14 Replies Latest reply: Mar 24, 2014 10:26 AM by aiwann
Adam72 Level 1 Level 1
So I bought a new full size aluminum keyboard from apple. Totally great design, except that the volume keys are perplexing me. Apple, in its infinite wisdom, has moved the volume keys to F10, F11 and F12, instead of above the keypad where they used to be.

There's apparently no way I can figure out how to move these volume keys back to the old places which are easier to use.

But even if they couldn't move, the big problem I'm having is when I use Final Cut Pro. I map the function keys F1 through F9. However, I CANNOT map any of these keys unless I check the keyboard control panel box to use the function keys as "standard function keys". This is great except that when I check this, I can no longer adjust the volume with the volume keys without holding down the "FN" key. I adjust the volume a LOT while working with video. So holding the FN key each time to adjust or mute the volume is VERY VERY ANNOYING.

So here's the question, is there a solution to this or are the Apple Engineers giving their users the middle finger? I've called Apple and they have no answers. Awesome.


Mac Pro, Mac OS X (10.5.8)
  • EOakley Level 1 Level 1
    I don't have a resolution to this issue; just adding another post to this thread in hopes of someone reading with an answer.

    Apple products rock, but this is an annoying issue that seems so simple to fix. I have read about a work-around with scripts, but I don't want to write a script for a simple key map.
  • Adam72 Level 1 Level 1
    If anyone else is annoyed by this problem, PLEASE comment!

    I'm more than a little floored that the new Apple keyboard is LESS functional than the old one!
  • afterglow Level 1 Level 1
    I'm with you on this. I love the feel of the new alum keyboard having moved from chunky plastic keyboard but really, it's crazy that if you make function keys programmable the volume stops working.
  • turtlenecknz Level 1 Level 1
    Yup... this is also driving me bonkers. FCP conflicts with the function keys. I can remap the dock and Exposé keys i use... but no way to remap the volume to the now redundant function keys above the numeric keypad. Come on Apple... must be a simple update to system prefs?
  • turtlenecknz Level 1 Level 1
    BTW... just found a solution/workaround....I tried a few keyboard remapping apps... I settled on Spark:


    ...and remapped the three volume controls to F13 - F15. Spark also allows you to run the onscreen volume slider icons and volume feedback sound (although the volume feedback sound doesn't seem to work...yet)

    Now just need some new keyboard stickers.

  • howardc64 Level 1 Level 1
    I'm using spark on 10.4.11 with the Aluminum wireless keyboard. Various keyboard updates all require >= 10.5 and this is my son's iMac G4 which runs better on 10.4.11

    I got F10-F12 to work with volume control using spark. But I also get no feedback sound. It seems checking the feedback sound option in spark isn't sticky across a reboot (which is how I load and run the new settings)

    F12 also maps to disc eject if you hold it down just a tad longer. googled around and seems like others have the same problem on 10.4.11 without any solutions
  • Roy Sinclair Level 1 Level 1

    I have just bought a new keyboard for my Mac running OSX 10.5.8 (I have reasons for sticking with this) and have been pulling my hair out for hours, googling everything in sight, trying to find out how to correctly assign my function keys. Spark has solved my problem completely, allowing me to correctly map the volume and media controls to the F7 to F12 keys. Thank you for posting this tip


    Keywords to help others find this thread...

    new keyboard

    function keys not working

    increase volume

    decrease volume



    F11 F12

    OSX 10.5.8

  • danitosan Level 1 Level 1

    I've found the solution:


    Prefs > Keyboard > Keyboard tab


    Deselect the first checkbox "Use function keys as standard function keys.. " (don't know the text in English).



    Et voilà!


    PS: Why Apple abandoned Support? Nobody answering anymore. RIP Apple.

  • TOAO Level 1 Level 1

    There is one method that does not require any third party software or system preference modifications.


    There are two versions of the Apple aluminum keyboard.


    The MB110LL/A.

    The MB110LL/B.


    The MB110LL/A is completely compatible with Leopard without modification.

    The MB110LL/A is discontinued but some are still hanging around.


    The MB110LL/B will function as a keyboard under Leopard but the "F" keys do not operate correctly unless modified. (including the Volume keys)


    The MB110LL/A aluminum keyboard was initially released as a keyboard for existing systems.

    It was followed by the MB110LL/B as a cross platform keyboard for Snow Leopard and above including "i" devices. (Intel machines)


    I tested both versions on Leopard and use the MB110LL/A only.

    I use the MB110LL/B on my Snow Leopard and above machines.


    One way to determine the identification is in the F1 to F4 keys.

    The "A" version has a round meter gauge on the F4 key.

    The "B" version has six little rectangles on the F4 key.


    Message was edited by: TOAO

  • gone_fishing Level 1 Level 1

    @TOAO: Thanks, your info did two things at once.


    1. We have 5 of those keyboards in total (German Layout), 2 of them with the gauge (older), 3 of them with Rectangles. I just had attached one of the newer ones to my trusty G5 (whose original keyboard has now several defunct keys) on 10.5.8 and was dumbstruck because the keys didn't work. I switched with one of the /A keyboards and ALL of the keys now work.


    2. (not-related to OSX) They keyboards are also attached to Linux/Windows machines and we use kernel parameteres hid_apple.fnmode AND hid_apple.iso_layout to control both the fn set (F-keys or special keys) and the setting of °/^-key vs <>-key. Up to now I had not been able to figure out why the same settings work on 3 machines but have to be reversed on the other two on identical hardware. You gave me the answer: the hardware is NOT identical, it shows even on the G5: when I connect the /B version then ^/° produces <> (inverted from what is printed on the keys), but the /A produces exactly what the keys show.


    Thanks to you and everybody on this thread.





    p.s. I just wonder what to do, if the G5 survives this keyboard as well...

  • TOAO Level 1 Level 1

    I had another unrelated keyboard problem that gave me a tiny bit of information.


    (QPI would not connect to keyboard on start and restart, Apple updated the SMC to fix this problem but only on the new Ash Can Mac Pros, older Mac Pros are simply out of luck)


    In this process I was shipped a replacement keyboard for free as a troubleshooting test.

    I was sent the wrong keyboard as luck would have it.

    In this case the wrong keyboard was the "A" model and my Mac Pro uses the "B" model.


    The tiny bit of information I received is that Apple defines the "A" model as "Keyboard, Extended, Wired (2007)" and the "B" model as "Keyboard, Extended, Wired (2011)".

    This can be helpful.

    You can contact Apple and request the 2007 model as a replacement part.... OR.... use the serial number from an older Mac and request a replacement keyboard.

    This will allow you to purchase a spare "A" model. ($50-$60)

    (it also helps to know the model number of the keyboard but not much because Apple does not seem to have that as a reference)


    How long the 2007 model will be available requires a crystal ball but we can bet that it won't be around forever.

    The writing is on the wall.


    You can no longer purchase a compatible Apple Monitor for ANY Mac Pro previous to 2013.


    Since the new model keyboard is incompatible (or nearly) with older machines and there is no Apple monitor compatible with older machines, the writing on the wall says.... you MUST purchase a new Mac if ANY peripheral fails.

    (management calls this.... "doing good business")


    To answer your question.

    If a peripheral fails and your computer is still fully functional, you are out of luck IF.... you did not buy compatible spares when they were available.

    I certainly did. (I bought both original keyboard and aluminum "A" model spares as well as three 27" DisplayPort monitors.... Displayport monitors work with Thunderbolt machines -  Thunderbolt monitors do Not work with DisplayPort machines.... its One-Way Street)

  • aiwann Level 1 Level 1

    you just save my life!!