Alps SKCM Blue
|Family||Alps SKCL/SKCM series|
|Precedes||Alps SKCM White|
|Sense method||Metal leaf|
|Rated lifetime||20 M|
|Actuation force||70 gf|
|Total travel||3.5 mm|
|Keycap mount||Alps mount|
|Switch mount||Plate mount|
Alps SKCM Blue, complicated blue Alps, or simply blue Alps, is a clicky switch in the Alps SKCL/SKCM series.
Blue Alps switches are branded only on the bottom. Identification is assisted by the unusual greyish-blue colour of the slider; while there are Alps clone switches with blue sliders, none of them have the same shade of blue slider, preferring teal and vivid blue.
The switchplate is typically grey full-height, but white switchplates have also been found in blue Alps switches.
The following image, taken by alps.tw, contains the only known official documentation on the blue Alps switch:
Known variants include:
|Grey, long||No logo||With slits|
|White, long||No logo||With slits|
- Accodata Keycat
- Acer KB-101A
- Some Chicony KB-5160
- Some Chicony KB-5161
- Datacomp DFK102
- Some Focus FK-555
- Some Focus FK-2001 and Focus FK-2002
- Leading Edge DC-2014
- Most Leading Edge DC-3014
- Some Monterey K104
- NEC PC-8801 Mk II SR
- Some early Northgate OmniKey models
- Some NTC KB-6151
- Some NTC KB-6251/6252
- OEMMAX MCK-101 (Ortek OEM)
- Panasonic Business Partner 286 keyboard (normal keys)
- Tulip ATK 030244
Simplified Alps Type III is a clone of the Alps SKCMAG. The switch appears to be an earlier Hua-Jie AK-CN2 adapted to use a shell derived from an Alps SKCMAG; unlike most clones, Type III is clearly intended to fool people into mistaking it for a real Alps product, aided by Alps having neglected to visibly brand their switches.
The most obvious difference between the clone and genuine article is that the clone switch has a vivid blue slider, instead of the blue-grey of the Alps product. The clone switch replicates the telltale slits in the slider hole as well as the long side tabs that normally indicate a genuine Alps switch. The upper shell may be derived directly from an Alps moulding, as a plastic support plate was required to support the contact plates where normally the shell has dedicated recesses. A similar switch has been found with a custom shell with the proper recesses.
Blue Alps switch in an NTC KB-6252EA keyboard
Blue Alps switches in a Chicony 5160C keyboard
Rare white switchplate version, partially disassembled