Alps Appreciation

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swampangel

28 Oct 2019, 02:55

I got an AEK (M0115) from ebay and the rotated f-row switches have these funky top housings:

Image

I feel like I've seen a photo of these before, but I can't find it. Anyone have a link to more info?

User avatar
mcmaxmcmc

28 Oct 2019, 03:14

swampangel wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 02:55
I got an AEK (M0115) from ebay and the rotated f-row switches have these funky top housings:

Image

I feel like I've seen a photo of these before, but I can't find it. Anyone have a link to more info?
Okay, what the fuck is this? :o

Just... what the fuck.... I've never seen anything like it! :shock:

This is some serious new material right here! Make a dedicated post about it or something! Please!

User avatar
PlacaFromHell

28 Oct 2019, 03:16

mcmaxmcmc wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:14
swampangel wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 02:55
I got an AEK (M0115) from ebay and the rotated f-row switches have these funky top housings:

Image

I feel like I've seen a photo of these before, but I can't find it. Anyone have a link to more info?
Okay, what the fuck is this? :o

Just... what the fuck.... I've never seen anything like it! :shock:

This is some serious new material right here! Make a dedicated post about it or something! Please!
Actually, Apple Standard Keyboard's have this kind of switches under the power button.

User avatar
mcmaxmcmc

28 Oct 2019, 03:57

PlacaFromHell wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:16
mcmaxmcmc wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:14
swampangel wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 02:55
I got an AEK (M0115) from ebay and the rotated f-row switches have these funky top housings:

Image

I feel like I've seen a photo of these before, but I can't find it. Anyone have a link to more info?
Okay, what the fuck is this? :o

Just... what the fuck.... I've never seen anything like it! :shock:

This is some serious new material right here! Make a dedicated post about it or something! Please!
Actually, Apple Standard Keyboard's have this kind of switches under the power button.
Not from the ones I've gotten so far... and so do like 99% of others. Seems to be a very rare thing.

User avatar
PlacaFromHell

28 Oct 2019, 04:12

mcmaxmcmc wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:57
PlacaFromHell wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:16
mcmaxmcmc wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:14


Okay, what the fuck is this? :o

Just... what the fuck.... I've never seen anything like it! :shock:

This is some serious new material right here! Make a dedicated post about it or something! Please!
Actually, Apple Standard Keyboard's have this kind of switches under the power button.
Not from the ones I've gotten so far... and so do like 99% of others. Seems to be a very rare thing.
I got one with that kind of switch in it, but unfortunately I sold it the last year.

User avatar
Elrick

28 Oct 2019, 05:42

PlacaFromHell wrote:
28 Oct 2019, 03:16
Actually, Apple Standard Keyboard's have this kind of switches under the power button.
Yeah I remembered it's their version of a Dust/Grime-Proof switch, utilizing the humble ALPs designed switch.

It actually worked quite well. As long as the switch is placed vertically so as to allow all fluids or dirt to fall off around the design.

Apple did do that type of design in the early days when it came to anything at all. Compared to now, where they do nothing at all except extort the gullible, out of their hard earned money.

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abrahamstechnology

28 Oct 2019, 11:57

Do those clip on? Maybe we can 3D print some to protect Alps switches for the future.

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E3E

28 Oct 2019, 12:09

This is only intended for caps with long stems. Yes, they clip on, but trying to recreate these would lead to some disappointment, as standard caps will not be able to reach a full-travel bottom out on these guards.

I figure it's partly for stability, partly for dust protection, considering the stems and high skirting on Row 0 AEK/M0116 caps.

For what it's worth: I've never seen these on any Apple Standard Keyboards or AEKs that I've owned. I've had over a dozen of them and the only time I've ever seen one of these was from a friend who had found one on his M0116.

Ultimately, they really don't add much, which is one reason I'd imagine they weren't seen more often.

User avatar
swampangel

28 Oct 2019, 13:25

Thanks everyone :) Sounds like I should take one apart and take a few more photos.

DaOver

04 Nov 2019, 11:19

What is this:
https://kprepublic.com/products/outemu- ... 9482701917
Image
Outemu ALPS?
Were they making switches for Matias but now selling them with their name on it?

EDIT: Turns out this are just Matias ALPS.

4sStylZ

07 Nov 2019, 13:33

Hi there,

I have ordered a M0116 and M0118 for 65€ the two. I think it’s a nice deal and I was thinking to make some custom 60% with them buuuuut… they are 14,5 unit long : What a dumbass I am :p

So. I wonder what can be interesting to do with them.

1. Wait and buy two kits https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=101024.0 wich will be priced for 400€ but…
2. Make a stupid custom from them : Cutting original plate, handwiring and place them in a 60% plate with something like two led bar on the the side for using the plate.
3. Sell them.
4. Please tell me that there is others option. I can’t buy 800€ parts for two keyboards. I am pretty sure that I can probably make some interesting 60% custom if I change some parts / caps. The thing is that I love the M0116 Apple layout and don’t want to butcher it.

