Esrille New Keyboard Review

By Xah Lee. Date: . Last updated: .

The Esrille New Keyboard came out around 2013.

Esrille keyboard 80052
Esrille New Keyboard, with Japanese labels.
Esrille keyboard 40445 s
Esrille New Keyboard 4032×3024 [image source reddit]

Esrille New Keyboard is from Japan, designed by Shiki Okasaka, from his company Esrille.

Total Key Count

Total key count: 76.

Each side has 38 keys. 6 are function keys, 6 are thumb keys.

Two Sizes of Keyboard

Esrille comes in 2 sizes:

The physical size of the whole keyboard is the same for both sizes.

Typing on Esrille New Keyboard

Typing on Esrille New Keyboard [source twitter nillpo]

Esrille New Keyboard Layouts

By default, the Esrille supports 3 English layouts: QWERTY, Dvorak, Colemak. [see Ergonomic Keyboard Layouts]

Esrille New Keyboard layout dvorak-2
Esrille New Keyboard layout Dvorak
Esrille New Keyboard layout fn layer-2
Esrille New Keyboard layout Fn layer

Japanese Input Layout M-type, TRON, Stickney Next, JIS Standard

The design of Esrille New Keyboard is much influenced by Japan's M-Type keyboard and TRON keyboard.

Esrille also supports several Japanese input layouts, including M-type and TRON.

[see Japanese Keyboard Layouts]

N Key Roll Over?

The max number of keys that can be pressed at the same time, is 6.

[see What's NKRO, N-key Rollover?]

Programable Keys?

You cannot program the keys easily.

However, the company provides instructions and tools to do so. Basically, you need to be a computer programer to do so.

Here's an excerpt from the company's site (as of 2017-11-02):

Q: How can I customize the firmware?

Take the following steps to customize the firmware for your NISSE:

See also: Programable Keyboards with Onboard Memory

Comparison and Alternatives

Esrille is among the many new keyboards invented after 2010. They have one feature in common: symmetric, many thumb keys, and mechanical keys.

Truly Ergonomic Keyboard vs Esrille New Keyboard 2015
Truly Ergonomic KeyboardEsrille New KeyboardElecom EX-G Trackball [image source twitter mobitant ]

Hands-On Review

Here's a review by jbm.

I have an Esrille NISSE and love it. I've been using it full time (6-10 hours a day, 5-6 days a week) since .

Side note: I believe I was actually the first person in the US to order one. It was before they were able to ship assembled boards internationally, so I ordered it as a kit and assembled it myself. I forget where I first saw it — maybe Xah Lee's blog - but the design was immediately appealing to me.

The other ergo boards I've used extensively are the Ergodox and Truly Ergonomic Keyboard. I like them all but the Esrille has been the best fit by a wide margin.

The things I like about all three are:

What I like about the Esrille above the other two:

Subjectively, I can tell you the Esrille is definitely the most comfortable for me. I used to experience some level of discomfort 1-3 out of most weeks, despite fairly good technique, regular exercise, breaks every couple hours, etc. I honestly don't remember the last time I experienced any discomfort typing since switching to the Esrille.

This is less important, since it's something you can always change, but I'll also mention that I've been very happy with the default layout on the Esrille, including the function layer. I fully expected to reconfigure things, just because I usually would, but in practice there hasn't been anything I've wanted to mess with.

As I'm sure you can tell, I'm a big fan, and would be very comfortable recommending it :)

Let me know if you have any questions about it — I'll be happy to answer any I can.


Esrille keyboard 1d102
Esrille keyboard [image source]

Where to Buy

if you buy this, tip me thanks

Japan keyboards

Esrille keyboard 40445-s289x217
Esrille New
Japan FKB8579 661 thumb shift keyboard 45474 s335x187
Thumb-Shift, 1980
NEC keyboard pk-kb015-s289x217
NEC M-Type, 1983
TRON Keyboard Unit TK1 s1520x831
TRON, 1986
NEC PC 8801 K1 keyboard bj3qh-s333x188
NEC PC-8801-KI, 1983
nec m-type keyboard 1990 36618-s278x225
NEC M-Type, 1990
NEC M-shiki keyboard NEC PC98 1992-s333x188
NEC PC-9801, 1992
scythe ergo diver keyboard left s289x217
Scythe Ergo Diver, ~2003
utron keyboard 02
μTRON, 2007

If you have a question, put $5 at patreon and message me.