Author Topic: Want a Little Advice On Topre  (Read 860 times)

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Online HotRoderX

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Want a Little Advice On Topre
« on: Fri, 10 November 2017, 17:39:04 »
for some reason I want to really really try a Topre board. I figured with black Friday right around the corner. I might be in a good position to try one. I want some opinions on what to expect. I know Toper is rubber dome based on switch concept if I understand it correct. I don't really understand the force ranges they have thought. The boards I was looking at possibly are


Leopold FC660C (45g)
Plum84 (35g) Topre Clones
PFU Happy Hacking Keyboard Professional2 Type-S (Not sure weight)

The Happy Hacking board... are kinda what got me wanting a topre but my biggest concern is that layout. I am also curious about the switches and what I should expect. I am not expecting it to be better then MX switches but different and perhaps more pleasant?

What should I expect with each one and how do the switches compare to MX switches I typically go for Linear in the 50-55 gr range ... my favorites being box blacks. and Mod-M Tactical.

I figured in a worse case I can always sale the board and most likely get most if not all my money back.

Offline zslane

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #1 on: Fri, 10 November 2017, 18:21:36 »
The 35g Plum will feel more like 30g and won't have any discernable tactility whatsoever. Also, the build quality isn't nearly as good as genuine Topre boards.

You might get along with a 45g Topre board (which includes the HHKB), but if you are used to 55g switches you might also consider a 55g Realforce board.

IMO, Topre switches feel substantially better than MX, and you will notice the difference in the typing experience immediately.

Offline hilltopchill

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #2 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 00:04:09 »
Just for reference, the switches on my 45G HHKB Pro 2 feel heavier than 65G zealios.

Online BliTzKiN

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #3 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 07:02:37 »
I've got a 55G Realforce and they feel heavier than the normal 55G in traditional switches, not in a bad way, though it may require a little getting used to.

Tried both the FC660C and HHKB Type-S, both are 45G but I preferred the HHKB because of the plate material and it being silenced. The FC660C felt pretty good as well but the harshness of the metal plate really took away from the typing experience. The lack of silencing was also kind of distracting as it was competing with the signature Topre "Thock". The Type-S on the other hand was probably the best stock Topre board I've felt, in fact, if the HHKB and Realforce was sold at the same price where I lived, I would have gotten the HHKB instead.

If you prefer a solid feel when bottoming out and planning to eventually lube/silence your Topre switches then go with the FC660C, since you seem to be more comfortable with the layout as well. If you're going to stick with the keyboard at stock then I'll go with HHKB.

Offline dante

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #4 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 09:22:26 »
The 35g Plum will feel more like 30g

After extended amount of time I feel like it takes more hand strength to type on this than a heavier weight.  The problem isn't pressing; it just feels like work lifting the fingers back up.  It's weird.

Online tp4tissue

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #5 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 12:54:18 »
Take any standard rubber dome keyboard..  it's already 85% towards Topre

Type on that for 2 minutes..

Visualize..

Smoother stem.. + more pronounced dome collapse feedback.


Then be objective about it,  is that what you want..

Offline dante

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #6 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 13:30:41 »
Take any standard rubber dome keyboard..  it's already 85% towards Topre

Type on that for 2 minutes..

Visualize..

Smoother stem.. + more pronounced dome collapse feedback.


Then be objective about it,  is that what you want..


You forgot imagine 4mm of travel - for no bloody reason.

Online HotRoderX

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #7 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 17:47:51 »
Thanks everyone for the comments and I know going in topre isn't for everyone and its a really really expensive rubber dome based keyboard. I am tempering my expectations that it will be unique and different experience but most likely not the end game be all that some people make it out to be.

The board I am 90% sure going with is the Leopold FC660C in white most likely.. as I can get a really really amazing deal on one. I do have question thought. Any issues with the usb port holding up? I would most likely use the board for least a while before modding it thought if I did keep it.. most likely least do lube on the sliders.

