Building a Keyboard: Epomaker GK68XS, Akko Keycaps, Gateron Switches 13

Building a Keyboard: Epomaker GK68XS, Akko Keycaps, Gateron Switches

Epomaker GK68XS: Packaging »

Introduction

Epomaker Logo

Right after the review of the Epomaker GK96LS was done, the Epomaker company representative mentioned that it supports a lot of different switch options, including some that are not familiar to most people. This is a big selling point of the keyboard, with the hot-swappable switches presented as user-customizable switch choices on a per-key basis. The hot-swap socket has become popular with many brands recently, several of which we have reviewed on TechPowerUp over the course of the last few months. However, there remained the issue that the feature was still a post-purchase modification as most such implementations did not allow for the purchase of a keyboard case and the PCB itself. So when Epomaker asked whether I'd be interested in checking out some of these newer, uncommon switch offerings, I decided to do a keyboard build to explore the process. Thanks again to the company for helping with the parts used in this article!


The original idea was to do a quick-look article of the switches themselves. However, I felt there was more I could do here. After all, they had even offered to send a blank keyboard case to use and test the switches. The entire world of custom keyboards has never been more accessible than it is now with companies putting out kits that are easier to put together than a PC. Indeed, the hot-swap switch socket is a revelation because it doesn't take any solder work to where I hope this article will be part of a series that explores different options beyond boxed products. Sure, there are still plenty of custom mods even here for those wanting to take the extra steps, be it in modded stabilizers, lubing switches with lube stations, and even a Frankenstein's Monster keyboard that mixes and matches components from various switches. For now, however, let's go with one of the simplest and approachable ways—using a few different switches paired with an Epomaker case and Akko keycap set, and let me know if this is something that interests you further.
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