:37 »
This is an interesting keyboard! One of the things that deters me is the lack of software to customize the layout, although the dev does say he will be making a program in the future.

True.  I know I would want to tweak some things, plus maybe add in some Fn layers.  Buying now would be with the hope that the dev does do as you pointed out - make his own customization program.

Offline Input Nirvana

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #11 on: Sun, 16 November 2014, 21:50:15 »
Awesome!
More options.
Very educational for everyone to see this as a direct comparison to Ergodox (positives/negatives/preferences), as well as a welcome addition to the custom keyboard market.

I'm going to contact him and see if he wants anyone to throw some weight behind this. And his price point is VERY enlightening and if this is successful, will redefine some custom keyboard parameters.
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Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #12 on: Mon, 17 November 2014, 01:12:02 »
Ordered.  I'll post a review in about a month once I get the keyboard and have time to try it out. 

I'm so weak at resisting these things.

Offline davkol

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #13 on: Mon, 17 November 2014, 07:56:55 »
The controllers are apparently Arduinos, there are no plans to connect the two halves, and synchronization of Fn-keys state will be done in OS-side special drivers. Meh.

The extra pinkie column is pretty weird too.

Offline tp4tissue

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #14 on: Mon, 17 November 2014, 08:23:02 »
Other than the fact that it's kind of ugly .. (aesthetically, weird curves)..

Ergonomically.. this board has a more novice friendly layout..

and at that price... it's a better choice than the ergodox..

Tp4 approved !


I agree the " J " column should be lower like on the ergodox.. buh... that's really not enough of a shift to matter..

Offline Input Nirvana

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #15 on: Mon, 17 November 2014, 09:11:09 »
Again, it's not without faults and may very well be a work in progress. I think it's very exciting for another community member to strike out on his own and do this. And via different channels, sources, vendors, etc. I believe the action alone helps motivate and create more awareness. I hope he embraces this and posts on GH to further the concept.
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Offline naz

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #16 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 05:23:27 »
His first disign was a matrix layout (except the 3 thumb buttons). He said it was uncomfortable to type, so he changed it into the current version.

i was going to sign up for an ergodox (there is a massdrop campaign now), but i know my thumb won't reach the thumb cluster. This model seems better to me that way, it is cheaper and it will be shipped nov 30 (ergodox jan 29)... so wath the hell, i'll order one.

by the way: what does "preassamble" mean??? i just want to be sure that i won't have to solder anything.

Offline hoggy

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #17 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 07:24:29 »
Ordered one too.  Seemed rude not to.
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Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #18 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 10:08:57 »
by the way: what does "preassamble" mean??? i just want to be sure that i won't have to solder anything.
If you don't want to solder anything then select the "preassembly" option - just means he'll put it all together, including soldering, for you.  I chose the same option :)

Offline JackMills

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #19 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 10:29:46 »
...
I'm so weak at resisting these things.
So am I, but my wallet gave a compelling reason not to order.
It looks interesting, but I have no use for the extra pinky columns as I have difficulties moving my pinkies that far and I don't like moving my hand a lot to reach pinky keys with my ring finger.

It looks great to me and if I would be in the market for an Ergodox then I would seriously consider this one, definitely for such a price.

 :thumb: for the developer
 

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #20 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 11:56:48 »
...
I'm so weak at resisting these things.
So am I, but my wallet gave a compelling reason not to order.
It looks interesting, but I have no use for the extra pinky columns as I have difficulties moving my pinkies that far and I don't like moving my hand a lot to reach pinky keys with my ring finger.

It looks great to me and if I would be in the market for an Ergodox then I would seriously consider this one, definitely for such a price.

 :thumb: for the developer
Totally understand where you're coming from.  I'm fine on the pinky action ;)  I'm also very much in the market for an Ergodox, but of course looking to save money.  It's still a lot of money (particularly with the options I selected), but it's a lot less than an Ergodox with the options I'd want.  We'll see how it goes.

I'm just thrilled that there are several split keyboard design projects in the works.  In a perfect world I'd have all of them :)

Offline vivalarevolución

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #21 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 17:08:22 »
Ordered one too.  Seemed rude not to.

