Does anyone else still not like the chiclet keyboard?

Discussion in 'Mac Accessories' started by Greene, Oct 7, 2015.

  1. Greene macrumors regular

    Greene

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2015
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    #1
    It's been a while since the intel macbook introduced this keyboard, and maybe (definitely) I'm a curmudgeon, but I still prefer the older pro keyboards with the traditional keys. This is despite the fact that the old pro keyboards were a huge pain to clean, and the chiclet keyboard is maybe the easiest keyboard ever to clean. Any one else feel the same way?
     
  2. 321estrellas macrumors 6502

    321estrellas

    Joined:
    Sep 28, 2007
    #2
    I liked both but I wouldn't go back to Apple's old mechincal keyboard. Not only am I used to chiclet keyboards now (and now I think they look much nicer), but being able to see all the dirt and stuff that got underneath was pretty gross to look at :p
     
  3. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #3
    I picked up an IBM Model M out of the trash at work the other day. It was absolutely filthy, but I took it apart, cleaned the keycaps ultrasonically, and hosed the rest of it down(yes, I did take a water hose to it to clean it up).

    After giving everything a couple of days to dry and putting it back together, it looks like new. I have a couple of Model Ms but I'm currently using this particular one on my Mac Pro at work. There's a very good reason why those of us who love Model Ms get a bit snobbish about them. The downside is the lack of Apple specific keys-specifically the Command key-which is why I also really like the Extended II even though it's not as good as a Model M(I need to just break down and buy the Spacesaver M from Unicomp)

    It's hard to fit a keyboard that good into a laptop(I think that the key travel on the Model M is more than the thickness of the new Macbook) but Apple has made some outstanding laptop keyboards over the years. The one on the G3 Wallstreet/PDQ has to be at the top, followed by the Bronze G3 Powerbook keyboard and Titanium Powerbook. I'd put the 12" Powerbook next, followed by the larger Powerbooks/Macbook Pros(which are effectively the same keyboard). Even though-for laptops-I mostly use chiclets these days I agree on the older keyboards being better. I wrote a lot of my master's thesis back in the spring on a 15" non-Unibody MBP for that very reason.
     
  4. Greene thread starter macrumors regular

    Greene

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2015
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    #4
    Never heard of the Spacesaver M, but man, the desire for one is strong now! I'd say t-minus 3 weeks before I break down and order one.

    And yeah, the chiclet design isn't that bad for laptops (although I too prefer the older Penryn / non-unibody / PB keyboards). The real bummer for me is that this design was transitioned to desktops.

    I've not had much experience with the new macbook keyboard, but from the 10 minutes i played with one, I think it's a step in the right direction.

    The real bummer about the chiclet keyboard isn't even apple's chiclets, but the wave of copy-cat chiclets that swept across the windows market. I'm sitting typing this on my dell with one such faux-chiclet, and man, yuck! Feels almost as bad as the original PC jr chiclet!
     
  5. Greene thread starter macrumors regular

    Greene

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    #5
    I don't have much experience with the 12" powerbook, what makes you prefer the 12" keyboard over the others?
     
  6. bunnspecial macrumors 603

    bunnspecial

    Joined:
    May 3, 2014
    Location:
    Kentucky
    #6
    It's hard to describe, but I find the 12" PB keyboard to be a bit more "crisp" than the larger PB/MBP keyboards. In a lot of ways, it has the same feel as the earlier Wallstreet/PDQ KB, albeit with less travel. By contrast, although I like the AlBook/MBP keyboard it is a bit "soft." I have two 12" PBs and several parts, and find them all pretty similar.

    My experience with the new MB keyboard is limited to a few minutes of playing with them in the store. The keys had a nice feel(the same sort of "crisp" feeling as the 12" PB) but the lack of travel REALLY bothered me. I found them bottoming out far too soon for my taste, although I would probably get used to it if I used it regularly.

    BTW, I went in today and remapped keys on my October 1991 manufacture Model M. The "Alt" key now functions as the Apple Command key, the control key as the Alt/Option key, and the (never used)caps lock as the(seldom used) Control key. I realize that remapping the "Alt" key probably seems a bit backwards, but as I rarely look at the keyboard when typing it makes the most sense to me to have one of the most used modifier keys(the Apple/Command key) where I naturally want to reach for it.

    I live close to the Unicomp factory and have dealt with them in person. Back in the spring, I picked up a Unicomp Model M(standard 101 key) at a flea market for $5. It was an "officially licensed" University of Kentucky Wildcats keyboard, and I was quite happy to use it at work during basketball season(I work at arch rival University of Louisville). The keyboard I bought came without a cord and was missing the special blue "Alt" keycap. The cable is a stock item(this was the plug-in version), and a quick email to the factory turned up a blue keycap. I walked into the factory with the KB in hand, where they installed both parts right in front of me and also were quite excited to see the UK keyboard. I was told that they still get regular requests for those.

    I've been putting off ordering a Spacesaver M, but need to do so.

