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View Poll Results: What kind of switch do you use/prefer in a mechanical keyboard?
Cherry Blue - tactile, moderate force, quite clicky/noisy 5 33.33%
Cherry Black - linear, moderate force, a bit quieter click 0 0%
Cherry Red - linear, light force, a bit quieter click 1 6.67%
Cherry Brown - tactile, moderate force, moderately clicky/noisy 7 46.67%
I don't own a mechanical keyboard 0 0%
My keyboard doesn't match with a poll option / 42 2 13.33%
Voters: 15. You may not vote on this poll

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  #1  
Old 04-08-2019, 02:52 PM
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Default Mechanical keyboards - what type of switch do you use?

Curiously seeing if there is an discussion to be had about mechanical keyboards (or mechanical vs membrane). I just bought a new mechanical keyboard last night and did some quick research beforehand. Copying a quick excerpt from the following Tom's Guide article (part of the Tom's Hardware website family). Feel free to add some background on why you prefer one switch over the other and for the different purposes you prefer a certain switch. I also included an excerpt on membrane vs mechanical keyboards for those who aren't as familiar in the tech specs at the bottom of the post.

https://www.tomsguide.com/us/mechani...view-4154.html
Quote:
Linear vs. Tactile
Two words you'll need to know in order to get the most out of this guide are "linear" and "tactile." Almost every mechanical switch is one or the other, and the difference between the two types is easy to understand. To actuate a linear switch, you must push it all the way down, like a membrane key. To actuate a tactile switch, you usually push it about halfway down; you can continue pressing the key after that, but you can also take your finger off and move to the next key right away.


Some aficionados argue that linear switches are better for gaming, while tactile switches are better for typing. I have no particular feelings on this debate, having successfully used both linear and tactile switches for both purposes.


Cherry MX

Cherry MX switches are the gold standard for mechanical keyboards. If a manufacturer doesn't use authentic Cherry switches, you can bet that the company will do its best to imitate them. There's no single magical quality that makes Cherries so comfortable and responsive — just good, old-fashioned German engineering and versatility.

Cherries come in a variety of colors, but these are the main ones you'll see:

Cherry MX Reds are some of the most widespread switches out there, and for good reason. These linear switches require 45 grams of force to actuate. The light touch makes them a good choice for both gaming and typing. The keys are also very quiet, particularly the MX Red Silent variant, which makes them good for office environments or crowded houses.

Cherry MX Blacks are linear switches that are very similar to Reds, save that they require 60 g of force to actuate. They feel a little more resistant than Reds, and are also available in a Silent variant.

Cherry MX Browns are some of the most popular switches in gaming keyboards. Browns are tactile switches that require 45 g of force to activate. They don't make much sound, and spring back very quickly after actuation.

Cherry MX Blues are "clicky" switches, meaning they make audible clicking noises every time you depress them, like typewriters of old. Some users find the noise gratifying; others find it insufferable. You won't know until you try. Cherry MX Blues require 50 g of actuation force.

Cherry MX Speed or Silver switches are built with gamers in mind. Like Reds, Cherry MX Speeds are linear switches that require 45 g of actuation force. Unlike Reds, though, they travel only 1.2 mm rather than the standard 2 mm. This theoretically lets gamers pound keys faster — helpful in genres like MOBA (League of Legends, Dota 2) and MMO (World of Warcraft, Star Wars: The Old Republic), where skills are constantly refreshing.

There are other types of Cherry keys out there, like the extra-clicky Greens and the resistant Clears, but those varieties are not as common as the ones listed above.
Since I know some people will have Razer or Logitech mechanical keyboards with the companies' own switches in there, for the purposes of the poll let's just say that Razer Green = Cherry Blue, Razer Orange = Cherry Brown, Razer Yellow = Cherry Red. For other company switches, simply vote based on the feel of the switch (linear+light force = Cherry Red, linear+heavier force = Cherry Black, tactile and clicky = Cherry Blue, tactile but not as clicky = Cherry Brown).

