Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

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Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby azog » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:10 am

Are the keyboards on the Mega ST the same as the Mega STe (and TT)?

Did try to search, but really didn't find a concrete answer. The pinouts here (http://www.allpinouts.org/index.php/Key ... _MEGA_ST(e)/TT) suggest they are the same, but I would rather know for certain if they are indeed interchangeable.

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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby joska » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:11 am

Yes, exactly the same.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Atharri » Sat Nov 24, 2012 9:30 am

azog wrote:Are the keyboards on the Mega ST the same as the Mega STe (and TT)?

Did try to search, but really didn't find a concrete answer. The pinouts here (http://www.allpinouts.org/index.php/Key ... _MEGA_ST(e)/TT) suggest they are the same, but I would rather know for certain if they are indeed interchangeable.

I have for years a Mega STE with a Mega keyboard there's no problem with that, it'll probably work on the TT too.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Dark Willow » Sat Nov 24, 2012 10:44 am

AFAIK they are totally interchangeable. The only difference is in the quality - TT / Mega STe keyboards have better tactile feedback than Mega ST ones.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby MRAtari » Sat Nov 24, 2012 12:12 pm

the Mega ST keyboard is totally indestructable and can be repaired whatever the fault, key switches that can be replaced individually, proper PCB (which is why it's so heavy)

the mega ste/tt types are terrible and fail very easily usually the mylar or the key stems snap as they are so flimsy, terrible terrible quality

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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby azog » Sat Nov 24, 2012 5:55 pm

Thanks for the replies, all. I saw a Mega2 on ebay w/o a keyboard, and since I have a Mega STE, I wondered if it was worth a shot to try to bid (I didn't).

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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby dhedberg » Sat Nov 24, 2012 6:16 pm

I have both a TT and a Mega ST keyboard for my Falcon030. I can switch between them without any problem. I agree with what have been said, the Mega ST keyboards are of very high quality, while the Mega STe keyboards are more likely to break (I have had to repair tracks on the membrane on mine). The Mega STe/TT keyboards are a lot nicer to type on though.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby 1st1 » Sun Nov 25, 2012 9:32 am

All these keyboards from 520, 1040, Mega-St, M-STE/TT and Falcon share the same keyboard processor and key layout. So they are totally interchangeable between these machines. The best quality keyboard is the one from Mega ST as it is the only one of them using Cherry keyboard modules.

Anyhow, the keyboards of 520/1040/M-STE/TT-Falcon are improveable for the feeling/feedback while writing. Inside they have little round rubber contacts which are responsible for the experience. Those in the Ataris do not have a pressure point (?) which you can feel while pressing the key. There are such rubber contacts which have that. 20 years ago I exchanged those in my 520ST keyboard to better ones from a PC keyboard. But I think it's easyer to get those rubbers for the 520/1040/falcon instead of M-STE/TT - these ones look quite strange and hard to get.

Anyhow, the best thing you might can do is getting an interface for PC keyboard and then use a modern PS/2 keyboard.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Guest » Sun Nov 25, 2012 5:24 pm

i remember seeing kits even now on ebay to change the feel of the keyboard
of rubber contactors made from neoprene

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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby joska » Mon Nov 26, 2012 8:50 am

MRAtari wrote:the Mega ST keyboard is totally indestructable and can be repaired whatever the fault, key switches that can be replaced individually, proper PCB (which is why it's so heavy)

the mega ste/tt types are terrible and fail very easily usually the mylar or the key stems snap as they are so flimsy, terrible terrible quality


Excellent build quality is worthless when the keyboard is awful to type on. The Mega keyboard is even worse than a standard ST-keyboard. The MSTE/TT keyboard OTOH is excellent. I've had five of these over the years and none of them has failed, they're really good to type on.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby joska » Mon Nov 26, 2012 8:51 am

1st1 wrote:Anyhow, the best thing you might can do is getting an interface for PC keyboard and then use a modern PS/2 keyboard.


Why would you switch to a keyboard with the wrong layout? The OP is lucky enough to have a MSTE keyboard, that's by far the best option for any ST/Falcon :)
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby 1st1 » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:34 am

joska wrote:
1st1 wrote:Anyhow, the best thing you might can do is getting an interface for PC keyboard and then use a modern PS/2 keyboard.


Why would you switch to a keyboard with the wrong layout? The OP is lucky enough to have a MSTE keyboard, that's by far the best option for any ST/Falcon :)


That's a point what we can discuss endless.... If one uses PCs regulary, and only sometimes an Atari, or returns back to Atari after a long absence, a PC keyboard is a good thing as one is no more familary with the nonstandard Atari layout. And there are very good PC keyboards, technology has advanced since 25 years back when the Mega ST keyboard has been developed.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby joska » Mon Nov 26, 2012 9:51 am

1st1 wrote:That's a point what we can discuss endless.... If one uses PCs regulary, and only sometimes an Atari, or returns back to Atari after a long absence, a PC keyboard is a good thing as one is no more familary with the nonstandard Atari layout.


What's a "nonstandard Atari layout"?

I think that if you're a casual Atari user, you will find it even more difficult to use a PC keyboard as you can't even rely on what's printed on the keycaps. Where's the "undo"- and "help"-buttons? What does the F11, F12, PrtScn, Scroll Lock and Pause-buttons do? The Win-keys? AltGr? NumLock?

