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Altar I February 2024 progress report
Published 28 February 2024 at 16:00GMT

With the pilot assembly programme successfully concluded, the final Altar I parts are now in full production — once they arrive assembly can begin. The latest estimate for pre-orders to begin delivery is April 2024.

Unboxing + typing

Now that we have a few Altar I units complete, we can begin to show them off:

Special attention was paid to the unboxing experience. One difficult problem to solve was eliminating plastic from the packaging. One new addition is the custom tape on the outside of the shipping box, which is made from reinforced paper.

Pilot assembly programme complete

The pilot assembly programme — where a small number of units were fully finished — has now concluded. We learned a huge amount, including the optimal assembly process, issues to look out for in QA, and identified a few areas for improvement. We'll apply all these learnings to the full assembly process.

Full production of final parts

The final remaining parts are now in full production and should begin to arrive in the next few weeks. Once these parts arrive we can begin assembling pre-orders.

Hardware updates

As previously mentioned, a couple of issues came up during pilot assembly, and these have now been addressed.

Firstly, the orange tip of the knob will now be a hard plastic instead of silicone. This is to ensure the knob stays in place, as silicone was too soft and difficult to bond. The new knob material also has a more reassuring feel.

Secondly, the access hatch (the plastic cover on the underside of the Altar I monobody) has been tweaked to fix some fitting issues that were discovered during pilot assembly.


The latest estimate for Altar I pre-orders beginning to ship is April 2024. Depending on your order number, however, your unit could arrive later. Orders will be shipped out in the order they were received (i.e. people who ordered first will be sent their units first).

Phased assembly process

One learning from the pilot assembly programme was that the optimal way to assemble Altar I in large volumes is in two main phases. Firstly, the electronic subassembly (PCB, plate, switches) is created, and then this subassembly is joined with the enclosure and keycaps in a second step. This is followed by QA, and then the unit is packed and shipped. This is the process we'll use for pre-orders.

What's next

Focus is now on getting remaining production parts finished. Once this is finished we can move on to assembly. We hope to begin putting together electronic subassemblies around the end of March. Then we'll finish the units and begin shipping them out around April.