Membrane vs Mechanical brief overview
Spoiler:

https://www.daskeyboard.com/blog/mec...eyboard-guide/
Quote:
Membrane vs. Mechanical
Most inexpensive keyboards, like the ones that come with computers, utilize a flexible membrane layer beneath the keys. When you press a key, it causes the membrane to press down and make contact with a bottom layer. This allows current to flow “closing” the switch so that the parent device registers the key press. The biggest problem with this type of keyboard is that you have to completely depress the key, also known as “bottoming out.” There is also little to no tactile feedback. Without tactile feedback it is very difficult to type without bottoming out every keystroke, causing over-exertion and finger/hand fatigue that can lead to carpal tunnel syndrome. Mechanical keyboards, however, use a switch underneath every key. Depending on the type of switch, they have a variety of response and travel times. Key switches will be explained in full detail in future installments, but the differences amongst them include the tactile feel and audible click each produces. Switches on a mechanical keyboard are made to last up to 50 million keystrokes. Think about how often you press a single key, and you’ll realize that’s a long time! Compare that to membrane switches, which typically last around 5-10 million keystrokes, and you’ll see why the initial investment in a mechanical keyboard is well worth it. A mechanical keyboard is the only keyboard with the capability to register all keys at one time (PS/2 permitting), also known as full N-Key Rollover. This is helpful for folks who type really fast and need to be able to hit keys in quick succession. Gamers who need to mash key combos quickly to frag their enemy also benefit. Try it on a membrane keyboard and you may be the one fragged. Certainly the clicking sound on a mechanical keyboard can be an acquired taste, but what is interesting is how many people find it relaxing. You get the rhythm of clicking while you type and often it is a calming sound. Some people find that listening to the clicks helps them create a faster typing speed. Plus, not having to bottom out with each key allows you to move to the next letter more quickly with less energy wasted. Try it for yourself and see if it doesn’t make a difference in how quickly you type.

Last edited by dancran1220; 04-08-2019 at 02:59 PM..
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Old 04-08-2019, 02:55 PM
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I use whatever I happen to have. But I'm interested in possibly getting a better keyboard, so I'll watch this thread.
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Old 04-08-2019, 02:56 PM
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I'm not a gamer, but I use a cherry mx blue switch keyboard at the office, because I'm that coworker. I asked before I brought it in if anyone around me minded, and no one did. Most of them have headphones in when they're at their desks.

I love it. It's so gratifying.
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Old 04-08-2019, 02:58 PM
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My typo rate has gone way down with a mechanical keyboard, but that's not why I enjoy it so much.
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:00 PM
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I've had cherry browns on my home keyboard for the last 6-7 years and really like them. I'd like to have one at the office but I think I'd be too self conscious of my loud clicking.
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:00 PM
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I use Cherry MX blues at home, but not in the office since they're so loud.
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:00 PM
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Poll added.

I use the provided membrane keyboard at work.
Have had a Razer Blackwidow ( Razer green switches --> Cherry Blue) since 2012.
Replacing that with a Corsair K70 (brown switches).

I can't imagine using a blue switch keyboard in the office unless I had a personal office. I could see myself getting a silent black switch mechanical keyboard for the office however.
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dancran1220 View Post
I can't imagine using a blue switch keyboard in the office unless I had a personal office.
Just imagine how it sounds on days like today when I'm more active than usual on the AO...
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:03 PM
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I don't need the click, it doesn't bug me, but it doesn't do anything for me. I can't imagine a situation where I'd need it, and I can imagine one where I wouldn't (eg typing while watching a movie).

I like a little resistance, but not tons. I modded a fight stick and put heavier springs in it (along with other things), and it was too much, so I went back to the default spring. So, I definitely don't need "extra" resistance.

I absolutely hate membranes though. One key gets messed up, and the whole things is useless. With mechanical it seems to be easier to fix a single broken key (assuming "broken" is due to getting wet, soda spilled on it, etc.).

I took my wife's laptop apart to clean the membrane and it had no affect. Keys still sticking.
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Old 04-08-2019, 03:04 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NerdAlert View Post

I'm not a gamer,
Please turn in your username and select a more appropriate one.
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