Let’s face it - we spend a lot of time using keyboards. If you spend a lot of time glued to yours, you may have found your wrists and fingers complaining. For a while, ergonomic keyboards have attempted to ease the strain on our hands, but one of the most unique solutions is the Ergodox. This design splits your keyboard in half, into two pieces that are curved in a shape that mimics the natural reach of your hand. The Hot Dox takes this a step further, allowing you to easily swap around the keys on your keyboard to suit exactly where you need them to fall to work best with how you type.
This might sound complicated, but a great aspect of the Hot Dox is that there’s no soldering or other crazy mechanics required. This is the first ever DIY ErgoDox that lets you mod it this easily...but why would you need to? I was perplexed at first, but there are loads of ways this is surprisingly useful. As well as being able to move your configuration of square and rectangular keys around to suit you, you can lube up switches to make buttons easier to press, and can place lighter, more responsive keys in places that you hit with your pinky, so it doesn’t have to work so hard. This got me thinking about how I type on a regular keyboard - I use my left-hand pinky, but pretty much only for Shift and Control, and I don’t use my right-hand pinky at all. In fact, I use most of my left hand, but my right hand flies around and pretty much only uses its thumb and forefinger. Weird! If I could morph a keyboard around my quirks, I could type so much faster!
ErgoDoxes are strange to get your head around at first - after all, you’re breaking a habit and trying to form a new one. However, it’s obvious from the second you get your hands on these keyboards that they’re built to work with your hands and, if I got used to it, I can imagine not wanting to turn back.
On top of its customisable perks, the Hot Dox is just built nicely. CNC-machined aluminium plate in a hex-screw secured acrylic case makes for lightly cushioned, comfortable typing, and the keyboard’s buttons are made from PBT, a plastic that resists wear, finger grease, shine and yellowing, so it should stay pretty and usable for years! And despite all the DIY meddling this kit allows, it still has a one-year warranty. RRP $214.99
4 out of 5
76 key split ergonomic layout
No soldering required
Hot-swap sockets for easy customisation and assembly
Good construction. Hardy but light-to-use materials
Takes getting used to!
Might be pricey and a lot of work if you’re not already invested in the ErgoDox idea.