QWERTZ laptop(?) matrix with Omron B3G-S amber


05 Jul 2020, 16:58

Writing of design choices for integrated keyboards reminded me that I have this board that I got as part of a package deal from tentator. So I dug it out from the bottom of the pile and hooked it up.
Omron-top.jpg (398.79 KiB) Viewed 1010 times
The compact layout -- aside from the giant ISO Enter -- suggests a laptop and the Turbo key suggests maybe a 286. Other than this, and that it's for the Germanophone market, I don't have any specific ideas about origin or brand. There are no distinguishing marks on the PCB, aside from the printing error of 13 for 23 next to the header.
Omron-bottom.jpg (411.23 KiB) Viewed 1010 times
It has amber Omron B3G-S switches, which is one of the reasons it was interesting. It's hard to do a completely fair comparison without a case. But to me these suggest an overdone version of orange or salmon Alps from AEKs. Louder, clickier, pingier. Which I could see having a certain appeal.
Omron-switch.jpg (476.15 KiB) Viewed 1010 times
The board itself has the switch matrix, diodes, and pull-up resistors. No logic components. No LEDs. Which means it doesn't care much about voltage, so I can use a 3.3V Teensy LC.
Omron-Teensy.jpg (662.27 KiB) Viewed 1010 times
(I know the IDC cable is kind of long; it's what I had in the drawer and I didn't feel like crimping a new one just for this.)

Turbo is a locking switch both of whose contacts are brought out on the header, making it completely independent of the matrix. Of course, I could make one an extra row and the other an extra column, with just the one possible connection. But that seemed like I waste (would go from bytes to shorts) and I wasn't sure what a good use for a locking key in that position was anyway. So, at present it doesn't do anything.

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