Advantage360 Professional  (ZMK Bluetooth)

Support Resources

 

KB360-PRO-GBR

FAQs

Switching which device keystrokes are sent to?

By default, output is sent to USB when both USB and BLE are connected. Once you select a different output, it will be remembered until you change it again. The output behavior allows selecting whether keyboard output is sent to the USB or bluetooth connection when both are connected. This allows connecting a keyboard to USB for power but outputting to a different device over bluetooth.

Read How: https://zmk.dev/docs/behaviors/outputs

GitHub Merge Conflicts: Migrating a custom layout from Firmware branch 2.0 to 3.0

An unfortunate short-term drawback to releasing new firmware is that sometimes “breaking changes” are introduced which will require users to rebuild custom layouts on the new branch. We know how frustrating this is so we do our best to minimize those types of updates. The last V2.0 update and the new V3.0 branch have introduced changes into the keymap files that causes merge conflicts for people updating with custom keymaps.

Learn how best to manage merge conflicts here: https://github.com/KinesisCorporation/Adv360-Pro-ZMK/blob/V3.0/UPGRADE.md

How do I set the startup Bluetooth Profile on my keyboard?

The “startup” Profile (White, Blue, Green, Red) is “saved” any time the keyboard goes to sleep after the default 30 second timeout. To change the default Profile, simply used the command Mod + 1-5 to toggle to the desired Profile and then let the keyboard go to sleep naturally (do not power it down).

If you are using the keyboard in Wired mode the Profile is irrelevant since keystrokes will always be sent over USB to the connected device, but we recommend toggling to Profile 5 to disable the flashing Profile LED.

How should I charge my keyboards batteries?

The Advantage360 Pro uses a custom, rechargeable lithium-ion 1500 mAh battery.

Just connect each module to your PC using the included charging cables. A full charge should take 6-8 hours and when the keyboard is connected to a power source it will run off of USB power. The batteries are designed to last for 3+ years depending on how often they are charged. Like all batteries their max capacity will wear down over time. We plan to offer OEM replacement batteries for sale down the road. Note: If you are charging the left module it will only be able to send keystrokes to the computer to which it is connected.

Charging and Safety

For best results connect the keyboard modules directly to a USB-A port on your PC. Do not connect them to a wall-charger, power-brick, or monitor port. Those charging methods can damage the battery, void your warranty, and potentially render the keyboard unsafe.

Battery Life

Battery usage will vary from user-to-user and will depend greatly on your settings.  To extend your battery life try dimming the backlighting using the command Mod + Down Arrow, or turn off the backlighting completely using the command Mod + Enter. The battery is only rated for a given number of charge cycles so we recommend charging the battery only when necessary to maximize its life span.

To check the current battery charge level, use the command Mod + Hotkey 4 and the indicator LEDs will display the status of each battery (Note: It is normal for the left side to need more frequent recharging)

  • Green: More than 80%
  • Yellow: 51-79%
  • Orange: 21-50%
  • Red: Less than 20% (Charge soon)

Note: Windows 11 battery level functionality is not currently supported.

Battery end of life

All Lithium-Ion batteries like those used in the Advantage360 Pro eventually reach their end of life. The battery will stop holding a charge and it may even expand and press the keyboard case apart. If you notice that your battery is expanding, please stop using the keyboard, turn the power switch off and contact Kinesis immediately. We recommend replacing your battery every three years for maximum safety and performance.

For more information on battery specs and safety, please see section 8.5 of the User Manual above for detailed information on battery specs, safety, performance.

Which version of firmware should I run?

We recommend always using the latest branch (i.e., the highest number if there are multiple branches available) and version of firmware, and keep your fork “synced” to obtain the benefit of the latest features and fixes. In January of 2024 we introduced a major firmware update to the 3.0 branch which has addressed main long-standing issues with connectivity between the keyboard and PC, and between the left and right modules. If you have experienced any connectivity problems we recommend updating your keyboard to the latest version.

Periodically we will introduce a new “beta” branch which may have experimental features. Once those features are field-tested we will incorporated them into the main branch.

For more information on branches and a full changelog, you can read more here:

https://github.com/KinesisCorporation/Adv360-Pro-ZMK/blob/V3.0/CHANGELOG.md

How do I switch between Windows, Mac, and PC mode, or Dvorak?

