Mechanical Keyboard (3)

I have recently switched to a different keyboard. I now use a Happy Hacking Keyboard Professional 2. As long as the name is, so small is the device. It is an ultra compact keyboard, what is referred to as 60%. This means that not only is it Tenkeyless, it even shaved off more keys. In this case, the most noticeable difference is the disappearance of the arrow keys.

It was a convenient moment for me to switch and I liked the prospect because a lot of people are highly enthusiastic about this keyboard. Among its most praised features is the key switch that is used; Topre switches. I have been using it for two or three weeks now and will continue to use it for at least 6 more weeks.

Among its positive points are its high quality build, both the case and the key caps. It is also really small which could be considered a plus. I also like that the cable is detachable and that it features two more USB ports. It is also directly compatible with OSX.

Unfortunately, I can name much more negative points. First off, I really do not enjoy the tactile feedback on this board. This could be because I do not type as one is ‘supposed’ to. Instead I am used to moving my hands, mainly relying on my index fingers. Perhaps true typists will enjoy the Topre switches. But I myself felt the difference only with Cherry MX switches (Blue). This, to me, is very close to simple rubber dome switches.

Additionally, the layout of the keyboard is too advanced for me to enjoy. The loss of the arrow keys is nearly insurmountable for me. Also the placement of the Delete (or Backspace) key just above the Return key, with the Tilde above the Delete, results in insanity in my case. This especially so because I used certain key binds with the Tilde which are now much harder to perform.

My first conclusion is, therefore, despite the $300,- price tag, the HHKB2 is not the best board. At least not for me. Live and learn.

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