My Unicomp 'Ultra Classic' buckling spring keyboard.

I’m old enough to remember the computer keyboards of the ’80s, when such things were oftentimes still high-quality, heavy-duty input devices. As time went on I lamented the proliferation of shoddily-made, plasticky keyboards and yearned for something better. In 2003 I ordered, direct from the manufacturer, my first Unicomp buckling-spring mechanical keyboard, still made in much the same way as the legendary IBM Model M keyboards of yore. Over seventeen years' near-daily use it was never less than a robustly reliable pleasure to type on. It was still working well in 2020, but it had a PS/2 plug and my then-new PC was all-USB. After putting up with the awkwardness of an adaptor for a little while, I decided to buy a new keyboard.

From The Keyboard Company, I ordered a Unicomp ‘Ultra Classic’ keyboard in black with a USB plug and a UK layout. As a small extra, I also obtained a red Panic button to put in place of the Escape key. It has a slightly smaller footprint than the old Unicomp unit, and is a little lighter in weight, but otherwise it’s very similar. All being well, it’ll last me until 2037! I also have a second-hand Cherry MX 3000 keyboard with ‘blue’ key-switches which I use in conjuction with my work laptop when at home; and a vintage beige Compaq-branded rack-style keyboard with ‘brown’ switches (and a trackball) that gets used when I’m in the office – in preference to the awful excuse for a keyboard my cheapskate employers provided me with.