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Drop ALT Re Review: One Year Later


ah the drop alt keyboard formerly mass drop alt if you’re watching old videos I still get a lot of questions about this even now most people just want to know if I’m still using it and the answer is yes I absolutely am it’s a funny one too because the initial review video I did on that board over a year ago got a little bit of hate and every video I did after where I was doing some work to the board got a little bit of hate to like it wasn’t worth putting money into so today we’ll address some of the things that you might see if you’re watching or reading older reviews on that board will talk about the revisions that they’ve made to that up to this point we’ll also talk about how it stacks up value wise and the current keyboard market and I’ll give you my honest opinion what I feel about it after having used it as a daily driver for over a year you ready let’s go I want to thank Skillshare for sponsoring today’s video true story when I started YouTube I’d never used a video editing software I’ve never presented on camera before I’ve never even used a DSLR camera the decision to pursue something creative can often feel like you have no idea where to start that’s where Skillshare comes in Skillshare is an

online learning community with thousands of classes for both established creatives and people who are maybe a bit curious about pursuing something creative for the first time Caleb Babcock in Niles gray the guys from a moment have an excellent class on creating cinematic video with your phone being able to convey information like that to an aspiring creative can help someone start to explore that path immediately without being overwhelmed by gear choices or financial commitment those are two of the biggest early stopping blocks for aspiring video creators and that’s just one example one piece of valuable content from a huge resource of classes that covers whatever your creative outlet may be plus ways to navigate the business of being a profitable creative even maintaining your mental health and managing your productivity new classes get added all the time and membership is less than ten bucks a month with an annual subscription the first thousand people to click the link in the description will get a two-month free trial for premium memberships you can start to explore a new creative avenue or find ways to streamline your existing process with Skillshare yelp write P you’re

watching Batsy tech and today we are revisiting the Alt key board from drop so the old is a 65% layout and in its original low profile form factor currently retails for a hundred and eighty bucks that includes a set of key caps unique to the OL and gray and charcoal backlit PBT and your choice of switches with some switches costing a twenty dollar premium there’s also a high profile option for a hundred and ninety dollars it’s a bare-bones option so no switches and no key caps these are traditionally only been available in their space gray color so love silver you may find some mito lazer variants floating around out there in the used market these are also now available for pre-order in black as well and if you can’t go all the way down to a 65 if you still need your function keys they do offer the control in a tkl layout also available in low and high profile all right all that out of the way I actually have used this board for the past year here in – three months maybe on one desk or the other pretty much every day now drop has made some quality adjustments and revisions to this thing up till now so let’s go back and address some of the stuff I saw when I first saw this board that made me a little nervous number one poor power

handling or the board failing to power up I have never had this issue this board has never once failed to power up for me nor has the control nor my more recent all high profile I did learn that if the LEDs seem dim to you especially after purchasing a custom coil cable you may be able to work around that if your motherboard has variable power USB ports I called like DAC up on gigabyte boards you can actually increase the power output of the USB ports just bump it up a little in your BIOS and the board can get crazy bright does it hurt it in any way I can tell you I’ve been running this one for months on end just like this with no issues number two poor stabilizers for the price point this is actually a legitimate complaint they are in fact pretty poor pretty good candidates for replacement you can’t just clip and lube the existing stabs but I would just grab some cherry OEM plate mount snapping screw ins don’t work so don’t bother and yes on a hot swap board you do not have to completely disassemble the board to get the stabs out that’s my bad I’ll take that out but for everyone who said it wasn’t necessary to band-aid mod the PCB because they don’t make contact yes they do despite being plate mount they definitely do make contact in both old variants and you do have to disassemble the board to get to the PCB easily

whether or not you think Van de Monte is worth it or not number three poor diffusion on the lighting yep it’s pretty legit you can definitely tell exactly where the LEDs are I am in the process right now of doing my first real custom board so will be interesting to see how diffused the lighting looks on the KBD 75 versus this alt board number four proprietary version of Q and K firmware yeah that’s true it makes it a much more involved process to do stuff like change colors or layout versus a dedicated peripheral software but on the huge plus side nobuggy dedicated peripheral control software it’s not impossible you’ll have to do some command line stuff it actually does support just straight-up qmk but it’s going to be more involved as you’re gonna lose that graphic interface and learning qmk is kind of like a skill set all its own number five this one absolutely kills me keyboard Susi’s get bent out of shape because the traces on the PCB are not arranged in an intelligent and artful manner like once some of these as a user you never see this and I don’t believe it affects the performance of the board in any meaningful way for comparison here are the traces on the KBD 75 PCB I get it it looks nice but I don’t get it number 6 finicky hot swap sockets nah I’ve never had this issue not one time these are from kale if I’ve ever had an issue with

these sockets it’s been user error because a pin on the switch wasn’t straight and I’ve been it flat against the bottom of the switch when I plugged it in hot swap is a killer feature it’s what made me embrace this board as time went on and it definitely pulled me a little further into the keyboard world my big complaint here is that these are geared for plate mount switches so that extra stabilizer pins aren’t supported by the PCB and they have to be removed from PCB mount switches it’s not even clipping the stems like the actual work that bothers me it’s permanently altering the switches in a way to where I wouldn’t be able or wouldn’t want to install them directly on another PCB at a later time this is the same thing you see in the glorious GM MK and oddly you can get full 5 pin support in like a really cheap GK 61 board or any board that uses that PCB variant like the matrix of leads to tell me that the typing experience like the sound and the feel is the same on a GK 61 as it is on this board nah number 7 weak magnetic feet that fall off all the time this was true not anymore the magnets have been updated the control I had with the newer magnets had no issue if you go high profile it’s not an issue at all because there are no feet you just get the angle that you get I got to say to the high profile weighs a ton I love this thing number 8 is case pink

