As a lover of heavy, click keyboards, the Das Keyboard 4C is just about perfect. This tenkeyless keyboard has been updated for 2020 with new keycaps and an updated, metal body.
The 4C features a dual USB hub on the left side and has discrete arrow keys, a full complement of keys in the Page Up/Down cluster, but eschews the numeric keypad found in larger keyboards.
Other improvements include:
- PBT Keycaps: New charcoal gray PBT keycaps have a higher density than ABS keycaps, and are set against a black aluminum top panel to create a modern, professional look. PBT keycaps do not wear over time.
- Lubed Keys: Large keys that include the space bar, return, shift and caps lock are lubed by the manufacturer to silence the switch and increase smoothness at the actuation points, reducing friction.
- Cherry MX Brown Switches: Now with gold-plated, Cherry MX Brown switches that provide long-lasting electrical contact and tactile feedback to allow users to execute keystrokes with speed and precision.
- N-key rollover: Full NKRO support detects all keystrokes for fast typists.
- Convenience Features: A 2-port USB 2.0 hub provides the ability to connect USB keys and charge phones, an extra-long (6.5 feet) cable for improved cable management, and a magnetically detachable footbar doubles as a ruler.
Das always makes great keyboards and this one is nearly perfect. Key travel is excellent and the quality of the switches and keys is noticeable. An aluminum top case ensures you won’t wear down the work surfaces and the dye sublimated keycaps won’t wear down.
The bad news? Don’t get this rig if you’re not a touch typist. The keycap printed is almost invisible on this beast and fine typing work – picking out a long number, for example – is hampered. That said, this model looks like Das Keyboard’s “blank” models with the added benefit of actually having printed characters.
I’ve been using the 4C as my daily driver and I can report that it’s delightfully usable and offers excellent build quality. At $139 it’s probably one of the cheapest Cherry MX Brown switched keyboards you can get these days and it’s well worth the investment if you’re not going to be doing a lot of accounting with the ten key keypad.