A New Round of Bakenekos

We are pleased to announce that the Bakeneko60 will be returning to CannonKeys. And this time - it's bringing a friend. The Bakeneko65 will also be coming to CannonKeys!

Bakeneko60 with CC Winter Tundra

When we first announced the Bakeneko60 and explained the cast aluminum process, we also mentioned that it should allow us to hit faster lead times compared to normal CNC keyboard group buys, which often take 6 months or more. Our intent was to keep them stocked, and restock quickly if they sold out - but it's been 5 months since our last Bakeneko60 release. We can explain!

Some of these delays are due to supply chain issues that still persist today due to COVID-19, but some of these delays are also due to our constant pursuit to improve the products we sell. Our initial round of Bakeneko60 delivered great value at an affordable entry price point, and we were really impressed by the quality we were able to reach given the price constraints. But we thought we could still make some improvements. More specifically, we wanted to improve the surface finish of our Bakeneko keyboards.

What we found through our experimentation is that it's hard to get a surface finish that everyone would agree is "better" while still hitting the same price point. The painted finish we chose to use in our first round enabled a lot of different colors to be used, and the white color used for painting turned out really bright - even brighter than some e-white coated finishes we've seen. We're going to continue to use this painted finish for some Bakenekos, and work with our factories to continue to improve the quality delivered to customers. We've experimented with different types of surface preparation techniques prior to painting, and we think we've landed on something that works well for this round. We should see higher quality overall with the painted finish, though our quality disclaimer still applies.

 

Painted Bakeneko

New to this round are powder coated finishes. These finishes are a bit thicker than the painted finishes - which can be seen as a positive or negative - but offer more consistency. To start, we're going to offer a powder coated finish in white and black. We're calling the white powder coat "Whitish" - if you see it in isolation, it looks white, but it's definitely not as bright as our painted finish. To me, the black finish definitely looks and feels like a step up from our old painted finish, but not everyone will necessarily agree with that.

Whiteish Powder Coat Finish

We're going to continue to experiment with surface finishes. Some of the finishes we've found haven't really been seen in keyboards before, to the best of our knowledge, and we're excited to see how they might land when we reveal them. We hope to offer a variety of Bakenekos in different styles of painting, powder coating, and alternative methods of finishes, so that everyone can try to get something that matches their preference!

With all of this in mind - starting tomorrow, we're going to be releasing Bakenekos using a staggered approach. Each drop may have a few colors with a few styles of finishes, but don't worry - if you miss out, that color and finish will likely come back later (as long as there is demand). Tomorrow's drop will have primarily "Whitish" Powder Coated Bakeneko60s available for sale, though we will have a small number of painted Navy and painted Black boards available as well. Our hope is we can increase the frequency of these Bakeneko drops, but the options available in each drop may be a bit more limited than the original round.

Bakeneko65 is also coming, and will be subject to the same finishing and release patterns as Bakeneko60. The kit will be very similar - it has a single layout hotswap (and white LED backlit) PCB, FR4 plate, and will come with all the addons you've come to expect from CannonKeys keyboards. We will definitely have more information about the Bakeneko65 in the near future - so make sure you keep an eye out for future updates!

Overall - we're extremely excited for this new round of Bakenekos, and the expanded options we will be able to offer. We can’t wait to show you some of what we’ve been working on, and we hope everyone who wants a Bakeneko will be able to get one!

 

Bakeneko60 and Bakeneko65