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Matej

Open Source Atari XE keyboard (130XE/800XE style)

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I was amazed by various PC keyboard projects last days. They are mechanical with Cherry MX switches.

It is possible to make new PCB (no membrane) and use Cherry MX keys (gaming keyboard)??? Anyone good in electronic CAD here?

Also what exact type and manufacturer of connector (datasheet) is used for membrane pinout connector to atari motherboard???

 

PC custom PCB:

PCB%20Bottom.jpg

 

Cherry switch:

Cherry-Mx-Switch-for-Mechanical-font-b-K

 

DIY gaming keyboard:

Satan-GH60-PCB-White-Board-DIY-Mechanica

 

Final keyboard:

1F4NODP_-1280x960.jpg

Edited by Matej
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I would love to see a replacement original 800 keyboard made with cherry switches. The 800 keyboards are getting tougher to keep going and replacements are really pricey. Every 800 keyboard I've seen recently has some cracked posts and keys pop off easily. An 800 keyboard would be easier to design as well since you the function keys on the right are separate from the keyboard.

 

The best thing I did for my 130XE was get the XE-Touch replacement rubber cups for the keyboard from Best Electronics. It completely changes the feel of the keyboard immensely. The toughest part with designing a new keyboard for the XE would be the funky shaped function keys.

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Yes as musician I rather use emulator and TMC or MPT tracker. When you compose music you click 100 x per minute note and than delete... And down arrow. Simply mechanical keyboard will make sense to me. For tracking on real Atari. Or I can imagine that coders will love it too. And as you wrote I have buyed extra 2x defunct-broken Ataris just for keyboard fix... Thats expensive (when broken Atari costs 40Euro).

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This is quite a coincidence as I was looking at Cherry switches myself a few days ago as I had the same idea. What I thought, though, is that the switches are too tall to be used in a standard Atari case so either it would have to be an external add-on or would need a new case design. I'm guessing there might be room in the older 800 though.

 

If you can make it work then I think you'd find quite a bit of interest, particularly for the XE as their keyboards are just crap.

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Your not the only one!, I came across this in my research!

 

http://www.wasdkeyboards.com/

 

I have been thinking in particular of alternative cases for MiST boards, one consideration is that a high quality keyboard in an XE case could still be used in an ST(e) setup - just allow for more function keys at the top - use a USB numpad if absolutely needed

 

This is quite a coincidence as I was looking at Cherry switches myself a few days ago as I had the same idea. What I thought, though, is that the switches are too tall to be used in a standard Atari case so either it would have to be an external add-on or would need a new case design. I'm guessing there might be room in the older 800 though.

 

If you can make it work then I think you'd find quite a bit of interest, particularly for the XE as their keyboards are just crap.

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I am very interested. My 65XE one is full of conductive paint to make it work. Any day it will stop working, and i'll need to put more paint to repair it. I will love to have proper keyboard for my computer.

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