Your wallet might be offended.
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Offline Input Nirvana

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #22 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 19:54:53 »
This illustrates where a more competitive price point can be (not just talk, but actual hit-the-street numbers), and self-produced. This is a HUGE and positive action for the community. I'm looking forward to see how this develops. Not just this one keyboard he's done, but his overall process. Everyones eyes should watch this carefully, I think he's got a good model and if he adjusts the design and can meet a some requests...he can set the gold standard. I've seen and been involved in similar projects, and this has all the earmarks of a successful program. Of course it's fairly early and there's plenty of room for failure, but as we speak there is a deliverable product, which is 90% of the process.

I tuned down an offer about 3-4 years ago for a keyboard start up. The reason? Because the handwriting was on the wall that the process/advancements would get down to this level where quality, custom products would be able to be self-produced. Geekhack is a large part of this ovarall spread of knowledge and excitement.


Hell, I put his link in my sig!
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Offline naz

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #23 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 20:38:00 »
done!! i ordered one! hope he'll finish the custom layout software by the time it gets here so i can change the default qwerty (on his "site" there is a ton of info).


Offline blahlicus

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #24 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 21:47:18 »
hello! i am the creator of the diverge, i havent been on an online forum for 7 years now (unless you count reddit) so excuse me if I seem out of place, please feel free to give some opinions or ask some questions and i will try my best to answer them

here's some updated information for those of you who want to know

features
  • 6 KRO per side
  • 72 fully programmable keys
  • 10 enableable layers
  • media keys
  • fn and pm keys
  • fn and pm keys work across the keyboards

i've completed a new version of the driver yesterday as well as the new custom driver software (the one that you have to download/install manually), now, the Fn and Pm layers work across the two sides, the two sides could talk to each other if the custom software is installed. currently the custom software is written in C#, so it will only work on windows machines (i did not test the thing with mono, so not sure about linux or mac)

about me

i am a college student majoring in computer science, i currently live in hong kong (i moved from california back to hong kong earlier this year), i am mostly a software person, but i know how to work with laser cutters, electronics (am audiophile who makes his own amps), 3d modelling (maya) and just general computer related stuff

plans about the future

after i am done with the diverge, i will probably branch off and make other types of keyboardw on the market as well, i do plan to do a matrix layout 60% keyboard next, after that, i would like to look into modular keyboards

current sales and the "business"

i need to sell 20 kits for this to be considered successful, currently i've sold 14 kits, so the current evaluation on how successful this is would be "fair," currently, i've set up my "business" such that it is extremely scalable, so thats kind of nice

by the way: what does "preassamble" mean??? i just want to be sure that i won't have to solder anything.

pre-assembled means that its going to be fully assembled when it arrives on your doorsteps, you wont have to do any soldering or assembling other than plugging in the usb cables

This illustrates where a more competitive price point can be (not just talk, but actual hit-the-street numbers), and self-produced. This is a HUGE and positive action for the community. I'm looking forward to see how this develops. Not just this one keyboard he's done, but his overall process. Everyones eyes should watch this carefully, I think he's got a good model and if he adjusts the design and can meet a some requests...he can set the gold standard. I've seen and been involved in similar projects, and this has all the earmarks of a successful program. Of course it's fairly early and there's plenty of room for failure, but as we speak there is a deliverable product, which is 90% of the process.

I tuned down an offer about 3-4 years ago for a keyboard start up. The reason? Because the handwriting was on the wall that the process/advancements would get down to this level where quality, custom products would be able to be self-produced. Geekhack is a large part of this ovarall spread of knowledge and excitement.


Hell, I put his link in my sig!

thank you for having faith in me! i will be honest with you, the production costs could be even lower if i had better equipment and if i was producing in bulk

right now, the biggest cost related problem i've ran into is the key caps, it is very hard to get cheap, quality key caps in a specific layout with words printed/etched on them, for example, the PBT key caps on my store costs $40, thats ludicrously expensive, why? because i am actually buying 87 key key cap sets retail and splitting them up to form the required keys needed for the diverge

the only way i could keep my prices low was to have my own key caps printed, and believe me, they wont even do business with me unless i ordered a relatively large quantity(i had to order so much that there's no hope of selling all of them this batch), thats what i did, but the fact to the matter is, the key caps that i order made are inferior in every way (single shot ABS, flat profile) but i had to do it or else the key caps themselves would be ridiculously overpriced


Quote

The keyboard has a different name on it in the pictures than the final product ...


just for your information, geminus is latin for twin/double/of two pieces
« Last Edit: Wed, 19 November 2014, 22:05:29 by blahlicus »

Offline Input Nirvana

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #25 on: Wed, 19 November 2014, 21:55:50 »
Welcome to Geekhack!

