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Have you done any mods? I was thinking about scavenging a trackpoint module out of an IBM and trying to make it work in my Poker.
Hey we're going to update the copy to clarify here, but you are right that this is the Sprintek SK8702 at it's core. Though it's got a couple upgrades such as a custom CNC machined casing by TEX that caused the price increase.
I am impressed by the casing and the added stick height! Do you have any new dimensions with the added height? (from bottom of module to tip with/without nub)
Hey, I'm out of the office today (sick. lame.), but I'll either get someone to measure it or measure it myself before this drop ends.
If I had to guess purely from the memory of holding it, somewhere around 1.5 inches? I'll get a real measurement for you soon.
Edit: I measure it from bottom of module to tip without nib at ~15/16 inch and with the nib at ~1 1/8 inch
If I can find the calipers I'll get something more precise, but hopefully that'll help for now
Thanks! Can you also get a measurement of the shaft diameter? (When you're feeling better, of course.)
Found the calipers!
Height from bottom of module w/ nib: 1.074 in
Height from bottom of module w/o nib: 0.971 in
Nib diameter: 0.275 in
Shaft diameter: 0.119 in
Base chip: ~1 in^2
About all I can think to measure, but let me know if there's anything else.
Is there any chance of Massdrop sourcing and providing the recommended connector or an equivalent in this drop (I mean connector pair M/F with flying leads for us to solder)?
Also does the stick deflect in use or is it pressure sensitive?
This is all pretty new to me, but if I understand your question right I believe it's pressure sensitive. I'll try to summon someone with more knowledge on the topic though to clear it up.
I'll also ask about the connector, but I suspect it was left off due to everyone having a unique need/plan for what kind of connection to use.
Usually something like this is a tension sensor (often piezoelectric) rather than directly pressure sensitive.
Also, as an FYI, the Yoda uses a PS/2 to USB converter chip which then connects to a USB hub. If you were able to connect the trackpoint directly to a PC it's likely possible to interface with it using the Lenovo Trackpoint driver (datasheet mentions partial compatibility).
Another option would be to connect it to a microcontroller and do the PS/2 to USB conversion yourself.
Summoning is complete.
Thank you HaaTa, I was wondering if it was similar in feel to an actual IBM/Lenovo Trackpoint, or more "joysticky".
I'd say it definitely feels more like a trackpoint. Though more like the earlier (and taller) IBM Trackpoints.
What I dont think anyone is realizing is "will this work with x" is not the question to ask. This will work with nothing other than the Tex Yoda natively. To "make this work with x" will be an entirely home brewed, DIY in its truest sense, project. You have to have the electrical and technological knowledge of the software and hardware that this comes with, as well as that of other boards and wires you may have to use. It would have been useful to sell the usb hub board that is on the bottom of the Yoda with this, or at least another micro controller that could handle the PS/2 conversion to usb (as @HaaTa said earlier). Much more information is needed than supplied, if you don't go out and figure it out. I wanted to believe that I would buy this, but you almost need an Electrical Engineering degree to understand and do this properly. I caution those of you who think you can add this to X, Y, or Z keyboard, you probably will not be able to. To make it work like the Yoda, you would need to DRILL a hole through the keybord's main board, tap into the power(at the right voltage, solder stick to connectors, and program a micro controller to convert the signal.
To be a fully functional trackpoint the only thing needed is a connector/wires soldered to the pads and a couple of switches added (all needed info is right there). This is PS/2 out of the box, so there is no NEED to convert to USB. So to use this as a standalone trackpoint only average soldering skill is required.
Adapting a keyboard for this to fit in is a totally different story.
Not sure how far he got. But hasu (of TMK fame) did get a few samples of these and might be adding support to his microcontroller code.
At some point I'll probably add support to my firmware (what the Infinity keyboard uses).
But yes, this is not a simple mod. However, this is not the most complicated project either. If there wasn't a controller chip on the trackpoint this would definitely need an EE degree (or serious dedication).
There's also the mechanical part of the problem, but unless trackpoints become common in fullsize keyboards this will always be a problem.
@HaaTa do you have to use Cherry mx switches for R,L,M ? or could you use traditional microswitches and just solder C and NO pins?
i have moded trackpads from lenovo|ibm and have a tex yoda. the tex yoda is already the perfect height if you drill a hole in your keyboard PCB and shove this pcb underneath the keyboard pcb with the steam going trhu said hole on the keyboard pcb. It will be almost as flush as the keys. and the machining is very well done.
that is fine if you are doing that (and drilling the keycaps)... but if you are doing something smarter, say, adding a touch pad to a microsoft natural keyboard, then the one scavenged from a laptop (or the module linked on the 1st post) makes much more sense.
I honestly do not see how this can be a good choice for non tex yoda owners, as its only advantage is to be as tall as mechanical keys when you use it between mechanical keys... and if you are a tex yoda owner, well, you don't need this.
Nah, you can use any switches you want.
@HaaTa ` If you were able to connect the trackpoint directly to a PC ` -- can you please elaborate on the directly part?
I see two easy options:
1) do a translation of ps/2 to usb (passively) and connect to a usb male header which will then plug into the PC directly. Wonder how that will be interpreted by the PC.
2) I could use an active ps/2 to usb connector (for the conversion), and would it then show up as a USB HID?
Trying to make a simple mod to get the trackpoint picked up by the PC (linux).