I’ve been wanting to do this for a while (and admit that it’s a bit self-serving) but here goes: have a question or something that you want to discuss but isn’t enough for its own thread? Well, I do so I’ll start.
What’s the current lore with plate-mounted stabilizers? I’m going to need to utilize them for the Frog Mini project but I haven’t used them in years. Does anyone have any preferences or recommendations?
My Adam keyboard (the one made from unbranded Lego) uses plate mounted stabilizers. They were decent, but there was a rub in the space bar I couldn’t fix. I tried replacing them with some Cherry branded ones I bought off of a reputable vendor several years back. They were worse.
Then, I replaced those with TX plate mounted stabilizers and they worked flawlessly.
Again self-serving but I’m back with another one. Have any of you purchased JST cables in bulk? I’m looking for some to connect a daughterboard on some EC Pro 2 PCBs that I’ll eventually have made. A Discord friend and I have scoured the internet but the JST PH connectors that we keep finding aren’t quite right - either the connector is slightly off or it’s a pigtail, DIY type. I’ve been able to find singles, but they’re pricey. What am I missing on these?
People have complained about changes in the ePBT manufacturing process a few times recently. I remember hearing stuff about how they shifted from using gateron blanks to a different OEM, and they’ve also gone through a long, painful process trying to get all-over dye sub working well – ever since Kuro Shiro R1. They’ve also gone through some ridiculously long GB times (probably related to the all over dye sub struggles).
The sets that I’ve tried have been good enough and their packaging has gotten great but I think there is a missed opportunity to for them to be the go-to for cherry sets that could be made with dye-sub rather than double-shot. CRP is awesome but they’re not that either, offering retro-type sets rather than mainline enthusiasts type sets. SP’s PBT DCS sets are very nice too but fairly uncommon.
Have a pretty minor question that doesn’t feel like it deserves its own thread so I’ll add to this one.
What is the silent tactile landscape looking like right now?
I’ve got an unassembled Salvation burning a hole in my workbench but I can’t decide what switches to put in it. I’m a big fan of Gazzew Boba U4s and considering just picking up another set of those, but it’d be nice to try something new if anyone has any recommendations.
I’ve found “Keeb” to be a pretty interesting site to see what’s available, though it’s not an exhaustive inventory of every product available. There are a good number of silent tactile options listed there.
Personally, I like the Haimu Whisper Silent (which I believe are functionally the same or very similar to Epomaker’s Iceberg Silent Rose Tactile), though I’m not sure if they’re necessarily better than the Boba U4. They have an interesting plastic leaf spring kind of piece that acts as a dampener, as opposed to the usual silicone or other soft plastic dampener. @Deadeye introduced me to these, so @leemu had the right idea!
I haven’t tried it personally, but there’s also a fully silent version of the TTC Bluish White which may be worth consideration.
There are many good silent tactiles out these days. Thanks for the shout, @leemu - this is one of my favorite branches on the switch tree.
The (fully) Silent Bluish White@ListlessLlama mentioned is the switch I’d take to an island if I could only bring one. For me, it has the best balance of characteristics. It’s not as quiet as Outemu silents like U4s, but it also has a more definitive bottom-out feel. I like the sound in its own right, a sort of muted thud.
The Haimu Whisper Silent is also quite good, and I think it makes for an overall more quiet switch than the polycarb Skyloong version thanks to the softer Nylon housing. I think these feel pretty similar to the Bluish whites but might be more quiet on the way down. The top-out is a little more sharp than most silents, but is still plenty quiet.
Wuque also has a similar Silent Tactile (practical name hey) made by Haimu, which is also Nylon.
If you like the soft dampening of the U4s, you might also like Outemu Silent Cream Yellows - more mellow tactility and lighter weight but the same dampening, and better tolerances than cheaper Outemu silents like Lemons and Peaches.
Kailh Silent BOX Browns were my favorite silent before the TTCs came along, and are pretty similar if less consistent - both between examples and over time. BOX tactiles feel “more mechanical” to me by virtue of an extra moving part between the stem and leaf, and this one is no exception. The use case where I’d recommend these before others would be for North-facing boards; I’ve yet to find a keycap that interferes with these.
Kailh Midnight Pro Silent Tactiles feel very similar to Silent Bluish Whites to me, and might even be a bit more stable / solid - but they damage some keycaps including GMK. If you’ve got some sturdy PBT caps they’ll probably be fine, and the Geon Trimmer tool will shave the stems down to an acceptable dimension for the rest. The process is a pain, but worth it if you really like the switches - these would be tied for my favorites if not for the stem thing.
Edit; almost forgot: Tecsee Medium Tactiles are silent. They only actually have dampeners on the bottom, but the top housing is so soft it doesn’t matter. These are MX-footprint, MX-compatible switches but are lower-profile and shorter travel. If you’ve got a keyboard where you wish the caps sat just a bit lower, these might be the move.
I’m honestly still not a fan of Gateron or Cherry silents without switching some parts around - and Cherry still only makes silent linears for some reason. Akko (KTT) has just started making silents as well, but I think they’ve also only done linears so far. JWICK has made great tactiles and has dampened switches, but I don’t think they have a full silent tactile yet - when they do it will probably be on-par with the TTCs and Kailhs. Durock has some, but the leaves seem a little crunchy to me compared to the others above.