Keychron's New Q1 HE Keyboard Uses Customizable Hall Effect Switches

We love customization, and we love Keychron. So, the new Keychron Q1 HE is right up our alley. It features Hall Effect Gateron 2.0 switches for customizable per-key actuation and analog-styled key functionality. Pre-orders for the Keychron Q1 HE start at $194 and begin shipping in early 2024.

Hall effect magnetic switches do not have a fixed actuation point. Instead, they measure how far you press down each key. This behavior opens the door to a ton of customization. You can set a custom actuation point for every key on the Keychron Q1 HE, with values ranging from 0.1mm to 4mm.

And if you’re really savvy, you can program multiple functions for individual keys. The “C” key may act normally when it’s pressed lightly, but a secondary function can be triggered by placing additional force on the key. If you’ve ever used a gamepad with analog shoulder buttons, this idea should be familiar to you.

These features are primarily geared toward gamers. Someone who plays a lot of online shooters, for example, might make their WASD keys as sensitive as possible while leaving the rest of their keyboard at a normal actuation. But the hall effect switches can also improve the workflow of writers, designers, and digital artists. Multi-action key customization is especially useful—instead of reaching for keyboard shortcuts like CTRL + C, you can assign your most-used shortcuts to a deep actuation point on individual keys.

Visually speaking, the Keychron Q1 HE looks very similar to the Keychron Q1 Pro. Both keyboards use a 75% layout and are housed in a machined aluminum chassis. They also have the same double-gasket design, which provides a premium acoustic experience, and they both use opaque (not shine-through) PBT keycaps.

But the new Keychron Q1 HE adds 2.4 GHz connectivity for a wireless 1000 Hz polling rate. You can get the same polling rate over a wired USB-C connection, of course, but a 2.4 GHz signal is a great alternative to the keyboard’s Bluetooth system.

Note that there are several hall effect keyboards on the market today, including the Corsair K70 MAX and the Wooting Two HE. These keyboards are sometimes advertised as “analog keyboards” because the pressure-sensitive keys are similar to analog triggers or joysticks.

Pre-orders for the Keychron Q1 HE are available in limited supply on Kickstarter. The barebones model is $194, while a fully-assembled kit is $214. You’ll have an opportunity to buy keycaps and other accessories when the campaign ends—Keychron will send you an email with instructions. Deliveries begin in Feburary or March 2024, and the Q1 HE will be listed on the Keychron web store sometime next year.

Keychron Q1 HE mechanical keyboard thumbnail
Keychron Q1 HE

Keychron is dipping its toes into gaming with the Q1 HE. This compact 75% keyboard uses Gateron hall effect magnetic switches, meaning that you can customize the actuation point of each key (or assign multiple functions to individual keys). Optional 2.5 GHz connectivity is included for those who want a 1000 Hz polling rate without using a USB-C cable. 


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