User avatar
abrahamstechnology

07 Nov 2019, 14:56

4sStylZ wrote:
07 Nov 2019, 13:33
Hi there,

I have ordered a M0116 and M0118 for 65€ the two. I think it’s a nice deal and I was thinking to make some custom 60% with them buuuuut… they are 14,5 unit long : What a dumbass I am :p

So. I wonder what can be interesting to do with them.

1. Wait and buy two kits https://geekhack.org/index.php?topic=101024.0 wich will be priced for 400€ but…
2. Make a stupid custom from them : Cutting original plate, handwiring and place them in a 60% plate with something like two led bar on the the side for using the plate.
3. Sell them.
4. Please tell me that there is others option. I can’t buy 800€ parts for two keyboards. I am pretty sure that I can probably make some interesting 60% custom if I change some parts / caps. The thing is that I love the M0116 Apple layout and don’t want to butcher it.
Just use them as-is.

4sStylZ

07 Nov 2019, 15:40

I prefer more smaller form factor. A size close to 60%, ortho if possible :)

For example my daily is a XD75 with a typematrix Bépo layout (Return / Backspace on the middle of the board)

User avatar
swampangel

07 Nov 2019, 20:28

4sStylZ wrote:
07 Nov 2019, 13:33
I have ordered a M0116 and M0118 for 65€ the two. I think it’s a nice deal and I was thinking to make some custom 60% with them buuuuut… they are 14,5 unit long : What a dumbass I am :p

2. Make a stupid custom from them : Cutting original plate, handwiring and place them in a 60% plate with something like two led bar on the the side for using the plate.
The curved profile of the keycaps is going to make a lot of 60% cases look a little off even before accounting for the spare 0.5u :| Maybe an AEK64 case, but imo you'd be best off either building your own 14.5u case or waiting for the ASK55.

I have to ask, why two? I'd probably customize the one with the preferred layout (or nicer switches) and leave the other one stock (other than cleaning) either to save or sell.

4sStylZ

07 Nov 2019, 21:52

Hmmm really two pricey. I have a AEK64 on a standard case the keycap curve isn't an issue for me.

User avatar
TheInverseKey

08 Nov 2019, 05:24

Just created a duck Orion V3 with Amber Alps. They are the better switch I think due to the level of tactility and sound over Blue Alps.

Image

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Mattr567

17 Nov 2019, 08:54

RGB off ;)

Image

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Muirium
µ

17 Nov 2019, 11:01

Ooh! HHKB style right Shift makes that one tasty little keyboard. I’d stumble a bit on quite what to do about \ but a spot of TMK programmability would make that near enough perfect.

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Polecat

25 Nov 2019, 00:19

We've talked about the many similarities between Focus and early Northgate keyboards...well...check out this label from a blue SKCM Gen1 Northgate Omnikey 102 currently on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/202829344522
Attachments
ebay Omnikey 102 label
ebay Omnikey 102 label
ebay102.jpg (297.34 KiB) Viewed 1763 times

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yuchipashe

25 Nov 2019, 08:30

Polecat wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 00:19
We've talked about the many similarities between Focus and early Northgate keyboards...well...check out this label from a blue SKCM Gen1 Northgate Omnikey 102 currently on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/202829344522
Nobody got it so I ended up getting it.
Last edited by yuchipashe on 25 Nov 2019, 09:19, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
yuchipashe

25 Nov 2019, 08:55

Polecat wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 00:19
We've talked about the many similarities between Focus and early Northgate keyboards...well...check out this label from a blue SKCM Gen1 Northgate Omnikey 102 currently on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/202829344522
Hmm, I searched the FCC ID and it seems to be the one for the Focus FK-555.

Looking at other sold gold badge omnikeys, they have a higher serial number and have the red FCC sticker:
Spoiler:
omnikey_1.jpg
omnikey_1.jpg (315.1 KiB) Viewed 1690 times
omnikey_2.jpg
omnikey_2.jpg (95.06 KiB) Viewed 1690 times
omnikey_3.jpg
omnikey_3.jpg (274.89 KiB) Viewed 1690 times
Compare that to an FK-555 FCC sticker
Spoiler:
555-1.jpg
555-1.jpg (243.27 KiB) Viewed 1690 times
Edit: I've searched through the history of Omnikeys being sold via worthpoint, and found this:
https://www.worthpoint.com/worthopedia/ ... 1981591980
Spoiler:
Image
It has almost a similar serial number that is lower, with the one I got as 3293 and the one I found being 3491, along with clear indication that there used to be a sticker at the bottom where the FCC sticker is supposed to be that is removed, with the bottom revealing a "SEFCO Computer Products". Possibly the Focus sticker tried to cover the SEFCO name, but who knows, the plot thickens...
Attachments
omnikey_4.jpg
omnikey_4.jpg (220.96 KiB) Viewed 1607 times
Last edited by yuchipashe on 25 Nov 2019, 14:36, edited 3 times in total.

