Well, darn. My nice big Unicomp mechanical keyboard has started to forget the "V" key and the left-hand "SHIFT" has become touchy -- press it with your pinkie too far to the right, and though it feels right, the switch hasn't swootch. Coming up on four years of middling-heavy use and I have had it apart once, so I shouldn't be surprised; there's probably debris I missed getting in the way. I still like them better than any other keyboard.
I've had an Azio 104-key MK Retro* with old-fashioned round keys since I found out such things could be had. The keys are okay but not quite the nice clickative Cherry or buckling-spring keyswitches (though they may be Cherry or a competent clone -- just not as clicky as I'd like). The layout is conventional and not appreciably larger or smaller than the Unicomp -- and, seeing as the latter is an IBM Model M in all but name, which was closely scaled to the IBM Selectric and Model B typewriters that preceded it, it is my standard of comparison.
If I can't fix my old keyboard, I'll likely save up and replace it. In the meantime, this Azio is well worth trying.
* Whoosh! Prices seem to have gone up since I bought mine. Look around, if you like the style -- versions without the number pad begin to approach affordability. Some the the Far Eastern manufacturers are producing interesting variations, too. Like the look but not the prices? If you have Bluetooth, the under-$30 Logitech K380, with a nearly full-size keyboard and a clickless but very definite keyboard feel, is my choice for portable use.
4 months ago