As an essential part of any computer system, keyboards come in a vast array of builds and styles. Therefore, it is important to understand what you want from your keyboard and how you are going to use it before you make a purchase.
Some keyboards are intended for office use and may have quieter switches and be more ergonomically designed. Other keyboards may be designed for gaming and offer backlight colors, lower keystroke length, and other adjustments.
However, we will be looking at one of the best office keyboards on the market today. But, is it the right keyboard for you?
Let’s find out in our in-depth Das Keyboard Model S review…
- Dimensions: 18 by 6.5 by 1.5 inches
- Weight: 3 pounds
- No. of Keys: 104
The Das Keyboard Model S is a basic-looking 104-key qwerty keyboard that has some surprises. It is intended for office use but can be used for some gaming if you like.
The body looks a bit flimsy due to construction materials. And you will hear some rattling of the keycaps if you shake it. Not to worry though, it is well-built and performs very well. That said, the Model S allows for very fast typing and doesn’t have the loud ‘clack’ that many keyboards do.
Let’s find out why…
Sometimes while typing, you look up and find that only a couple of the words you just typed are on the screen, and nothing else is happening. Maybe you find that you have just typed a sentence, and there are double letter strikes or run-ons.
This can happen when the typist gets ahead of how the computer registers the keystrokes. The Model S solves this problem and allows the typist to go as quickly as they like with no worries.
How does it work?
The keyboard has what is called “N-key rollover,” or commonly referred to as NKRO. This means that the keyboard registers the keystrokes and essentially creates a list for the computer to read.
This is very handy for people who work between the keycaps or roll their fingers while typing. It is also one reason some consider this one of the best typing keyboards you can buy.
Built to last…
Additionally, the Das Keyboard uses Cherry MX Brown switches, rated at 50 million strokes. These switches are mechanical and can offer different pressure settings for different keys across the board.
Furthermore, these particular switches require around 46g of pressure. Therefore, you need simply a light tap on the keycaps to actuate them. This also reduces the ‘clack’ that you hear from many other keyboards, thus making the typing environment much quieter.
As mentioned, the Model S has a basic qwerty board layout, so it is instinctive and easy to use. The keycaps are well spaced and laser-etched, so the inscription will not wear away. They have a good textile feel and grip on your fingers to prevent slipping, even though they are made of an ABS plastic material.
Full of familiar features…
All of the function and control keys are in their normal places, and there is a number keypad on the right. Again, since this is designed as one of the best keyboards for work, the layout is quite familiar and holds no surprises.
Integrated into the top row of function keys are dedicated media shortcuts. These keys allow you to adjust the volume, change tracks, and of course, play or pause a selection. This is a great little feature for the worker who likes listening to music while working.
All of these features are great, but how does it feel working with the board?
The board is made of glossy black plastic and lies almost flat with just a minor incline. It does have feet at the back, which can be used to provide better ergonomics.
Unfortunately, they are not adjustable and raise the keycaps to a height where you may have to lift your hands. To prevent this type of fatigue, it is recommended that you get a wrist pad to give you the needed lift to work comfortably.
On the inside…
As mentioned earlier, the board appears flimsy but is far from it. The internal structure has a metal plate to provide rigidity and support the internal workings. It comes in at a hefty three pounds, and with its skid pads on the bottom, it will not be slipping around the desk.
The keyboard connects via USB, and the cable is solidly attached internally to the keyboard itself. It is a well-structured connection, and you will not have to worry about it bending or breaking at the connection point.
A little extra…
The board also offers two non-powered USB ports on the back left corner. However, being a non-powered board, it cannot read or transfer files from USB flash drives. But they can charge a phone or tablet, which frees up USB ports on your computer. A convenient feature, in our opinion.
As with All Cherry MX switch keyboards, you can replace and add parts as you see fit. You can add ring dampers to the switches to make them as silent as possible. This means you could easily have one of the best quiet keyboards with just a few modifications.
You can replace switches with heavier or lighter actuation weights for more comfort and less fatigue. Many people adjust the weight so that keys normally hit by your index and pinky fingers are lighter, with the heaviest being on the space bar and other frequently used control keys.
However, it is important to know which Cherry MX switches are on your board if you are planning to make changes.
Das Keyboard Model S Pros & Cons
- Cherry MX Brown switches.
- N-key rollover.
- Keycaps wobble.
Looking for Something Else?
Find the latest computer equipment to keep you comfy by checking out our in-depth Best Ergonomic Keyboards Reviews, our Best Ergonomic Mouse Reviews, our Best Ergonomic Computer Desks, our Best Ergonomic Keyboard Tray Review, and our Best Ergonomic Under Desk Footrest Reviews for some superb options available in 2021.
You may also like our Best Ergonomic Office Chairs for Back Pain Reviews, our Best Membrane Keyboard Review, our Best Quiet Mechanical Keyboard Reviews, our Best Big and Tall Office Chairs Review, and our Best Seat Cushion Review for more great products that are currently on the market.
The truth is that there isn’t a perfect keyboard, nor will there ever be. This is because each person is different, and the design and features of any keyboard boil down to a matter of personal preference more than anything else.
With that in mind, the Das Keyboard Model S doesn’t try to be great for the individual. Rather it is focused on being ideal for the office environment. The result is one of the best mechanical keyboards currently on the market.
The use of Cherry MX Brown switches allows for a quieter environment, and the addition of NKRO allows users to set up personalized layouts and functions. The few flaws with the construction are more of a personal gripe and easy to overcome, as opposed to a deal-breaker.
Until next time, keep working smarter, not just harder.