How much does lacking the space between the keys on a 96 layout affect in your guys opinion? Since the rise in popularity in 96 layout keyboard. Wondering since I am planning a 96 or a 1800 layout.
If it bothered me I would have bought an 100%
I’d say there’s a similar argument to be made for tactile/clicky vs linear switches. With tactilies/clickies, you get some sort of sensory confirmation that the switch has actuated (in theory). With linears, you need to memorise where the actuation is, but you get used to it eventually.
Of course, there’s many other differences, but I find myself feeling out for that gap between the alphanumeric cluster, arrow cluster, and numpad when I reach for the arrow keys without looking on my KBD19X (compact-1800 layout). With my Welfare96, it’s much harder for me to feel for where the arrow keys are, and I always have to look down to find them. I suppose I might get used to them eventually, but for now, I’m sticking with my 19X
The lack of space bothers me but on the other hand there are some absolutely gorgeous POS (Point of Sale) boards out there that can make me ignore it.
The majority of hobby boards don’t do it for me. Official POS boards on the other hand scratch a particular itch: You’re typing on something that was never made for you.
Considering most of the keyboards I typed on as an adult before getting into mechs were laptop keyboards, the lack of space has never been a concern. I also dont play games on my PC, so spacing isnt really a major concern one way or another.
If I had to choose between 96 and 1800 layouts, I’d go with the 1800 every time.
While the 96-key layout seems cool for being able to crunch so many keys together, it doesn’t work well for some people and how their hands navigate a keyboard.
For example take a standard TKL keyboard. TKLs are sectioned and people quickly identify and refer to the sections appropriately, a la F-row, nav cluster, & alphanumerics. The sectioned off parts makes it easy for your hands to travel to the sections with clear distinction where your alphanumerics end, and where your nav cluster begins.
This sense of partitioning is lost with 96 keys since so much is attempted at the same time. With your numpad so close and your f-row slammed inwards, the sections blend together which is hard to translate against your muscle memory of a normal fullsized or TKL.
When I first learned about 96-key layouts long ago, I thought they would be the bees-knees and a total game changer for me. They were a game changer, in letting me know that I never wanted to play the game known as the 96 key ever again .
If I had to make an exception, I’d say full numpad 96-key layouts are the best 96 key layout. An close example of this layout would be the Vortex Vibe. I really wish they went with a normal 2u ‘0’ key instead of having a 1u ‘0’ next to a 1u ‘00’ (because pushing 0 twice is so hard right?). While you won’t have dedicated arrows, I think the arrows on the 2468 do the job fine (as long as you don’t mind toggling numlock between using the arrow/nav keys and typing numbers on your numpad).
1800 or a normal fullsized keyboard works well if you need to have a numpad and all the normal full functionality imo. 1800 is definitely the more stylish option. I would prefer the 1800 over most full sized keyboards.
I dislike the crammed look 96keys and even 75% boards have.
Having no stagger and no spacing between numbers and function row looks ugly to me.
I like 96 boards, but I am also a fan of the 1800 layout (without having tried one yet)
I have both 1800 and 96 key layouts (as well as some similar layouts like the UK78), but I have to be honest I much prefer the split sections in the 1800, having two TX1800’s that I use at home and work respectively.
It didn’t bother to me at all, actually, 96 layout is my all time favorite! My hand didn’t have to move that much to reach the numpad section. By choosing which layout you want to use, it’s your choice, it depends on your use case, it’s matter of personal taste.
Aesthetically I really like the 96 but agree the muscle memory is tough to adjust to for the arrow and nav clusters. The numpad placement is OK and not that much of an adjustment, but I’m not a huge numpad user.
I had the arrow keys on my 96 in a different profile or upside down for a while. That way they were easier to find. The look was weird.