Author Topic: My favorite keyboard to type on is surprisingly, Royal Kludge's Topre clone  (Read 4824 times)

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Offline Lunatique

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  • Location: Lincoln, CA
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After years of buying/selling/collecting keyboards, I'm surprised by the fact that my favorite keyboard to type on currently is the Royal Kludge C930-87 RGB (there's also a version without LED backlighting, as well as have 35g, 45g, and 55g versions. Mine is 45g).

When I first got into mechanical keyboards, I preferred the very tactile ones, and if that meant the keyboard might be loud (buckling spring, Cherry MX Blue), I didn't mind it too much, because the overall impact was more visceral and fun. But once I've experienced the much quieter Topre RealForce ergonomic weighted silenced version, I much preferred the peace and quiet while typing. However, the ergonomic weighted version wasn't tactile enough (due to the keys with lesser weight), while the 55g version was a little heavy for my taste. There were other switches there were kind of in-between, with enough tactile feedback but not too noisy, such as the Matias quiet switch, Cherry MX Clear, Leopold's 45g Topre. I would have been happy with those, but then I got the Royal Kludge C930-87 RGB, and it instantly felt "just right," sort of like the Goldilock and the Three Bears--I found my keyboard. This is probably the one keyboard I'll keep if I have to sell off my entire keyboard collection.

The reasons I love the Royal Kludge C930-87 RGB are:

-Although it's a emulation of the Topre switch and many consider it "not authentic," it is similar enough that I don't really care.

-It's about as quiet as the silenced RealForce Ergonomic Weighted keyboard, but it's more tactile (only because it's not ergonomically weighted).

-It's not as heavy as the 55g Topre.

-It's 45g, and feels slightly smoother than the Leopold 45g Topre, and quieter (less high-pitched clacking). The initial resistance is slightly lower than the Leopold Topre (not as crisp), but the weight feels similar.

-Overall, it just feels really smooth, quiet, and has just enough tactile feedback to feel good to type on, but doesn't call attention to itself for being too heavy.

-It uses Cherry MX stems, so you have lots of keycaps to choose from.

I'm not a fan of LED backlighting that will spill out between the keys and distract from the actual legends, so I did a mod where I took off the keycaps, then used black acrylic paint to cover the transparent housing. This provided enough blocking of the light spill to make it a lot less distracting. And if you don't like LED backlighting, there's a version without it, or you can just turn it off, as well as put on your own choice of Cherry MX compatible keycaps.

I know keyboard preferences are highly subjective, but I just wanted to share this with all of you, in case some of you are looking for a keyboard with similar characteristics.
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Offline dchadwick

  • Posts: 418
Interesting, but I wish it looked... less horrible. I'm not a fan of the "gamer" aesthetic, myself.

Offline killyou

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  • Location: Poland
Interesting, but I wish it looked... less horrible. I'm not a fan of the "gamer" aesthetic, myself.

Just switch the caps.

Offline klennkellon

  • Posts: 1272
  • Location: Southern California
  • I like bottoming out
Would love to pick one of these up but I can never find them. I can only find the 35g Plum boards. Though they are made by the same OEM as RK if I recall.

Offline dchadwick

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Maybe a basic question, but is it possible to totally turn off the backlighting?

Offline Vladimir

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  • Location: Brazil
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Would love to pick one of these up but I can never find them. I can only find the 35g Plum boards. Though they are made by the same OEM as RK if I recall.

If the problem is the weight/force, I've heard it's easy to buy parts to change that with a Plum KB.
That wouldn't be possible with real Topre boards.
 Matias Mini Quiet Pro              Noppoo Nano 75-S Brown

Offline ArtKey

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  • Location: Ho Chi Minh City, Viet Nam
    • ArtKey - Your MechKey Companion
The clone Torpe switch gives us feeling like Cherry Brown switch but w/o clicky sound. Of course, it is just like, the guality gap btw them are huge  :-X :-X

Offline Fullcream

  • Posts: 147
  • Location: Australia
The RK topre clone is amazing. I got one when they were still somewhat new. 55g with no backlighting. I've since converted it to detachable cable, and replaced the alphas with topre domes. And it is now currently my favourite board.

What I really like about these which I'm not sure people are aware of or care is that on these boards (or at least mine anyway.) You can actually put cherry profile caps on without the cap bottoming out on the housing. I can ONLY do that on this board. Not a Novatouch or any topre board with mx sliders (I haven't tried the realforce rgb). It's because the sliders on these are actually the longest mx compatible topre sliders I've come across. They are longer than jtk and also the other cheaper sliders you can find on aliexpress etc.

Great board!

Offline tuxkey

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  • Location: The Netherlands
sounds good.
i didn't know that i thought it was awful. :cool:
i have the FC660C with the Hasu controller and must say after trying programmable boards i'm all in with programmability..
so a couple weeks back i got the k-type as my new yet to arrive TKL format board..
i would consider the Royal Kludge if it was fully programmable...
perhaps as a work board..but for now i'l stick with my FC660M with mx-clears and FC660C 45g topre.
All cost me a pretty penny because i have the luck to live in the bloody EU so paid like 204 for my mx-clears Leopold and even more for my Topre board but at least for that one i paid less because the seller helped me out.. :thumb: