[IC] 651 Keyboard - A Minimalist 65%


#1

Hello everyone,

This is Spooknik from Keyboard Collective. I have a design for a 65% keyboard design that I’d like to do an interest check for.

It’s called the 651 Keyboard. 65% + First design = 651.

Please fill out the IC form here.

About

The 651 is based on Scandinavian Modern Movement of design. It emphasizes a minimalism and simplicity combined with functionalism and aesthetics. I’d done my best to incorporate all of these traits into the 651 Keyboard.

  • Simplistic - Large bezel that is equal distance the whole way around.
  • Minimalism - There are no outward facing logos, branding, screws, or seams. No unnecessary curves, fillets, or chamfers. Everything you need nothing you don’t.
  • Functionalism - The side profile has cutouts that allow the user to pick up and move the keyboard easily. Large chamfer protects edges from damage. All parts are held together by the same length M3 screws.
  • Aesthetics - Modern and simple looks that will stay timeless for years. The bezel and large chamfer allows a better transition between your desk and keycaps. Heavy and solid board.

I’ve written a small article about my design philosophy if anyone cares to read it.

Details

Case:
Blocker or Non-Blocker bottom row [Depends on IC numbers]
6061 Alu
65% Layout
Unibody Design
Top mount
7 Degree Angle
2.5 kg (5.5 lbs)

Plate:
1.5 mm plate
Screws to case with 12 M3x5mm
Brass, Aluminum, Stainless and maybe POM
Supports ANSI and ISO
Separate MX and Alps Plates

Weight:
Sandblasted Brass
Natural color PVD coating
Not Shiny
~0.6 kg (1.3 lbs)

PCB:
QMK
USB-C
ESD Protection
MX & ALPS
RGB Underglow
LED backlighting for key swtiches
Maybe Bluetooth [Voice your opinion in IC]

Layouts


MX Layout


Alps Layout

Pictures


Brass PVD Sample


Internal Weight


Plate Assembly


Bottom Assembly


Back Profile

Maybe more pictures on Google Photos

Current Status

Two prototypes have been made.

IC form is live and community feedback is welcomed!

Please fill out the IC form here.


Looking for specific keyboards
#2

It’s beautiful! Really sober and elegant in its simplicity :slight_smile:

But I feel like the bezel is a tad too thick to truly have a minimalism vibe. (I like my bezels on the tiner side)

But this, omg this, is the layout I desperately need in my life :

Nice work !


#3

Yep, but it won’t be so nice and will lost charm with 0.5 unit spacer near arrow cluster. So sad!


#4

Thanks for the interest and feedback!

The bezels are thicker in this design, it’s true.


#5

Both options (with and without blocker) are possible :slight_smile:


#6

Nice, and especially nice with a Scandinavian board! But why no split space?


#7

a Scandinavian board!

There are dozens of us!

Actually it does support split space, I just completely forgot about it when making the layout in KLE. So thanks for reminding me! :sweat_smile:

Edit: Updated the layout picture.


#8

65%s aren’t my personal poison, but the aesthetics on this one are absolutely fantastic. Good luck!


#9

Thanks for the support :blush:


#10

Amazing design! I really love the thick bezels and overall aesthetic. Congrats!

Unfortunately, I’m not a 65% keyboard user. I really prefer my 60% boards, so if you ever to run this same design in the 60% form factor, count me in!

Good luck with the IC and eventual GB!


#11

Looks really good!


#12

PCB Samples have arrived!


#13

I really like a bottom row like this:

1.25u+1.25u+1.25u+2.25u+1.25u+2.75u+1u+1u+1u+1u+1u+1u

The fact that this keyboard seems to support that is exciting to me.

Am currently just collecting parts to make a series of boards which demo the switch/keycap/layout combos that really stand out in this hobby. For this I’m thinking either XDA, SA, or perhaps even DSS?


#14

Yes, the plan is to support this, I’m pretty confident this won’t change. The IC is doing very well, so i’m pretty sure we’ll make both blocker and blocker-free versions of the board.

I don’t own an SA sets anymore, but MT3 profile looks pretty good on. I think high profile sets look great on this board.

XDA also looks good as well. Sadly, I don’t own any DSS to tell you how it looks.

There’s picture of MT3 and XDA caps on the prototype in the Google Photo’s album.


#15

The more I look at this board the more I like it! 65% is by far my favorite form factor & the minimalistic look of this is really growing on me. The ALPS compatibility is a huge plus for me also, but I do have a question about the ALPS layouts. Is there spaces on the PCB to have a 1.75u R Shift with two 1u keys to the right of it or is the 2.75u R Shift with one 1U key to the right the only spacing possible with ALPS switches?

If I was to grab one of these kits it would be for an ALPS based build, but I am really not a fan of the way the arrow cluster is setup for them. I mean I get it, 1.75u shifts are pretty rare in ALPS mount & your layout makes sense to address that. Although both spacings could be available for ALPS switches since there is already MX switch places on the PCB in the spots for a 1.75u R Shift with two 1u to the right already anyways. To me being stuck with the L shaped Arrow cluster for ALPS builds keeps me on the fence about this board while if both layouts are possible with ALPS I would most likely be in for one.


#16

Thanks for the interest!

I’ve actually gotten a few comments about the 1.75U vs. 2.75U shift for alps layout. I just assumed 2.75U was the way to go for the sake of compatibility, and I arranged the arrow layout accordingly. But it seems people more want 1.75U.

The PCB supports both 1.75U and 2.75U right shift for alps. However, the plate cannot. With the alps style stabilizers you have to either pick 1.75U or 2.75 for this spot. The GB will probably be for the plate with 1.75U Rshift (and thus a normal arrow cluster). But I will provide CAD files for both versions so people can laser cut 2.75U if they want. Hope that can accommodate everyone :slight_smile:


#17

Nice, awesome to hear! I’m definitely gonna be keeping an eye on this hearing that you’ll be going with a 1.75u shift for ALPS layout now. GL with everything moving ahead man, looking forward to your pricing & timeline info on this when you get it sorted out! :grinning:


#18

That looks pretty nice. Are those bezels 1U wide? I like them.
The only thing I might do differently would be to make the cutouts on the sides and back a bit higher/prominently to make them clearer design features and give the board a more distinctive look. Maybe do them 1U as well, that would make sense.


#19

The bezels are roughly 1.8mm. So a little under 1U.

That’s a good thought about the back, I might try to also make that 1.8 mm and see how it looks. I originally wanted it to be the same height as the side cutouts.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts :slight_smile:


#20

:+1:t2:
Just two more things; will the pcb support usb-c to usb-c? And is the weight only internal? I consider the 65% to be the perfect work board so I would carry it around daily and as such would appreciate the option of leaving out the brass weight. Wouldn’t mind having to buy it with the kit but not having a big hole in the bottom when not using it would be nice.