Author Topic: membrane keyboard with NKRO  (Read 30899 times)

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Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 08:39:11 »
hey all im new here so please be gentle :fear:

just wondering if there are any keyboards with membrane switches that have n-key rollover and if not, why? thanks!

Offline ch_123

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #1 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 08:55:08 »
There are some that claim to implement it across some parts of the keyboard or have a greater than average rollover. There's none with full NKRO though...

Why? Well, I'd imagine that it's difficult to solder diodes onto a thin layer of plastic.

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 10:22:18 »
cheers for the info m8s.

i'm looking for a good NKRO keyboard to buy but they are hard to come by here in AUS :( anyone know of any good places

got my eye on this one:

http://www.auspcmarket.com.au/show_product_info.php?input[product_code]=KE-FKBN87MC-EB&input[category_id]=1838

but its $176 what a pain in the clacker.. will be hard for me to put that much down for a keyboard

Offline Phaedrus2129

  • Posts: 1131
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 10:48:53 »
Cheapest board I know of with NKRO is this:
http://www.provantage.com/adesso-mkb-135b~7ADES09P.htm

$70. It's basically an iOne Scorpius M10 with NKRO. They apparently have some QC issues, but that's the cheapest you'll get true NKRO.
Daily Driver: Noppoo Choc Mini
Currently own: IBM Model M 1391401 1988,  XArmor U9 prototype
Previously owned: Ricercar SPOS, IBM M13 92G7461 1994, XArmor U9BL, XArmor U9W prototype, Cherry G80-8200LPDUS, Cherry G84-4100, Compaq MX-11800, Chicony KB-5181 (SMK Monterey), Reveal KB-7061, Cirque Wave Keyboard (ergonomic rubber domes), NMB RT101 (rubber dome), Dell AT101W

Offline namelessguy

  • Posts: 51
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #4 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 10:56:10 »
I heard that Korean "Skydigital nKEYBOARD" is a NKRO board, as the name suggests, and quite popular among budget gamers there. The Japanese model is also available but it's got a bit expensive (around 5,000 JP yen), as is usual with imports.
Razer Tarantula is 10-key rollover board but this one is quite expensive so you wouldn't be interested in this one.
Logitech G11 and older G15 (but not G15S) has at least 6-key rollover.

Offline ch_123

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #5 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:00:38 »
I'm taking Ripster's line on this one - NKRO is a gimmick. I'd rather buy a good keyboard with 2KRO than a cheap one with NKRO... Besides, cheap keyboard with NKRO is somewhat oxymoronic...

Offline elbowglue

  • Posts: 582
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #6 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:02:19 »
The Chicony KB-5181 doesn't have NKRO but it has a pretty decent roll-over characteristic, I was recently messsing with it, I can get 10 keys to register at the same time in certain patterns.  It's not true NKRO however as qwezxc dosen't work.  It's cheap and may have the best clicky switches out there.
My keyboards: Filco Cherry Blue Tenkeyless(daily home), Compaq MX11800 (modded to blacks), Compaq "MX 84u",  Wellington\'s Dampened Endurapro, Pinkalicious Filco Blue Cherry, Chicony KB-5191, Chicony KB-5181, Desko MOS 5023 UP "elbowglue" spos (modded to blues), Siig Minitouch (monterey blue), SMK-88 (blue cherries), Ricercar SPOS
Smallest to biggest keyboards in inches (Length X Height) - Length is most important for a midline mouse position

