I remember Binge mentioning the :~$ynth late last year. I admit, I was a bit perplexed about how an artisan like KeyKollectiv would utilize a tool like this. Over the course of a year, we developed and fine-tuned methods that fit our workflow. Introducing a new tool like :~$ynth seemed superfluous at best. Despite this sentiment, the concept intrigued us and we felt it would be a disservice to ourselves if we didn’t explore the possibilities.
We were fortunate enough to receive our :~$ynths a little earlier. Having watched Binge’s tutorial, we had a good understanding on how to properly utilize it. The first thing we noticed was how polished the :~$ynth was. We could tell that a lot of thought was put into its design. Considerations such as proper spruing, registration marks and cruciform stamp was a good sign that the :~$ynth was created with the maker in mind.
The :~$ynth exceeded our expectations in form, but what about function? Any artisan that has had the pleasure of making MX molds knows, all too well, the variance of fitment. From our experiences, creating a base template with SP DSA’s or GMK’s produced Cherry stems with ample fit. However, the same could not be said of Gateron or Imsto PBT keycaps. Naturally, this was a point of concern when we started experimenting with the :~$ynth. I admit, there was skepticism when it came to using the cruciform stem stamp. Luckily, after vigorous testing, we’re happy to conclude that this tool was able to allay any doubts of fitment.
Setup was easy and felt intuitive for us as fairly experienced casters. The :~$ynth provides a solid baseline template to create precision keycaps. Simply put, it's a powerful tool for veterans and beginners alike. Furthermore, having made efforts to source CNC’ed masters in the past, I can safely say that the price point is more than reasonable for the functionality that it provides.