Thoughts on the ABKO AR87 TKL?

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07W7HNM7G/?coliid=I2SGFIN2GIVQ12&colid=3MJO4O4G6RYO4&ref_=lv_ov_lig_dp_it&th=1

It’s a prebuilt designed by LZ and made in Korea.

  • 6.83 lbs. (3 Kg) Full Aluminum Construction
  • South Facing Switches
  • Plate mounted stabilizers
  • Removable USB-C
  • Internal Dampener
  • 1.4 mm PBT Keycaps (Dye-Sublimation)
  • RGB Side Lighting
  • Soft Shell Carrying Case
  • Keycap Puller and Cleaning Brush
  • Choice of Cherry MX Switches

There is a video of someone deconstructing the keyboard here:

I’m kind of confused about the soldering joints on the switches in “2:44” as I would assume the holes are meant for soldering LED’s but the holes are already soldered in. Wonder if anyone knows the reasoning behind that.

I’m also interested in the mounting style of the keyboard. Some people say it’s bottom mount. Can anyone confirm if that is actually true?

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image

Hi @cosign_swim,

I can confirm that this is tray mounted.

In answer to your first question, my best guess it that, since this board is mass produced, different combinations of components are used across a number of different models.

In the case of the AR87, it appears that there are embedded LEDs only on the PCB’s left and right edges. However, I bet another model uses LEDs across the entire PCB. If I get a better idea when I desolder the switches in a couple weeks, I’ll let you know!

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No ISO version it seems

TKL is such a basic and well thought layout that I wonder why there aren’t more keyboards offered in this layout with a high quality pcb. Furthermore, it seems that every pcb is incompatible with the other, and designers don’t even want to use qmk firmare and ofter write their own. On the other hand, 60% pcb keyboards are all interchangeable.

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Especially as far as OEM TKLs are concerned!

I don’t know if this is what you are looking for @gmk but Switchmod has a group buy running right now for the Hineybush H87a, a qmk-powered PCB which is compatible with a large number of custom TKL cases. I found this compatibility chart super handy.

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Thanks, I’ll look for readily available cases. But it seems that there are none.

While it isn’t listed, I am pretty sure that this PCB fits Switch Couture’s Electrotype 87 which is currently available at a fair price.

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