KBC Poker: 11.6 x 3.9 - HHKB: 11.6 x 4.3 - Siig Minitouch (Geekhack Space Saver): 11.6 x 6 - Deck/Tg3 82: 12 x 6 - Noppoo Choc Mini 12.4 x 5.3 - Compaq "MX 84u": 13.1 x 7.5 - Filco Tenkeyless: 14 x 5.3 - Cherry "ricercar spos" G86-62410EUAGSA: 14 x 7.75 - Topre Realforce 86u: 14.4 x 6.65 - Desko "elbowglue spos" MOS 5023 UP: 14.5 x 8.4 - IBM Model M Spacesaver: 15.3 x 7 - G80-1800: 15.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-125B: 16 x 7.3 - Compaq Mx11800, Cherry G80-11900: 16.25 x 7.5 - Filco Standard: 17.3 x 5.4 - Unicomp Endurapro: 17.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-135B: 18.3 x 6.0 - Cherry G80-3000: 18.5 x 7.6 - IBM Model M, Unicomp Customizer: 19.3 x 8.27

Offline Phaedrus2129

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #7 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:02:22 »
Quote from: ripster;165587
?  Why do you think it's made by iOne?


It isn't, but I think it's from the same OEM. It looks all but identical and has the same switches.
Daily Driver: Noppoo Choc Mini
Currently own: IBM Model M 1391401 1988,  XArmor U9 prototype
Previously owned: Ricercar SPOS, IBM M13 92G7461 1994, XArmor U9BL, XArmor U9W prototype, Cherry G80-8200LPDUS, Cherry G84-4100, Compaq MX-11800, Chicony KB-5181 (SMK Monterey), Reveal KB-7061, Cirque Wave Keyboard (ergonomic rubber domes), NMB RT101 (rubber dome), Dell AT101W

Offline Phaedrus2129

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #8 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:03:33 »
Quote from: namelessguy;165588
I heard that Korean "Skydigital nKEYBOARD" is a NKRO board, as the name suggests, and quite popular among budget gamers there. The Japanese model is also available but it's got a bit expensive (around 5,000 JP yen), as is usual with imports.
Razer Tarantula is 10-key rollover board but this one is quite expensive so you wouldn't be interested in this one.
Logitech G11 and older G15 (but not G15S) has at least 6-key rollover.


No... Rollover is the *minimum* number of keypresses that can register, not the max. The G11 and G15 and all Logitech boards are, I believe, 2KRO. They might even use the IBM matrix, I don't know.
Daily Driver: Noppoo Choc Mini
Currently own: IBM Model M 1391401 1988,  XArmor U9 prototype
Previously owned: Ricercar SPOS, IBM M13 92G7461 1994, XArmor U9BL, XArmor U9W prototype, Cherry G80-8200LPDUS, Cherry G84-4100, Compaq MX-11800, Chicony KB-5181 (SMK Monterey), Reveal KB-7061, Cirque Wave Keyboard (ergonomic rubber domes), NMB RT101 (rubber dome), Dell AT101W

Offline ch_123

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:03:43 »
Quote from: elbowglue;165593
It's cheap and may have the best clicky switches out there.


Montereys or SMK?

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:05:12 »
Quote from: ch_123;165592
Besides, cheap keyboard with NKRO is somewhat oxymoronic...


true.. new question.. :P

are there any cheapish mechanical keyboards with 4 or 5KRO?

Offline namelessguy

  • Posts: 51
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #11 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:12:47 »
Quote from: ripster;165590
Source of info?

http://www.renoise.com/indepth/equipment/crippled-chords-without-full-n-key-rollover/
http://wikiwiki.jp/fpag/?%A5%AD%A1%BC%A5%DC%A1%BC%A5%C9%A4%CE%C6%B1%BB%FE%B2%A1%A4%B7%A4%CB%A4%C4%A4%A4%A4%C6 (Japanese)

These websites (and a few others, and google too). Not confirmed by myself (except Razer) and could possibly be inaccurate information though.

Offline ch_123

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #12 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:13:06 »
With mechanical keyboards your choice is between 2, 6 and n. You might want to check that keyboard linked on the last page, most of the others are quite expensive.

Having owned an NKRO keyboard, I can't see what the fuss is. If you've had prior experience with blocking, the odds are that it's because the keyboard you were using was badly designed. I've never had any issues with any games I've played whilst using my 2KRO keyboards.