Thank you for posting AND making this great project! We would love to help and be involved, this is what we do! There are many individuals on the forum and via backchannel that can be of assistance.

Please consider making a dedicated thread appropriately titled, and have it as something that can be a vendor or group buy thread. The mods can help with this :)
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Offline batfink

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #26 on: Sun, 14 December 2014, 11:08:50 »
This looks like an extremely nice keyboard project. I am tempted to order one. However, as something of an ergonomic keyboard noob, it would it be good to get feedback on it from someone who already got one.

I am also interested to know:

- I presume the key scan codes are hard-coded to Qwerty, so am I right in thinking alternative layouts need to be configured in software?

- If you order a pre-assembled one, how easy is it to physically re-arrange the keys to an arbitrary layout?  I am guessing as the keys are described as "flat" it means they are all identical in size and profile and can be swapped between rows without problems?




Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #27 on: Sun, 14 December 2014, 11:41:13 »
This looks like an extremely nice keyboard project. I am tempted to order one. However, as something of an ergonomic keyboard noob, it would it be good to get feedback on it from someone who already got one.
Other than the developer, no one has the keyboard in hand yet.  Mine is on order and has started through the shipping process, but it will be a while as it's coming from Hong Kong to the U.S.  Hopefully it won't take *too* long :)

- I presume the key scan codes are hard-coded to Qwerty, so am I right in thinking alternative layouts need to be configured in software?
- If you order a pre-assembled one, how easy is it to physically re-arrange the keys to an arbitrary layout?  I am guessing as the keys are described as "flat" it means they are all identical in size and profile and can be swapped between rows without problems?
Yes you would need to configure through software which the developer is going to provide.  Last I talked with him he was "close" for version 1 of the software that gives you a little GUI to map keys how you want.  Out of the box it's all preconfigured with a qwerty layout that doesn't require his software - only need the software to make changes.

Your last question depends on which keycaps you ordered.  There are flat profile keycaps that you could put anywhere like you said, however I ordered the OEM PBS keycaps which are row-specific in their profile.  I much prefer that profile so for me it was the clear choice.  If you went with flat keycaps it would be super easy to move things around.  just get a keycap puller (or make one with some paper clips or something) and pull any caps you want to move, then pop them into place where you want.  If you are familiar with this on a normal mechanical keyboard then sorry for stating the obvious :D

I'll try to post some pics and a review once I receive the keyboard to give people a better idea of what it's like.

Offline highend

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #28 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 05:03:07 »
I'm interested as well...

@blahlicus

Can you offer Cherry MX brown keyswitches as an alternative to the blue ones?


@Hairball
Quote
however I ordered the OEM PBS keycaps which are row-specific in their profile

Where exactly did you order these?

How much do you have to pay for the international shipping?

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #29 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 11:04:59 »
Can you offer Cherry MX brown keyswitches as an alternative to the blue ones?
Obviously not the builder/seller here, but blahlicus said blues were the only option currently.  I think the only option right now is to order the keyboard with no switches and add your own.

Quote
@Hairball
Quote
however I ordered the OEM PBS keycaps which are row-specific in their profile

Where exactly did you order these?
When the keyboard first went up for sale you could choose between flat ABS and OEM PBT (sorry I had a typo in my previous post saying "PBS"  :D)  There was limited availability on the OEM PBT keycaps though and they ran out is my understanding.

Quote
How much do you have to pay for the international shipping?
I paid $18.05 for international shipping from Hong Kong to Colorado.  I'm not sure how much of that shipping fee is based on the dollar amount of the product being shipped and how much is more like a flat rate though.

UPDATE
For those interested, the keyboard I ordered is close to arriving.  It's in town and should be delivered either today or tomorrow.  :)

Offline highend

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #30 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 13:12:20 »
Thanks for your comments, Hairball!

Quote
I think the only option right now is to order the keyboard with no switches and add your own

That will be a expensive option. Getting these keyswitches in Germany isn't as easy as in the USA (and if I import them on my own, maybe taxes and the delivery costs...)

Quote
There was limited availability on the OEM PBT keycaps though and they ran out is my understanding.

:(

Quote
For those interested, the keyboard I ordered is close to arriving

Very interested! The Ergodox (that I found before this keyboard) looks really nice but I'm quite sure I can use one 1/4 of the pinky keys with it and it's rather expensive (compared to this one), too.


Offline davkol

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #31 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 13:45:50 »
Quote
I think the only option right now is to order the keyboard with no switches and add your own

That will be a expensive option. Getting these keyswitches in Germany isn't as easy as in the USA (and if I import them on my own, maybe taxes and the delivery costs...)
Quite the opposite, actually. Just harvest them from some random old keyboard. Getting a Compaq-branded G80-11800 with broken-in browns shouldn't be much of an issue.

Offline Sagii

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #32 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 15:22:46 »
I just have a quick question regarding the availability; it says there are four available. I assume that is in the first batch that'll be shipped, right?
Now, is this first batch of 20 the only batch you'll do, or will this keyboard be available in the future as well, and if so, how long will it take before it'll be possible to get a hold of one of these again? :)

This looks nice btw (coming from someone who knows absolutely nothing about ergonomics, so take it for what it's worth :))). The low price point is a huuuuge plus for me, and is one of the main reason I consider this over others at this very moment in time.
If it turns out I managed to fry my poker 2 PCB you might just get an order from me. Good luck with this!

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #33 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 16:35:40 »
I have the diverge keyboard sitting in front of me now :)  I took pics of the unboxing and a few different angles showing what it looks like.  I'm typing this message on it right now.   Going to take some serious adjustment on my part lol.  I can say this thing feels super solid and well made.  It looks slick and feels nice if a bit alien, but that was to be expected with such a different layout.  I'm struggling a bit with the shift keys as they are pretty far removed from where I'd like them.  I'll likely end up remapping them to be closer.   I'm also finding that I keep getting more spaces than I want so it seems I'm resting my thumbs on the space keys too much so that's a bit of a retraining thing.  Not having backspace where I expect is a hard habit to change and for some reason the hardest letter for me by far is "c" - I keep hitting "v" by mistake.  Just have to get used to it I guess hehe.

I'll post pics in a bit.  Right now I'm really struggling trying to type  :))

Offline Sagii

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #34 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 16:58:57 »
I have the diverge keyboard sitting in front of me now :)  I took pics of the unboxing and a few different angles showing what it looks like.  I'm typing this message on it right now.   Going to take some serious adjustment on my part lol.  I can say this thing feels super solid and well made.  It looks slick and feels nice if a bit alien, but that was to be expected with such a different layout.  I'm struggling a bit with the shift keys as they are pretty far removed from where I'd like them.  I'll likely end up remapping them to be closer.   I'm also finding that I keep getting more spaces than I want so it seems I'm resting my thumbs on the space keys too much so that's a bit of a retraining thing.  Not having backspace where I expect is a hard habit to change and for some reason the hardest letter for me by far is "c" - I keep hitting "v" by mistake.  Just have to get used to it I guess hehe.

I'll post pics in a bit.  Right now I'm really struggling trying to type  :))

Haha, well, if it makes you feel any better; I thought it was hard enough to adjust to a mech coming from a rubberdome :))
Looking forward to the updates. The fact that it feels solid is very good(!!), that's one of the things I value the most :) Good luck adjusting ;) How does it feel using the "thumb cluster" (guess it really ain't a cluster)? Is it easy to reach all the keys that are layed out for the thumbs?

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #35 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 18:01:48 »
Unboxing Pics and my initial impressions!

Here's the pics: http://imgur.com/a/DMkBg

First impressions:
It feels super solid and basically indestructible.  The glossy black that I opted for looks really good and the white OEM PBT keys go well with a bit of a grand piano visual.   The design is very thick with the 5 layers of acrylic, plus the keycaps and the rubber feet, but not unusually thick.  It's slightly thicker than the front end of my Ducky Zero Shine, but thinner than the back of that keyboard.  Together the 2 halves combined are narrower than a standard keyboard with 10-key.

Worth noting in case anyone wasn't aware - to save money the developer went with less expensive controllers than the Ergodox.  The upside is obviously that it costs less, but the downside is that it means each half of the keyboard has a separate controller and requires its own USB cable plugged into your computer.  I knew this going in so it wasn't a surprise, but some people are bound to expect a single cable like most keyboards use.