The Advantage360 has done away with what were previously known as Thumb Key Modes and the included Dvorak layout. But you can still customize any of the keys in any of the different layers however you see fit.

If you don’t want to learn how to customize your keyboard on Github, you can use the new Quick Config files available below to access Mac Mode, PC Mode, and Dvorak. Note: These files are not customizable so if you want to further customize your layout, you will need to build it from scratch.

Advantage360 Professional

How do I remap a key or create a macro?

The Advantage360 Pro does not support onboard programming and is designed for power-users only. Remaps and Macros are created by creating a GitHub account and then editing the keyboard configuration files on GitHub or by using our Keymap Editor. GitHub will then build custom firmware files specific to your settings and layout which then need to be flashed directly to the keyboard. Please consult the full User’s Manual for detailed instructions.

Note: ZMK supports basic text string macros of up to 64 characters.

If onboard programming or complex macros are an important feature for you, please contact Kinesis to see about exchanging your 360 Pro for the Smarset model.

How do I update my keyboard after making changes on GitHub?

Each time you update your keymap with new remaps or macros or use the Keymap Editor GUI , you will need to download a new set of left and right firmware files from GitHub and flash them to the corresponding keyboard module. Step-by-step instructions are available at the top of the page.

Advantage360 Professional

How should I clean my keyboard?

Basic Cleaning

Basic cleaning should be performed regularly by using compressed air to remove any loose debris in the key wells.

Deep Cleaning

A more thorough cleaning is possible, but take care not to damage the keyboard by getting it wet or forcing off the keycaps. Unplug the keyboard and remove all the individual keycaps to gain access to the keywell, which can collect lots of dirt after time. Use the included keycap removal tool and grab two sides of the keycap and pull straight up. If you no longer have the keycap removal tool you can purchase one on Amazon or use two paperclips bent into the shape of a “J”.

  • Soak the loose keycaps in warm soapy water lightly scrub to remove any gunk. Rinse the keycaps and let them thoroughly dry.
  • Use compressed air to remove any loose debris in the key wells and use cotton swabs with rubbing alcohol to remove gunk.
  • Use a microfiber cloth and a small amout rubbing alcohol to clean the outer plastic keyboard case.

Do not reconnect the keyboard to your PC until it is thoroughly dry.

Where are the media keys?

There are no multimedia keys in the default Advantage 360 layout but you can add any number of media actions to any key in any layer via GitHub. Please consult the User Manual for step-by-step directions.

View the full list of supported actions here: https://zmk.dev/docs/codes/

Note: Use the consumer media tokens that start with “C_” instead of the keyboard tokens that start with “K_”. Note that not all actions are supported on all operating systems.

How do I get F13-F24 and/or the International keys to work?

By default this keyboard has NKRO enabled, however for compatibility reasons the higher ranges are not enabled. If you want to use F13-F24 or the INTL1-9 keys with NKRO enabled you can change CONFIG_ZMK_HID_KEYBOARD_EXTENDED_REPORT=n to CONFIG_ZMK_HID_KEYBOARD_EXTENDED_REPORT=y in adv360_left_defconfig. Then “commit changes” and flash the new firmware to your keyboard.

Troubleshooting

If your Advantage360 Professional is not working as expected, you have several options.

Step 1: Reference the FAQs above and the Troubleshooting Tips at right for targeted tips.

Step 2: Power cycling both modules is a common fix:

  1. Disconnect the RIGHT module from your PC and use the battery-power switch to power it down (slide towards the USB port)
  2. Then disconnect the LEFT module from your PC and use the battery-power to power it down (slide towards the USB port)
  3. Wait 5 seconds and then connect the LEFT module to your PC or use the battery-power switch to power it on (slide away from the USB port)
  4. Wait 5 more seconds for LEFT module to fully wake up, and then connect the RIGHT module to your PC or use the battery-power switch to power it on (slide away from the USB port)
  5. Repeat 2-3 times in the above order as needed

Step 3: Install the latest version of factory default firmware available below. Note: A major update was released in January 2024 to address connectivity issues.

Step 4: Talk to some power users on the ZMK Discord and or post a new Issue to Github.

Step 5: If you still need help, use the link at the bottom of the page to submit a Trouble Ticket to Kinesis.