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #13 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:33:29 »
i can confirm the G15 doesn't have 6kro cause my brother has one.. can't remember what other 2 keys but it blocks the 'o' key.. even though o isnt that big of a deal for me :P

im still skeptical about buying the G110 as it may block some keys i use

might just have to fork out for the filco.. are the other filco's like the pink one 2 or 6KRO ie. http://www.elitekeyboards.com/products.php?sub=filco_keyboards,majestouch_104key&pid=fkb104mceb
« Last Edit: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:38:27 by ohmage »

Offline elbowglue

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #14 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:33:35 »
Monterey switches.   The one ripster broke apart:
http://geekhack.org/showwiki.php?title=Island:8771&do=comments&page=2
My keyboards: Filco Cherry Blue Tenkeyless(daily home), Compaq MX11800 (modded to blacks), Compaq "MX 84u",  Wellington\'s Dampened Endurapro, Pinkalicious Filco Blue Cherry, Chicony KB-5191, Chicony KB-5181, Desko MOS 5023 UP "elbowglue" spos (modded to blues), Siig Minitouch (monterey blue), SMK-88 (blue cherries), Ricercar SPOS
Smallest to biggest keyboards in inches (Length X Height) - Length is most important for a midline mouse position

KBC Poker: 11.6 x 3.9 - HHKB: 11.6 x 4.3 - Siig Minitouch (Geekhack Space Saver): 11.6 x 6 - Deck/Tg3 82: 12 x 6 - Noppoo Choc Mini 12.4 x 5.3 - Compaq "MX 84u": 13.1 x 7.5 - Filco Tenkeyless: 14 x 5.3 - Cherry "ricercar spos" G86-62410EUAGSA: 14 x 7.75 - Topre Realforce 86u: 14.4 x 6.65 - Desko "elbowglue spos" MOS 5023 UP: 14.5 x 8.4 - IBM Model M Spacesaver: 15.3 x 7 - G80-1800: 15.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-125B: 16 x 7.3 - Compaq Mx11800, Cherry G80-11900: 16.25 x 7.5 - Filco Standard: 17.3 x 5.4 - Unicomp Endurapro: 17.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-135B: 18.3 x 6.0 - Cherry G80-3000: 18.5 x 7.6 - IBM Model M, Unicomp Customizer: 19.3 x 8.27

Offline namelessguy

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #15 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:43:18 »
Quote from: ohmage;165608
i can confirm the G15 doesn't have 6kro cause my brother has one.. can't remember what other 2 keys but it blocks the 'o' key.. even though o isnt that big of a deal for me :P


Is it the older G15 for sure(with 18 macro keys on the left)?
If that's the case I'm going to update the information on JP wiki.

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #16 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:44:05 »
kk thanks heaps all, looks like i'll be forking out for the filco nkro.. peace!

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #17 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 11:45:34 »
Quote from: namelessguy;165612
Is it the older G15 for sure(with 18 macro keys on the left)?
If that's the case I'm going to update the information on JP wiki.


ah, nah his is the g15v2.. sorry for misinforming ya m8

Offline namelessguy

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #18 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 12:00:06 »
Quote from: ripster;165605
Even Microsoft R&D couldn't pull it off so why would Logitech have?

Ah, but you know a small Korean company is doing what Microsoft can't (or just don't) do. And they've dropped their trackballs too!
But it's too bad Razer or Logitech don't care about NKRO any longer.

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #19 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 12:30:20 »
Quote from: namelessguy;165617

But it's too bad Razer or Logitech don't care about NKRO any longer.


even 6kro would be fine really.... :(

Offline EverythingIBM

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #20 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 14:20:56 »
I have a question...
Do model Ms or KB-8923s have ghosting? I've never experienced such a phenomenon. The only that happens for me is if I press too many keys, then I'll either get a pause with no input, or a beep; depending which computer you're on (which is Windows' fault). I think macs can actually support a whole bunch of key presses at once; they don't beep or pause anyways (although, pressing lots of keys spikes the CPU to 100% for some odd reason).
Keyboards: '86 M, M5-2, M13, SSK, F AT, F XT

Offline kishy

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #21 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 14:29:24 »
Not sure it's a Windows thing, to be honest. The beep that is generated is a system beep through the system speaker, not a sound played by Windows, which tells me it's a BIOS level thing.

To test, boot up into CMOS setup and try in there.
Enthusiast of springs which buckle noisily: my keyboards
Want to learn about the Kishsaver?
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Offline EverythingIBM

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #22 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 14:34:44 »
Quote from: kishy;165665
Not sure it's a Windows thing, to be honest. The beep that is generated is a system beep through the system speaker, not a sound played by Windows, which tells me it's a BIOS level thing.

To test, boot up into CMOS setup and try in there.


Nah, in windows 7 it doesn't use the system speaker, it plays a sound file instead fed through your actual speakers. Plus, it CAN be disabled, on my thinkpad I had to disable it because... everything I'd type on the damn thing, it would BEEP (thinkpads can't support multiple keys being typed on them?). I bottomed out the keys so much from smashing it. But now it just gives little "pauses", it types fine, just goes crazy with the input.
Keyboards: '86 M, M5-2, M13, SSK, F AT, F XT

Offline EverythingIBM

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #23 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 14:39:39 »
Quote from: ripster;165666
Try this test:  Link.

Press A (hold), S (hold), then X.   Eeeek.  No X!!!!!

In a typical FPS that would be going in a diagonal and trying to use the radio (or grenade, or whatever).  But then somebody shoots you.  Very sad.


Some combinations work, some don't (and the ones that don't do the stupid beeping through my speakers).

Maybe I should just invest in an M-Audio keyboard.
Keyboards: '86 M, M5-2, M13, SSK, F AT, F XT

Offline namelessguy

  • Posts: 51
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #24 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 17:32:48 »
Quote from: ripster;165676
What is this mysterious Korean company?

The name is "Skydigital", I don't know the details but looks like it's making and marketing computer peripherals there. Well, maybe it's not that small really...
http://en.skyok.co.kr/
http://skyok.co.kr/kr.php (Korean)

Offline Rajagra

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #25 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 17:59:13 »
All keyboards that use membrane switches are 2KRO.*
By definition they cannot tell the difference between three keys being held down in a rectangle and all four keys being held down. If you look hard enough you will find combinations of three keys that will fail. Therefore they are 2KRO.

Examples of the Logitech G15 Ver 1 failing with 3 keys.

*The Microsoft one claiming 26KRO is an exception because it doesn't use membrane switches - they are variable resistance points instead.
« Last Edit: Sat, 20 March 2010, 18:03:31 by Rajagra »

Offline namelessguy

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #26 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 18:14:07 »
Thanks for the info, Rajagra!
Come to think of it I never checked the right shift/ctrl key! But I don't have Razer Tarantula now and can't check it anymore.

Offline ricercar

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #27 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 18:27:34 »
Quote from: ripster;165666
Press A (hold), S (hold), then X.   Eeeek.  No X!!!!!

If that works, Press Q (hold), W (hold), then S. No S? Some of my Toshiba laptops that pass asx will fail qws.
I trolled Geekhack and all I got was an eponymous SPOS.

Offline gcogger

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #28 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:03:25 »
Quote from: namelessguy;165723
Thanks for the info, Rajagra!
Come to think of it I never checked the right shift/ctrl key! But I don't have Razer Tarantula now and can't check it anymore.

I've just been playing with my Tarantula and can't get less than 6 (via USB) so  far although, obviously, I haven't tested every combination.  If anyone can suggest something that's likely to fail, I'm happy to try it.  (QWS and ASX work fine, as does QWASX).

I can't stand the keyboard otherwise, but it seems pretty good in this one regard.
« Last Edit: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:07:15 by gcogger »

Offline Mental Hobbit

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #29 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:10:16 »
Quote from: gcogger;165757
If anyone can suggest something that's likely to fail, I'm happy to try it.


