Does this keyboard have the fabled ALPS Green SKCL?

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joebeazelman

08 Nov 2018, 06:41

Yesterday, I went on a buying spree at my local thrift store. Someone dropped a giant mega load of vintage Macs. It was like reliving 1990s Macworld all over again, but a lot more affordable. All the hardware I drooled for back in the day was now all mine! I purchased a ton of hardware classic Mac hardware, including 3 PowerMac 9600s and an 8600. Among all of my purchase, this unassuming generic looking ADB keyboard was what really caught my eye for a measly $1. This is the one time when ignorance isn’t bliss.
front of keyboard
front of keyboard
keyboard front.jpg (1.56 MiB) Viewed 1095 times
Spoiler:
back of keyboard
back of keyboard
keyboard back.jpg (1.51 MiB) Viewed 1095 times
Unlike some of the cheaper ADB keyboards at the time, this one features two ADB ports on both sides of the keyboard.
Spoiler:
side view
side view
side view left.jpg (1007.75 KiB) Viewed 1095 times

As you can see, the keyboard has a serial number and the brand only on the back:

Emblem
Emblem
emblem.jpg (1.12 MiB) Viewed 1095 times
Adesso is a recognized brand from back in the day and a competitor to Matias from what I recall.
They made lower cost alternatives to the Apple keyboards. The still make keyboards, but their latest offerings are horrible. The FCC ID and it appears to have been manufactured by Wentek Technology, Inc. Although I cannot confirm, Wentek is also known as Ortek, Inc. Apparently, they made a bunch of similar looking keyboards for other brands with ALPS switches under the brands Precision Devices, Inc. and Micro Warehouse Power User.

I can’t tell if they are true ALPS or some clone. It feels like the black ALPS on my Dell Black Bigfoot, but smoother with less tactility, although you can hear a subtle ping occasionally. I suspect this is what’s meant by linear feel. The keycaps fit perfectly on my Dell as well.

Green alpish switches
Green alpish switches
green alps stems.jpg (1017.77 KiB) Viewed 1095 times
Spoiler:
Key cap
Key cap
key cap.jpg (2.46 MiB) Viewed 1095 times
key cap on dell
key cap on dell
key cap on dell.jpg (1.33 MiB) Viewed 1095 times

The question remains, are these true ALPS switches or am I getting too excited? The switch in the photo doesn't have the characteristic ALPS logo on it. I have other genuine ALPS switches that don't have the logo on them either. Looking at the images in the wiki for the SKCL green, none of them look like this one, but the tale tell sign is the tiny four small tabs. Sigh, well I can't be that lucky. Does anyone know who makes these switches?

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subcat

08 Nov 2018, 06:47

the switches are clones

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Myoth

08 Nov 2018, 06:53

wiki/Hua-Jie_AK_series


if they are clickies, they are what I linked

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joebeazelman

08 Nov 2018, 07:24

No click, but then again, the alps black isn't what I would call a click either, more of a clock. This has a much lighter actuation and a subtler clock. I would say they are linear, but I've never typed on linear switches.

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//gainsborough
ALPSの日常

08 Nov 2018, 07:33

Indeed it is an alps clone switch. You can tell from the plate mount clips. Appears to be a 4-tab clone.

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Lynx_Carpathica

08 Nov 2018, 12:05

I have these from the exact same keyboard. They supposed to be linear but actually they are closer to being a tactile switch. I liked them, but the very high actuation point ruined it for me. I've flashed away 3 times by accident in league.

Therese switches are undocumented so far on deskthority.
Last edited by Lynx_Carpathica on 08 Nov 2018, 12:05, edited 1 time in total.

User avatar
Elrick

08 Nov 2018, 12:05

joebeazelman wrote: I purchased a ton of hardware classic Mac hardware, including 3 PowerMac 9600s and an 8600.
They were the Authentic Apple Powermacs in their day.

No PC could match their power back then, especially the 9600/350 (604e) series, which I had at that time (also when Jobsie's arse got kicked out during that period - Best time).

Fantastic piece of hardware that was released (despite EDO ram usage), also loved using their simple OS 8.6, which was the last real Apple OS ever released.

Their earlier Apple operating systems were superb and very reliable (never had any problems) as long as you didn't install any weird Control Panels and/or Extensions ;) .

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zrrion

08 Nov 2018, 14:31

It looks like they can be opened from the top. Pics of the internals would be great in identifying the switch.

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joebeazelman

08 Nov 2018, 16:13

OK. I will desolder and dismantle one of the switches and post photos. Stay tuned.

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mark201200

11 Nov 2018, 23:58

I have a very similar (if not identical) keyboard. They're "linear" alps clones. Too bad they're so fucking scratchy they feel tactile.

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Polecat

12 Nov 2018, 01:57

I have the same or similar clones in a NIB Ergo 2000 keyboard, likewise very scratchy/squeaky and probably came that way. I only saved it because it's rare to find Alps or clones in an Ergo board.
mark201200 wrote: I have a very similar (if not identical) keyboard. They're "linear" alps clones. Too bad they're so fucking scratchy they feel tactile.

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abrahamstechnology

12 Nov 2018, 02:53

Are there any more Alps Apple boards still there?

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Polecat

22 Nov 2018, 05:19

This just popped up on ebay; same as mine:

https://www.ebay.com/itm/Ergo-3000-Keyb ... :rk:1:pf:0

[quote="Polecat" post_id=428528]I have the same or similar clones in a NIB Ergo 2000 keyboard, likewise very scratchy/squeaky and probably came that way. I only saved it because it's rare to find Alps or clones in an Ergo board.

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Lynx_Carpathica

25 Nov 2018, 22:55

mark201200 wrote: I have a very similar (if not identical) keyboard. They're "linear" alps clones. Too bad they're so fucking scratchy they feel tactile.
mine was not scratchy....just after when I left it in my basement for 5 yers. it was fine untill then. But yes, they are wierd.

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