When I first released the Granite set a few years ago I never would have thought I would have seen a Round 4.
I actually wanted to make the first round a limited edition –like all of my designs– but I’ve been accused of being selfish and if the community wanted more I should have let ’em.
So we had Round 2 and it sold twice what the first round did. Again, I thought the world had enough, but boy I was wrong! I was basically receiving a message on Reddit, Geekhack or Deskthority every other day about running the set again.
I reluctantly agreed on Round 3, sure that nobody would have cared about Granite anymore. Round 3 sold even more than the previous run. I’m pretty sure I said Round 3 would have been the last one, not because I didn’t want more, but because I thought the interest on gray keycaps was gone for good. Apparently I was wrong again.
So I’m glad to announce the forth round of Granite. I won’t say that this will be the last one, but I’d like to concentrate on something new for the next time.
What is this all about again?
Despite the huge success and high visibility some of you might still don’t know Granite or don’t understand the fuzz about a gray keycap set. The main Granite features are:
- DSA family. DSA is a low profile, spherical top keycap family by Signature Plastics. I myself prefer other keycap profiles, but DSA has its undeniable qualities. One for all, the keys are not sculpted, they all lie on the same level, making it ideal for custom keyboards or if you want to cover less common layouts like colemak. Granite, thanks to its DSA backbone, is an extremely versatile keycap set that will adapt to virtually any keyboard.
- PBT material. PBT is arguably the most durable material for keycaps. Granite was the first set ever to feature a PBT spacebar from Signature Plastics together with all the other key sizes.
- Dye-sublimated legends. The legends are dye sublimated and virtually eternal. The ink is soaked into the plastic few micron behind the surface. The legend becomes part of the plastic itself and you really have to scratch deep to wear it off.
- Options. Lots of them. Granite was first designed to support custom keyboards. As such we also included keycap sizes that are not normally available elsewhere. Also, since we don’t need a new mold for each legend, we were able to add a plethora of novelty keys and support for many international languages!
- Attention to details. The legends were designed one by one with an incredible attention to detail. The characters are not aligned to the absolute center, but to the visual center. For example the right arrow
→visually weights to the right, so to make it look like it is really in the center we had to slightly shift it to the left. Countless of these small adjustments were applied to reach what I believe has become a little piece of art.
- Text and Icons modifiers. Not only you can mix and match keycaps to cover the most arcane keyboard layouts, you also have the freedom to choose between the simplicity of TEXT or the elegance of ICON modifiers. We had a poll at the very beginning to decide if we should have run text or icon but we ended up making both and in all rounds they always sold 50/50.
- Simplicity. Last but not least. There are dozens of incredibly colorful and well designed keycap sets around, but nothing’s more elegant than a simple gray layout.
If you want to know more you can also check the Keypuller page.
Difference with previous runs
Each round had its own character and some limited edition keys. This one is no different.
Specifically two kits have never been done before: Elven Tongue and Secondary Legends. The former is something I always wanted to do, I actually started working on it in September 2012 and only thank to Granite success it is now a reality. The latter has been requested so many times and I finally took the time to design it; it’s the perfect companion for your 60%.
Round 4 has other small differences: the control key has a new icon, we now have text and icon arrow cluster (it was icon only before), UK keys are now split from the international kit, and of course I added some novelties for the WhiteFox (my custom keyboard)!
What kits do I need?
It’s impossible to make a list of all compatible keyboards. Generally speaking to cover a 60% (Poker and the like) and a Tenkeyless you need Common kit and Modifiers (choose between text and icon). That being said I strongly recommend to also pick at least the Pro Modifiers, to future proof your purchase and keep a good resell value.
If you have a full standard layout keyboard you also need the Numpad. If your full size also features additional multimedia keys (likely above the numpad) you need to grab a kit that has four 1 unit keys. Your best bet is the Bonus Pack.
If you have a Winkeyless, or anyway a keyboard with 1.5u modifiers and a 7u spacebar (instead of 1.25u and 6.25u) you need Common kit + Modifiers and Pro Modifiers + a spare 7u spacebar. Don’t forget the spacebar! The Common kit only carries a 6.25u bar.
The safest options to cover an Ergodox is to pick: Common kit, Text Pro Modifiers (for the extra 1.5u keys), Ergodoxian and possibly some Blank spares.
If you have an ISO keyboard you definitely want to grab the ISO Enter and the UK or the International kit. If you require the Alt Gr key, that is in the Extreme Modifiers.
The WhiteFox (and other 65%) is covered by Common kit, Modifiers and Pro Modifiers. The Bonus pack has the fox icon (and few extras), so you might want to grab that as well.
Mac users of course might want to pick the Apple kit.
Everything else is pure vanity. Of all I’d pick the RGB kit, while I suggest any custom builder to also add the Extreme Modifiers kit.
Below the complete list of the available kits. Good hunting!
For future reference the following is the Granite Round 4 price list.
Common kit ......... $31.99 Modifiers .......... $27.99 Pro Modifiers ...... $21.99 Numpad ............. $14.99 Extreme Modifiers .. $18.99 RGB(YO) kit ........ $18.99 Bonus Pack ......... $23.99 International kit .. $32.49 UK kit .............. $6.99 ISO enter ........... $9.99 Mono Legend ........ $19.99 Extra Homing ........ $7.99 Ergodoxian ......... $32.99 Apple kit .......... $13.99 Windows kit ........ $12.99 Blank pack .......... $8.99 7u Spacebar ......... $4.99 6.25u Spacebar ...... $3.99 3u key .............. $5.99 Elven Tongue ....... $28.99 Secondary Legends .. $29.99