Try numpad 4+8+9 or other numpad combos over several rows please.
Typing on blues.

Offline gcogger

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #30 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:19:48 »
4+8+9 works fine.  I've been trying everything I can in the numpad (and cursor keys) area and still can't get less than 6.

Edit:
I'm off to bed :)  I'm happy to try any other combinations tomorrow.
« Last Edit: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:30:16 by gcogger »

Offline Mental Hobbit

  • Posts: 461
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #31 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 20:47:09 »
Quote from: gcogger;165761
4+8+9 works fine.  I've been trying everything I can in the numpad (and cursor keys) area and still can't get less than 6.


Wow, I'm impressed. Haven't seen any rubberdome capable of handling keypresses in more than one row on the numpad - and I've tried that on any board I got my hands on. Of all keyboards I tried, it only worked on mechanical full-NKROs, i.e. Filcos, Steelseries and ancient Cherries.  

I'm left-handed, so I use [num] 7-8-9 as my home row in games, and R-arrow as default action (thumb-)key.
Typing on blues.

Offline Brodie337

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #32 on: Sat, 20 March 2010, 21:44:59 »
Hey, where in Australia are you, TS?

I've got a Chicony KB-5181 that you can have if you're interested.

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
Some corrections...
« Reply #33 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 01:08:44 »
Quote from: ripster;165577
Welcome to Geekhack!  We're always gentle (at least I am up to post count 10).

One keyboard that has a rubber dome yet claims 26-Key rollover is the new Microsoft Sidewinder X4.
Show Image
.

 Unfortunately they screwed up the design.  It has a problem called ghosting where keystrokes register that you actually didn't want.  

This is WORSE than key blocking so I don't recommend you buy it.

From the ExtremeTech Review.



Hey gang!

I am the researcher behind the Sidewinder X4 anti-ghosting technology. I wanted to clear up some misconceptions I've noticed in this forum.

The "ghosting" referred to in the quote above is not from the keyboard. That's a software bug on the PC side. You can see the same behavior with competitive USB keyboards that report large number of keys. For what it's worth, I have only seen this behavior when you exceed 11 simultaneous keys from a single keyboard, so it's probably not much of an issue for most people. This is all discussed on our web site:

http://www.microsoft.com/appliedsciences/SideWinderX4.mspx

On that page, you'll see that we fully document what X4 can and cannot do. The people in this forum seem to be unusually well informed about keyboard issues, so I hope you'll appreciate having all this information plainly stated.

In addition to this, there has been some misinformation about how X4 works. We add a fixed resistor in series with each key. Every resistor is nominally the same value, although this is not critical. Ultimately, the system is just making on/off measurements, checking to see if a current exceeds a simple threshold. I know this is quite an innovation in the keyboard space, but this type of technique is how many multitouch systems work and has been used for decades in industrial sensors (e.g. Tekscan).

In order to help cut through the confusion, we've put up a browser based keyboard tester. You can find it here:

http://www.microsoft.com/appliedsciences/KeyboardGhostingDemo.mspx

It's capabilities will depend somewhat on what browser and what operating system you are using. But it should be good enough to give most people a quick way to test their keyboards for obvious problems. Here's what I do when I want to show just how bad most keyboards are:

Press and hold ASDW. Now try pressing every other key while continuing to hold ASDW. You will probably find a number of keys that don't work. When you find these, try releasing some of the ASDW keys. You will probably be able to narrow it down to specific 3-key combinations that don't work.

Anyhow, I hope this is helpful!

Offline elbowglue

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #34 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 01:56:46 »
Quote from: Paul Dietz;165795

The "ghosting" referred to in the quote above is not from the keyboard. That's a software bug on the PC side. You can see the same behavior with competitive USB keyboards that report large number of keys. For what it's worth, I have only seen this behavior when you exceed 11 simultaneous keys from a single keyboard, so it's probably not much of an issue for most people. This is all discussed on our web site:


Whatsup, thanks for the response!  I don't know about you other geekhackers, but ghosting with 11 simultaneous keypresses is a big problem for me!

