More than just office peripherals – Keyboards are not just a boring staple of professional equipment; to some it maybe just as a die hard hobby to get into.
The Mech Collective is an annual event for the enthusiasts that took the mechanical keyboard hobby to heart. GGWPTECH covered the 2018 Mech Collective and also massively contributed to make the ESGS Mech Collective happen. What else could surprise our ragtag group of hobbyists in the keyboard world with 2 major collectives happening in a year?
2019 is a year filled with changes in the community here and there – shifts of ideologies and interests associated with the downpour of knowledge and information between one source to another. after the 2018 ESGS Collective, we felt the sudden surge of novices wanting to enter the hobby through the number of questions and threads popping out in the online cyberspace regarding keyboards.
It was different, it was more serious – and the mech community was more than willing to share what they know to the general public.
The 2019 Mech Collective is the biggest mech collective yet – without exaggeration, the space of the event is a true testament of growth not of just the community but the whole hobby itself. The event space was supposed to accommodate 70-80 people but we had reports from the organizers that slots we’re opened and the total attendees hit around 100 more or less.
We see the veteran collective attendees which is actually a bit hard to spot this year due to the sheer amount of new people on the event grounds. Unlike last year, we see more kitted keyboards with custom keysets and caps other than seeing them in their stock glory. My first collective was a bit sad – the caps I ordered for my IKBC MF87 and Kimat XT2 came in late and I decided to just bring my brand new MF87 in the collective last 2018.
This year, I was surprised to notice that I grew from having 1 keyboard to 4 – all of which had their own keysets; it felt harrowing and overwhelming but this was a hobby that I enjoyed not only because of what I collect but also the cool people directly involved in the community.
The collective had the usual sets of 60%s and TKLs, but we also got to see a huge spike in wood handwired customs, artisans, and a little less of the alu case craze.
Custom keysets were also a sight on the tables – Varmillo sets, Themed bundles, and keys that went well with the case such as this Scrabble themed keyboard we happen to stumble upon.
A trend that’s been picking up are keysets with different alphabet styles – last year’s star was the “Baybayin” integration. this year we even saw an elvish keyset coupled with a wooden case and cover
The funny thing in the event are the familiar faces that wasn’t part of the huge hobby before – We know them from the community but we didn’t see them before diving deep into the keyboard hobby. Its ultimately warming that the mechanical keyboard community was able to release proper info that turned these novices into full hobbyists in less than a year.
The organizers were cool to anticipate the volume of attendees – but maybe this 2019 experience should be a sign for the organizers to amp up the display options, seats, and contingency plans for attendee overflow. They did a great job this year, even if they experienced a sudden added volume in the expected forecast for the event
I think this is a great forecast on our efforts to try and have this rocking in ESGS again this year. Tune in for updates for our road to the ESGS Mech Collective 2019