Offline 1391406

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #8 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 18:15:01 »
I'm certainly no stranger to rubber dome boards and have used what I consider some great ones, but Topre is in a class all its own. I wasn't expecting much, but I have a couple of Realforce keyboards that ultimately turned out to be end-game boards for me.
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Offline sodiumjoe

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #9 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 22:10:33 »
The USB connector has historically been an issue because it's held on by just solder. One remedy is to buy a hasu controller, which is a good idea anyway for full custom programmability.
« Last Edit: Sat, 11 November 2017, 22:13:46 by sodiumjoe »

Offline sodiumjoe

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #10 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 22:16:12 »
Btw, it's a pretty great time to be getting into topre, as jchan's bke domes just went up for sale in two different weights, with another set of 55g domes in the works, and two separate vendors are working on resin hipro caps.

Offline sodiumjoe

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #11 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 22:19:06 »
fwiw, is recommend buying and keeping your topre board as a daily driver for at least a few weeks before passing judgment. Personally I was underwhelmed at first but after a couple of weeks, once I got used to the feel and understood "how to type" on a topre board, I'm a complete convert and can't imagine going back to Cherry.

Offline _rubik

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #12 on: Sat, 11 November 2017, 23:38:51 »
It's previously been mentioned, but I thought I'd double down. Definitely get a board between 45g and 55g. Domes in that range have a crisper, tactile feel -- very appealing. I found that most lower weighs just feel mushy and unappealing. That being said KeyClack is selling the BKE redux domes, so you can customize pretty much any topre board you buy.

Online HotRoderX

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #13 on: Sun, 12 November 2017, 01:59:29 »
The USB connector has historically been an issue because it's held on by just solder. One remedy is to buy a hasu controller, which is a good idea anyway for full custom programmability.

It's previously been mentioned, but I thought I'd double down. Definitely get a board between 45g and 55g. Domes in that range have a crisper, tactile feel -- very appealing. I found that most lower weighs just feel mushy and unappealing. That being said KeyClack is selling the BKE redux domes, so you can customize pretty much any topre board you buy.

Btw, it's a pretty great time to be getting into topre, as jchan's bke domes just went up for sale in two different weights, with another set of 55g domes in the works, and two separate vendors are working on resin hipro caps.

It's previously been mentioned, but I thought I'd double down. Definitely get a board between 45g and 55g. Domes in that range have a crisper, tactile feel -- very appealing. I found that most lower weighs just feel mushy and unappealing. That being said KeyClack is selling the BKE redux domes, so you can customize pretty much any topre board you buy.

The hasu controller was something that peaked my interest I like its easily replaced and makes the board fully programmable. Thats a huge plus to me.. I also seen the BKE Redux doms so I most likely start at 45g and go up if I needed to.. just orders those. I might order them anyway but I like to give the Topre board time. When I get one my goal is to maybe use it until I get my Godspeed drop from massdrop.. so maybe now till February.. Seems like have lots of projects started nothing completed.. and some boards I want to sell. so getting something that plan to break in/use for a while might be the ticket to cool my jets for the time being. Also maybe I end up loving it so much... decided to keep some of my cherry boards but focus more on Topre life :P.

Offline dante

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #14 on: Sun, 12 November 2017, 08:56:12 »
The USB connector has historically been an issue because it's held on by just solder. One remedy is to buy a hasu controller, which is a good idea anyway for full custom programmability.

Can't find it now but someone on r/mk knew of a repair center in Asia that only had a 50/50 chance of repairing the connector in the FC660C.

I myself had a loose but functional connector when EK had sold them.

My biggest issue is the 4mm of travel.  Maybe not even that but not being able to set where the activation point is if I wanted it to activate sooner.

Hypothetical "speed" Topre keyboard at 3.5-3.6mm of physical travel would probably be more to my liking.

