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T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

T400/410/420 and T500/510/520 series specific matters only
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agarza
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T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

#1 Post by agarza » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:19 am

I'm in the process of gathering the parts to perform the classic T420s keyboard installation to a T430s. I've already ordered the palmrest which is still yet to arrive, and now I'm looking to get a decent keyboard that is not compatible.

I've found a seller who claims it sells Original, 90% new NMB Keyboard:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/264245718523

From looking at those pics the keys look a little worned out and also the listing describes as having 10 keyboard available, but I'm quite dubious, basing on the seller low selling volume.

Has anyone ordered a NEW keyboard for T420 in the past months that they will endorse a seller of selling good quality keyboard, It might be quite hard to source an original keyboard. I've also known that compatible keyboards' keys do not have the same dimensions as original ones.

Regards
Current
T440p:
Core i7-4710MQ|16GB RAM|Intel 200GB SSD| 14.1" AUO IPS FHD|Win 7 Pro|T450 Trackpad|Backlit keyboard|2nd Caddy

T460p:
Core i5-6300HQ|16GB RAM|lPNY 256GB SSD| 14.1" Panasonic IPS WQHD|Win 7 Pro
Past: T420 HD+, X61s XGA, T61 14" SXGA+, T42p 14.1 SXGA+, T30, A22e

dr_st
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Re: T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

#2 Post by dr_st » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:29 am

I never saw a "compatible" keyboard for any Thinkpad. Where did you see them for sale?
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), X1 Carbon (20HQ), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

agarza
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Location: Guadalajara, Jalisco MEXICO

Re: T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

#3 Post by agarza » Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:47 am

For example on this Amazon listing:
https://www.amazon.com/Original-IBM-Key ... merReviews

One of the buyers noted:
Do not believe for a moment that this is an original Lenovo keyboard identical to the one that came with your notebook. I have owned a series of Thinkpads and I can assure you that this does not have the legendary feel of typing on a genuine Thinkpad keyboard. It does work properly, but rather clicky and tinny to type on, slight sticking on one or two keys, and on the one I received the space bar was not seated correctly. Also, as another reviewer noted, close examination of the keys shows that they are not the same as on the genuine Thinkpad keyboard.

Something like this:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Orig-Lenov ... ctupt=true

Looks more "genuine" as it comes with the box.
Current
T440p:
Core i7-4710MQ|16GB RAM|Intel 200GB SSD| 14.1" AUO IPS FHD|Win 7 Pro|T450 Trackpad|Backlit keyboard|2nd Caddy

T460p:
Core i5-6300HQ|16GB RAM|lPNY 256GB SSD| 14.1" Panasonic IPS WQHD|Win 7 Pro
Past: T420 HD+, X61s XGA, T61 14" SXGA+, T42p 14.1 SXGA+, T30, A22e

dr_st
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Posts: 8096
Joined: Sat Oct 29, 2005 6:20 am
Location: Israel

Re: T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

#4 Post by dr_st » Tue Mar 19, 2019 1:41 pm

agarza wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:47 am
One of the buyers noted:
Do not believe for a moment that this is an original Lenovo keyboard identical to the one that came with your notebook. I have owned a series of Thinkpads and I can assure you that this does not have the legendary feel of typing on a genuine Thinkpad keyboard. It does work properly, but rather clicky and tinny to type on, slight sticking on one or two keys, and on the one I received the space bar was not seated correctly. Also, as another reviewer noted, close examination of the keys shows that they are not the same as on the genuine Thinkpad keyboard.
I am more inclined to believe that this particular buyer is wrong; there were 3 different keyboard vendors used by Lenovo on this generation of Thinkpads, and the feel of the keys, and the general typing feel differs between the three. Sticky keys, keys not seated correctly is something that happened to me on multiple Thinkpad keyboards, and multiple generations of laptops.

It's quite likely that the sellers are selling used / refurbished keyboards from scrapped laptops, and the keyboards may not be in best condition. However, if there were actually 'counterfeit' or 'compatible' keyboards manufactured for Thinkpads, someone would have surely taken one apart for inspection, or at least taken the caps off to show the difference in the key mechanism. In many years of using Thinkpads and browsing Thinkpad forums, I have seen no evidence that such keyboards exist.
agarza wrote:
Tue Mar 19, 2019 10:47 am
Something like this:
https://www.ebay.com/itm/New-Orig-Lenov ... ctupt=true

Looks more "genuine" as it comes with the box.
So what's wrong with that? Buy it.
Thinkpad 25 (20K7), X1 Carbon (20HQ), Yoga 14 (20FY), T430s (IPS FHD + Classic Keyboard), X220 4291-4BG
X61 7673-V2V, T60 2007-QPG, T42 2373-F7G, X32 (IPS Screen), A31p w/ Ultrabay Numpad, A21m 2628-GXU

agarza
ThinkPadder
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Posts: 1530
Joined: Fri Aug 11, 2006 10:31 am
Location: Guadalajara, Jalisco MEXICO

Re: T420s Keyboard recommendation on where to get it

#5 Post by agarza » Tue Mar 19, 2019 2:44 pm

OK, so that's reassuring to know.

Reason of asking is whether to get the used NMB or the other brand new, I'd hate having shiny keys even though it's an NMB keyboard, seller didn't offer too much explanation when asked if the keys were shiny or not.
Current
T440p:
Core i7-4710MQ|16GB RAM|Intel 200GB SSD| 14.1" AUO IPS FHD|Win 7 Pro|T450 Trackpad|Backlit keyboard|2nd Caddy

T460p:
Core i5-6300HQ|16GB RAM|lPNY 256GB SSD| 14.1" Panasonic IPS WQHD|Win 7 Pro
Past: T420 HD+, X61s XGA, T61 14" SXGA+, T42p 14.1 SXGA+, T30, A22e

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