« Last Edit: Sun, 21 March 2010, 01:59:15 by elbowglue »
My keyboards: Filco Cherry Blue Tenkeyless(daily home), Compaq MX11800 (modded to blacks), Compaq "MX 84u",  Wellington\'s Dampened Endurapro, Pinkalicious Filco Blue Cherry, Chicony KB-5191, Chicony KB-5181, Desko MOS 5023 UP "elbowglue" spos (modded to blues), Siig Minitouch (monterey blue), SMK-88 (blue cherries), Ricercar SPOS
Smallest to biggest keyboards in inches (Length X Height) - Length is most important for a midline mouse position

KBC Poker: 11.6 x 3.9 - HHKB: 11.6 x 4.3 - Siig Minitouch (Geekhack Space Saver): 11.6 x 6 - Deck/Tg3 82: 12 x 6 - Noppoo Choc Mini 12.4 x 5.3 - Compaq "MX 84u": 13.1 x 7.5 - Filco Tenkeyless: 14 x 5.3 - Cherry "ricercar spos" G86-62410EUAGSA: 14 x 7.75 - Topre Realforce 86u: 14.4 x 6.65 - Desko "elbowglue spos" MOS 5023 UP: 14.5 x 8.4 - IBM Model M Spacesaver: 15.3 x 7 - G80-1800: 15.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-125B: 16 x 7.3 - Compaq Mx11800, Cherry G80-11900: 16.25 x 7.5 - Filco Standard: 17.3 x 5.4 - Unicomp Endurapro: 17.9 x 7.1 - Adesso MKB-135B: 18.3 x 6.0 - Cherry G80-3000: 18.5 x 7.6 - IBM Model M, Unicomp Customizer: 19.3 x 8.27

Offline namelessguy

  • Posts: 51
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #35 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 04:04:45 »
Greetings, Dr. Dietz!

Actually I'm curious about the driver, rather than the SideWinder X4 hardware itself.
You just can't handle more than 11 keystrokes at a time with the standard USB HID driver (on Windows XP, at least), you will see ghosting problem when you try (but please don't ask me why, I know very little about how the driver or Windows OS itself works).
And, from what I've gathered, you can't use the brute force here if the hardware is only using USB 1.1 low-speed; to confirm key inputs, every USB keyboard on the market today continuously reports the "current condition" of the keys, while the PS/2 keyboard only sends changes in its state, so I guess 800 Byte/second on USB low-speed interrupt transfer is totally underpowered for NKRO with a decent report rate (though it may be enough for anti-ghosting up to 10-14 keys, not enough for 26 or 17 keys).
And my concern here is that no official article of this keyboard boasts that it uses the USB full-speed transfer for, like, say, faster response for gaming.
« Last Edit: Sun, 21 March 2010, 06:32:44 by namelessguy »

Offline gcogger

  • Posts: 19
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #36 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 05:18:45 »
Quote from: Paul Dietz;165795
Here's what I do when I want to show just how bad most keyboards are:

Press and hold ASDW. Now try pressing every other key while continuing to hold ASDW. You will probably find a number of keys that don't work. When you find these, try releasing some of the ASDW keys. You will probably be able to narrow it down to specific 3-key combinations that don't work.


Works fine on the Razer Tarantula :)

Of course, yours is half the price, has backlit keys and is probably nicer to type on.  I may have to buy one to see if I like it :)

Offline Mental Hobbit

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #37 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 08:33:04 »
Thanks to Dr. Dietz, interesting insights. I'm also glad we can finally put a name to this familiar face. ;)

Typing on blues.

Offline ohmage

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membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #38 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 09:27:51 »
hey all im back

was just curious.. seeing as the X4's ghosting "issues" were  caused by the USB HID driver... does that mean if ya plug it in via a PS/2 converter it should be full nkro or? just out of curiousity tho, i wouldn't need any more than 6kro ^_^ need somebody to test this!