Offline sodiumjoe

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #15 on: Sun, 12 November 2017, 10:56:21 »
The USB connector has historically been an issue because it's held on by just solder. One remedy is to buy a hasu controller, which is a good idea anyway for full custom programmability.

Can't find it now but someone on r/mk knew of a repair center in Asia that only had a 50/50 chance of repairing the connector in the FC660C.

I myself had a loose but functional connector when EK had sold them.

My biggest issue is the 4mm of travel.  Maybe not even that but not being able to set where the activation point is if I wanted it to activate sooner.

Hypothetical "speed" Topre keyboard at 3.5-3.6mm of physical travel would probably be more to my liking.
the realforce rgb has customizable actuation point. Personally I think it's pretty ugly, I think lighting in general is gross, and I'm perfectly happy with stock actuation point, but it might be something you want to look into. Not sure if the new RFs that were announced has this feature either.

Offline Polymer

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #16 on: Sun, 12 November 2017, 14:53:02 »
Take any standard rubber dome keyboard..  it's already 85% towards Topre

Type on that for 2 minutes..

Visualize..

Smoother stem.. + more pronounced dome collapse feedback.


Then be objective about it,  is that what you want..

Better stability when striking the keys and on bottom out...plus they actuate sooner (may or may not be a a big deal to some) and are far more reliable..

Not to mention fantastic keycaps (which may be a good or bad thing since they're Topre stemmed). 

They're just like Rubber Domes..except they've fixed all the stuff annoying about normal rubber dome keyboards...

Online nguyenhimself

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #17 on: Sun, 12 November 2017, 20:17:49 »
Take any standard rubber dome keyboard..  it's already 85% towards Topre

Type on that for 2 minutes..

Visualize..

Smoother stem.. + more pronounced dome collapse feedback.


Then be objective about it,  is that what you want..

Better stability when striking the keys and on bottom out...plus they actuate sooner (may or may not be a a big deal to some) and are far more reliable..

Not to mention fantastic keycaps (which may be a good or bad thing since they're Topre stemmed). 

They're just like Rubber Domes..except they've fixed all the stuff annoying about normal rubber dome keyboards...

Probably the best quote I read about Topre is that, Topre is like the Toyota Lexus: Amazingly designed in every way and meant to last for decades, but also quite expensive if you buy new and often mocked, sometimes jokingly, as "Still just a Toyota".
                                           
Realforce 87U 55g       Leopold FC660M (Zealio 67g)       TADA68 (Gateron Brown)

Online ander

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #18 on: Mon, 13 November 2017, 04:14:13 »
Take any standard rubber dome keyboard..  it's already 85% towards Topre... Type on that for 2 minutes...
Visualize... Smoother stem.. + more pronounced dome collapse feedback. Then be objective about it,  is that what you want...

But dude, you can't leave out The Sound!




Okay, I'm a musician, and sound's obviously important to me... Many people echo my sentiments, though, when I say that I value the distinctive Topre thock as much as the feel.


I'm certainly no stranger to rubber dome boards and have used what I consider some great ones, but Topre is in a class all its own. I wasn't expecting much, but I have a couple of Realforce keyboards that ultimately turned out to be end-game boards for me.

+1. That said, typing is very, very personal. (You can actually identify people by their unique typing patterns, like fingerprints.) There are lots of people who think anything with more character than a membrane board is a waste of time and money. And peeps who won't type on anything but clanky, twangy, 30-year-old IBM Model M's and F's (yay buckling springs!). And everyone in between.

It's entertaining talking about keebs online, but ultimately you gotta try them. And I mean connected to a computer, actually typing on them, seeing and feeling how they respond to your particular touch. And this is doubly true when it's a whole category of switch you've never used.
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Offline zslane

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #19 on: Mon, 13 November 2017, 11:55:09 »
What ander said.

