The case and the keymat

Discussion in 'Pyra News' started by EvilDragon, May 29, 2015.

  1. Wally

    Wally I am a banana! Staff Member

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    Can this NOT turn into a keyboard thread? 
     
  2. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    IMPOSSIBLE.
     
  3. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    About the space bar: since the keys are already rectangular to start with (not square like on the Pandora), the space bar has an aspect ratio that is more extreme than on the Pandora. Without countermeasures, it could be very "wobbly", in the sense that if you press it on one side, the other side does not go down.

    So I have the following questions about the wobbliness of the space bar:

    • Will the space bar be wobbly?
    • If not, how is it avoided?
    • If it is wobbly, would it be possible to make it a "dual-action" key, where pressing it on the left side would potentially do something different than pressing it on the right side? The default could/should be that both are just "space", but it would be neat if remappers could magically get an extra key here.
    • If it is wobbly and it is possible to make it a "dual-action" key, would you consider a dual-action space key something that can be used in the default keymap and in the labeling? My guess is no, and I don't want this myself (I want either two separate keys or one single-action key), but some people *cough*comrade*cough*kingu*cough* made a layout proposal that is based on this principle.
     
  4. Bosbeetle

    Bosbeetle Terminally lost

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    Like ED said the gaming buttons will be similar to the normal buttons, and all of them will have plastic inlays.
     
  5. GizmoTheGreen

    GizmoTheGreen Active Member

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    nice to see progress! :D you're all doing awesome work!
     
  6. fusion_power

    fusion_power Advanced Member

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    Wouldn't be thicker=better actualy? Just to be on the safe side.

    I hope the ABXY buttons will be really convex like "real" gaming" buttons because they just do not work well if they are mostly flat like the rest of the keyboard. I recommend to use separate button caps for these 4 buttons so they look like the usual Gamepad buttons like on the classic X Box gamepads for example. There is a reason why these buttons are that much rounded.

    The 2 smaller buttons could be flat and lower actualy so they are not touched accidently.

    Will the surrounding rubber of the mat (the keys, not the inlay) stay transparent or will it be covered black?
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 29, 2015
  7. Grench

    Grench Forum Addict!

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    Nicely done summary of where we're at now. Thank you for that.
     
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  8. ImmaculateChimp

    ImmaculateChimp Member

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    Wouldn't having the gaming keys (ABXY, also hopefully not d-pad as well) made the same as the other, "standard" keyboard keys affect their "action"? While it may not be a problem for the "standard" keyboard keys, the keymat, being a type of silicone would make the keys, in general, sort-of squishy, throughout (also I imagine it would leave the sides of the keys more prone to wear and tear as they travel up and down through their holes in the frame). To make them more rigid (if that can even be done, I'm not sure), would surely affect the feel of the "travel" of the keys and gaming buttons.

    Couldn't the areas of the keymat for the gaming buttons & d-pad be left like in standard gaming controllers, where they are just the little nubs that solid plastic buttons rest on top of (hopefully, with a flange to hold them in place in stead of glue this time)? If the d-pad IS being made that way, wouldn't it just be safer and much more stable to make the ABXY buttons the same way as well? I get that having the ABXY buttons light up, adds to the perceived "wow factor" (for some people); but with the rest of the inside of the Pyra already being lit up, some light is going to leak out from around the buttons, no matter how they are constructed..so why not give the Pyra "normal gaming buttons"?
     
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  9. WizardStan

    WizardStan Mega GP Mania

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    this is how the Pandora does it: The keymat is all squishy plastic, the keycaps of the keyboard part are hardened and the gamekeys (including Dpad) are plastic buttons just put on top of the squishy.Technically the D-pad is glued into place.
     
  10. ImmaculateChimp

    ImmaculateChimp Member

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    I know. I went on to explain that I understood all of this.
     
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  11. levi

    levi Still fresh, damnit!

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    I guess ED is looking at whether it's possible to reduce the number of small parts like those buttons which need to be individually put in the right place, thereby making the Pyra less expensive to produce, and reducing its cost to you.