Offline JBert

  • Posts: 764
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #39 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 10:36:29 »
Actually, no: PS/2 converters are notorious for their 6KRO.
It doesn't matter my model F is virtually NKRO, any convertor that hasn't got a special driver will only pick up the first 6 keys.
IBM Model F XT + Soarer's USB Converter || Cherry G80-3000/Clears

The storage list:
IBM Model F AT || Cherry G80-3000/Blues || Compaq MX11800 (Cherry brown, bizarre layout) || IBM KB-8923 (model M-style RD) || G81-3010 Hxx || BTC 5100C || G81-3000 Sxx || Atari keyboard (?)


Currently ignored by: nobody?

Disclaimer: we don\'t help you save money on [strike]keyboards[/strike] hardware, rather we make you feel less bad about your expense.
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Offline Rajagra

  • Posts: 1930
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #40 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 11:02:10 »
Quote from: ripster;165864
And he may take away my mug.


It isn't your mug. It remains Microsoft's property at all times and you merely have a licence to use it. :smile:

Those technical details are interesting. Putting resistive tracks directly on the membrane is quite neat. And since it doesn't suffer from the "variable resistance" issues I referred to before, I think it can work well.

I can't quite visualise how the scanning algorithm would work, but I'm inclined to believe it is workable.

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #41 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 11:33:28 »
Quote from: Mental Hobbit;165843
Thanks to Dr. Dietz, interesting insights. I'm also glad we can finally put a name to this familiar face. ;)

Show Image


Cool. That's a much better picture than my official MS one.  The hair is way nicer. And it's much less gray!

:wink:

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
Driver...
« Reply #42 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 12:05:03 »
Quote from: namelessguy;165825
Greetings, Dr. Dietz!

Actually I'm curious about the driver, rather than the SideWinder X4 hardware itself.
You just can't handle more than 11 keystrokes at a time with the standard USB HID driver (on Windows XP, at least), you will see ghosting problem when you try (but please don't ask me why, I know very little about how the driver or Windows OS itself works).
And, from what I've gathered, you can't use the brute force here if the hardware is only using USB 1.1 low-speed; to confirm key inputs, every USB keyboard on the market today continuously reports the "current condition" of the keys, while the PS/2 keyboard only sends changes in its state, so I guess 800 Byte/second on USB low-speed interrupt transfer is totally underpowered for NKRO with a decent report rate (though it may be enough for anti-ghosting up to 10-14 keys, not enough for 26 or 17 keys).
And my concern here is that no official article of this keyboard boasts that it uses the USB full-speed transfer for, like, say, faster response for gaming.


The product team did the new USB interface, so I can't claim to be an expert on that. But it is full speed. Ironically, when X4 was in the planning stages, the faster interface was going to be one of the major features listed on the front of the box. But when we showed up with our resistive matrix solution, the marketing team latched onto it as the signature feature. So now, the faster interface is barely mentioned. But it does have it.

For what it's worth, I suspect that a lot of the marketing on faster response is confusing. Just because reports are being sent every ms doesn't mean that the latency is anywhere near that small. Mechanical switches bounce, so keyboard firmware has to do some filtering and this can add many ms of delay. In addition to this, you have to pass through the whole HID stack before the app sees anything. Finally, most screens introduce their own latency, which can easily be over 10ms. And this isn't counting any delay in the application itself. So the time between hitting a key and something changing on screen can be surprisingly long. This is particularly evident on touch screens. If you drag an object around in a circle, look at how far behind the image lags.

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
Mug safety
« Reply #43 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 12:14:49 »
Quote from: ripster;165864
I was going to mention to Paul Dietz that his employer might want to look into that problem of the OS ghosting keyboard input.  Keyboard computer input has been tackled by multiple companies over many computing platforms over 50 years so I would have thought that they would have figured out how to do it by now.