When I decided to try mechanicals, I didn't know what sort of switch I would like. I started with linears because that's what I thought I would prefer. I used MX Red-based boards for a while before trying a Topre board and realized I really valued its tactile sensation and its thock sound. I now understand that I'm more of a tactile switch guy than a linear switch guy, and since I hate bottom-out and upstroke noise, silenced Topre turns out to be the ideal platform for me.

But it took a couple of years of trying other things first (MX reds, MX silent reds, Matias tactiles, etc.) to determine what I liked best and valued most in a switch.

Offline dorkvader

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #20 on: Mon, 13 November 2017, 12:54:44 »
They're probably the most "polite" of the mechanical keyboards. A lot of people find them underwhelming at first, but start to warm up to them after a week or so. I have two, a 104-pro 30g uniform, which is almost linear in feel, and a novatouch (45g i think?) Both are very "nice" to type on but not very exciting. Exciting keyboards like the model F have been banned form my office, so I often keep it quit with these.

Overall they're great and if I had to give up all my keyboards for just one, it would definitely be a contender (it would lose out to hall effect + solenoid, but that's a project in progress)

Online HotRoderX

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #21 on: Mon, 13 November 2017, 13:01:47 »
I ended up ordering a FC660C got a really impressive deal on it and am both nervous and excited. I am nervous that I will end up liking it to the point of shunning my MX boards... excited to try something new. Plan is to shelve my MX boards for least a month while giving topre exclusive try. The figuring out what I think... after that most likely depending on outcome mod it. I do want to get the TMK controller.. and most likely lube the slides. I don't think I do a MX upgrade on it.. as from what read those MX sliders feel like crap. After that... might get some of the JChan domes as a upgrade to 55g just to try something else.

I am going in very subjectively and if people wanted I could try doing a review.. I know my post can sometimes be eye melting to try and read. I am not the best with grammar.


Also a big thanks to everyone this threads been a massive help.

Offline zslane

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #22 on: Mon, 13 November 2017, 13:15:39 »
Exciting keyboards like the model F have been banned form my office, so I often keep it quit with these.

Why have they been banned from your office?

Offline typo

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #23 on: Tue, 14 November 2017, 01:05:26 »
I find that on Topre I sometimes miss keys even though I pressed them. Did not actuate. Not bad board I have 7 with Topre switches. The RGB is no way 45G. I measured higher than 55G Realforce. Ahh gamers. Interestingly on it the actuation points make no difference in mistypes. All Topre boards tend to lower my WPM and especially HHKB 2 Japanese. Not the layout either.

I much prefer Cherry. The issue is longevity. Yeah 50 Million but long before all that solder fails. Topre is much simpler. Capacitance quite frankly even more reliable than a rubber dome. No issues with downtime ever. That is why I prefer it. It also certainly does not feel bad by any means. Just a preference. The quality of the case may seem shoddy but do not let that fool you. They are built for the long haul. If that is important for $250+ than by all means it is the king. I like them all just fine even though I often mistype and can easily live with them. I prefer Cherry but all considered I feel Topre is superior. If you like rubber dome you will love it. As it is the cup rubber you feel. Just for anyone that does not know this. It certainly is not a bad feeling at all. Any of them are great keyboards. Type heaven is not as good but 1/2 the price. If you are not sure. I think you will have wished you bought the Japanese made though. That is if you like it. There is no way I or anyone can judge for you.

Offline OfTheWild

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Re: Want a Little Advice On Topre
« Reply #24 on: Tue, 14 November 2017, 02:02:01 »
I have a 55g RF 104UW that I use at work sometimes. With the added dampening rings its pretty quiet - definitely on-par with the rest of the office rubber domes around me. It's not a cheap setup though for sure. And I'd definitely be cautious of someone walking away with it one day thinking it was a neat looking board simply not knowing what it was. Usually though I have no problems with the sound of my Ducky with linear and o-ring'ed GMK caps and I tend to prefer typing on that more than the topre.
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