Mass Production of Optimus Maximus Has Not Started

If you've been following news of the full-sized 113-keys Optimus Maximus keyboard with colour OLED screens (10.1mm² large with a 48x48 pixel resolution) located inside each key, you are probably aware of the bad news that is circulating one of the most revolutionary ideas in keyboard history. Since the initial pictures were posted, the product was priced quite ridiculously and the keys were made black and white to cut costs. Specially designed software is reportedly meant to be able to change images on the colour screens depending on the program running.

Now, Artemy Lebedev, chief executive of Art Lebedev Design studio, has admitted that mass production of the highly-anticipated device has not yet started, the design studio has yet to finalize the device, and that there is no driver. Earlier this year Art Lebedev promised to deliver the first 200 Optimus Maximus keyboards to customers on December 1st. It is unclear whether Art Lebedev will be able to deliver working Optimus Maximus keyboards to those who pre-ordered them for $1564 a piece back in May, 2006. In early October it transpired that the company may face shortages of certain components, which, in addition to some other factors, might cause delay of the product release.

View: Product Page
News source: Xbit Laboratories

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So many people have missed the point entirely, unfortunately.

It's not about fancy lights; it's not about fancy icons; it's all about usability.

Think about any major production/design/editting software - instead of finding functions buried deep down in menus, you would create a shortcut, a function key (not new) with easily recognizable icon (this is new). It will make anyone's life who works with these kinds of software a lot easier.

Avid makes a keyboard for its software thats only $120. I am sure you can get a custom keyboard for each production/design/editing program and the total cost will still be considerably less than $1500. So in the end it just looks cool. On top of that, most people that actually study how to use said programs never need to look at the keyboard to find shortcuts. You can make all the excuses you want, afterall, its your money.

Holly crap... I want to sell my arms and legs to get one of that...... :)
Anyway, I would love someone creates a touchscreen keyboard. You can program it to display diff keyboard layout. That would be cheaper

It just costs a lot because of the fact that each key is a OLED. If they just put the OLED on the F keys on top, and had the rest of the keys lit up, that would probably cut down the price to like $260 or less.

But I guess they wanted to simply make something that any language can adapt to.

if you check out fry's or micro center. they have the backlit keyboards. not microsoft ones. but they are pretty good and are about $50.

Saitek makes keyboards that are backlit. You can get them with blue or red LEDs and they cost about $50. I love the backlit keyboard on my Macbook Pro

this starts to sound like scam.. Who wants to bet that those who pre-ordered the keyboard won't see their money back?

Andre said,
Idiot. Art Lebedev Studio is a respected company. You don't really think they would run off with the money.

no, respectful company doesn't set unrealistic goals. Art Lebedev has not delivered a single product yet, however his company charged customers for pre-orders. I hope I'm wrong and people will get their 1.5k keyboards or at least their money back, but we shall see...

you can buy as many keyboards as you will need in a lifetime with that price!
looks good though. they should set the price to at least $100, nothing more.

I had to do a little research just now to know what an "Optimus Maximum" keyboard was, and it looks cool - but definitely NOT $1500. Keep it! I'm hoping that's just the starting price, and then it'll go down because nobody will buy it at this price. Anyone who is/will be buying it obviously doesn't have better things to spend their money on.

They clearly should just license it to a 3rd party like logictec to product it. Develop a standard API for setting the keys etc too... I've been hearing about this keybord for like 3 or 4 years...

pjak said,
good for multi-lingual, multi-user systems but not for the average joe's pc... ;)

as multi-lingual user, I wont even think about this =__= ... "maybe" I will if it was $150 not 1500 ...
but what ever ... as they said ... we don't even look at the keyboard anyway ...

sLm4ever said,
... as they said ... we don't even look at the keyboard anyway ...

Exactly. I have my keyboard set to switch from English to French by pressing Alt + Shift, I don't need to look at it.

$1,500 for keys that light up and neat little stickers?? I'm pretty sure I bought one of these for my niece last year, Fisher Price Little Haxor, $14.99...pre-lead.

The only situation that I could think of that justifies the OLED displays is "randomize keyboard layout every 10 minutes/1 hour/1 day/reboot", hehe.

In about 5 years time, these will be the norm. You'll be able to get them for $100 when OLED is standard on displays and prices of new tech just come right down. I'll wait.

Ooh, take a deep whiff, old computer veterans identify its rank odor instantly!


It brings back the heady days when Computer Shopper was 2 1/2" inches thick and the future was bright with possibilities that never panned out.

$1500 for reprogrammable key looks?


I don't even *look* at my keyboard when I type, so this would clearly be useless to me.

It sounds like Optimus Prime just had a tuned-up upgrade to the NEW MORE POWERFUL OPTIMUS MAXIMUS!!

This keyboard is ridiculous and total unnecessary, if you have $1564 and want to buy this, spend on a $100 keyboard and give $1464 to charity.

I loved the idea of this keyboard and it really did seem like a genius invention, but more and more it's starting to remind me of the phantom

freeza said,
If I had the money to buy one, I sure would!

NOT! for $1500 i can buy myself a standard keyboard, and a mouse, and some speakers oh. yeah. and before i forget. a gaming PC as well!!!


Id never pay $1500 for a keyboard, I dont care how fancy it is, Ill stick with my Microsoft OEM keyboard, thanks

Mystnight said,
Id never pay $1500 for a keyboard, I dont care how fancy it is, Ill stick with my Microsoft OEM keyboard, thanks :)
I am truly fu'king rich and I will buy one.