Keyboards and the Model M (was Re: NEC ProSpeed 386)

Swift Griggs swiftgriggs at
Tue May 31 16:42:09 CDT 2016

On Tue, 31 May 2016, Peter Coghlan wrote:
> > It might be interesting to poll the list to see who's still using an IBM
> > Model M keyboard on their x86 box.  I am.
> > Windows key?  What Windows key? ;)
> x86 box?  What x86 box? ;)

Hehe, I use my Model M mostly with SGI's that have PS/2 ports. So, I'm 
right there with you. 

I have three model M keyboards, including the M5-2 with colored keys 
intact. I'm a keyboard nut along with a lot of other list members. I would 
echo what others have said about it's heavy key weight vis-a-vis other 
modern high end keyboard such as those based on MX blue switches. It's a 
little on the "pounding" side which will actually slow you down if you are 
a touch typist. However, the positive feedback from the buckling spring 
design can make you faster (because you become sensitive to the tiny 
'click' and thus release quickly after that feedback).

As far as a PS/2 keyboard they are extremely well built gear. However, 
these days the Model M is no longer my favorite. The Cherry MX blue 
switches are superior, IMHO. The main reason being their lower resistance. 
However, the key caps can also make a big difference. Low weight keys 
pitched at the wrong angle will still be hard to push, for example. 

I won't list out the embarrassing number of keyboards I've owned. However, 
just for posterity my favorites are:

1. The Logitech Orion Spark G910 with Romer-G switches
2. The CM Storm Quickfire Pro with MX Blue switches
3. The Razer Blackwidow with green switches 

Here's why:

1. It's not the bling/colors, it's the switches. My only complaint is that 
the keys are slightly more scalloped than I'd like. Other than that, it's 
a pretty awesome (USB only) keyboard. 

2. This is the best Cherry-based keyboard I've encountered. There is some 
kind of wonderful substance on the keys that makes them continually tacky. 
For whatever reason, the key weight feels slightly lighter than other MX 
blue based rigs. I feel that anything beyond the MX blue keywieght is "way 
too much". This keyboard nails it. 

3. Their new model with "green" switches is outrageously light. I can type 
faster on this keyboard than any other I've tried. However, it requires a 
bit more care than the Orion, for example. 


More information about the cctalk mailing list