But that would be rude.  And he may take away my mug.


Your mug is safe from me. And yes, we are very definitely looking into it...
:wink:

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #44 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 12:22:47 »
Quote from: ripster;165892
Haha!  Good to see you have a sense of humor.  Have some wallpaper for your PC and send my apologies to the Microsoft R&D crew.
Show Image


The brass rat is a very nice touch! I haven't seen mine in many years. And the hair is sadly closer to the truth...

Thanks!

:smile:

Offline kishy

  • Posts: 1576
  • Location: Windsor, ON Canada
  • Eye Bee M
    • http://kishy.ca/
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #45 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 12:48:39 »
Looks more like a beaver...
Enthusiast of springs which buckle noisily: my keyboards
Want to learn about the Kishsaver?
kishy.ca

Offline Phaedrus2129

  • Posts: 1131
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #46 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 13:18:40 »
Shhh! The rat knows all! :p



You seem to be everywhere, Mr. Dietz. Sorry for TwoCables over at OCN, he gets stuck on things sometimes. And also sorry for my lack of EE knowledge! Wait, you aren't the Pope? Oh.



You mentioned that the ghosting issues (not key blocking ;) ) are due to an OS-side problem, correct? Well, you do work at Microsoft. Has this been passed on to the Windows programming team, and could we see an update that fixes this issue some time in the future?
Daily Driver: Noppoo Choc Mini
Currently own: IBM Model M 1391401 1988,  XArmor U9 prototype
Previously owned: Ricercar SPOS, IBM M13 92G7461 1994, XArmor U9BL, XArmor U9W prototype, Cherry G80-8200LPDUS, Cherry G84-4100, Compaq MX-11800, Chicony KB-5181 (SMK Monterey), Reveal KB-7061, Cirque Wave Keyboard (ergonomic rubber domes), NMB RT101 (rubber dome), Dell AT101W

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
Rat vs. Beaver...
« Reply #47 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 13:24:34 »
Quote from: kishy;165903
Looks more like a beaver...


That's the MIT ring, affectionately/mockingly called the "brass rat". It features the beaver mascot...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MIT_class_ring

Offline kishy

  • Posts: 1576
  • Location: Windsor, ON Canada
  • Eye Bee M
    • http://kishy.ca/
membrane keyboard with NKRO
« Reply #48 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 13:36:01 »
Lol thanks, I had just Googled it myself.

I still say it looks more like a beaver (meaning the name is misleading).

Beaver:



Rat:

Enthusiast of springs which buckle noisily: my keyboards
Want to learn about the Kishsaver?
kishy.ca

Offline Paul Dietz

  • Posts: 25
Not the Pope...
« Reply #49 on: Sun, 21 March 2010, 14:05:33 »
Quote from: Phaedrus2129;165907
Shhh! The rat knows all! :p



You seem to be everywhere, Mr. Dietz. Sorry for TwoCables over at OCN, he gets stuck on things sometimes. And also sorry for my lack of EE knowledge! Wait, you aren't the Pope? Oh.



You mentioned that the ghosting issues (not key blocking ;) ) are due to an OS-side problem, correct? Well, you do work at Microsoft. Has this been passed on to the Windows programming team, and could we see an update that fixes this issue some time in the future?


I'm definitely NOT the Pope. But I am very curious to see how people are reacting to the X4. I think it has a bit of an uphill battle because most people don't understand the ghosting/blocking/simply-not-working problems that many keyboards have when pressing some combinations of 3 keys. I know that there are a lot of factors that go into choosing a gaming keyboard. But I would hope that having the keys you press being accurately reported would be pretty high on everyone's list...

As for the PC-side issues that happen when 12 or more keys are pressed simultaneously on a single USB keyboard, rest assured that we have people looking into this. The problem is both intermittent (may or may not happen) and inconsistent (different problems arise with the same key presses). As best as we can tell, this is a very old issue that went undetected because we didn't have keyboards that would report that many keys...