Cherry MX Blue switches were the only option unless you ordered without switches and wanted to add your own later.  Luckily, blues are my favorite.

First 5 minutes of use:
Woah is this layout weird lol.  I've been a touch typist for... longer than I even want to think about - let's just say many years.  It's going to be tough to reprogram my own brain here, but that was a known issue when I ordered this.  The keys feel good, the layout feels good for the most part with 1 significant exception: the outside column of "pinky keys" as I'm calling them.

You can see in the last photo that it's literally a pain to reach the shift key without moving my whole hand.  There's a column of mostly unused keys between the outer column and the "QAZ" column that I'd rather map things to.  I've sent a message to blahlicus asking if the keymapping software is ready yet because that's the first thing I want to change. ;)

The other issue that's purely a keymapping thing is there's no mapping at all for INS/DEL/HOME/END/PGUP/PGDOWN and that's gonna bug me.  In particular I need DEL, HOME and END.  The others are much less significant for me, but those 3 I use constantly.

The offset to my gripes about the pinky column is that the thumb keys/cluster/whatever is really well positioned for me.  My thumbs rest right on the middle of the 3 keys (mapped to space by default).  The 3 thumb keys are mapped to Return-Space-Backspace by default.

Problems I'm having initially due to the non-staggered columns is really only one key for the most part, oddly enough.  The "c" key is killing me lol.  I keep hitting "v" since I'm so used to moving my middle finger down and to the right to get to "c" normally.  That'll just take time to adjust.  Also, having the backspace moved to the thumbs is weird - I'm so programmed to reach over to the upper right and (wrongly hehe) use my right ring finger to press the backspace key.  Again, that's not a layout issue - just something I'll need to adjust to.  The space key didn't take hardly any adjustment other than it's SUPER sensitive.  I get extra spaces a lot from just resting my thumbs on the keys.

Overall this looks and feels like a quality product that may need some tweaking of the keymapping to get to where I need it to be.  I'm very glad I went with the OEM PBT keycaps.  I don't think I would have liked this with the ABS flat keycaps.  It would have felt really weird to me.

Let me know if you have any questions.  I'll also followup here when I get word about the keymapping software.

Appendix A - Default Keymapping (ok having an appendix in my little forum post is lame lol)
Left Hand - Right Hand
Green text means you need to hold the Fn key which acts as a modifier, not a toggle.  Eventually I'm hoping to have selectable layers that I can swap.

Oh and final note... this was typed on my Ducky because I didn't want it to take forever to type up on the new keyboard. ;)

edit: sorry just realized I didn't resize the pics and they are kinda huge :(  Not able to fix at the moment.

2nd edit: the "spare switch" is for a switch keychain.  There are included acrylic pieces to put it together, but I think I'll need to glue them together.
« Last Edit: Fri, 19 December 2014, 19:31:56 by Hairball »

Offline Sagii

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #36 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 19:36:25 »
Thanks for the writeup ^_^ Wether I'm going to put money into this or not is probably gonna rely heavily on how much programmability it'll get. I'd definetely like to be able to switch keys around as I like, switch between several layers (both as toggle and modifier),and just in general program it as I'd like. It looks good so far though.

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #37 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 19:44:19 »
Thanks for the writeup ^_^ Wether I'm going to put money into this or not is probably gonna rely heavily on how much programmability it'll get. I'd definetely like to be able to switch keys around as I like, switch between several layers (both as toggle and modifier),and just in general program it as I'd like. It looks good so far though.
I hear ya.  I'm kind of counting on the option to program this to my liking.  Without that it would be too frustrating as it is.

Offline daerid

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #38 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 22:41:05 »
If I can re-program this I'll snap one up immediately.

Offline nomaded

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #39 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 23:23:14 »
If I can re-program this I'll snap one up immediately.

Indeed. For me, one of the biggest draws of the ErgoDox was the ability to program the whole keyboard however I wanted. All I really need is the source for the firmware and the layout file. I'll definitely keep an eye out on this one.
Dvorak
ErgoDox fullhand (MX Clears) w/Nuclear Green Data SA || Infinity ErgoDox (Zealios 78g tactile) w/SA Retro || Atreus62 (MX Clears) w/Chocolatier || TECK 209 (MX Browns) || TouchStream ST
Kensington Slimblade Trackball || Logitech Cordless Optical Trackman || Apple Magic Trackpad
Current Dvorak-based ErgoDox layout || Current Dvorak-based TECK layout

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #40 on: Fri, 19 December 2014, 23:53:18 »
If I can re-program this I'll snap one up immediately.