I’ve not had this issue on my low profile all but I did have this issue on the new version of the control that showed up here with the halo throughs on it even now that I have v2 silence and my low profile no issue and those definitely have some spring noise to them I also don’t get a lot of it on the high profile at all let’s listen to some box Jade’s and then we’ll listen to some lubed creams from novelties c’mon those creams are legit the housings and the stems are lubed at 3204 and it’s GPL 105 on the springs and the surrounding stems in that sound test our stock only the space bar has been clipped in loop I really wanted to save the space bar for the video but out of habit I just automatically do them as soon as they show up I got to say too that the caps don’t necessarily fit super snug on all switch times box switches are really snug but like these eyelets I can just pull these off by hand it’s not like they fall off the board or anything all right value conversation now this is where I think things get really interesting we’re gonna call it a price point of a hundred and eighty dollars so for a hundred and eighty dollars you can get this or you can get something like a huntsman Elite or a Corsair k95 which is almost criminal for boards like that yeah they’re full-sized yes they have features

but the switch selection is very limited in whatever switch you pick that’s it that’s the one you get I can’t with a clear conscience recommend that people do that the GM MK 60 or TKO bare-bones will get you hot swap and it’s only sixty bucks it’s a good level you still give pretty poor stabs and you don’t get USBC for now but I suspect the revisions getting pretty close they’re a GK 61 is a really viable option as an entry-level as well one of the very few that supports five pin switches natively it’s plastic but it’s lightweight and portable if you really just never see yourself using hot-swap you just want a production board haiti’s is a good 65% still my recommendation for a production 65 I don’t often recommend the one to SF because ducky pulled a super dick move with their proprietary sized right shift key it’s really limiting when you’re looking for aftermarket key caps so what else does that leave currently that’s not a rhetorical question let me know in the comments if you know of something that I’m missing here in terms of a production board with hot-swap and I’ll see if I can get a few together for around the video but otherwise we go all the way to the other end of the spectrum and we look at full custom boards and that’s the comment I get more often than any why are you putting all that money into the alt when you could just go full custom okay cool I get it let’s go to Cavey defense because that’s where everybody starts right a tofu 65 kit is a hundred and seventy-five bucks that’s a bare-bones price no switches no caps no hot swap either and no backlighting which is a deal-breaker for some people you do get accent RGB and you do get cherry stabs but I don’t think that holds up

value eyes I personally picked the kbd 75 v2 kit 160 bucks and I added a brass weight for $30 no hot swap no stabs no backlight no switches no caps a hundred and ninety bucks plus I had to buy a soldering iron if you want to really get technical or you can get an aluminum case hot suave accent or gb per key or GB to USB seaports kind of Q and K compatible one of the best key cap sets out there and switches for a hundred and eighty dollars I don’t get it I fail to understand how this is a bad way to go even the hundred and ninety dollar bare-bones high profile all will still give you a sick case and a perky RGB hot swap PCB when you start looking at high-end customs you’re basically talking three hundred dollars to get in and it goes up from there and they’re normally on group by with some of those boards taking a year or more to come to market and it’s a different class of board because hot swap becomes more rare backlit is exceedingly rare the cases though are generally like works of art how important backlighting is to you is a personal choice but it’s also affected by your choice of switches and key caps some switches restrict more light than others and obviously all key caps are backlit but some combos of switch and key cap will make backlighting close to but not completely irrelevant so a full year later do I still recommend the whole yes probably more now than I did a year ago actually after I’ve

experienced a ton of different keyboards what I recommend paying $80 more for something like the alt versus something like a ducky one too many yes I absolutely would and none of that has anything to do with my affiliate deal with drop first off arrow keys and second if you have any interest at all and getting into keyboards lubing switches filming switches modding stabs even noise dampening stuff like silver thane you can basically learn to do everything you would do on a full custom except solder and I mean you throw a nice gmk set on that high profile all come on this is gonna sound a little sales pitchy to but I have to point out the drop allows returns now they didn’t do that a year ago I hope I sincerely hope that I build out that KBD 75 and it blows my mind I really want to come back with a video and go oh I totally get it now I really hope that happens but I’m pretty skeptical for now the old gets my vote and a strong recommendation any questions hit me in the comments were dropped by the discord and that’s it for this time I’m bright P thanks so much for watching don’t forget to hit that like button hit that sub button and until next time stay up

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