 

Trouble keeping my keyboard connected to my computer

The Advantage360 Professional users Bluetooth Low Energy  (“BLE”) wireless connectivity technology between the left and right modules, and the left module and the host computer. Compared to “Classic Bluetooth”, Bluetooth Low Energy is intended to provide considerably reduced power consumption and cost while maintaining a similar communication range. All major mobile and desktop operating systems natively support Bluetooth Low Energy, but desktop performance for BLE tends to lag behind Classic Bluetooth presently.

Our customers report the best performance on Linux machines, with Windows second, and Mac lagging in third. Some users have reported issues connecting (or staying connected) to their PC (especially Mac). Bluetooth can be quirky and ZMK is improving but not perfect. Some issues can be exacerbated by bad practices and environmental variables. Operating System updates can change Bluetooth drivers or settings which can cripple connectivity until we are able to push out a patch. Defective keyboard hardware is possible, but rare.

If you are having difficulty, try deleting the connection and re-pairing the keyboard to the host device from scratch. Deleting the connection is a two step process that involves 1) Clearing the connection for the desired Profile (1-5) ON THE KEYBOARD using the Mod + Windows command and 2) Forgeting/Removing the connection for the keyboard ON THE PC.

Bluetooth drivers are implemented differently on each O/S and some versions are more and less compatible with the Zephyr Bluetooth Stack on which ZMK is built. If you are having trouble with your connection we recommend experimenting with a 3rd party Bluetooth dongle that can connect to your PC. We recommended the TP Link UB4A (Available from Amazon).

Kinesis is continuing to research ways to improve the connectivity experience for our customers and we are regularly pushing out new builds with new features and fixes. You can always sync your fork and rebuild your firmware on the latest version, or you can download the latest factory default firmware below for a quick and easy test

As of January 16, 2024 we  launched a new production firmware version that should improve connectivity issues for many users. For general connectivity issues, we prefer that you submit an “Issue” on GitHub so our engineers can hear directly from you.

https://github.com/KinesisCorporation/Adv360-Pro-ZMK/issues

 

My GitHub build is failing...

Unfortunately Kinesis is not able to troubleshoot custom firmware builds, but here are some common problems we’ve heard about:

  • You have an incomplete key binding
  • You have an empty macro
  • You are trying to implement a feature that is not currently supported in Kinesis’ branch of ZMK

Tip: The best bet to troubleshoot a failed build is to revert all the way back to the default layout, and then add each change incrementally and run a build to identify exactly where the failure is occurring.

 

Keyboard is typing numbers instead of letters

Check the new Layer LEDs to see if you have inadvertently toggled into the Keypad Layer.

  • If the Layer LED is OFF then you are in the Base Layer and the keyboard should be behaving normally.
  • If the Layer LED is WHITE then you are in the Keypad Layer (where the numerical keypad resides). Tap the Kp key once to toggle back to the Base Layer.
  • If the Layer LED is Blue then you have gotten “stuck” in the new Fn Layer (where the F1-F12 keys reside). Press both of the new Fn “pinky” keys simultaneously to toggle back to the Base Layer.
  • If the Layer LED is Green then you have gotten “stuck” in the new Mod Layer (where the programming commands reside). Power cycle the keyboard to revert to the Base Layer.

If keys continue to output incorrectly please submit a Trouble Ticket to Kinesis.

Keyboard is non-responsive
  1. Connect the both modules to a PC via the included cables and see if keys output to that PC normally. If they do not, let the keyboard charge for 60 minutes to see if you simply have a dead battery or a more serious problem. If the keyboard works over USB than you may just need to charge the battery (each module has its own rechargeable battery…).
  2. If the batteries are charged and the keyboard is still having problems, connect the modules to your PC using the included USB cables and use a paper clip to try mounting the virtual drives to your PC. If you can get the drives open, try flashing Kinesis factory default firmware using the files and instructions found on this page.
  3. If the drives are not response, please submit a Trouble Ticket to Kinesis.

 

Keyboard is not sending key strokes to the correct device

The keyboard will always send keystrokes to whichever computer the left module is plugged into, regardless of profile or pairing status. If you want to send key strokes to a device wirelessly, the keyboard cannot be connected to any other computer via the USB cable.

