Roll your own keyboard

Subject: General Tech | May 24, 2018 - 01:44 PM |
Tagged: DIY, input, mechanical keyboard

The mechanical keyboard market is huge, with numerous companies offering a variety of designs, switches and keycaps but perhaps you just can't yet find the perfect model.  One answer to that dilemma would be to build your own keyboard from scratch and TechSpot just published a guide to help you do just that.  In part one they provide a bill of materials you can build a shopping list out of, with an impressive amount of choices for each component.  In part two they cover the build process as well as a large gallery of designs which just might inspire you to take this project on.

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"In the world of mechanical keyboards, big brand names like Corsair, Razer, HyperX, etc., take the bulk of the limelight. But what if I told you that every part of a keyboard can be customized? This goes far beyond the aesthetics, so if you're not one for making compromises, it may be time to build your own."

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Source: TechSpot

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May 24, 2018 | 06:29 PM - Posted by Alex Lustenberg

Awww, and the let's split is only a footnote in a gallery!  There have been some amazing leaps made in just the past year with regard to custom keyboard fabrication, especially in the minimalist / isolinear / ergonomic spaces. has had their planck 'board available for a while now, and the community took that and created the Lets Split! varient. / /u/SouthPawEngineer has produced some amazing engineering.  Using the same PCB for both the backing plate and the guide plate is absoultely ingenious in its simplicity.  Full NKRO without a single diode still blows my mind.  Now if I only had the time to build one... wonder if they would send us a few eval units...

Finally, have to give props to the software that makes all this possible, QMK, has opened the floodgates for both build your own, and design your own keyboards.  It also powers a considerable amount of turnkey assembled keyboards, like my current ergodox-ez.

Buyer beware, a fully programmable / build your own keyboard is the first step down a very deep rabbit hole of iterative typing optimization!  Not that that is a bad thing...


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