Keychron C1 & C2
The Keychron C1 and Keychron C2 are entry level wired mechanical keyboards. The C2 is a full-sized layout which includes a number pad, while the C1 forgoes the numpad for a more compact footprint.
Purchase Date: 2021-12-21
Review Date: 2022-01-18
I personally used the Keychron C2 with the brown switch (shown above). For those newer to mechanical keyboards (as I am myself), a quick overview of the switch types:
- Red: Light weight, smooth/linear, and more quiet. Popular for gaming.
- Brown: Tactile feed. More noise than red
- Blue: Tactile and Clicky. Noisier, but best feedback on button press.
This mechanical keyboard is well built and sturdy. There are ABS plastic keycaps (not ideal, but perfectly fine for the price-point) included for both Windows and Mac layouts. The included USB cable is high quality, braided, and USB-C on both ends!
Pay close attention when purchasing this keyboard as it comes with 3 switch options (listed above), various backlight options, as well as Hot-Swappable or non swappable keys. I would of course recommend hot-swappable keys, but if you're looking to save money and don't ever want to change your key-caps, then you can skip it. Do note that the ABS keycaps it comes with will fade off well before the rest of the keyboard goes bad though.
As my personal intro to mechanical keyboards, I have no complaints about the design or layout, with one exception. I do not like how the top row, which contains the Function key as well as Media Keys, defaults to the Media Keys and only acts as F keys when the FN key is also pressed. The FN key is only on one side and I personally want to use F12 much more often than Volume up. I still have not adjusted to this, and it may just be me who prefers things this way.
Overall, I think for a Windows or Mac user you could not ask for a better keyboard for the price.
I however am a Linux user, and this keyboard does suffer some functionality issues under Linux. I was pretty shocked to find this out after purchasing, because the last time I had compatibility issues with a keyboard was... never. Someone will inform me I'm sure, but I cannot fathom the reason this keyboard would not work well in Linux out of the box, other than that Keychron must be trying to be a little too fancy behind the scenes.
Keychron pretends to solve this issue by pointing you to a generic Facebook group every chance they have. This is an extremely poor user experience.
If you are looking for an entry level mechanical keyboard, or you aren't really sure what a mechanical keyboard is but know you need a better quality keyboard, I recommend the Keychron C1 or C2 to Windows and Mac users.
For Linux users, while there are workaround to get things working as you'd expect them to work, I cannot recommend this keyboard. While yes, Linux users generally have the knowledge to enable these workarounds, I would recommend supporting a company that also supports your platform. Keychron as a company does not support the Linux community.
My Purchase Price (including tax and shipping): $54.49
View the official Keychron 2 site: https://www.keychron.com/products/keychron-c2-wired-mechanical-keyboard