Good keyboard?

Hello All!

A Matias ‘Tactile Pro’ keyboard is what was recommended to me from folks here, in tidbits talk a few years ago as a good typing keyboard.

I confess to being very happy with mine, and, have since bought a ‘Quiet Pro’ for use on another Mac.

My experience has been that the Tactile Pro is far more durable.

Now some years later I find I need a new keyboard.

What other good mechanical keyboards currently on the market are worth considering?

Or, am I better off just getting another Tactile Pro keyboard?

Cheers,

Bill Taylor

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Keyboards are a very personal thing. What kind of feel do you want/require? Once you know that, people can suggest models. Or if you’re so inclined, key-switch models, after which you can look for mechanical keyboards that use those switches.

If you like the feel of the Matias keyboards, by all means get another.

If you like the feel of Apple’s keyboards, they’re good quality (but a bit pricey) options. All the models Apple sells today are Bluetooth, but you can use them as wired if you connect them to your Mac via the USB charging cable.

And don’t forget that you don’t need a “Mac” keyboard. Any USB keyboard should work just fine. If it’s not recognized by macOS, you’ll be asked a few questions about the positions of certain keys (ctrl, caps-lock, CMD, etc.) and then it will just work. The only downside to a “PC” keyboard is that any specialized media keys (e.g. volume control or media play/pause) may not work without special configuration and/or software on the Mac.

There have been many good keyboard articles/reviews here. You may want to read some of them. Here’s a search for “keyboard”: Search results for 'keyboard' - TidBITS Talk. A few articles that you may find of interest include:

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I’m using an original Matias Tactile Pro (from ~2000). I did have a year long affair with a a Das Keyboard Model S, tho, which was almost as nice to type with. Ultimately I stopped stopped using it because of problems with its USB hub.

https://www.daskeyboard.com

I’m still enjoying the New Model M. The Mini M is also good, better in some ways, but not Mac-optimized.

Am using a Macally slimkey C keyboard that someone on here recommended as a cheap but decent wired keyboard for my iMac. So far so good (a few months in). I miss easy access to mission control is the only downside so far. It’s there but requires pressing fn+f3.

Hello All,

Many thanks for your suggestions, folks!

As it turned out, I again bought a Matias Tactile Pro keyboard. Pleased to say I’ve already received it, having just ordered it on Wednesday or Thursday night.

For what it’s worth, my experience has proven to me at least, that the Tactile Pro is far more durable than the Quiet Pro model. I’ve found that while my Quiet Pro isn’t as old by about at a year or two as my Tactile Pro, the Quiet Pro has developed a few dead keys, or switches. Don’t know how easy it is to repair either keyboard, as they both presumably use different switches?

So if anyone else needs a good typing keyboard, and until something better comes along, I’d recommend the Tactile Pro.

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Right around the time that Bill Taylor posted about keyboards, my wife’s wired Apple keyboard died and she took mine which lead me down the keyboard rabbit hole. What to get – darn – I wanted it all. I followed David C. Shamino’s links (thank you) and learned about buckling switch keyboards (thanks Josh), more about the Matias Tactile Pro and Adam’s Das Keyboard and then I heard about hot swappable keyswitches from thewirecutter.com. The ability to change out a switch if it stopped working or to change the feel seemed like a great idea. I watched the youtube videos that countermoon posted and of course I wanted to try the different keyboards here in Los Angeles. No such luck near me. I was thinking about buying several and giving my wife one of them. But after several weeks of using a rechargeable Apple miniature keyboard, today I found a new youtube video from David Lee who countermoon referenced for his “best keyboard ever” video two years ago. His new find is the Keychron Q1 (Keychron Q1 QMK Custom Mechanical Keyboard) which has a switch to change between Mac and PC layouts (with dual key cap sets), a disconnectible power cord, hot swappable switches… and I went for it with the Gateron Phantom Brown switches knowing that I can change them down the road if I want or if one breaks. I didn’t even wait to customize my choice of keycaps which will be available for those with more patience. With shipping, I am paying $200 - ouch!. But I figure that I put at least $400 of my time into trying to decide what to get. David Lee’s August 24, 2021 Youtube video is “The Best $150 Custom Keyboard”: The Best $150 Custom Keyboard - YouTube
I will report back as I go. :slight_smile:

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