ntv242

25 Nov 2019, 09:25

4sStylZ wrote:
07 Nov 2019, 13:33
Hi there,

I have ordered a M0116 and M0118 for 65€ the two. I think it’s a nice deal and I was thinking to make some custom 60% with them buuuuut… they are 14,5 unit long : What a dumbass I am :p

Where did you find deal like that :o

User avatar
Chyros

25 Nov 2019, 19:10

Polecat wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 00:19
We've talked about the many similarities between Focus and early Northgate keyboards...well...check out this label from a blue SKCM Gen1 Northgate Omnikey 102 currently on ebay.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/202829344522
My man! :D If this isn't the definitive missing link I don't know what is! :D I'd already found an OmniKey with Focus on the PCB, and ones with Focus-STYLE stickers, but this one sports a genuine FSQ FCC ID. It also shows very clearly that the OmniKey and FK-555 ARE in fact related. Looks like my theory was right! :D

User avatar
Polecat

26 Nov 2019, 05:05

Chyros wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 19:10

My man! :D If this isn't the definitive missing link I don't know what is! :D I'd already found an OmniKey with Focus on the PCB, and ones with Focus-STYLE stickers, but this one sports a genuine FSQ FCC ID. It also shows very clearly that the OmniKey and FK-555 ARE in fact related. Looks like my theory was right! :D
I thought you'd enjoy seeing that. I've got earlier and later examples on my list with the red Sefco labels. I don't know why this keyboard got the Focus label instead of a Sefco one, but it's the first and only one I've seen with that.

The inspection numbers (1xxxxxx, 1xxxxxxx, or 8xxxxxxx) don't necessarily correspond with the dates and serial numbers on the Northgate-added paper labels, or with the change from blue to white switches, so there's still plenty of mystery surrounding these keyboards. I'll keep watching and logging, we'll see what turns up next!

User avatar
Polecat

26 Nov 2019, 05:24

yuchipashe wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 08:30

Nobody got it so I ended up getting it.
Congratulations, let us know if you find any interesting labels or markings inside once it arrives.

Thank you for the other labels you posted. I'm keeping a database of Northgates (also Focus, Monterey, and a few others) to try to learn more about them. Some of it makes sense, but there are still some unanswered questions. The Sefco labels seem to have disappeared around February 1989. The change from blue to white SKCM switches took place around May or June, but doesn't correlate to inspection number, Northgate serial number, or label date. Northgate must have added the paper labels since those have also been found on Northgate keyboards from other suppliers (Monterey, Silitek...) So the serial numbers and dates on those labels would have been assigned after Northgate received the keyboards from the manufacturer. The inspection number labels were probably applied by the manufacturer since they are also seen on early Focus keyboards. But again the numbering on those doesn't exactly match up with dates or slider color of the switches.

4sStylZ

26 Nov 2019, 13:56

ntv242 wrote:
25 Nov 2019, 09:25
Where did you find deal like that :o
France website Leboncoin. They are very rare to find, you need to act quickly.

I got them last week, with another AEK2 for a total of 120€ :

M3501 Apple Extended Keyboard 2 French Azerty ISO White Alps.
M0116 Apple Standard Keyboard French Azerty L Shapped Return key Orange Alps.
M0118 Apple Standard Keyboard French Azerty Iso Orange Alps.

Image
Image
Image

The AEK2 have some « Differents » and not so common AVID keycaps with the good Apple Profile.

Now what I need are IDEAS for custom builds.
I am still searching informations about all the stuff who can be done with thoses 14,5u long layouts. Any ideas are welcome.

Here is a render of a future 3D printed case :

Image

Image

User avatar
Muirium
µ

26 Nov 2019, 14:57


4sStylZ

26 Nov 2019, 15:16

Yep, but as said previously I can’t buy 2 kits for a total of 700€ just for two keyboards. I love this hobby but it’s too much for me even if the quality seem’s awesome…

User avatar
swampangel

26 Nov 2019, 15:58

4sStylZ wrote:
26 Nov 2019, 13:56
Now what I need are IDEAS for custom builds.
I am still searching informations about all the stuff who can be done with thoses 14,5u long layouts. Any ideas are welcome.

Here is a render of a future 3D printed case:
I really like that this design keeps the curve-over-wedge look of the originals

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ppCircle

27 Nov 2019, 13:35

Imagine be scammed 3 times :cry:

Image

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