The original Preonic keyboard was praised for its build quality, compact form factor, and intuitive layout—and the new version is no different. However, this time around we're offering the CNC-aluminum case in your choice of five colors, including the striking new purple colorway. What's more, this version has a new ARM STM32 processor that provides more power to the PCBA and the USB-C connector. Another upgrade? The new Preonic has Kaihua hotswap sockets (which support grid 2x1u, 1x2u, and 2x2u bottom row layouts) so you can swap out your switches whenever you want without even picking up a soldering iron. Plus, If you’re new to keyboard kits, the compact Preonic is a great way to learn about keyboard programming.
Note: The base price excludes both switches and keycaps.
The Theory Behind It
Designed by Jack Humbert at OLKB, the Preonic is made for efficiency. The layout is very similar to the Planck (also by OLKB), but with an additional row for easier access to numbers, function keys, or whatever else you’d like to program. The smaller space bar makes it easier to use your thumbs to access additional layers via the “raise” and “lower” keys. And even with the extra row, the keyboard still maintains a very compact form factor for portability.
New Plate, No Problem
Now we’re offering an MX plate which supports the 1 x 2u, 2 x 2u, and Grid layout. The plate design even allows you to swap out switches on the fly. Thanks to the Kaihua hotswap sockets, replacing switches is completely plug and play, so you never need to worry about tedious soldering—not to mention all layouts are fully supported. Made from 304 stainless steel, the plate is heavy and stable, with five holes for mounting the included M2 screws.
Beeps & Boops
Also notable, the PCBA is outfitted with a small speaker, which is driven by the MCU. In the default firmware this will make a few different noises—like a short series of beeps on startup, notifications when you put the board into Device Firmware Upgrade (DFU) mode, plus noises when you change the default layout to prevent mishaps when typing quickly. The speaker can be disabled by a keyboard shortcut or by flashing new firmware. This version also has pre-populated bottom-lit LEDs and allows for expanded functionality with footprints for things like DIP switches, power adapter plugs, Qwiic connectors, and more. For more information, check out the QMK documentation and the specs section below.
Case Color Options
Build Guide made by a community member
Designed by OLKB
Produced by Drop
Anodized CNC aluminum case
ARM STM32 processor
Reprogrammable Matias / MX-compatible PCBA
304 brushed stainless steel top plate
Dimensions, assembled: 9.1 x 4.1 x 0.9 in (23.1 x 10.4 x 2.3 cm)
9x bottom-lit RGB LEDs: RGB LEDs that glow through the bottom of the case (acrylic cases would be preferred)
Cherry MX and Matias/ALPS switch footprints
PCBA Footprints for Extra Capability
Footprint for a 4-channel DIP switch (210-4ES): A DIP switch is just 4 little switches combined into one (the Poker has one for settings)
Footprint for a 2-pin JST-PH (PRT-09749): This is a power adapter plug for wireless builds (Bluetooth, etc.)
Footprint for a 4-pin Qwiic (I2C) JST-SH connector (PRT-14417): Makes it compatible with Sparkfun’s Qwiic system
Footprint for a clickable (worked into the matrix) rotary encoder (COM-09117, et al): This will spin and click to allow even more customization
Footprint for a 6-pin male/female header (PRT-09015 or PRT-12590, et al): For development and DIY projects
Included (Base Price)
CNC case (anodized if aluminum)
USB-A to C cable
5x M2x14 mm Phillips flathead machine screws
5x M2x3.5 mm brass spacers
5x M2 nuts
4x rubber bumpons
1x socket wrench tool
Images are for illustration purposes only. The color(s) of the final product may differ slightly.
RETURNS—NO QUESTIONS ASKED
We get it. Sometimes what you ordered just doesn’t work out. If that’s the case for you, don’t fret! All customers (both US and international) may return this item in new, unused condition within 30 days of delivery.
Estimated ship date is Dec 14, 2021 PT.
Payment will be collected at checkout. Cancellations are accepted up to 2 hours after checkout for in-stock items, or up until pre-order ships.