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Das Keyboard Review

Well, I just got my Das Keyboard (delivered about a week ago), and I've been typing on it non-stop since. I feel I owe my readers a review, just in case they are looking at getting one themselves.

First, when I pulled it out of the box, I couldn't get past the size. This keyboard is huge. Of course, it's modeled after the IBM model M, so what do I expect? But even then, I can't believe how small keyboards are getting these days. The keyboard that I was typing on is a Dell keyboard, with virtually no padding around the keys. Quite the opposite here, where there is more than an inch between my numbers and the function keys, and almost 3 inches between the function keys and the top of the keyboard. So, in a nutshell, it's big.

Second, after plugging it in and giving it a go, I had forgotten how loud keyboards were back in the day. This keyboard is no exception. "Clickity-clack" all day long. Had I known about how loud it is, I probably wouldn't have purchased it. However, after only 4 hours, I seem to have gotten used to it, and it isn't bothering me as much. Luckily, it doesn't bother my coworker, as his iMac keyboard is nearly as loud. So, we have a bit of loud typing in the room.

Finally, the tactile feedback. It is truly amazing! With every keystroke, I just sit and marvel about how good it feels, and how well the keys snap back at me after I release my finger. Also, the differing pressures required on each key is barely noticeable at first, but after a while, you notice that your wrists aren't getting as sore as previous. This is because the weaker fingers are given a break on pressing down the keys they are assigned to, which is nice to help eliminate RSI.

The best thing about the keyboard, though, is staring into complete black. Aside from the Das Keyboard logo, the labels for the status lights, and the lights themselves, this keyboard is completely black. It's really cool. At first, though, it took a bit to find out where Insert, Delete, Home and End were, as well as '/', '*' and '-' above the 10-key. Also, not knowing where the numbers are above the letters is proving to be challenging. I guess it's high-time I learn the proper way to type those numbers. But all-in-all, I'm loving it. Really cool. So now, with all my blogging, programming and other typing I do, we'll see if this keyboard can withstand the 50 million keystrokes that it promises on the site. I'm sure I'll reach it.

If I were to give this keyboard a rating, I would give it 8 out of 10 stars, just because the size is a bit big for me, and the "clickity-clack" is a bit too loud. Other than that, you can tell it's engineered well, and a solid keyboard. I have a feeling I'll be loving this keyboard for years to come.

{ 13 } Comments

  1. Shane Falco using Firefox 2.0.0.2 on Ubuntu | March 16, 2007 at 4:20 pm | Permalink

    Well, I just bought one a week or so ago after reading your blog and am really disappointed with it. The keyboard is light plastic with a very cheap feel - even compared to many stock keyboards! One of my keys actually sticks which I've never once experienced on a new keyboard. In addition, the clicking sound is hollow and cheap compared to others like the old IBM models.

    The only good things I can say about the keyboard is that looks ok and is USB. In addition, if you care about people thinking you're super duper mister computer guru, buy one...it does impress the cubicle dwellers. I don't care about that, though, so the whole gimmick of this device is lost on me.

    The bottom line is that this keyboard is not worth the price and I will be returning it.

  2. Sandy using Firefox 2.0.0.2 on Ubuntu | March 17, 2007 at 10:11 am | Permalink

    Anyone have a good recommendation for a similar keyboard, but with labels on the keys?

    I desire the clickety-clack. :-)

  3. finalbeta using Firefox 2.0.0.2 on Ubuntu | March 17, 2007 at 11:24 am | Permalink

    Thanks for this review, and thanks to Shane Falco.
    I was planning on ordering this keyboard, but I will hold off now. I guess it really is not worth it.

    Anyone knows of any other keyboards like this? All black, no labels. I don't really mind clickedy clacking or not.

  4. Aaron using Firefox 2.0.0.2 on Ubuntu | March 17, 2007 at 6:28 pm | Permalink

    Shane- I disagree respectfully. I think the Das Keyboard has a great tactile feedback. It weighs 3 pounds, so I don't know how that could it could feel like light plastic with a cheap feel. I can't even get the keys off, as the construction is solid. Honestly, I don't understand see how it is a gimmick. It has the weight, solid feel and response of the IBM Model M all over the place. One real solid keyboard.

