KeyboardIO Atreus (Mechanical Keyboard)

The KeyboardIO Atreus is my sole keyboard for work and typing.

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The MIGHTY Atreus!

This keyboard has become one of the few tools that I leave home without.

There are a few features of this keyboard that make me a true believer...to the point that I haven't used a built-in Apple Keyboard on my MacBook in over 2 years.

What are these undeniable attributes that make the KeyboardIO Atreus my go to keyboard?

  • Form Factor. The Atreus is a 40% keyboard. That means it doesn't have a keypad, a function row or a number row. In fact, if you look closely, you'll see that the space key is the same size as every other key.
  • Programmability. The Atreus is fully programmable. It uses Kaleidoscope, an open source firmware for keyboards. Once the keyboard is plugged in and the GUI for configuring a layout is installed (Chrysalis), it's just a matter of deciding what path you take towards making the Atreus your keyboard.
  • It's Mechanical. There's something about the "clickity-clack" of a keyboard that is undeniably satisfying to me. Beyond the immediate feedback (this is a USB-C keyboard, no bluetooth) between typing and the screen, the sound of a "click" motivates me to keep typing for fear of the silence it leaves behind.
  • Hot Swappable Mechanical Switches. Not everyone likes the "clickity-clack", especially people who aren't the ones typing. The Atreus has hot swappable switches, so you can use those "clickity-clack" switches at home and opt for some quieter switches for when you're out and about or on a trip.
  • Thumbs Are The Workhorse. You may notice that all of the keys that would normally require a reaching pinky (special keys) have been moved to the center of the keyboard. This allows a user to use those big meat bags (your thumbs) to do a lot of what you used to rely on your pinky to do. It will help significantly reduce the strain on the pinky, reduce the amount of movement overall that your hands have to do to type and increase your overall typing satisfaction. It took me a few days to get used to using my thumbs for my special and modifier keys but once I got used to it I decided I can never go back to a standard keyboard.

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