My computer doesn't have Bluetooth

If your computer doesn’t have native support for Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) devices you have several options:

  1. Connect the Left Module to your PC using the included charging cable and use the Pro exclusively as a “wired” keyboard. You will still need to plug in the right module to your PC periodically to charge the battery, but otherwise you will have full functionality.
  2. Purchase a 3rd party Bluetooth dongle that can connect to your PC. Finding a dongle that will work well with your PC and our keyboard can be tricky but we recommended the TP Link UB4A (Available from Amazon).
  3. Return the Pro and get the base model Advantage360 which is optimized for a wired USB connection.
Right Side LEDs are flashing Red

When all three of the right module LEDs are flashing Red is means the right module cannot locate the left module. That could be because the Left module is Off, has a dead battery, or is out of range.

  1. But sometimes the left and right side can just temporarily lose touch with each other. If this happens, the quickest fix is to power cycle both modules using the step-by-step instructions at left
  2. In some instances, it may be necessary to manually re-sync the modules. Follow the instructions below to flash the Settings Reset file and then install the desired firmware files.
Backlighting is flickering?

Certain users may perceive a subtle flicker in the backlight at lower intensity levels. Try using the combination Mod + Arrow Up to increase the brightness until the flicker goes away. If that doesn’t work, you can manually edit the configuration files on Github to change the brightness settings. See Section 5.4 in the User Manual for detailed instructions.

 

Trouble Pairing: Profile LED is flashing slowly

When the Profile LED flashes slowly it means that the keyboard has stored a bluetooth connection for the active Profile (1-5), but that particular PC is not in range. Check that PC and confirm that it is powered on and bluetooth is enabled. If that doesn’t work, you should remove the keyboard from the device in it’s bluetooth menu AND then use the bluetooth clear command on the keyboard (Mod + Windows) and try re-pairing from scratch.

If you are trying to pair a new device, use the shortcuts Mod + 1/2/3/4/5 to load one of the other 5 “Profiles”. Each Profile can only be paired with a single device at a time.

Trouble Pairing: Profile LED is flashing rapidly

When the Profile LED is flashing rapidly it means the keyboard has not been paired over Bluetooth in the active Profile (1-5), but is currently “discoverable”. Toggle to a different Profile (Mod + 1-5) to re-establish the connection with another device or simply pair the keyboard from your bluetooth enabled device.

Trouble Pairing: Won't reconnect to previously paired device

If you are having difficulty connecting or reconnecting to a previous paired device, please follow these steps:

  1. Use the Bluetooth Clear command (Mod + Windows Key) to forget any previously paired devices associated with the active Profile
  2. Visit your PC’s Bluetooth menu and forget/remove any previous connections to the “Adv360Pro”

Once you’ve cleared the connection both at the keyboard and PC level, try pairing again from scratch.

Caps Lock, Num Lock, Scroll Lock not working

Not all operating systems support sending this status over Bluetooth, sorry!

Dual-boot systems

Unforunately because of the way the keyboard “registers” itself with the host-PC, it is not possible to pair the keyboard with both operating systems in a dual-boot environment, regardless of Profile selection.

The best workaround is using one O/S wired and the other O/S over Bluetooth.

One user has found a potential workaround for using both devices wirelessly:

https://hoelter.prose.sh/kinesis-advantage-360-bluetooth-dualboot

Battery life and charging

Based on real-word usage, you should see the following life-expectancies but these can vary based on how many hours a day you are using the keyboard:

  • Backlighting enabled: 3-4 weeks on a full charge (Note: there are 5 brightness settings you can choose from to extend battery life)
  • Backlighting disabled: 6-8 weeks on a full charge

If you are getting significantly less than the above times, please leave the keyboard plugged in over night and then perform the Battery Status Command (Mod + HK4) the next morning. If the indicator LEDs don’t illuminate Green please submit a Trouble Ticket to Kinesis.

