Before connecting a USB device to the ports, check that the consumption current of your USB device does not exceed mA or the USB device may not be detected and may not function correctly. By using the Dip-Switches on the back of the keyboard, you can change the Keyboard Mode and functions of some of the keys on the Keyboard. The HHKB mode is set as the factory default. To change Dip Switch settings, we recommend using a small screwdriver that is approximately 1. To use the codes that are shown on the front facing side of the keys such as F1 to F12, PgUp Page Up , Caps, and arrows cursor , hold down the [Fn] key and press the relevant key.
The height adjustment mechanism is located on the bottom of the keyboard, allowing you to adjust the height at the rear of the keyboard to suit your preference. There are three different height settings:. Select the same height setting on the Left and Right sides of the keyboard, ensuring the feet click correctly into position.
HHKB Professional 2 Keyboard Review
If you use the HHKB with the Japanese keyboard setting, you cannot input symbols such as brackets and in accordance with the symbols on the keys. When you connect the keyboard to a laptop computer with a Japanese keyboard and change the keyboard layout setting to the English keyboard, you cannot input symbols in accordance with the symbols on the keys of the laptop computer. This is caused by a feature of the operating system.
After the dedicated driver for macOS is installed, the [Alt] key works as the [Option] key and the  key works as the [Command] key. Other company names and product names are the registered trademarks or trademarks of the respective companies.
System Requirements. Can I change the key layout? KVM switches are not supported. Connect the keyboard directly to a computer. Those keys are not available with Windows. The multimedia keys are available with Mac. How can I use them? The Eject key is not available. The driver supports Mac OS X Instead of jiggling when they're pressed, or feeling like they're hollow, these keys have a certain heft.
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I can't testify to the keycaps' long-term durability or wear resistance, but the overall impression is one of an old-school mechanical board that feels like it ought to live forever. Many of its kind, indeed, have.
Happy Hacking Keyboard Professional 2 – OMG Japan
View All 8 Photos in Gallery. But enough about the keycaps. They make the first impression, but it's the switches underneath that determine if you'll want to commit to the HHKB Professional 2. The keyboard is outfitted with capacitive switches akin to those made by Topre. The company makes another set of not-cheap keyboards, the Topre Realforce line, that uses genuine Topre switches. PCMag has a review of one in the works, too. These non-contact switches are supposed to offer smooth, linear travel when pressed. The broadest way to describe how these switches feel would be to compare them to the mechanical Cherry MX switches popular among many keyboard enthusiasts.
The HHKB Layout
See our guide to the best mechanical keyboards for more on the subtleties of mechanical switches. They aren't quite as smooth as Cherry MX Black switches, which are popular with gamers because they offer minimal feedback and stiff resistance against mis-strikes, but they don't have a mid-press tactile bump like the MX Browns do. I hesitate to compare typing on the HHKB Professional 2 to the feel of my own Logitech G Pro because many people think the latter's own-design Romer-G switches are too mushy for their tastes. They do feel similar, though, and people worried about that kind of keyfeel can rest assured that the HHKB's feel is a bit more solid than Logitech's.
If you like the Romer-G, you'll probably like these. If you don't, you might like these more. But don't expect a gulf of difference.
A detachable USB cable comes bundled. The latter is a trivial quibble, but the KVM limitation is too bad; a compact keyboard like this one could be a good solution for use with multiple systems in some niche cases. Two feet underneath the forward corners adjust to three different heights based on your preferences. The only branding is an HHKB Professional 2 logo in the bottom-right corner, so you don't have to worry about an ostentatious logo marring the minimalist design; this is pretty subtle.
The Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety CCOHS lists five factors that increase the risk of developing carpal tunnel syndrome: repetitive hand motions, awkward hand positions, strong gripping, mechanical stress on the palm, and vibration. Typing for prolonged periods, depending on the desk and the keyboard in question, can agitate all five of those factors.
Programmers and other such data professionals type more than most folks, and oftentimes in the same patterns. To allow them to do so more efficiently and with less risk of injury, the designers concentrated on a keyboard better suited to developers. The primary approach?
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Reduce the distance between keys so typists wouldn't have to stretch their fingers constantly. Being able to adjust the keyboard's height can also help the wrists sit in a more natural position. The HHKB's unique, minimalist layout allows typists to keep their fingers close to the home row at all times. Here's how it works. Most of the non-alphanumeric keys have been removed and turned into modifiers for the remaining keys. You activate these additional functions by holding down Fn and pressing the appropriate key.
Most keys have been replaced by this system, with the exceptions being customizable keys flanking the spacebar, the Alt keys, and the Ctrl key. The last rests where Caps Lock would be found on a more traditional keyboard layout. Now, most consumer keyboards these days let you reprogram any customizable keys strictly via a software utility, but these customizable keys are quite different.
They are controlled by six DIP switches on the back of the keyboard That's part of the reason why the HHKB comes in versions with blank keycaps; that way, a user won't be confused if key presses don't have the expected result in a different DIP-switch mode versus what he or she sees on the keycap. You'll want to examine that PDF at the link, as the possible configurations and key shortcuts are complicated. Indeed, you'll have to be pretty motivated to decipher the possible combinations.
As someone who's suffered from varying degrees of wrist pain for nearly a decade I spend most of my day typing , it's easy for me to see the HHKB Professional 2's appeal. It also doesn't hurt that removing non-essential keys gives the keyboard a small footprint that lets me bring my mousepad as close as possible to my non-mousing hand. Less distance between hands equals less back and shoulder pain while I'm gaming, at least for me. It also means less distance to go back and forth between keyboard and mouse in everyday use.
Missing Page Navigation Keys and 20 Extra Function Keys
Figuring out what combination of keys has to be pressed to have the intended result, even at the default settings, is hard when the black labeling on the charcoal keycaps is practically invisible except under ideal lighting. Too much light results in a glare that obscures the label; too little illumination quite literally leaves me in the dark because of the keyboard's black-on-basically-black color scheme. The missing keys and unique layout effectively reset my ability to touch-type to prehistoric levels. I couldn't even type quickly looking at the keys, either, because of their near-invisible labeling.
I've gotten more used to it over the course of a few weeks with the board, but only when it comes to writing. I still forget where the Ctrl key is, and I don't know most of the default Fn combos. That assessment is borne out by the Aesop's Fables test over at TypingTest.
All of those errors were caused by mistyped punctuation or, interestingly enough, capitalization mistakes. I suspect I would have fared even worse had I been asked to type any numbers. Still, these results aren't enormously far off the words per minute and three errors I get with my G Pro. But those results don't accurately convey the increased frustration I feel with the HHKB Professional 2 versus more traditional keyboards. I miss the cursor keys for correcting quick typos, the dedicated media controls for convenient volume adjustment, and the one-touch access to certain keys.
Some issues can be overcome with prolonged exposure, as my TypingTest.