One of the most important aspect of designing a keycap set is the color selection and subsequent color matching process. Without a solid combination of colors that resonates with the community, a set is almost certainly destined for obscurity, or even at risk of not being manufactured at all. The entire process is also one of the few steps that can really derail a set’s production estimate. In this post I hope to shed some light on the color selection and matching process from start to finish and give plenty of tips along the way to ensure that this step will go as smoothly as possible for anyone that plans on designing a GMK keycap set.
The first, and often overlooked step, is to calibrate your monitor(s)! If you’re like me and not a graphic designer by trade, chances are that you leave your monitor in some kind of gaming mode, or eye comfort mode, and not setup to give the most accurate color reproduction. Another good thing to do is check your work on multiple devices or...
As we publish more articles in the "Mech Keys How-To" series currently ongoing, navigating the various topics and finding previous articles will only become more difficult. This thread will serve as a table of contents to help add some structure to the whole project.
Feel free to also suggest future topics in this thread, as it will surely be easier to identify gaps and opportunities for further exploration when viewing everything as a whole.
Mechanical vs Membrane
Sizes and Layouts of Mechanical Keyboards
Staggered and Ortholinear Layouts
Low-Profile vs High-Profile Keyboard Designs
Build Materials and Other Case Design Considerations
Selecting Your First Mechanical Keyboard (The_Manic_Geek)
How To Design a GMK Keycap Set (GMK_Andy)
Introduction to Mechanical Keyboard Switches (ThereminGoatMK)
The Three Main Types of Switches (ThereminGoatMK)
Switch Marketing Terms...
I don’t like the phrase “it should go without saying”; if that were the case, there would be so many things that never got mentioned, and a lot of things we’d get wrong because of it. This is also true when building your custom mechanical keyboard: there’s a multitude of best practices out there that can, and will, help guide you towards a cleanly built, good-sounding board and an overall positive experience, provided someone *tells* you what those are. Here are some that “should go without saying”, but will be said anyway for those who are new to the hobby, or just getting back in after some time away!
We’ll be focusing on hotswap mechanical keyboards, as those are by and large the most popular kind of PCB for newcomers and veterans alike, though many of our practices will still apply to soldered builds as well. As always, if there’s anything you feel we missed and would like to add, or need further clarification on, feel free to leave a comment below!
Check All Parts Before...