[GB] [IC] XDA Oblique (AEK-style keyset)

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XDA Oblique is an MX-mount keyset inspired by the keycaps of the AEK, M0116, AEKII, and similar Apple keyboards. I initially designed this set in DSA profile, but some people suggested XDA would look better and in a poll XDA won 2:1 with nearly 70 votes.

The font used in this keyset is Oswald Light and is angled at 18°. This is a very close to Univers 57 Condensed Oblique, the font used on the AEK. I have modified/resized some of the symbols to match the AEK. The only characters that are significantly different are G, R, J, '&', @ and the lowercase g in page up/page down. Even Univers 57 isn't an exact match to the AEK's font though; it is slanted at a smaller angle and several of the symbols are different. The colour will be Pantone Cool Grey 2 U, which matches Apple's colour very well.

Renders

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Super high-res 4k version

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Super high-res 4k version

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Super high-res 4k version

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Super high-res 4k version (Imgur decided this one was just a little too big and converted it to a JPEG. Let me know if you want the original 4k PNG for whatever reason :) )

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Super high-res 4k version

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Super high-res 4k version

More renders coming soon™

Specs

This keyset will be made in XDA profile for Cherry MX-mount switches. XDA is a uniform profile similar to DSA but with a flatter, wider top surface.

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The keys will be made of PBT with dye-sublimated legends. The grey keys will be a custom coloured PBT, while the accent keys will be dip-dyed.

Kit Layouts

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Unfortunately there are no 6u center-stem spacebars or convex 1u spacebar keys in XDA profile, so bad news for the HHKB and ortho users that requested them :(

Special thanks

Quaddepos has helped a huge amount with the development of this set. Pretty much everything since the end of January has been a group effort between us.
/u/mangoeatingkiwi helped a lot with the ortho kit. Since I'm not an ortho user this sped things up a lot ;D .
/u/twigcase from /r/VintageApple helped us match Apple's original grey colour. He also makes and sells some very cool paper iPhone cases on his website.
Thank you to everyone that gave feedback throughout the IC. Lots of the best ideas came from things that were suggested during the IC (XDA profile, the accent kit, Japanese sublegends, ...)
Last edited by dr_derivative on 22 Mar 2018, 19:30, edited 3 times in total.
dr_derivative

Unread post22 Jan 2018, 15:59

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Looks quite cool, thanks for sharing!
dr_derivative wrote:Also, this is my first post on Deskthority, I'm usually more active on Geekhack and Reddit, so let me know if I'm doing anything wrong :).

You didn't include lots of GH-specific markup that doesn't work here so you're already way ahead of the curve. ;)

To be truly AEK-style, will you also include D and K homing keys too? :D
scottc
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Unread post22 Jan 2018, 16:06

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scottc wrote:You didn't include lots of GH-specific markup that doesn't work here so you're already way ahead of the curve. ;)

The preview button came in handy :lol:
scottc wrote:To be truly AEK-style, will you also include D and K homing keys too? :D

Not sure if anyone would actually use those though, but feel free to ask for them in the form and I'll see how many people want them
dr_derivative

Unread post22 Jan 2018, 16:25

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dr_derivative wrote:...so let me know if I'm doing anything wrong :).

Please state the mount the kit will be mode for. I guess it will be cherry mx, but it is better to state this clearly.
obfuscated
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Unread post22 Jan 2018, 23:58

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obfuscated wrote:
dr_derivative wrote:...so let me know if I'm doing anything wrong :).

Please state the mount the kit will be mode for. I guess it will be cherry mx, but it is better to state this clearly.

Fixed! It is indeed Cherry MX
dr_derivative

Unread post23 Jan 2018, 00:05

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Looks cool! I was wondering about the speciality kit - shouldn't there be two 1u Ctrl caps as well? I got the impression it's meant for boards like G80-1800. Either way, best of luck! I'll be looking forward to seeing it in the flesh.
macboarder
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Unread post23 Jan 2018, 19:36

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macboarder wrote:Looks cool! I was wondering about the speciality kit - shouldn't there be two 1u Ctrl caps as well? I got the impression it's meant for boards like G80-1800. Either way, best of luck! I'll be looking forward to seeing it in the flesh.

Yes, I'll add two 1u Controls and a 1u menu key as well :).
dr_derivative

Unread post23 Jan 2018, 21:14

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I just filled the poll, because, just recently I realized I would like to join the GB. Is my understanding that these keys will be dye subbed on PBT non profile key caps, right?

In support of the decision of going XDA and no SP: The PBT dye subbed made by SP suffered the quality defect of warped edges in longer than 1u key caps. It happens with Granite and I still key caps as examples of such ugly thing.
ideus
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Unread post23 Jan 2018, 21:47

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ideus wrote:Is my understanding that these keys will be dye subbed on PBT non profile key caps, right?

Yes these will be dye-sub PBT. XDA is similar to DSA, just wider and flatter.
dr_derivative

Unread post23 Jan 2018, 22:26

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Looks great! I have some old Apple //gs keys on my Atreus, would be nice to have some other aesthetically appropriate keys for some of my builds.
cnasc

Unread post25 Jan 2018, 01:12

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Nice idea, I'd quite like this to go forward :D
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Unread post25 Jan 2018, 02:05

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ideus wrote:The PBT dye subbed made by SP suffered the quality defect of warped edges in longer than 1u key caps. It happens with Granite and I still key caps as examples of such ugly thing.

YES SP dye subbing sux to the extreme. I stopped buying anymore dye subbed key-caps from them, simply due to very poor quality issues that they seem to never over come.

For the first time now the Chinese made dye-subs are superior in quality compared to anything produced by SP and I find that strange especially during 2017/2018.
Elrick
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Unread post25 Jan 2018, 02:26

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Elrick wrote:
ideus wrote:The PBT dye subbed made by SP suffered the quality defect of warped edges in longer than 1u key caps. It happens with Granite and I still key caps as examples of such ugly thing.

YES SP dye subbing sux to the extreme. I stopped buying anymore dye subbed key-caps from them, simply due to very poor quality issues that they seem to never over come.

For the first time now the Chinese made dye-subs are superior in quality compared to anything produced by SP and I find that strange especially during 2017/2018.

I have not tried any other dye-subs but some very old ones and I am willing to get my hands on these AEK ones.

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ideus
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Unread post25 Jan 2018, 22:27

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I've updated the OP with the current kit layouts and some renders. The kit layouts are fairly final, but if there is any major compatibility issues they will be fixed. I might also add an Ergodox set since there seems to be some interest, but I'm not 100% sure if that will be printed or blank.

We're currently working on contacting vendors interested in running this group buy and hopefully getting some samples of the dye-sub quality using this font.
dr_derivative

Unread post22 Mar 2018, 19:30

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