    Sandy- I would recommend getting an IBM Model M keyboard. They can be found all over the web.

    finalbeta- Don't listen to Shane. I don't know how he gets the review of the keyboard that he is saying. The Das Keyboard is one solid keyboard. I love it, and I'm really critical and hard to please, as you could probably tell from reading my blog.

  5. Chris Call using Internet Explorer 7.0 on Windows XP | April 10, 2007 at 11:37 am | Permalink

    It's possible that Shane Falco got an orginal Das Keyboard instead of the Das Keyboard II.

    According to the Wikipedia entry for Das Keyboards, the original keyboard used membrane switches and was not highly reviewed.

    All that changed with the Das Keyboard II, which used gold plated cherry buckling spring microswitches. It cost $20.00 more also, but the quality was much better.

  6. Aaron using Debian IceWeasel 2.0.0.3 on Debian GNU/Linux 64 bits | April 10, 2007 at 12:17 pm | Permalink

    Chris- That would make sense. This keyboard is a great keyboard. I use it all the time, and absolutely love it. Mine definitely is version II.

  7. CPS using Firefox 2.0.0.9 on Windows XP | November 21, 2007 at 2:30 pm | Permalink

    Sandy- I would check out the Unicomp Customizer 104

  8. Glenn using Internet Explorer 7.0 on Windows Vista | February 26, 2008 at 7:22 pm | Permalink

    I could not agree with Shane more, I was extremely disappointed in this new DAS keyboard when I got it home from Micro Center. It is very light, extremely flexible, not solid at all, very flimsy, the keys make a cheap, hollow sound when they bottom out at the end of the keystroke, very poor quality feel to the keyboard alltogether.

    I have and do own some IBM model M keyboards, and this is NOT like them in any way, except that it does have the "clicky" keys, with mechanical keyswitches (Cherry keyswitches I believe). It does not, by any means, weigh like the IBM's...this keyboard is extremely light and cheap feeling.

    I am just wondering if there are more than one variety or production runs of this keyboard? My box looks pretty new, and it does not refer to the keyboard as being a DAS keyboard II, but rather just states that it is a DAS keyboard? The keyboard itself says "Made in Germany" ..."Designed in Texas" ...

    It's going back, it was a total disappointment. It does look pretty cool though. And it didn't help my typing, since I don't look at the keys anyways...except those little symbols on the number keys...lol !

  9. stephen using Firefox 2.0.0.14 on Windows XP | May 20, 2008 at 2:36 pm | Permalink

    it is very light, extremely flexible, not solid at all, very flimsy, the keys make a cheap, hollow sound when they bottom out at the end of the keystroke, very poor quality feel to the keyboard all together.??? Are you kidding? You must be talking about another keyboard! I used this keyboard during tax season, working 10 to 12 hours a day, six days a week. The keyboard is solid, feels great, and I could not be happier. It without a doubt a high quality keyboard! Infact I will be buying more for my other computers.

  10. porn using Firefox 2.0.0.15 on Windows XP | July 13, 2008 at 5:40 am | Permalink

    Chris- That would make sense. This keyboard is a great keyboard. I use it all the time, and absolutely love it. Mine definitely is version II.

  11. sohbet using Internet Explorer 7.0 on Windows XP | July 15, 2008 at 7:48 am | Permalink

    thank you

  12. Gennick using Internet Explorer 6.0 on Windows Unknown | February 12, 2009 at 2:43 am | Permalink

    Hello. And Bye.

  13. club penguin using Firefox 3.0.10 on Windows XP | May 22, 2009 at 11:50 pm | Permalink

    I was extremely disappointed in this new DAS keyboard when I got it home from Micro Center. It is very light, extremely flexible, not solid at all, very flimsy, the keys make a cheap, hollow sound when they bottom out at the end of the keystroke, very poor quality feel to the keyboard alltogether.

{ 1 } Trackback

  1. [...] I’ve blogged about the Das Keyboard 2 before. I loved it. Unfortunately, however, my daughter stepped on it while in the floor (she was playing with it) and broke the space bar fairly bad. I tried my best to get it repaired, but nothing succeeded. So, for several months, I was without my glorious Das Keyboard, and was stuck with those crappy, squishy, HP multimedia keyboards. [...]

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