Apple Vintage Computer Keyboards

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What to Know About Apple Vintage Computer Keyboards

Apple computers have long held special appeal for a segment of the market. The Apple brand is known for designing intuitive products that are easy to use, including the brand’s classic keyboards.

What are some basics of these vintage keyboards from Apple?

Apple's vintage keyboards offer simple designs with full functionality. Many are full-size, and some offer extended keyboards with numeric keypads. Here are some basic elements of these keyboards:

  • Materials: These keyboards are made of hard plastic. The function keys, if the specific keyboard has them, have italicized characters.
  • Design: Many models feature specialty keys above the main QWERTY keypad. Most of these keyboards also have a separate numeric keypad on the right-hand side of the device. This set-up makes typing easier for many users.
  • Color: Most of these items are neutral in color. Older models tend to be beige, and later ones are a light grey color. iMac keyboards are generally clear with black keys and bright accent colors.
  • Wiring: These Apple devices are vintage and pre-date wireless technologies like Bluetooth. All of these vintage keyboards are wired. Most of these models predate USB technology.
What are accessories for these items?

The most commonly seen accessories are cords and mice. For early models of the Apple Mac, the cords were not attached to the keyboard itself. Because of this, some users may need to purchase a cord separately. Later keyboards include the cord attached to the keyboard. Replacement keys for the keyboards are also available.

What are some common models of Apple's vintage keyboards?

Apple's keyboards have evolved a lot over the years. Most are one solid unit, but some models are split into two parts for ergonomics. Some common models and their characteristics are:

  • M3501: This keyboard features the famous multi-color Mac logo in the top left-hand corner. The specialty and number keys are set off from the QWERTY pad.
  • M0115: This keyboard features a row of specialty keys and a separate pad of number keys. This item is grey with grey keys.
  • M2980: The M2980 features a separate numeric keypad and a line of specialty keys above the QWERTY keys. This model is beige with beige keys and was typically used with the Mac.
  • M2452: Used with the iconic iMac of the 1990s and early 2000s, this keyboard is clear with black keys. The specialty and QWERTY keys are integrated in a single layout. Arrow, page up, and page down keys are integrated with the number pad.
  • M110: This keyboard is similar to a classic typewriter layout. It does not have separate function keys or an offset keypad.
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