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Thread: When did keyboards change so much?

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    When did keyboards change so much?

    I've spent a few hours today looking around various sites trying to find a replacement keyboard. Feels like it's a bit of a mammoth task compared to a few years back!

    I used to look at the most up to date Microsoft Digital Media based keyboards which used to look something like this:



    It was often updated but the general designed stopped the same for several years. They were always hard wearing, had nice keys for typing and playing games and loads of media buttons allowing everything from volume to track changing.
    The nearest they do today is the "Microsoft Natural Ergonomic Keyboard 4000" (of course ) which is similar, but has the curve layout:

    http://www.ebuyer.com/97577-microsof...-usb-b2m-00008

    Nice enough, but don't really dig the entire curve layout for gaming.

    I thought there would be a simple replacement from the likes of Logitech, but almost all of their keyboards seem to have these silly "flat keys" with hardly any travel on them. They seem to offer little in terms of a normal keyboard, with "normal" keys (preferably with some media ones dotted about).

    Not only that...but the prices....jeeze. The first Microsoft one above used to cost me about 15 quid. Anything that comes close in terms of features now is almost double. Seems crazy that you can almost get a SSD for the price of an 'okay' keyboard.

    Currently looking at the MS Sidewinder but I've not tried one in the flesh yet. Maybe a test in PC world before a Scan order one of the days.

    So my dear HEXUS friends, when did keyboards change so much? The keys seem to have changed to a more 'slimline' approach, along with higher prices and a massive selection from many manufactures which all seem to have loads of models with minor differences.

    Any thoughts on a suitable keyboard for me?
    Ta

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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    I would try your local supermarket, they seem to stock "Value" keyboards that are kind to the pocket and should meet most of your needs, Something like this from Tesco Direct or this from Asda

    Not sure if they meet all your requirements but it's better then paying a small fortune (my latest keyboard was £80), let us know how you get on.

    Rookie

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    DDY
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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    Finding a replacement keyboard is a mammoth task for me every time, keyboards and mice are things I get attached to and breaking from their familiar feel and look is difficult.

    I myself went from something similar to yours; a slightly curvy Logitech and later a similar MS model, and most recently – breaking from those familiar designs to an MS Sidewinder which I've been using for about half a year.

    I have to say I'm very pleased with the MS Sidewinder and now that I've warmed to it, I don't want anything else .

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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    Dont know why the prices have changed so much, only reason i can think of is increases in the price of materials? Personally i ditched all them rubber dome boards awhile ago and will never go back! My favourite out of the rubber dome ones though was my MS ergonomic 2000(i think? Looks exactly like the one you linked) and that was the most comfortable board id used and it was only £15 , the layout for me was fine for gaming but typing is the main aspect when i used/bought it. Id highly recommend looking/investing in a mech board as they are much better and will outlast anything else , im currently eyeing up a 'gaming' board now to go along with my Filco Majestouch 2 board (for work ) and so far ive come to the conclusion that one of these:
    http://www.scan.co.uk/products/coole...aming-keyboard

    Cheap and very well built as its OEM is the same as the guys who make the Filco boards which are regarded as one of the best in the market, ofc it does have that gamer look rather than a professional/subtle look of a filco. However going with mech boards you open up a whole new world, theres so many switch types to choose from its very hard to decide! http://geekhack.org/showwiki.php?tit...Keyboard+Guide very indepth guide , and for reference the above CM board uses MX-Black switches.

    Now to recommend more rubber dome switches, if you can get a sidewinder x4 then id say youd be alright, i enjoyed my X6 and apparently the x4 is better in a few ways, avoid logitech boards they feel so cheap and nasty (even though they are premium prices!)my g510 felt horrid yet it was a £50+ board (got for £17.50 so was happy to sell it for a mountain profit when i gave up with it ),

    So MS ergo as you linked or grab a sidewinder x4/6, cheap ebay might be a few cheap . Also if you do end up looking for mech boards, id say cherry MX-Brown switches are the best in terms of a compromise, they are good for typing and gaming and personally i find them great to use .
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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    if you're after something basically the same as that old ms multimedia key board then you could try the gigabyte gk-k6800
    http://www.ebuyer.com/321334-gigabyt...black-gk-k6800

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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    I have the MS ergonomic 4000 and love it, the typing action isn't quite as good as my old model M, but that became impossible to use at night due to the complaints I would get, the curve layout takes a little while to get used to but it has made it a lot more comfortable to type and I do a lot of typing and it is also good for games, though only the 1-6 keys are in easy reach of your left hand.
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    Re: When did keyboards change so much?

    I changed to ergonomic years and years ago on my desktop. Biggest problem getting used to it was over-reaching top row of letter and hitting numbers a little. Work and notebook are not a problem being normal layout, but ergonomic is much easier on the arms and hands.

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