Temporary Disconnects

The January 2024 update introduced an important fix to address issues caused by the latest Intel Bluetooth drivers. Unfortunately there seems to be a fundamental incompatibility between the configurations that are optimal for Intel and those for macOS. If you are running the latest firmware and experience intermittent malfunctions/disconnects on macOS (or other systems), please make the change below:

Change CONFIG_ZMK_BLE_EXPERIMENTAL_FEATURES=y to CONFIG_ZMK_BLE_EXPERIMENTAL_FEATURES=n in adv360_left_defconfig and adv360_right_defconfig

Further discussion on this issue can be found here: https://github.com/KinesisCorporation/Adv360-Pro-ZMK/issues/349#issuecomment-1901919337

Custom Programming Overview

The Advantage360 Professional uses the open-source ZMK programming engine which is incredibly powerful, but also incredibly complex. Reprogramming the layout or settings requires creating a GitHub account and then compiling and flashing your own custom firmware file. This page provides a brief overview of features and funtionality. Those wishing to customize their keyboard  should consult the full User Manual above for detailed instructions.

Note: If you only want to enable a basic Mac Mode, PC Mode, or Dvorak layout you can bypass the Github process and download pre-configured firmware files below.

Setup your GitHub account

  1. Set up a new GitHub.com account or log in to your existing account.
  2. Visit the”Adv360-Pro-ZMK” Repository and use the button to “Fork” your own copy.
  3. Navigate to the “Actions” tab of your new “Repo” and click the “Enable Workflows” button.

Now that you have your own personal GitHub Repo setup, there are two ways to customize your keyboard:

  1. Direct Editing configuration files on GitHub
  2. Using our Graphical Keymap Editor

Direct Editing Configuration Files

Navigate to the “Code” tab of your Repo and open the “config” folder to access the various configuration files to 1) customize the layout (“adv360.keymap”), 2) write/edit macros (“macros.dtsi”), or 3) change keyboard settings (“adv360_left_deconfig”).

 

Graphical Keymap Editor

The Advantage360 Pro Keymap Editor is an open-source, web-based application originally created by Nick Coutsos. You can use the editor to 1) customize the layout and 2) write/edit macros (changing keyboard settings is not currently supported).

Adv360 Pro GUI

Visit the Keymap Editor

Note: Not all features may be supported in the Keymap Editor.

Access your Personal Firmware Files

Once you have customized your layout or settings, you will need to click the “Commit Changes”  button to tell GitHub to build your custom firmware files. Once you have done that, navigate back to the Actions tab of your Github Repo and download your files (Note: builds can take several minutes to complete). Once you have your firmware files in hand, follow the update instructions at the top of this page to flash your new firmware onto each keyboard module.

Videos

Firmware and Reset Files

Your Advantage360 Pro has been programed with the latest version of firmware as of its factory build date. But updates to fix bugs and add new features are being released regularly. You can customize firmware from GitHub or access “Factory Default” firmware and Quick Configs from this page. The firmware update process on the 360 Pro is very different from other Kinesis keyboards. Step-by-step firmware flashing instructions can be found at the top of the page.

Legacy Quick Config Firmware Files (***NEW Files Featuring Jan 2024 Connectivity Enhancements***)

Looking for a quick way to enable legacy layouts like PC Mode, Mac Mode, or a Dvorak. Download one of these firmware files and use the instructions above to flash the keyboard. Note: These files are not customizable.

Factory Default Firmware

On January 16, 2024 Kinesis rolled out a major update to the 360 Pro Firmware to improve the stability of the connection between Keyboard and PC, and between the left and right modules. You can “Sync Your Fork” on GitHub or download the factory default version here.  If you are having problems with your keyboard or just want to revert to the default layout and settings, you can install the latest version of factory firmware.

Reset File

If the left and right key modules are not communicating properly as indicated by the right module’s LEDs flashing Red, you may need to reset the “sync” connection. Before you try a reset, make sure to power cycle each module several times to see if that restores the connection. To reset the keyboard, follow the step-by-step Reset instructions at the top of the page.

Note: A Settings Reset also erases the connections between your keyboard and any paired computers, so you will need to re-pair the keyboard with each computer. 

Warranty

Advantage360 Keyboards are sold with a THREE YEAR limited warranty

Submit a Trouble Ticket

Not finding your answer?

Submit a trouble ticket and a support technician will respond to you in a timely manner.

We are happy to issue a Return Merchandise Authorization for confirmed hardware defects but before we do so we will need to run through a series of troubleshooting steps with you and we may require that you install the latest version of firmware.

Please note: The Advantage360 keyboard uses the open-source ZMK engine and is not designed for novice users. Kinesis Technical Support can help point you in the right direction and provide written documentation, but we cannot provide individualized ZMK training and custom programming help. 

©2024 KINESIS
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