    (full disclosure: this post was typed from my 2012 MBP with a chiclet keyboard)
     
  7. azt33 macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2006
    Location:
    Zurich, Switzerland
    #7
    Ah, the 12" PowerBook - definitely my favourite keyboard in an Apple laptop!
    Just for the sole reason of the keyboard, I refuse to upgrade my work laptop (Lenovo X220) to the newer model, Lenovo T450. I just can't stand the chiclet keyboard, even though I have used it for the past 8 years or so. Would love to go back...
     
  8. BeatCrazy macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2011
    #8
    I had one of my mechanical keyboards with Cherry blues break, so I decided to take the plunge and try out the MK2 for home use with my Macs. It does take a big adjustment. But I was getting tired of non-Mac keys on virtually all mechanical keyboards. Also, I find myself really pounding on the small-travel keys, which I'll have to learn to stop doing.

    On a laptop, it's an easier transition. But in the long-term, I'm probably better off using this new keyboard from Apple. I don't do much typing at home. I stick with a traditional mechanical at work.
     
  9. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Feb 9, 2011
    #9
    As with any matter of preference that are those that do and those that do not. Use whatever it is that works for you.

    I prefer buckling spring myself but all my Macs are MBP's.
     
  10. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #10
    I have been using a Tactile Pro for quite some time now. I don't even notice the noise from it anymore. The one that I use is a first gen model that has a few flaws which is why I also purchased a 4th gen model which is supposed to be much sturdier and fixes a few bugs. I've just been a bit lazy about taking it out of the box...

    I considered the Spacesaver M but the lack of USB ports on the keyboard swayed me to the Tactile Pro.
     
  11. cdcastillo macrumors 6502a

    cdcastillo

    Joined:
    Dec 22, 2007
    Location:
    The cesspit of civilization
    #11
    Yes, another vote for the magnificent keyboard on the 12" PowerBook. I had one that got stole in my final year of internal medicine residence, where I wrote my thesis. I replaced it out of necessity with a white macbook, and regretted the change in keyboard immediately.
     
  12. Greene thread starter macrumors regular

    Greene

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2015
    Location:
    Fort Worth
    #12
    Yeah the tactile pro is tempting, I'd love to get my hands on one to try it! Another one of my favorites which can be had for cheap with an ADB to usb adapter is the Apple ADB keyboard from the early 90s (i think?)
     
  13. theSeb macrumors 604

    theSeb

    Joined:
    Aug 10, 2010
    Location:
    Poole, England
    #13
    As far as laptops go, I enjoy using my rMBP's keyboard, but for serious typing I prefer the Tactile Pro. I don't notice the noise myself, but my wife certainly does even when she is downstairs and I am upstairs in my study. I have had to move the Tactile Pro to my other office location and bought a Quiet Pro for the study. Everyone is happy now.
     
  14. turbineseaplane macrumors 68020

    turbineseaplane

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2008
    #14
    Yes - They are awful (and getting worse).

    At my desk these days I run a Realforce 87U 55g - It's bliss on a whole new level.
    Takes so many of the things I loved about my IBM Model M SSK, but is much more modern (and considerably quieter).
     
  15. c8rlo macrumors 6502

    c8rlo

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2015
    Location:
    FL
    #15
    i'm using my HHKB Lite 2 with my MM and switch between it, my HHKB Pro 2 and the CM Storm Quickfire Rapid TK. I have a windows PC as well any may start on a gaming build, looking at the Corsair K70 or Razer Blackwidow Chroma RGB for dedicated gaming.
     
  16. thisismyusername macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2015
    #16
    I'm ok with using laptop chiclet keyboards when I'm on the go, however in general, I don't like them. I much prefer mechanical keyboards. My keyboard of choice for work and general use is a Kinesis Advantage. For gaming, I use a Ducky keyboard with browns. There's nothing special about the Ducky that made me choose it; it was one of the cheapest mechanical keyboards I could find at the time and it's worked well.
     
  17. c8rlo macrumors 6502

    c8rlo

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    Sep 1, 2015
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    FL
    #17
    same here, how's the typing w/ the browns?
     
  18. pastrychef macrumors 601

    pastrychef

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2006
    Location:
    New York City, NY
    #18
    Of all the mechanical keyboards you guys have tried, which felt the stiffest? I mean, which required the most force to press. I type with pretty heavy fingers and like having stiff keys. Thanks in advance.
     
  19. thisismyusername macrumors member

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2015
    #19
    I prefer browns although, to be fair, I don't have extensive experience with reds/blacks/blues/etc. I like that browns provide tactile feedback but without the loud clicking of blues (which would probably drive my coworkers and my wife insane). If I had to do it again, I'd buy the same keyboards I have now.
     
  20. c8rlo, Nov 19, 2015
    Last edited: Nov 19, 2015

    c8rlo macrumors 6502

    c8rlo

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2015
    Location:
    FL
    #20
    cherry mx red, but you're best bet would prob. be cherry mx clear or black...
     

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