Alps keyboard codes

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Alps keyboard codes typically contain a segment of the part number of the switch, which provides clues to help identify the part numbers of the switches themselves.

Code structure

Alps keyboards are marked with either one or two defining codes. The PCB code is written into the PCB in un-etched copper and typically begins "12K" (older keyboards) or "56AAA" or "57AAA" (newer keyboards); membrane keyboards may have this code written on the membranes instead. The format of these codes is not understood, but it provides the third letter in the switch series. For example, 12KC538A denotes SKCL or SKCM switches.

The completed assembly may also be affixed with an assembly label; this can be found on either the plate or the PCB. These labels have typically two codes, of which one is never understood. The other type of code begins "K" or "KF" and it provides letters three and four of the switch series. For example, KFFLEB004C indicates Alps SKFL series. In the case of KFFBA010, this is taken to be SKFF series on the assumption that there is no extraneous "F": KFFBA010.

The importance of these codes is clear: obtaining these codes provides the identity of Alps switch series in the absence of any catalogues or datasheets. Alps SKFL series was identified solely using the KFFLEB004C code, which was subsequently confirmed true by search engine results for a stock of surplus SKFL series switches sold by Technology Transplant. The KF codes—that identify the full series name—are comparatively rare; the best source of these is Canon typewriters, which were consistently provided with these labels and which used a wide variety of Alps switch types.

Known codes

A circle is assumed to be "0" (zero) not "O". Years given are for the reference keyboard cited.

PCB code Assy. no/model no. Product Switch Year Reference
12KC018A TRS-80 Model III Alps SKCC Cream 1980 Deskthority
12KC218A IBM Multi Station 5550 4773313 I Type Keyboard Alps SKCL Green 1983 rzwv
KCCAA147 Canon? Alps SKCC Green 1984? Coronthica
12KC284A Toshiba Pasopia 700 Alps SKCC Green 1985 MouseFan
12KC343C IBM 6112884 Alps SKCC Green Deskthority
12KC424D IBM 5140 Convertible Alps SKCM Brown, Alps SKCL Compact rzwv
12KC528H KFCMAA018B Canon typewriter keyboard Alps SKCL Green, Alps SKCL Double Action, other SKCL/SKCM, Alps plate spring mega Imgur
12KC557D KFCMAC008A Leading Edge DC-2014 Alps SKCM Blue 1987 Klikky Klik
12KC538A Apple IIc Alps SKCM Amber, Alps SKCL Lock
12KC564B Zenith Z-150 Alps SKCL Green 1986 rzwv
12KC619BK KCLEA907L Packard Bell keyboard Alps SKCL Brown, Alps SKCL Yellow 1987 rzwv
12KC619BK KCME907L BIOS Express keyboard Alps SKCM Blue Sandy
12KC626B KFCMEA015A Panasonic Business Partner 286 keyboard Alps SKCM Blue, Alps SKCL Green 1986 MouseFan
12KC654D IBM Multi Station 5550 4773313 II Type Keyboard Alps SKCL Green 1986 rzwv
12KE010C TRS-80 Model III Alps integrated dome (black cross mount) Google+
12KE080B ICL One-Per-Desk keyboard Alps semi-integrated dome Deskthority
12KE086A Toshiba HX-10 Alps integrated dome (Alps mount, central peg), Alps SKFL 1984 Nightfall Blog Nightfall Blog
12KE095A Canon V20 Alps integrated dome (Alps mount, central peg), Alps SKFL 1985 Eski Bilgisayarlarım
12KE124G Sharp PC-7000 keyboard Alps integrated dome (Alps mount, central peg) geekhack
12KE152A KFEWBA003A Canon S-17 Alps SKEW White, Alps SKCL Green Deskthority
12KF006C KFFBA010 Canon AP400 Alps SKFF series 1982 Flickr
12KF086A NEC PC-8201A Alps SKFL 1983
12KF088B Toshiba HX-10D Alps SKFL 1984 MouseFan
12KN003A Yamaha YIS-503ⅢR Alps plate-mount membrane actuators; Alps SKCL Green LED 1988 xlat/eBay
KFNLEA901 Alps SM-101 Alps buckling spring Deskthority
54AAA0006B KFNFBF004A Alps UE0200P12 Alps moulded spring over membrane rzwv
54AAA0158B Sanwa Supply SKB-J109 Alps membrane rzwv
56AAA0327C Apple Desktop Bus Keyboard Alps SKCM Salmon 1990
56AAA0640B KFFLEB004C Toshiba T3200 Alps SKFL Deskthority
56AAA0550H Zenith Supersport SX Alps integrated dome Wiki
56AAA1371C IBM PS/55 keyboard Alps plate spring 1990 Sandy
56AAA1654C NEC PC-9801-98-S02 Alps SKCL Yellow, Alps SKCL Heavy Grey rzwv
57AAA0141D IBM LPFK 6094-020 Alps conductive dome, cross mount (not MX mount) 1999 rzwv