Microswitch Keyboards

I’ve been reading up on these microswitch keyboards that some of the members here have, particularly the DAS keyboard, and it sounds like a godsend. I click on the Happ competition buttons I have at home, and using those on a keyboard would be sex to my fingers. I was wondering if you guys knew about any other microswitch keyboards, whether it be model numbers, or companies. Even better would be if there were keyboards that use Japanese Sanwa/Seimitsu type switches in them, particularly Sanwa and their ultra sensitive buttons. Anyone know if they exist?

I don’t really know what you mean. You mean a keyboard with the tactical feel of sanwa buttons? In other words, not a clicky Model M? The IBM Model M is the pinnacle of keyboards, but definitely not the same feel as Sanwa buttons.

Right, basically the model M uses microswitches instead of the membrane that many keyboards nowadays use. I basically wanted to know if there exist keyboards that use more “sensitive” microswitches, like the ones in Sanwa buttons.

I know this isn’t a direct answer, but is there an equivalent of a laptop keyboard for desktops? That’s how I would imagine a Sanwa keyboard. Very light without the clicking/tactile feel. I have a model M sitting around here but I prefer and type faster on just a plain ole’ boring Dell keyboard.

For that, I’d look at the aluminum Apple keyboards.

Yeah. Those use the cheap membrane jobs. The clicky mechanical switches are what make them so durable and feel so nice.

i always find that i type faster on my model M’s (i have over 12 of them) than any keyboard that uses membrane only… mainly because by the noise it makes i know how many times i have hit the keys and i can actually predict when i made an error

also the early model m’s are built like a tank and doesn’t shift around like the new featherweights


That’s true. I like having a five pound keyboard sitting on my desk. I only have one Model M, but I only need one.

these are collector items… i got a few just to make sure that I have ones that are ready to use when i decide to clean one of the working ones


Unicomp is a company that now owns the rights to the Model M style keyboard design, which uses a spring loaded mechanism (called a buckling spring).

The Customizer 101 is a keyboard that is based off a late version Model M keyboard that IBM made.


Is the storefront that sells the 101s.

There’s a site for people like you.

There’s also a forum where people know an insane amount about keyboards:

They’ve got a whole forum just of audio recordings of keyboards.

Wow, great links. They’re definitely helpful. It seems for mechanical keyboards, cherry is really the only company that makes the microswitches, which is ok, cause I love the clicky feel of pushing on the HAPP buttons.

check out the Razer brand keyboards…they are designed for gaming and are extremely sensitive and very responsive due to the anti ghosting built into it. i have the tarantula, they are fairly inexpensive, only like 80 bucks

model m collectors will not like the unicomp because they don’t make them exactly like the older IBM vintage model m’s

i have tried razer brand keyboards… it’s totally different… i haven’t had much issues with “ghosting” on my model m… maybe because it’s PS/2 … when i use usb keyboards they ghost like mad


You have to be careful with the Tarantula. I have one as well and it works pretty well, although the rubber dome construction can get a bit spongy. The way they construct them, I’ve found examples of ones where the domes don’t match up right with the keys and then from one part of the keyboard to another the feel of the buttons can change dramatically. Also, some of them are just randomly crap for fighters. I think they have quality control issues with these.

I picked one up because it was at a CompUSA going out of business so it was marked down, and because it promised 10 keys at once, which it does. I can use mine for fighters, but apparently that makes me lucky.

Ghosting can vary with PS/2 and USB. The Razer Tarantula is USB and allows 7 keys at once in “legacy” mode, where it appears as a standard USB keyboard, but does 10 keys at once with the Tarantula software installed (and the keyboard switched into ridiculously named “Turbo Mode”).

I have an old IBM keyboard (good but not clicky) that does any 7 keys and another PS/2 that does 5 keys max, but nearby keys ghost each other at like 3 at a time.

I think one of the reasons the older ones don’t have the issues is that they used to be built much better. I’ve looked inside some older ones where all the keyswitches are mounted on one big circuit board with a diode in series with each switch. If its built like that, ghosting and masking are gone.

I love IBM Model M!

There was a computer in my house.
Keyboard from year I was born; 1987.

I always enjoyed the sound when typing.

As I got older, and use newer computers, I touch newer keyboards.
Keyboards got slim and thin; eww.

I don’t know about you, but I really hate laptop keyboards.
So I always use an external one.
The buttons are not super flat, and just earier to type to me.

In like 1999, I got a PC.
Keyboards at that time, were getting less clicky. :sad:
I used the 1987 Model M on my 1999 computer.

Flash a lot of years.
Three years ago, the lovely Model M I’ve been using, got thrown away.
So sad.

I want it back!

When do people push more than 7 keys at once?

Where are you located? they can still be bought if you want one


When you’re playing Melty Blood and need to keyboard mash :stuck_out_tongue:

Srsly though, some combos are hard to pull off because the keyboard doesnt take input as fast as it could.

keyboard mashers FTW