Indeed. For me, one of the biggest draws of the ErgoDox was the ability to program the whole keyboard however I wanted. All I really need is the source for the firmware and the layout file. I'll definitely keep an eye out on this one.

I talked to the developer, blahlicus, and he's hoping to have the programming software done by the end of the year.  He just got wrapped up in other commitments, but hopefully can finish things up so we'll have the software in the next week or two.

Offline Sagii

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #41 on: Sat, 20 December 2014, 07:17:11 »
@Hairball wohoo, sounds good!

Btw, has anyone got an answer for my question about availability that I asked earlier ? ^^

Offline highend

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #42 on: Sat, 20 December 2014, 10:11:29 »
@Hairball

Thanks for the pictures and your comments, really appreciated! Judging only from your comments this isn't the perfect keyboard for me. Unfortunately...

Anyway, I hope you can change the key mapping as soon as possible (whenever the creator release it's software for it) :)

Offline batfink

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #43 on: Sat, 20 December 2014, 10:50:59 »
@Hairball, nice report. Interesting to see the default layout it uses too. For me the critical issue is going to be remapability.

I agree the shift key is *way* too far away. I would have shift on one of the three thumb keys. I don't even see the need for two extra pinky columns - one would be enough. I would leave the leftmost and rightmost columns on this keyboard either blank or rare keys only.

I use the "angle shift" technique on my keyboard so I'm guessing at least the C-V issue wouldn't be a problem for me!


Offline hoggy

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #44 on: Sat, 20 December 2014, 11:14:58 »
Thanks for the write up and pictures!  Looking forward to getting mine even more now.

I'll take some pictures of it next to an ergodox as soon as I get it.
« Last Edit: Sat, 20 December 2014, 11:16:34 by hoggy »
GH Ergonomic Guide (in progress)
http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=54680.0

Offline hoggy

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #45 on: Wed, 24 December 2014, 09:58:57 »
Arrived today, I'll get some piccies up later.
GH Ergonomic Guide (in progress)
http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=54680.0

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #46 on: Wed, 24 December 2014, 17:20:27 »
Arrived today, I'll get some piccies up later.
Awesome.  I'm basically in a holding pattern until the software to remap keys is released.  Missing del/home/end keys are painful (will be able to easily map them luckily) and I still can't stand where the shift keys are located.  Just need to move those shift keys in one column and it'll be MUCH better.

Let us know what you think of yours and how it compares to the Ergodox.  I know they are different price points, but the the Ergodox is the closest in style that I'm aware of to this new Diverge keyboard so that's the obvious comparison.

Offline hoggy

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #47 on: Sun, 28 December 2014, 06:45:03 »
After a few computer problems over the past few days...





Hairball,  I'm pretty much waiting to remap it as well, my setup at work is a pain without hardware dvorak (I've got an autohot remap script, but it stops a bundle of other triggers from firing).

GH Ergonomic Guide (in progress)
http://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=54680.0

Offline Hairball

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #48 on: Sun, 28 December 2014, 11:22:32 »
Hairball,  I'm pretty much waiting to remap it as well, my setup at work is a pain without hardware dvorak (I've got an autohot remap script, but it stops a bundle of other triggers from firing).
Thanks for the comparison pics.  Until we get that software to remap it, the Diverge is sitting unused right now.  Looking pretty, but ultimately not functional for me.  I'm very curious to know if remapping some keys will make it a viable keyboard replacement for me.  If not I may swing back around to a more standard layout and go with something like this: http://matias.ca/ergopro/pc/

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Re: New Budget Split Ergo keyboard - Uniquek Diverge
« Reply #49 on: Sun, 28 December 2014, 23:19:36 »
Interesting and hopeful. Options.
From my perspective (I take a global approach) I feel this is a huge step. I'm hoping this develops over the next couple months to a trouble-free ergo board with programming features. If so, it will really turn our perspective around on the ease and resources needed to bring these projects to the user market.

At this point, I feel I'm a supporter, and want to see the direction this goes. If there's room I'd consider lending muscle.
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