    As far as I understand it, the only difference between a separate cap on top and a cap built in to the rubber keymat is that a cap acts to spread the pressure, helping ensure the rubber collapses evenly, while with direct access to the keymat there's a danger the button might collapse on one side first, giving a less positive sensation to the gamer's thumb.  But the Pandora keyboard keys didn't do that in practice, so maybe it's not a problem that needs solving, and built-in caps will be fine.  And the gaming buttons are circular, which is harder to make collapse only on one side too.
     
  12. ImmaculateChimp

    ImmaculateChimp Member

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    What about the tiny plastic bits that will now have to be inserted into the top center of each and every single key, including gaming buttons (btw, I'm guessing they will all have to be held in place with yet more glue... :(   )? I'd think that would actually add exponentially to the number of, complexity of, difficulty in placement/orientation of (the "separate plastic button that rests on top of a little nub" can be made so that they will only fit in the holes right-side-up), the possible need to be re-glued after a vigorous gaming session, etc.. If it is going to be the "cost saving argument" seriously, we've been through this with discussion of having a quality audio chip.. It seemed to be fairly unanimous that the people who cared wouldn't mind paying a few extra dollars to get the best we can get. Once again, and quite likely much more important to an even greater number of people (since we're talking about the main gaming controller buttons) "saving a few bucks" is not what people are going to want. Just imagine trying to play a game like Super Mario World or a twitch shump using the kind of "rubbery"(likely silicone) buttons on an older-model calculator. ...and games like Street Fighter? No way that will work out well... Also, when the whole button is made of squishy material it will not depress evenly, the sides (or body) will bow one way or the other (even if only slightly), again likely forcing it to rub against the hole in the frame as it travels up and down through it (leading to wear & tear). This bowing will also affect the stability of the gaming buttons as you press them inward. Imagine taking a spring and trying to compress it without having it end up bowing in any particular direction, it can be done (sometimes) but it requires more time (moving slowly) and attention/effort to do so. That is just not the way that people press gaming buttons.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 30, 2015
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  13. EvilDragon

    EvilDragon Administrator Staff Member

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    The travel distance of a button doesn't have anything to do with the cap though. The 3DS has nearly flat buttons and a very low travel distance and they work fine. I also prefer PSX buttons to the ones on the XBox, personally.
     
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  14. _wb_

    _wb_ Microbe Staff Member

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    Good question! Will the keys have a transparent border around them (which lights up with the backlight on), or not?

    (If there's a border, that also means that some margin has to be respected on the inlay/cap, to avoid labels touching the border)

    Another question: how does this get produced? Are those keycaps somehow printed collectively on a sheet of plastic, sent to a laser cutter to turn them into separate keycaps, which are then glued into the rubber in some automated way? Or how does it work? Would there be a way to remove a keycap and replace it with another one, e.g. to swap the letters Y and Z without cutting up the rubber?
     
  15. fusion_power

    fusion_power Advanced Member

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    I just asked because I don't think it looks that great if the keycaps are surroudned by the transparent rubber that glows. This needs practical testing of course but I would prefer a solution where the buttons are completely black and only the labeling is shining through when lit.
     
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  16. LogicalUnit

    LogicalUnit Still Fresh

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    Hi all, I'm a newbie, really looking forward to the Pyra. :)

    I plan to use my console as an all-in-one emulation platform, especially for N64 games. I was hoping that the 6 face buttons might more closely resemble the N64's controller. The four standard buttons are fine to use as C-buttons, but the remaining two face buttons on the Pyra seem a little small and inaccessable.

    It's probably too late to change the design at this stage, but I just thought I'd mention it.
     
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  17. TrashyMG

    TrashyMG Sarcasm Dispenser Staff Member

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    That has been mentioned numerous times. The issue is that there is no room for the buttons in a n64 like configuration and most people here didn't like the idea of shrinking the down the button size any further.
     
  18. bzar

    bzar A Commando

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    More precisely, there's no room under the case plate. There have been some image manipulations that seem to fit six buttons in a 2x3 formation there, but their positions are impossible due to components and case features under the hood.
     
  19. TrashyMG

    TrashyMG Sarcasm Dispenser Staff Member

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    Replying to a 4 month old post?
     
  20. bzar

    bzar A Commando

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    What. This thread showed to me as one with new posts. Didn't think to look at the time stamp :D
     

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