TGR Tomo vs. Hex.4b vs. Thera75 vs. KFE CE

I am looking to get my first board. Currently evaluating these 5 choices. I have an option to buy a GB spot for hex.4b, rest of the boards are avaiable on mechmarket.

Hex is around 300, Tomo is 480, Theras are around 300-350, KFE CE is around 500. I like both 75 and TLK. I would use this as a daily driver for work.

I plan to use JWK musetsu, tactile switches. What is objectively the best board of the above 4 and why?

None, it’s all preference.

I wouldn’t suggest a GB for your first board because you’ll be left without it for months if not years.

You’ll have to compare the features of each personally such as aesthetics, layout, materials (i.e. Thera is a fully exploded layout, Hex has compact arrows and right column).

Personally I would get a cheaper aftermarket one to refine your taste. I’d actually go even cheaper with a Keychron or something to try out some mods; these GB boards from small vendors have less information available and maybe unreliable tech support (no RMAs, no easy to get extra PCBs, etc).

Well, to start, they all have different mounting methods so it would depend on what type of feel you’re going for. If I remember correctly, the Hex.4b is a plateless o-ring mount with tabs, Tomo is an O-ring/Topmount, Theras are plateless, and the KFE CE is top mount. As you may already know, each has different sound signatures, and as I don’t have any of these boards I can’t comment much about it in depth, but here are some things I’ve noticed with boards that share similar mounting methods:

O-ring: Makes things higher pitched in general. Not crazy bouncy/flexy but not harsh. Personally my favorite, but YMMV.

Plateless: Can’t comment much. Closest I’ve tried was a half plate but definitely bouncy and soft. I haven’t had enough experience with them so can’t comment on sound either.

Top mount: Tends to make things more resonant/louder? Doesn’t have lots of flex and is a smidge too hard/harsh for me personally. I’ve heard these work well with tactile so it might be a good option for you, but I wouldn’t buy a board just because people said it works well with the switches of your choice.

I agree with what was said above; if you’re really leaning toward the Hex.4b then go for it, but I don’t think a GB Board will be the greatest first custom mech experience. I joined my first GB thinking that the wait wouldn’t be too bad, but since then my tastes have changed and I sold it as soon as it arrived. Your millage may vary though.

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This is a really good example of how much preference can differ. I have boards with all of these mounting styles; my plateless is actually the Thera*.

I have a strong preference for linear and generally do stiff builds like top mount + brass plate as I try to not to bottom out. I’m not picky about it though because I find degrees of softness mostly just different rather than better or worse.

*Plateless can also be finicky with switch alignment and compatibility. Tecsee Ruby pins are too small for my Thera, so it’s a god awful build with horrible wobble and twisted keys that I need to redo.

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