■ What is HHKB in the first place?
HHKB is a long-selling model of a high-end keyboard whose first machine was released in December 1996. We have evolved key touch and multi-platform support while inheriting the basic concept designed with a reasonable key layout in a compact size for over 20 years. This year, we also received the “Good Design Long Life Design Award”.
The key switch of this product adopts "Capacitance non-contact method" that detects the change of capacitance value when the key is pressed. The standard grade has a key pitch of 19.05mm, a key stroke of 4.0mm, and a pressing pressure of 45g. The Type-S grade, which aims for high-speed keying and quietness, has a special design for the internal structure of the key. Is tuned to 3.8mm.
▲ In the back is HHKB, which I have been overworking for 8 years and 6 months. The body itself is completely discolored, but there is no mechanical damage. It has enough durability to be active in several years.
■ New product lineup includes 3 grades and 16 models
HHKB is available in 3 grades and 16 models. If you are considering purchasing for the first time, you may be wondering what the difference is, but it is clear from the following presentation materials. In short, the standard model “HYBRID” (30,250 yen including tax) that supports Bluetooth connection and keymap changes, the high-level model “HYBRID Type-S” (35,200 yen) that realizes high-speed keying and quietness, Bluetooth connection, There are 3 grades of the cheapest model "Classic" (25,300 yen) with a keymap change function, each combining an English layout, a Japanese layout, an unmarked key, and black and white colors. However, Japanese layout is not prepared for Classic only.
That's why (3 grades x 3 arrays x 2 colors) -2, so 16 models are in lineup.
▲ Keyboard surface.
▲ Use two AA batteries for power. Operating time is about 3 months when using alkaline batteries. Instead of a built-in battery with a long life, a replaceable battery type is adopted.
▲ USB Type-C is used for the terminal connected to the PC with a cable. However, the cable is not included. Considering the depth, we recommend that you choose an L-shaped cable.
As for “improving the multi-pairing function”, up to four units can be connected via Bluetooth, and another unit can be connected via a plus USB cable. The combination key “Fn + Control + 1/2/3/4” can be switched to the connection destination via Bluetooth, and “Fn + Control + 0” can be switched to the connection destination via USB at any time. By the way, you can switch to a device via Bluetooth while connected to a PC with a USB cable. There is no need to unplug the cable when using wireless.
▲ Key assignments can be changed simply by moving the keys from bottom to top. This keymap setting tool also has a firmware update function.
■ Only HHKB gives you the feeling that you and your PC are connected by wire.
For the writer who has been using HHKB for 8 years and 6 months while sometimes cheating on other keyboards, this new product is a supreme keyboard without flattery. All the dissatisfaction felt with the conventional Bluetooth model has been resolved, and we want to use it as the main keyboard in the future. The HHKB is the only way for me to feel like I'm hitting the key and having a wired connection between myself and the PC.
▲ The compact HHKB seems to be a reliable partner at domestic and overseas exhibitions where long texts must be written on-site. The Type-S is a bit noisy for use at the venue, so it's worth it.
■ I would like a derivative model with a keystroke of 1 to 1.5mm to achieve the best key touch.
However, even the authors of such HHKB believers feel uncomfortable at the beginning of use when using them alternately with recent thin mobile notebook PCs. The keystroke of 1 ~ 1.5mm on mobile notebook PC and the keystroke of HHKB 3.8mm / 4mm are too different.
Again, for the author who writes most of the manuscript on a desktop PC connected to HHKB, immutable HHKB is the best partner. However, for users who use a mobile notebook PC as the main machine, the author says that a derivative model that achieves the best key touch while bringing the keystroke to 1 to 1.5 mm equivalent to the mobile notebook PC is also required. think. That may be the role of other manufacturers and brands, but I would like PFU to work on it.