New ThinkPad Trackpoint Keyboard II

eclairz

22 Jan 2020, 14:57

Didn't see anyone posting here about the new ThinkPad Trackpoint Keyboard II so looks like they announced it, but surprisingly missed this news.
https://www.notebookcheck.net/ThinkPad- ... 649.0.html

Here's the brochure: https://news.lenovo.com/wp-content/uplo ... ft_CES.pdf

Of interest it looks like it uses a mixed wireless propriety USB and also BlueTooth which is good as I don't find BlueTooth very reliable. They changed it from Micro-USB to USB-C which is also good, but if they flattened out the tractpad buttons like they did with my ThinkPad X1 Extreme it will be sadder but I guess it means it will be consistent feeling keys with my different PCs and Laptops.

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sharktastica

22 Jan 2020, 20:44

I have the first iteration of this, and it's a solid mobile keyboard. Probably the best non buckling springs TrackPoint keyboard (and low-profile keyboard at large) in my opinion, even beating the older LITE-ON-made SK-883x and SK-884x. Can't comment in comparison to a Model M4-1, but the older TrackPoint implementation on the M4 would make it a non-contest for modern devices. The biggest issue with it is the Micro USB port - it breaks SO easily. Ended up having to glue a cable in place on my example.

Type-C will thus be a welcomed change provided they haven't cheapes out on material. I'll likely get this keyboard anyway because ThinkPads are my primary computing love, and I do like having a very slim and portable keyboard to take to the library that I know I'd enjoy.

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Man_In_Blue

22 Jan 2020, 22:17

Its been a long while since those have gotten an update. I would love to pick one up! I miss my old Thinkpad laptops and those amazing keyboards.

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Man_In_Blue

22 Jan 2020, 22:24

Its been a long while since those have gotten an update. I would love to pick one up! I miss my old Thinkpad laptops and those amazing keyboards.

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robo

22 Jan 2020, 22:27

I have one of the old ones of these for my workshop computer, since it's compact and the keyboard and pointing device are in one.
I slightly prefer the old MacBook keyboards to the ThinkPad keys, but they're not bad.

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phinix

23 Jan 2020, 09:55

T470s was best laptop I had, that keyboard was amazing.
Don't know hwy they put Fn key in CTRL place - I always switched it in BIOS.

Do they make full layout of these, like wired regular keyboard?
Oooft, imagine TKL...mmm... :lol:

eclairz

28 Apr 2020, 10:47


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fohat
Elder Messenger

28 Apr 2020, 14:35

phinix wrote:
23 Jan 2020, 09:55
T470s was best laptop I had, that keyboard was amazing.

Don't know hwy they put Fn key in CTRL place - I always switched it in BIOS.
Whoa! How do you do that? I love my T440p but that key has always driven me crazy!

JBert

30 Apr 2020, 00:55

fohat wrote:
28 Apr 2020, 14:35
phinix wrote:
23 Jan 2020, 09:55
T470s was best laptop I had, that keyboard was amazing.

Don't know hwy they put Fn key in CTRL place - I always switched it in BIOS.
Whoa! How do you do that? I love my T440p but that key has always driven me crazy!
On my T440 it takes a restart, at which point you need to press F1 or Enter to get in the ThinkPad Setup screen.

Use arrow-right to go to the Config tab, then go down to Keyboard/Mouse and press Enter.

This screen has an option "Fn and Ctrl Key swap". Press the down arrow to highlight it and then press the "-" key to toggle it.

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depletedvespene

02 May 2020, 18:43

I read this thread with interest... then I saw the layout in the new keyboard. The nav keys are, shockingly, placed in an even worse manner than is done in 1800-lite layouts. Granted, this thing's layout is not as absurdly stupid as in the new keyboards by Microsoft, but... this thing is inexcusably bad.

ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II
ThinkPad TrackPoint Keyboard II
yeccccch.png (727.9 KiB) Viewed 749 times

Seriously... doesn't anyone designing a layout care to actually think HOW it'll be used anymore? Or even how to mitigate the loss of the 16th column in a non-outlandish way? (and this is AFTER conveniently forgetting the misplacement of Fn, a Thinkpad sin they're still guilty of)

And WHERE are Pause and Scroll Lock? Are they even present in the Fn layer?

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Darkshado

03 May 2020, 21:41

I have the wired 2013 model, the nav key placement is disappointing. Fn + the arrows feel like the smarter option but there's no documented way to reprogram the layout on this thing.

I tried Fn + all the unmarked keys in Switch Hitter and there aren't any scancodes coming out. So yeah, no Pause or Scroll Lock without some computer-side hack.

Concerning the Fn key position: on actual Thinkpads you can swap the Fn and Ctrl keys in the BIOS, but there's no option to do it here. (Also, since the caps aren't the same size you couldn't make the physical layout follow.)

I don't think anyone's gone to the trouble of somehow rewriting the firmware on one of these yet to fix any of the above.

One thing I really don't like here are the flat Trackpoint mouse buttons, the previous design gives obvious cues to distinguish between the left, middle and right buttons.

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funkmon

07 May 2020, 03:49

depletedvespene wrote:
02 May 2020, 18:43
I read this thread with interest... then I saw the layout in the new keyboard. The nav keys are, shockingly, placed in an even worse manner than is done in 1800-lite layouts. Granted, this thing's layout is not as absurdly stupid as in the new keyboards by Microsoft, but... this thing is inexcusably bad.


yeccccch.png


Seriously... doesn't anyone designing a layout care to actually think HOW it'll be used anymore? Or even how to mitigate the loss of the 16th column in a non-outlandish way? (and this is AFTER conveniently forgetting the misplacement of Fn, a Thinkpad sin they're still guilty of)

And WHERE are Pause and Scroll Lock? Are they even present in the Fn layer?
Okay, now while I appreciate that pause and scroll lock aren't there, which is irritating...I really like that nav layout, especially page down and up next to the arrow keys. Actually, now that I think about it, you know what's fantastic? The numpad nav cluster, if only it used an inverted T arrow layout. That's ideal. Give me those Home, End, Page Up and Page Down right there with the arrow keys.

Honestly the Model M fucked this all up for us.

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Shifty

08 May 2020, 12:31

I don't think I have ever in my life used the pause or scroll lock keys. What do you guys use them for that's so critical?

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depletedvespene

09 May 2020, 01:12

Shifty wrote:
08 May 2020, 12:31
I don't think I have ever in my life used the pause or scroll lock keys. What do you guys use them for that's so critical?
Well, the Pause key serves to... pause... the output.

The Scroll Lock key toggles the scrolling mode. It's an absolute must in applications where the screen shows a small window of a large work area (spreadsheets being the quintessential example, but nowhere near the only use case).

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Muirium
µ

09 May 2020, 13:30

Pause the output… of what?… your dot matrix printer?

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zuglufttier

09 May 2020, 14:21

I think scroll lock and pause still work on FreeBSD (possibly Linux as well) for example if you work on the console! The machine is booting up and if there's a kernel panic or anything like that, you have the possibility to look up any error messages. Otherwise impossible, unless you have some other kind of access to the machine via network. But this is a very rare use case, I used it once years ago :D

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depletedvespene

09 May 2020, 19:53

Muirium wrote:
09 May 2020, 13:30
Pause the output… of what?… your dot matrix printer?
No, of your teletype. Not mine, your teletype.

jakkul

09 May 2020, 23:25

KU-1255 is the best keyboard I've ever had :) It's just my fingers and me not wanting to spend more than $120 on a keyboard. And now it's showing it's age. I want (or even NEED) to replace KU-1255.

I see that the new lenovo board is going to be out. With no wired connectivity. I'm a bit paranoid when it comes to using wireless keyboards and typing passwords (irrational but well). Do you guys see any reasonable scissor type narrow boards wired worth looking at?

