keyplus controller update
It has been a while but I’ve finally got my next batch of controllers ready. The main change in this version is a new USB Type-C connector. This connector has a couple advantages over the one I used previously:
- It doesn’t have any SMD pads hidden underneath the connector. This makes it easier to inspect visually, and it is possible to handle solder if you really want to.
- It is easier to route without using fine tolerances.
- It extends about the same distance above and below the board. So it is good for low profile builds.
For more information about the controller check out my previous post.
Besides bug fixes, a lot of the work I’ve been doing on the firmware has been improving the python code for interfacing with keyplus keyboards. One new feature is the ability to read the current layout that is loaded on your keyboard. I haven’t got any UI to take advantage of this feature yet, but I want to start working a GUI now so that you will be able edit your layouts without any config file (in some cases you still might need/want one though).
I’ve also cleaned up the python API making it easier to use in scripts to send commands to your keyboard from the host PC. With the new API you should be able to do stuff like this:
Check out the change log on github for a more comprehensive list of what has been changed/added.
This was my first time getting PCBs assembled at the factory, so I was a little bit nervous that something would go wrong, but everything seems to have turned out okay. I put my order in right before Chinese New Year, so it took a bit longer than I expected though.
Automated PCB assembly definitely beats hand assembling boards by placing hundreds of components. However, for prototypes, hand assembly still has some advantages since it can save time and money, so I think I’ll still be hand assembling plenty of boards in the future.
Controllers for sale
I hope to have some controllers ready to sell next week. There a couple of things I wanted to go over with the firmware before I’m ready to ship them, and I’m waiting on the 2.0mm pin headers to go with the controllers. I’m planning to sell them for 16USD. If everything goes well, I’d hope to get this price lower in the future with larger orders.