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roberttx
June 25th, 2017, 07:18 AM
I have some model M keyboards that must have come from terminals - the cord has the flat RJ45 looking plug on the end.

Are they electrically the same as regular model Ms and can I replace the cord with a regular PS/2 style cord, for testing?

zombienerd
June 25th, 2017, 07:22 AM
Yes. Model M's were universal, and could run with DIN or PS2 connectors. Many of them had that jack to change cables, that does not mean it was a terminal unit keyboard.

Older ones were even autoswitching XT/AT, check your birthdate on the label.

roberttx
June 25th, 2017, 07:33 AM
Thanks!


Many of them had that jack to change cables, that does not mean it was a terminal unit keyboard.

I'm not referring to a jack socket in the keyboard, I mean that they have a cord with that jack plug on the free end. I'm not aware of anything but terminals that used that as the keyboard connector.


Older ones were even autoswitching XT/AT, check your birthdate on the label.

Cool! What years am I looking for?

zombienerd
June 25th, 2017, 07:42 AM
1986 and older, generally, but not *all* of them did. You can check out the model number breakdown on Wikipedia and see what yours is capable of:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Model_M_keyboard#Features_by_part_number

Stone
June 25th, 2017, 08:24 AM
I have some NOS detachable model M cables in both AT and PS/2 styles:

http://www.vcfed.org/forum/attachment.php?attachmentid=4277&d=1281533249

roberttx
June 25th, 2017, 08:41 AM
I have some NOS detachable model M cables in both AT and PS/2 styles:

I might have to hit you up for some of them. Need to do a keyboard audit, first, figure out how many I have, etc and cross reference to how many PCs I have. Not as easy as it sounds, because I keep finding stuff that I'd forgotten about...

Stone
June 25th, 2017, 09:32 AM
Not as easy as it sounds, because I keep finding stuff that I'd forgotten about...Gee, don't you have a computer? It'll take care of all that kind of nonsense for you. It takes the strain off the brain. :-)

fatwizard
June 25th, 2017, 09:56 AM
I looked at the Wiki article with interest as the model M keyboard I have (or what I thought was a model M) doesn't seem to be in the list. Can someone identify this keyboard for me?

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rittwage
June 25th, 2017, 10:30 AM
I looked at the Wiki article with interest as the model M keyboard I have (or what I thought was a model M) doesn't seem to be in the list. Can someone identify this keyboard for me?

392983929739299


That's not a model M. That's a model F, AT version. It was shipped with early 5170's (and maybe 5162's?)

Chuck(G)
June 25th, 2017, 10:30 AM
I believe that you have a Model F keyboard. See here (http://clickykeyboards.com/product/ibm-pc-at-original-keyboard-original-box/)

Some criticize the Model M's for being noisy, but to my ears, the Model F was a lot noisier.

Curiously, Model F "clones" are still being made in China (https://www.modelfkeyboards.com/). Don't know a thing about them, but I'll be jiggered if I'll pay $325 for a Chinese "space saver" Model F.

Stone
June 25th, 2017, 10:32 AM
Model F it is.

Chuck(G)
June 25th, 2017, 10:41 AM
But back to the original question. There were several connectors used with the Model M, depending on application:

http://i.imgur.com/NNquq.jpg

DDS
June 25th, 2017, 11:50 AM
I believe that you have a Model F keyboard. See here (http://clickykeyboards.com/product/ibm-pc-at-original-keyboard-original-box/)

Some criticize the Model M's for being noisy, but to my ears, the Model F was a lot noisier.

Curiously, Model F "clones" are still being made in China (https://www.modelfkeyboards.com/). Don't know a thing about them, but I'll be jiggered if I'll pay $325 for a Chinese "space saver" Model F.

Model M's are still being made by the current incarnation of IBM's keyboard manufacturing division that was spun off as KeyTronic (IIRC -- my rememberer isn't as good as I remember it being. How's that for recursion? ;-) ).

They now do business as Unicomp and make a variety of buckling spring model M's with various connectors. I'm not sure if that would qualify as a "clone" or not. I bought my wife one that attaches to her ultra wide screen HP running Windoze 10 (grrr) all in one desktop via USB. She's been using it just fine on various computers for years.

https://www.pckeyboard.com/

Chuck(G)
June 25th, 2017, 11:55 AM
The IBM keyboard division was spun off as part of Lexmark. Unicomp probably bought out Lexmark's Lexington, KY operation or at least their tooling. (Lexmark :: Lexington, perhaps?)

