Recommendations for professional looking fullsize or 96/98 keyboard with hotswap?

In a perfect world I would like a Leopold FC900R/FC980M in beige vintage aesthetic with hot swap capability - but that doesn’t exist. How close can I get out of the box?

Preferring something with a high profile case and professional aesthetic. Not looking for a ‘deal’ - I don’t mind spending extra if the quality is there.

I would also be interested in keyboard businesses that my cater to requests like this and will handle the assembly, lubing, programming, etc. Unfortunately the ones I’ve found only seem interested in smaller keyboards.

Thank you in advance!

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luckily this is where youre kinda wrong.
thanks to @Dave who made a hotswap version of the FC980m PCB which fits in both the normal leopold case and the heavy 9 case

you can read about it in this post


Thanks Gyllfred I do like my FC980m quite a bit. Here are a few 1800 alternatives if for those don’t want to have a custom PCB made.


AKKO 3098



Thanks for the link @Dave !

And @dante there is one version of FL980 in beige vintage aesthetic Taobao link :slight_smile: they are hotswap by default with Kailh box switches, but there are also 3-mode wireless versions of them which you can learn more from this thread

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@milneraj there’s one thing to consider with the FL esport 980 is the side profile. IMOH, I don’t particularly like it (see below). If you don’t mind it it seems the a solid pickup.

I currently own: Rekt 1800 (aluminum version of stack 1800), 2x Leopold fc980m (1 modified BT, and 1 custom PCB), and a G80-1800.

Rekt 1800 ($$$) – the stacked1800 seems a better value pick-up. Must be soldered or add hotswap sockets.

TKC 1800 ($$) – this is basically just a G80-1800 with a plate and QMK PCB. Must be soldered or add hotswap sockets


The Rekt1800 and TKC1800 appear to be sold out. If I remember correctly, the TKC1800 is discontinued because the Cherry G80-1800 is discontinued - I think they were sourcing these keyboards from Cherry.

Stacked1800 needs to be built - which I’m not immediately prepared to do.

The FL980 looks interesting - but there are mentions of “Driver” software that need to be installed from a Google drive account. This doesn’t give me warm and fuzzies; I am also using a variety of alternative operating systems (BSD, Haiku) where I am unable to install it.

The Akko 3098 looks interesting… may research that a bit further.

I’m glad to see a 980M PCB that is usable. I may go that route and put it back in the original case. The Heavy 9 is affordable but the significant other may not see it that way and murder me with it.

Thank you for the suggestions!

It’s in stock now:

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Another possible option would be something like this:

This one on Drop is a pre-assembled version, but I built one of these for a friend a while back and I believe all the parts are still easy to get. The Drop version isn’t hot-swap, but the case fits the Melody96 PCB, which does have a hot-swap version.

It’s tray-mount so potential for acoustic tuning is kinda limited, but with the right caps I do think it’s a very professional-looking chassis.

If you decide you’d be interested in something like this, I’d be happy to build and set it up for you.

I have the melody96 with an acrylic bottom, a bit of a souped up NYM96. It’s a good intro board, but I quickly realized that I am not a fan of the compact nature. The lack of blockers makes it harder to home myself to the arrow clusters or numpad.

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