Tai-Hao APC series

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Tai-Hao APC series
Tai-Hao APC series.jpg
Manufacturer Tai-Hao
Introduced ca. 1990–91
Switch type Clicky; tactile; linear
Sense method Metal leaf
Rated lifetime 20M
Bounce time 10 ms
Actuation force 45, 55, 65, 70 and 75 g
Keycap mount Alps mount
Switch mount Plate mount

Tai-Hao APC series is a range of Alps clone switches manufactured by Tai-Hao.

Description

APC switches have the same approximate shell design as other four-tab clone switches. Internally they are very similar to other Alps clone switches, with the current generation of switches using the same narrow copper-based click leaf.

According to Tai-Hao, the APC series was introduced a year or two after Tai-Hao Aruz,[1] which has a confirmed sighting of 1989. It was previously misunderstood that the APC series was introduced in 1984 or 1985, but 1990 or 1991 is consistent with the apparent appearance of Alps clone switches around this time.

The contact design of APC is derived from that of the Aruz switch. It remains uncertain whether Hua-Jie AK series or Tai-Hao APC series arrived first; it is however confirmed that Himake were involved with the Aruz switch, and both switch series started out extremely similar.

Specification

Specification for current, unbranded switches:

Bounce time < 10 ms
Total travel 4.5−0.5 mm
Pretravel 2.1±0.5 mm
Operating force 45±10 gf, 55±10 gf, 65±10 gf, 75±10 gf
Lifetime 20 M cycles

Recognition

Alps clone internals--CP, front, APC.svg


Front contact plate
Square, with one finger, and top and bottom reinforcement recesses; almost identical to that of the Simplified Alps Type IV switch

Alps clone internals--CP, rear, APC newer.svg


Rear contact plate (newer)
Small, no holes, and with the characteristic recess-reinforced leg

Alps clone internals--CL, mantis.svg


Click leaf (newer)
Narrow, copper-coloured "mantis" click leaf

Alps clone internals--CP, rear, APC older.svg


Rear contact plate (older)
Large, no holes, and with the characteristic recess-reinforced leg

Alps clone externals--APC.svg


Shell
All APC switches are four-tab clones

Numbering
NW:A##, or NW:##A[2] (alphanumeric numbering, top-left)

Alps clone internals--APC 3.svg


Shell
The lower shell of some more recent switches can be rotated 180°

Variants

Branded

Branded "APC"; white slider; clicky; extremely similar to the unbranded Type IV simplified with a wide steel click leaf.[3] Likely to be discontinued variants within the APC range.

A Packintell Electronics–branded Key Mouse keyboard registered with the FCC in 1989 has been found with a mixture of branded and unbranded switches, giving a rough idea of when the branding was removed.[4] The keyboard's manufacture date is not known.

Unbranded

These are the production switches. All switches have the typical narrow copper-based click leaf. The only known tactile variant (BSW 045WHN) uses a modified click leaf with shallower angles on the hooks to allow the slider to pass without generating a click.

Presently (July 2017) only three switch types are in active production, two standard weight types for keyboards and one heavy weight for machinery; other types can still be manufactured on request.[5] BSW 280WH was previously blue-green, but is currently vivid "neon" green, and is available for sale and was included in a group buy at Reddit.[6] BSW 055WH was previously teal or dark blue, but is now made in the sky blue colour formerly used by BSW 045WH. Likewise, BSW 065WHN is white, while previously it was listed as black.

Part number Slider colour Type Force
BSW 055WH Sky blue Clicky 55 g
BSW 065WHN White Linear 65 g
BSW 280WH Green Linear 280 g

Discontinued

Part number Slider colour Type Force Notes
BSW 045WH Sky blue Clicky 45 g
BSW 045WHN Red Tactile 45 g
BSW 055WH Teal Clicky 55 g Old colour (see above)
BSW 055WHN Brown Linear 55 g
BSW 065WH White Clicky 65 g
BSW 065WHN Black Linear 65 g Old colour (see above)
BSW 075WH White Clicky 75 g
BSW 075WHN Black Linear 75 g
BSW 070WH White Clicky 70 g
BSW 070WHN White? Linear 70 g Unconfirmed

Gallery

BSW 045WH

BSW 045WHN

BSW 045WHN is a 45 g tactile switch. Tactility is achieved by straightening the hooks on the click leaf, such that the slider passes it without pulling it forward. This gives a level of tactility somewhere in the region of half of that of Cherry MX Brown, and the switch does not click. In contrast, SMK second generation switches achieved the same effect by chamfering the slider and using a virtually identical click leaf to that found in their clicky switches.

Keyboards

  • Tai-Hao F21-7D and OEM customer varants:
    • AZiO Levetron Clicker (KB528U)
    • Rosewill Striker RK-6000
    • Wintek-WK-750
  • Some KPT KPT-84 keyboards
  • Packintell-branded Key Mouse keyboard[4]

Specifications

References

  1. Conversation with Tai-Hao
  2. Deskthority — ALPS what type?
  3. KBtalKing — ㊣ALPS軸類零組件比較㊣ (Chinese only) Dated 2009-05-24. Retrieved 2015-07-23.
  4. 4.0 4.1 Geekhack — New guy needs help identifying keyboard & Alps-like sliders Posted 2010-07-04. Retrieved 2015-07-23.
  5. Correspondence with Tai-Hao, 2017-07-31
  6. Reddit — [GB] Tai-Hao APC Switches (ALPS Style) : mechmarket