Yes, I have used PC keyboards with my Ataris. Actually, I think I've used PC keyboards for more years than I've used Atari keyboards. But now I'm back to the "nonstandard Atari layout" (TT keybard, Stacy keyboard) and I'm really pleased with it. Switching between layouts is no problem at all even though I use a PC all day at work and probably spend atleast 10 times as much time with this layout than the Atari.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby 1st1 » Mon Nov 26, 2012 10:26 am

What's a "nonstandard Atari layout"?



The ATARI keyboard layout is not industry standard. Industry standard is the 102 key PC keyboard, also like AMIGA , Acorn Archimedes and Apple computers are using (almost) it.

For example the position of the Caps Lock and the Control key on the Atari keyboard is ugly. I already thgought about the idea to swap them.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby joska » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:17 am

1st1 wrote:The ATARI keyboard layout is not industry standard. Industry standard is the 102 key PC keyboard, also like AMIGA , Acorn Archimedes and Apple computers are using (almost) it.


"Almost" is no standard ;) Compare an Amiga 500 keyboard to a PC keyboard, there's about as many differences as between an ST and PC keyboard.

In fact, what you call "standard" applies only to a majority of PC's, and even there it's not very standard. Especially on laptops, e.g my own Lenovo has moved the Control-key to an even more awkward position (like on the Mac keyboards). I use four different PC keyboards on a daily basis and none of them has the same layout.

1st1 wrote:For example the position of the Caps Lock and the Control key on the Atari keyboard is ugly.


Like on the Archimedes and Amiga you mean ;) I prefer this location of the Control key. On most PC keyboards it's located in the bottom left and right corners, which means you have to twist your wrist or finger to reach it. It's an ergonomic disaster. That's why a lot of people prefer to switch the Control and CapsLock keys.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby wongck » Mon Nov 26, 2012 11:21 am

I got a standard 102 keys small-footprint keyboard for my PC....
but it is like a notebook keyboard and I cannot use it properly because it is not standard layout !!!
LOL.... the standard means key codes and # of keys ?
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby 1st1 » Tue Nov 27, 2012 7:52 pm

You know what I mean.

Image
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Dark Willow » Tue Nov 27, 2012 8:58 pm

I use Atari (TT) and PC (IBM laptop) keyboards in more or less equal measure. I'd say that the Atari layout is better in terms of layout, especially for control key, with the caps lock key being nicely out of the way. I also like having brackets repeated over the numeric pad.

However, the feel of the Atari keyboard is much more "mushy" (even with the TT key'b) than that of the classic ThinkPad keyboard, which is the 2nd best I've ever used (the best was another IBM keyboard - an earlier ThinkPad derived one supplied with the small form factor IBM PS2/E - very good system all round).

So it's horses for courses really, whatever works for you is best for you.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Guest » Tue Nov 27, 2012 10:35 pm

simulate it in proteus vsm
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby wongck » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:22 am

Dark Willow wrote:So it's horses for courses really, whatever works for you is best for you.


Exactly.
You got to get use to it, that's about it.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby DarkLord » Wed Nov 28, 2012 12:32 am

I use one of the old IBM "tank" keyboards on my main Kubuntu box. One of those that
weighs more than most computers these days, and goes "klackety-klack" when you
type. :) I love it. Too bad they don't make them any more.

I think the original Mega ST's keyboard, as well as the keyboard on the STacy are
the best Atari ones, followed by the Mega STe and TT. Note that I do like any ST
with the TT-Touch upgrade installed though. Very improved feel.

IMHO, most modern PC keyboards aren't worth space as a door stop. :lol:
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Ato » Wed Nov 28, 2012 11:25 pm

DarkLord wrote:I think the original Mega ST's keyboard


Huh, you've been busted! You like 'em old Mega ST keyboards because they make a clickety-clack sound as well, right? :lol:

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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby DarkLord » Thu Nov 29, 2012 2:07 am

Well, they don't "klack" as much as those IBM keyboards do, but yeah, pretty much. :)

The STacy keyboard is a surprisingly good one as well.
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Re: Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby Methanoid » Fri Mar 22, 2013 3:08 pm

1st1 wrote:All these keyboards from 520, 1040, Mega-St, M-STE/TT and Falcon share the same keyboard processor and key layout. So they are totally interchangeable between these machines. The best quality keyboard is the one from Mega ST as it is the only one of them using Cherry keyboard modules.


Doesnt make sense.. the MegaSTE keyboard has smaller function kets than standard ST... or can you swap the internals and just keep the Function keys from the MegaSTE? Ask as I may source a German or French machine and want a UK keyboard layout

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Are Mega keyboards interchangeable?

Postby ToasTuk » Fri Mar 22, 2013 6:50 pm

The processor chip is the same but the circuit board on the mega st and internal keyboards are of a solid pcb type and each are different sizes s cannot be swapped, the mega ste and tt are a flexible plastic material (Mylar), so there are 3 different circuits here that cannot be swapped.

I know the keys on the mega st and on the internal keyboards differ underneath so cannot be interchanged, as do the tt/mega ste ones again, not sure if the tt and mega ste are interchangeable with each other, so there are 3 different key types maybe 4 which cannot be swapped either.

The layout (pattern) differs in different countries. I.e German 'azerty' layout and the English 'qwerty' layout but these layouts are the same through the range of boards.
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