Mechanical Keyboards - India - Mid 2020

Mechanical Keyboards

This is going to be a really short writeup on what mechanical keyboards are and
then we'll get to the options available to us right now in India, mid 2020.

You can go all the way down to the buying options and skip the other info if
needed.

What are we talking about again?

Mechanical keyboards are the much more robust version of your day to day
keyboard. The keyboards you normally see around are membrane keyboards which are
cheaper to produce and use digitial contacts to figure out what key was pressed.

On, the other side we have the Mechanical Feel keyboards which are basically
the same membrane keyboard but with clicky keys trying to imitate Mechanical
keyboards and these are also available at a decent price range, you can invest
in these if you don't really want to spend much on mechanical keyboards but then
we do have a few budget options right around the same price.

Finally, Mechanical Keyboards. I'm just going to go over the important
components that'll get you enough knowledge to get started.

We've got 4 components

The Case

It's the casing for the actual keyboard, there's nothing much to tell here other
than the various varieties out there. You can get 3d printed cases, metal cases,
plastic cases, wooden cases, there's a whole bunch and each has it's own cost
and when going the budget route, the obvious choice is the plastic case. Don't
worry, there's a few cases that are really sturdy even if plastic

PCB

Now this is what the cable/bluetooth/wireless receiver addon is on and your
system connects to this to detect the passed signals or in even simpler words,
this circuit board takes care of actually passing the required digital signals
for the system to detect what is being typed.

Hot Swappable vs Soldering

There's 2 types of PCB's , or circuit boards. One which allows you to directly
plug in the switches and one which needs you to solder the connection points to
the board. The one's you can plug into are called Hot Swappable boards and the
others are called solder boards.

Switches

Now part 1 of the fancy stuff, the keyboard tech has improved over time and
you've got a lot of options for the switches you'd like to use. You've got
really clicky switches to really silent switches. Unfortunately, there's not
much you can get directly in India and are limited to a few brands but you can
import a lot of the other ones from various places online but the options in
this post will be limited to stuff you can buy from Amazon and/or online local
mechanical keyboard resellers like PCStudio and Meckeys.

Short explanation of the switches,

Clicky - Keys that make a nice loud click sound, just like a typewriter.

Tactile - Need lesser pressure to activate and is normally good for games
where the action needs to be instant

Linear - You'll have to press the key all the way down like membrane keys to
activate it

There's obviously more types of switches, you've got blacks, silvers, jades ,
but these are the most common ones and most prebuilt keyboards will come with
one of these.

Now, the most heard thing in the Mech Keyboard community is the Cherry MX
Switches, now while the german engineered switches are a great choice
overall,Gaterons are another set which can be your first choice when spending a
good amount of money while building a custom mech. They might be a little harder
to obtain in India but as always we've got alternatives.

On the contrary, you can find all of these on various international markets
online, since it's a little hard to obtain them right now without paying huge
amounts of customs, we'll stick to the below options.

Namely

Now each of them have the same colors available and each have their own level of
tactility and force to activation but they try to replicate the original color
pattern I mentioned above so you should be fine. Now these are available at
different rates online and you can obtains most of them form Meckeys and Amazon.
These are all good switches anything else is probably a clone (ironically outemu
is actually a clone, i'll let you do the research on that).

Keycaps

And Part 2 of the fancy stuff , the keycaps. The switches are basically you're
medium to connect the keycaps to the PCB and once they are in place all you have
left is adding the keycaps. Now keycaps have a wide range and are just a search
away on Amazon and Meckeys.

There's so many out there that I didn't even want to add them in the options
below but I guess I'll just add the ones I like and you guys can get ahead and
get others if you want too.

Yes, you can buy a cheap mechanical keyboard and replace the keycaps to make it
look better than the cheap legend/font it comes with.

What Can I Buy?

These are based on the date of the post and the prices have been fluctuating on
amazon for a while now so they may get out of the price brackets but the point
of this post is to list out valid buying options.

You can also go through Keychrons which are available at different price ranges
and can be found from their website keychron.in , these
keyboards mostly come with Mac support so is preferred by Mac Users but you can
use almost any keyboard mentioned below by just switching the modifier keys in
the macOS keyboard preferences.

2000 - 4000 INR

The tightest bracket but you've got a few options.

Set your Expectations

Links

6000 - 10000 INR

You've find a good amount of prebuilt options at this range and also build a
custom one if you'd like too.

Set your Expectations

Links

10000+ INR

At this price you can go for most options on Meckeys.com and Amazon but the
recommend brand to go for would be Varmilo in and if you can, build a custom
one.

Custom Keyboard?

Yeah, you can build a custom one, you can find various videos online to get you
through this but the simplest one would be with the options below.

Base

GLORIOUS GMMK CUSTOMIZABLE TKL RGB -
Link
Comes with the pcb and the case already, don't have to mess with that when
starting out.

Switches

Kailh Box Switches -
Link
Comes in packs of 10 so you'll need 90 keys , round it to 100 for extra switches
for use later

Keycaps

ABS BACKLIT DOUBLE SHOT KEYCAP – WHITE -
Link

I like the off white tone of these, so I chose these, you can find a lot of
options over at meckeys and amazon.

Now this should cost you anywhere around 10k to 14k based on what you choose and
that sums up our post.