Getting into the custom mechanical keyboard hobby may seem intimidating at first. Not only are there a lot of different options in the market now, searching for the right vendor to make your purchases can be even tougher, especially if you’re not located in bigger markets like the US.
But even though it’s not quite as easy to get the same selection of products in Malaysia, there are actually a number of great vendors located here and in our neighbouring countries that carry a wide array of options. Yes, unfortunately, we do have to look at international vendors to get all the necessary keyboard parts for us here in Malaysia.
Anyway, if you’re interested to get into the custom mechanical keyboard hobby, here are several vendors that I have personally dealt with; ones that I can wholeheartedly recommend.
This is my go-to vendor if I want to get parts quickly and fuss-free. Keys.my, based here in Malaysia, has its own online store as well as a Shopee store – where it is actually a Preferred retailer – to cater to a wide range of audiences. Whether you want to look for switches, stabilisers, or lube, Keys.my has you covered.
In my experience, Keys.my ships out orders very quickly as well. I’ve purchased multiple items from the vendor, and never did it take more than a couple of days for the package to be in the courier’s hands. All in all, if there’s any keyboard part that I’m looking to get, Keys is the first vendor I look at.
This is another vendor based here in Malaysia. Even though its selections are not quite as large as Keys.my’s, Rebult Keyboards does sometimes carry products that Keys doesn’t offer. On top of that, it’s worth noting that Rebult is currently running an Interest Check for two switches: Harimau and Penyu, which are tactile and linear switches respectively.
Half of my keyboard-related purchases are probably from iLumkb. Not only does it stock up on a wide variety of products – especially switches – it also runs plenty of Group Buys for various items. These include keycap sets, deskmats, switches, and even keyboard kits such as the Wilba.tech Salvation – it’s ending tomorrow on 7 May, by the way.
But do note that iLumkb is located in Singapore, so it does take slightly longer for packages to arrive in Malaysia. That being said, iLumkb is easily one of the bigger vendors that’s closest to Malaysia, so I’m thrilled whenever iLumkb is the Southeast Asia proxy for big, high-profile group buys such as the aforementioned Salvation keyboard.
You can head on to iLumkb’s online store if you’re keen to check out its wide range of products.
Based in The Philippines, Zion Studios has a reasonably good selection of keyboard parts. In fact, it even carries certain switches that other vendors in this list do not, such as the Tecsee Kingfisher and an all-black Gazzew Boba U4T Thocky.
As mentioned, Zion Studios is based in The Philippines, so do expect longer shipping times. Aside from that, I’ve only dealt with the vendor once for the Jelly Epoch drop – stay tuned for our full review – which is only set to start shipping sometime this month. But based on my interactions with Zion Studios, I do see myself returning for more purchases – maybe even for the Kingfisher switch.
Nonetheless, you can take a look Zion Studios range of keyboard products right here.
Last but certainly not least is KBDfans. Even though it’s not the closest vendor to my location – it’s based in China – the sheer number of keyboard parts and accessories offered by the vendor are just too good to pass on. You want to build a keyboard from scratch? KBDfans (literally) has all the parts you need.
These are just some of the vendors that I have personally dealt with. JustKeys is another Malaysian vendor worth mentioning, alongside Pantheon and Monokei; both of which are located in Singapore. I haven’t purchased anything from these vendors yet, but they do have a good reputation.
And there you have it. The custom mechanical keyboard hobby is a very rewarding one, especially for someone in my line of work who needs to do a lot of typing on a daily basis. If you’re in a similar position, I implore you to look into investing in a proper custom mechanical keyboard – you won’t look back.