Gift Guide: a few ideas for the mechanical keyboard fans

Gift Guide: a few ideas for the mechanical keyboard fans

It’s not hard to see that the world of mechanical keyboards has become a rabbit hole. If you know someone who talks endlessly about gasket mounts, lubing switches, and the pros and cons between ABS and PBT keycaps, you might consider buying them something similar for the holidays.

One of the strangest things about the mechanical keyboard industry is that many items are only available through limited group-buys. Shipping dates may be a year or more away. This is especially true for keycaps or highly customized keyboards. We are not going to recommend them here, for obvious reasons. This guide is for 2022 and not 2023. While we will highlight a few keyboards here, the majority of our discussion will be about accessories. We assume you will want a keyboard that is easy to customize. There are pre-built keyboards, but they can all be modified.

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Keyboards

Image Credits AKKO

There is more choice than ever in mechanical keyboards, and there are no limits to what you can spend if you’re so inclined.

The Tester68 is located at the bottom. It’s available for as little as As low as $15 (Walmart), although the going price seems be around Amazon Prime: $35. It’s plastic/wireless-only, but for the money, it’s an affordable way to get your feet wet and start modifying your keyboard without worrying too much about breakage.

You can enjoy the likes of when you move up in cost. Akko’s 3068BAkko’s very own switches, keycaps, and wired connections make this a hotswap keyboard that can be replaced easily with 65% of the keys.

The $125-$175 range is the best price for mechanical keyboards. You get better quality materials and boards, which sound and feel great. You can also modify them to your hearts content.

Image Credits KBDFANS

I love the KBDfans KBD67 liteIt is now in its fourth generation. It is made of a strong plastic and comes in a variety of colors. You can even get it in the European ISO layout if you prefer. It’s a nice upgrade to the lower-end boards. KBDfans also sells an aluminium case ($125).

Novelkeys offers a larger board if you are looking for something more. NK87 Entry Edition For example, the price of $135 is great. However, Keychron’s Q-series keyboards are the company to beat (at least in this price range). There are wired aluminum hotswap board that can be modified with keycaps and switches. The company offers many layout options, from full-size boards up to 60 percent, as well as some unique styles, such the excellent Q5 With its 1800 layout, or The Q8 In the (semi)ergonomic Alice style (that’s what I use as my daily driver right now).

Image Credits Mode Designs

Mode Designs is a great option for those with more money. Recently, I The Sonnet was reviewed The experience was wonderful, but unfortunately it is not possible to make it available in time for the holidays. But the Mode 80 This is because if you have $400 to spare, the fit, sound, and finish you can get from that board are a significant upgrade over the cheaper ones. It’s also easy to see how Mode — like other high-end keyboard manufacturers — truly understands the market.

Accessories

You might be looking for accessories, rather than a keyboard.

Keycaps might be a good option if you know what style the person you’re buying for. Drop is one of a few companies that offers a limited selection of keycaps. Keycaps GMK Available without having to wait until the end of 2023 for a group purchase GMK white on-black This is the classic and you can’t go wrong. The price point of $110 may not be as easy to swallow but it’s still quite affordable for a set from Germany’s GMK. Drop’s own and innovative designs are also available. Keycaps DCX They are also very nice and more affordable at $99. These ABS keycaps are available in white-on-black and black-on–white, just like the GMK sets. Half the price Keychron Cherry-style PBT keycaps You can choose from a variety of colors and have enough keycaps for compatibility with almost any keyboard on the market. You can also check out Cannon Key’s selection typically ranges between $65 and $79.

Perhaps you are looking to purchase some switches? It’s difficult to recommend them, as it all depends on your preference and some of these are not easy to find. You can’t go wrong with something as hyped as the justifiably. Gateron Oil King For example, a linear switch. You can also use the Akko CS Sponge Its double tactile bump is fun and very affordable. All Akko switches Punch well above their weight. Another classic is the C3EqualzX TKC Tangerine linear switching. It’s as easy as it gets, but then it’s in the premium category.

Image CreditsGLORIOUS

What about stocking stuffers? Perhaps some Durock Switch Film? A cool desk mat? Or a simpler to use Switch opener? Or maybe A lube station Because there is nothing quite like it Boring Relaxing is like lubing a hundred switches.

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