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inmbolmie

10 May 2020, 11:48

funkmon wrote:
07 May 2020, 03:49
.I really like that nav layout, especially page down and up next to the arrow keys. Actually, now that I think about it, you know what's fantastic? The numpad nav cluster, if only it used an inverted T arrow layout. That's ideal. Give me those Home, End, Page Up and Page Down right there with the arrow keys.

Although I see the reasoning and on paper should be a good idea, I have one Dell laptop that has this arrow-page up-page down arrangement and I must say that I end up pushing the paging keys accidentally while scrolling with the arrows, and it is infuriating, especially when you are in the middle of a shared presentation and you look silly not being able to scroll properly through a document :? .

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Darkshado

10 May 2020, 19:52

Ctrl + Pause stops a build in Visual Studio, double tap on Scroll Lock pops up certain KVM consoles.

4sStylZ

10 May 2020, 20:39

depletedvespene wrote:
02 May 2020, 18:43
I read this thread with interest... then I saw the layout in the new keyboard. The nav keys are, shockingly, placed in an even worse manner than is done in 1800-lite layouts. Granted, this thing's layout is not as absurdly stupid as in the new keyboards by Microsoft, but... this thing is inexcusably bad.
I got the old USB version with the exact same layout and I second all of this. Accessibility of Home / End is completly stupid, to me that was a fun keyboard to use for some weeks but very badly optimized.

If people want a real thinkpad layout… guess they need a Tex Shinobi :p

Image

Link : https://tex.com.tw/products/shinobi?var ... 9883648090

For me that's a pretty solid keyboard… but no QMK hardware support and that's a big issue for me.

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funkmon

11 May 2020, 02:46

Holy smokes that thing looks awesome.

chzcake44s

11 May 2020, 15:01

Shifty wrote:
08 May 2020, 12:31
I don't think I have ever in my life used the pause or scroll lock keys. What do you guys use them for that's so critical?
Rare use case, but I use Pause to enter a command layer on my desktop configuration (i3) and Scroll Lock as a compose key. I actually have a macro set in QMK to output Scroll Lock + --- to give me an em dash on any machine that uses Scroll Lock as Compose.

Also—Pause pauses DOOM. :evilgeek:

Findecanor

11 May 2020, 16:16

depletedvespene wrote:
02 May 2020, 18:43
Seriously... doesn't anyone designing a layout care to actually think HOW it'll be used anymore? Or even how to mitigate the loss of the 16th column in a non-outlandish way? (and this is AFTER conveniently forgetting the misplacement of Fn, a Thinkpad sin they're still guilty of)
ThinkPads never had a 16th column. Some other business-oriented laptops from Lenovo had though.
Instead, ThinkPad keyboards before chiclets (2014) had a 3×2 nav cluster above Backspace, so having Home/End/Ins/Del around there caters to old users. The PgUp/PgDn next to Up used to be some Page Left/Right keys that I can't remember ever did anything in any normal programs, so I'm glad they changed those. The PrtSc key used to be a Menu key.

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depletedvespene

11 May 2020, 16:27

Findecanor wrote:
11 May 2020, 16:16
depletedvespene wrote:
02 May 2020, 18:43
Seriously... doesn't anyone designing a layout care to actually think HOW it'll be used anymore? Or even how to mitigate the loss of the 16th column in a non-outlandish way? (and this is AFTER conveniently forgetting the misplacement of Fn, a Thinkpad sin they're still guilty of)
ThinkPads never had a 16th column. Some other business-oriented laptops from Lenovo had though.
I was speaking in the general terms of a 75%-ish layout.
Findecanor wrote:
11 May 2020, 16:16
Instead, ThinkPad keyboards before chiclets (2014) had a 3×2 nav cluster above Backspace, so having Home/End/Ins/Del around there caters to old users. The PgUp/PgDn next to Up used to be some Page Left/Right keys that I can't remember ever did anything in any normal programs, so I'm glad they changed those. The PrtSc key used to be a Menu key.
Some. Others had a 1800-like layout (like the Lenovo G570 right before me right now does).

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