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Building a mechanical keyboard is becoming an increasingly popular choice for enthusiasts and gamers alike. Not only does it offer the freedom to customize your own keyboard, but it can also be cheaper than buying a pre-built one.
This gives users the opportunity to make their own unique keyboard layouts and choose from a wide range of switches, keycaps, and other components. With this in mind, it’s worth considering whether building your own mechanical keyboard is worth the effort and cost savings.
Keyboard Building Costs It generally takes around $200 to acquire most of the parts necessary for building a mechanical keyboard. The keycap set, switches, and plastic frame can buy separately, but they will typically cost $30-50 each. This will leave you with approximately $150-300 in materials.
Building a mechanical keyboard can be a cheaper option than buying a pre-assembled one, and it can also be a fun and rewarding experience. Building your own mechanical keyboard requires you to purchase the parts, assemble them, and then program the keyboard.
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What is a Mechanical Keyboard?
A mechanical keyboard is a high-performance keyboard with tactile and audio feedback that provides more precision than traditional keyboards. Mechanical keyboards are generally more durable and reliable than standard membrane keyboards. They come in several different switch types, which vary in terms of feel and sound when typing.
Should I buy or build a mechanical keyboard?
It depends on your needs and preferences. If you want a keyboard with a specific layout or features, then buying one may be the best option. If you are looking for something more customizable, or if you have time and patience to learn how to build a keyboard, then building one may be the best option.
Why Is It Cheaper to Build Your Own Mechanical Keyboard?
Building your own mechanical keyboard is generally cheaper than buying a pre-made one because it allows you to customize the parts and components you use and not pay for features that you don’t need or want. You can also save money by purchasing parts and components in bulk, which can bring the cost down significantly. Additionally, you can often find cheaper second-hand parts, which can also reduce the overall cost.
How much is a good price for a mechanical keyboard?
Mechanical keyboards are becoming increasingly popular, and with good reason. They offer a unique typing experience thanks to their tactile feedback, durability and versatility. However, the price of a mechanical keyboard can vary greatly depending on the features and brand. Generally speaking, mechanical keyboards range from around $60 to over $200, making them an affordable option for many users.
Why are mechanical keyboards very expensive?
Mechanical keyboards are very expensive because they have a durable build and usually feature high-quality switches that provide an optimal typing experience. Additionally, these keyboards often include features like RGB backlighting, media controls, and macros that make them more attractive to gamers and typists. The cost of these features adds to the price of the keyboard.
Are mechanical keyboards really worth the buy?
Yes, mechanical keyboards are worth the buy. Mechanical keyboards provide a better typing experience than non-mechanical keyboards due to their durability and tactile feedback, making typing faster and more accurate. Additionally, mechanical keyboards are more customizable than non-mechanical keyboards, allowing users to personalize the key layout and features.
Steps to Building a Mechanical Keyboard
Steps to Building a Mechanical Keyboard
Step 1: Purchase Parts
- The first step to building a mechanical keyboard is to purchase the necessary parts. This includes the keyboard case, keycaps, switches, PCBs and other components such as stabilizers and diodes.
- You can buy individual components or buy complete kits that include all the necessary parts.
- If you are building your own keyboard from scratch, you will need to purchase the following parts:
- Keyboard case: You can buy a ready-made keyboard case or make one yourself.
- Keycaps: The keycaps are the round plastic pieces that cover the switches of the keyboard.
- There are different sizes and shapes of keycaps available, so choosing which ones suit your needs is important.
- Different types of keycaps include standard round caps, tall caps, split cherry blossom keys (commonly used in Japanese keyboards), and 50% and 25% tester keys that allow you to test lighting fast inputs without using the full keyboard.
Step 2: Test PCB to make sure it work
Step 3: Lube Your Switches (Optional)
Step 4: Mod Your Stabilizers
Step 5: Install Stabilizers into PCB
Step 6: Install Switches into Plate & PCB
Step 7: Solder Switches
Step 8: Add Foam and Rubber Feet to The Case
Step 9: Install Assembled PCB Into Case
Step 10: Install the Keycaps
Step 11: The Typing Test
Cost of Building a Mechanical Keyboard
The cost of building a mechanical keyboard can vary greatly depending on the type and quality of the parts used. Generally speaking, a basic mechanical keyboard can cost anywhere between $50 and $150, while more advanced keyboards with custom parts can range from $200 to $600 or more.
Parts of Building a Mechanical Keyboard
- The case is the most visible and arguably the most important piece of a mechanical keyboard.
- It supports and houses the PCB, plate, switches, keycaps, and other components.
- Cases come in a variety of materials such as plastic, aluminum, steel, or even wood.
- PCB – The Printed Circuit Board is mounted to the plate with a variety of methods, such as screws or clips.
- The PCB contains many different circuits including all of your switches, lights, stabilizers, mechanical key switches and potentially more.
- Switch – A switch is an electro-mechanical component which triggers when you press it down on an electrical signal from your computer or peripheral device. They come in many shapes and types, but most keyboards and mice have two switches on them.
Cost Comparison of Building a Mechanical Keyboard
- The cost of building a mechanical keyboard varies depending on the type of keyboard and components you choose to use.
- The most basic mechanical keyboards can cost around $50 to $100, while higher-end models can cost up to $200 or more.
- The cost of the individual components for building a mechanical keyboard will vary depending on the type of switches, keycaps, and stabilizers that you choose.
- Switches can range from $0.50 to $2.00 each, while keycaps typically range from $10 to $30 per set.
Building your own mechanical keyboard can be an affordable alternative to buying a pre-made one, as it allows you to choose the components you need without breaking the bank. With the right parts, tools and know-how, anyone can construct a high-quality mechanical keyboard in their own home at a fraction of the cost of purchasing one.