KeyTronic was absorbed by Honeywell sometime during the 1980s.

Stone
June 25th, 2017, 11:58 AM
DDS, how's the 'feel' compared to the real IBM Model M? By real I'm trying to exclude that crap made by Lexmark.

roberttx
June 25th, 2017, 02:16 PM
I have some Model Fs, too, but I think they go to my 5150s.


DDS, how's the 'feel' compared to the real IBM Model M? By real I'm trying to exclude that crap made by Lexmark.

I'd like to know this too. SWMBO has been wanting a more tactile keyboard, at work. I offered her a Model M, but she wants one in black. If these really are identical in feel to the original Model Ms, that's her Christmas present sorted.

roberttx
June 25th, 2017, 02:21 PM
But back to the original question. There were several connectors used with the Model M, depending on application:

That's very useful, Chuck, thanks. Part of me thinks "Smart of them to make the connectors mechanically incompatible, so that you can't plug one into the wrong thing." The rest of me thinks "Why didn't they just settle on a single connector and make it a Standard?"

Stone
June 25th, 2017, 03:30 PM
I have some Model Fs, too, but I think they go to my 5150s.There are two Model Fs. The PC, XT model with 83 keys and the AT model with 84 keys.

Chuck(G)
June 25th, 2017, 08:45 PM
There was also a 122-key Model F.

roberttx
June 26th, 2017, 07:54 AM
There are two Model Fs. The PC, XT model with 83 keys and the AT model with 84 keys.

I looked at some of mine and they are the 83 key ones, with no demarcation between the alpha section and the numeric keypad.


There was also a 122-key Model F.

Was that the terminal version?

Casey
July 3rd, 2017, 08:48 PM
PCkeyboard is why I will never spend over a $100 on a used Model M on eBay, when I can get a brand-new keyboard from them for $84. If I decide I really need a Model M, I'll get a new one from them. Otherwise I'll with with a 99-cent PS/2 keyboard from the local thrift store. What can I say, I'm cheap and poor. Not to mention I've scored a perfectly decent Compaq, Dell, and IBM from them, not to mention a MS Internet keyboard. All PS/2. Can never have too many keyboards, although some of my friends disagree... :cool:

SpidersWeb
July 3rd, 2017, 11:00 PM
Just to add to the list, the Model M that ships with the IBM RT has a speaker in it, and slightly different keycaps e.g. the "ńction" key

Chuck(G)
July 4th, 2017, 07:27 AM
All of my Model Ms (some purchased new) cost $20 or less. You just had to be in the right place at the right time.

Even when I had Model Ms, they were my second choice for a keyboard. My NCR-branded Cherry keyboards have a nicer feel, IMOHO. But they also lack F11-F12 keys, which got to be such a bother that I mothballed them.

vwestlife
July 4th, 2017, 09:14 AM
Was that the terminal version?

It's called "the Battleship":


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p_JTZo2rKmw

bettablue
July 7th, 2017, 05:02 AM
Is there anything you don't have? Nice reply though.

DDS
July 7th, 2017, 06:29 AM
The IBM keyboard division was spun off as part of Lexmark. Unicomp probably bought out Lexmark's Lexington, KY operation or at least their tooling. (Lexmark :: Lexington, perhaps?)

KeyTronic was absorbed by Honeywell sometime during the 1980s.

Like I said, my rememberer ain't what it used to be. Per the wiki it was Lexmark.

There used to be some info about the employees executing an employee buyout of the buckling spring keyboard operation when it was going to be closed down by Lexmark. Per their website, what they're currently making is a Model M. As for the feel, we still have my wife's original IBM branded Model M: PN 1391401, FRU 1392090, SN 6790973, dated 03-28-91. For all intents and purposes, the feel is as close as you're going to get when comparing two mechanical keyboards.

They also say they offer 4 categories of repair service although the web page is not specific on what is covered or if they just repair their products or also repair 25+ year old IBM branded ones. If you have a vintage Model M you want fixed it might be worthwhile to contact them for an estimate.

Their site make no mention of Model F keyboards at all.