Massdrop ALT Mechanical Keyboardsearch
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Massdrop ALT Mechanical Keyboard

Massdrop ALT Mechanical Keyboard

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(26 reviews)
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Stickied
Hey Friends,
Very excited for the launch of the ALT to followup the CTRL launch. 65% keyboards have always been one of my favorite form factors. It allows me to take advantage of the smaller footprint on a compact keyboard and still give me to easily access the arrow cluster and navigation cluster which I use daily - from spreadsheets to video games.
The ALT will ship with the same features that made the CTRL awesome - the firmware will be based on QMK and we will be adding it to our keyboard configurator for easy reprogramming. The same RGB lighting and customization. The keyboard also has dual USB C connections that functions as an USB hub and the PCB will ship with Kaihua hotswap sockets to allow for easy switch swapping.
This keyboard is another step in our eventual goal to make custom keyboard design more accessible to the community. We will continue to work on this line and add more offerings in the future - for example a matching numpad - since there were a lot of request for those in the CTRL drop.
For community members, this simplifies the experience of owning a custom keyboard, for community designers, this solves the hardest parts of your technical back end. This solution for designers means more projects will make the leap from concept to production, increasing the diversity of designs available to the community at large.
Thanks for your interest and support, none of this would be possible without you and the continued support of the mech keys community at large.
Last, a few administrative notes on this drop: The drop is set to end on May 24th. However, we will be doing a payment capture on April 30 so we can initiate tooling for some of the components in the ALT.
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I honestly don't game often enough to justify it.
YanboWu
Any plans to bring back the high-profile version of this board?
I love this keyboard, and want to buy one, but ... it says dual USB-C connectors. My phone uses USB-C, but my computer uses a normal USB connector. Can I use this with my computer ?
Jolly_Mac
Use converter
there is no way to have a split backspace, right?
If I choose the barebone version can I mount the Cherry Mx Clear switches? thx
emadb
Yes, just make sure your switches are plate mount.
I see here a few comments about the keyboard not being "high-profile", can anyone give me more info about what this means?
ValerI0
High profile keyboard would have a ridge covering the bottom of the keys. See a WASD CODE TKL, for example.
When i first got this keyboard, it is actually disappointing. I switch back to my G pro right away. But after I give this little thing a try for longer period of time, I have to say, this is THE best keyboard I've used. I do recommend paying that extra money for the cherry switches.
is there a video online showing how to swap the switches? I didn't want to break anything and I'd like a visual on how to do this.
Are the Cherry MX Brown 3 or 5-pin?
I'm so stuck on which to buy. The ALT or the CTRL. I'm coming from typing on a planck, and i need more keys!
Kosior
ALT is amazing. I love it
Fijy
lol i ended up getting a ducky and a pok3r rgb. Found out they were both available for preorder.
How difficult is it to program the keys and add macros?
CoreFour1996
VERY. Most confusing process I had to have a programming expert help me. The included instructions were literally defective
Will the high-profile version of this board be available again any time soon?
Wish there was a silver case option and raindrop mode for the lighting. If so I would definitely buy!
I wish this keyboard took the Varmillo va68 approach and maintained a standard size for the right shift keycap. So many great keycap sets aren't compatible with this board, and it's really too bad.
can we expect to see a full size variant of this keyboard in the near future?
does this have access to f1-12 by hitting a function key or any other method
Trihard7
It is programmable but Fn + number keys does provide access to F1 - F12.
Hello, I didn’t own the ALT but I owned the CTRL. Everything’s great for the board and how they keep prices low is by using lower amounts of Aluminium. Having owned the CTRL, the CTRL is actually lighter than my TADA68 (a smaller form factor keyboard). just a PSA on why ALTs are cheap in the market
If I have the CTRL keyboard, can I use the CTRL's keycaps for the ALT as well? Not sure if the keycap profiles are different.
codykala
Yes and No. All keycaps from the CTRL should fit except for RSHIFT. ALT is a 65% keyboard so it requires a shorter RSHIFT than TKL.
Hey guys this is my first mechanical keyboard I just bought. Is this in US keyboard format or a different country. Also would the ducky one 2 mini be a better pick for someone like me new to these mech keyboards? Thanks
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Yeah! Thats actually the exact one I want to get, but it didn't have a choice for Cherry MX Brown switches for the CTRL. Is there anyway I can get the CTRL and put Cherry MX Brown switches in there? Or what would be the next best switch for me for the CTRL as I use my keyboard for gaming and the occasional typing/coding.
Phlooke
The CTRL and ALT keyboards have PCBs with hotswap sockets installed. You can source your own switches and swap them in or buy the barebones version and simply install them. Note that the barebones version will not come with keycaps. The Halo True and Halo Clear options are both tactile, but they will be significantly heavier than MX Browns.
(Edited)
So...I see the bootloader has OS X/Win 10 compatibility, but will I experience issues going back and forth between the two? Will I need to re-flash each time? This will be a pain going back and forth between a work Mac and a personal Windows machine.
hcm004
It depends on the layout you flash. The keyboard will always retain whatever firmware you load onto it. What this means if you are switch back and forth is the modifiers will be a little funky. But you can work around that on the Macbook by changing the modifier keys and using Karabiner.
does this have any kind of rollover?
Amitse
6KRO with toggleable NKRO
jxliu
thanks
Would love to see this in an ISO edition 🤞
does the barebones version come with stabilizers?
myroblyte
Yes
God what an unfortunate time for it to drop. Someone convince me not to return the Z70 that I just ordered and order this ALT. What are some of the glaring issues with this board? I'd like to know.
hxpers
Mine's great!
@Massdrop Does the pcb have holes for PCB Mount switches?
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Would it be cheaper to buy this barebone and order plate mount Mx brown switches clear and install myself? I'm very new to this. I'd greatly appreciate any feedback
Deal breaker. I don't want to have to clip my switches on a hot swap pcb. Weird design choice.
I can't help but think that finding keycap sets with proper heights for this board is especially difficult (as difficult as it is for a 75%, anyway). Otherwise, I love the design, just not the price.
Kujo
Most gmk base kits support 65/75 percent layouts. You also have xda/dsa uniform profile. Harder than tkl, but not difficult.
Jino74
That's awesome that GMK supports it, but for the price, they'd better, tbh. My point is being limited to either xda/DSA or pricey GMK kits is a bit of a downside to 65/75 percent layouts.
Some programs still depend on distinguishing right and left control. Not having a right control is a detriment, and there was room to put it in.
Void2258
Program right Ctrl to be FN + left Ctrl? Or, depending on your use case, you could replace left with right? That's the joy of having QMK programmability. Edit: Actually, FN + right Alt would be a nice compromise.
I really like the aethestics and size/layout of this keyboard. Currently I am using the plum84 with the 35g electro capacitive switches. Which option for this keyboard suits me best if I want something as lightweight and quiet as possible?
One reviewer states that USB-C to USB-C cables do not work with this keyboard. Can MD confirm?
Dang, I have been waiting for this Re-Drop for a long time now, but it's just 1 week too late. I already jumped on the KBD67 (In Navy Blue with brass plate) from KBDFans instead.
Is this the PCB with a spaghetti mess of the traces?
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Ugh yuck. I'd rather wait for Novelkeys to drop his rumoured 65% board
Nster101
The KBD67 from KBDFans looks awesome if you want to check that one out as well. It has the option for hot swap sockets and looks pretty awesome. I got one in Navy Blue with a brass plate.